Gidich + Sepulveda Architecture
Ho-Ho-Kus, New Jersey, Bergen(5 Reviews)
Gidich + Sepúlveda Architecture is a collaborative architecture & design company based in New York City. GSA was created by a small group of colleagues shortly after receiving undergraduate degrees in architecture from New York Institute of Technology. The company has since been involved in the construction, design, and production of projects across almost every medium, from digitally fabricated large-scale sculptures to interactive designs, to various residential-commercial projects, to international competition ranging through all architectural typologies. As the studio adjusted to a wide range of projects, we began to focus less on the medium and style and more on ideas.
As a studio, GSA embraces projects through a mix of research and ideas. On one hand, the studio is invested in projects that require significant research and experimentation. These projects provide a testing ground for us to help germinate a studio environment that is ripe with creativity. We take advantage of what we learn from these projects through the design of our more client-based work. The constraints of all projects are treated as opportunities that are tested through a collaborative studio environment with the hopes of solving typical problems in new ways, with new tools. Through the studio's unique blend of backgrounds as designers, artists, architects, and educators we are able to approach every project from a fresh perspective to create rich spatial, graphics, interactive and visual experiences. By mixing research, creativity, and technology with a strong desire to make working fun, GSA attempts to create new and unique experiences.
In 2013 - 2014 GSA was shortlisted in various international competitions that year, including both ONE Prize & eVolo skyscraper annual competition. The studio has also produced a wide range of design projects and collaborated with various artists, designers, publications and institutions including ONE Prize, The New York Times, eVolo Magazine, Surface Magazine, and New York Institute of Technology. The studio has also exhibited work in galleries throughout New York City. We continue to work on many projects in New York while taking on new projects and clients in Europe and Asia. At GSA we pride ourselves on forging close collaborative relationships with our clients with the goal of creating budget-conscious, yet distinctive designs that express the specific needs and identities of our clients.
Gidich + Sepulveda Architecture
1555, 188 E Franklin Turnpike, Ho-Ho-Kus, NJ 07423, USA
How can someone tell if their Garage is suitable for conversion?
Permits are required for most types of construction, and garage conversions are no exception. But permits are just the first step. You also need to take building ordinances into consideration as you are planning a conversion. For example, homes are required to have a certain number of covered off-street parking spaces, so if you eliminate your existing garage you may be required to build another garage or carport to satisfy this requirement. Local setback ordinances present another potential complication—if the resulting room would be too close to the property line, the city may not issue a permit. It is best to know the full scope of what is required and what is possible before you and your contractor begin to draw up any plans.
Run us through the different stages of the Garage conversion process - what's involved?
See above for the partial answer.
First Stage- Zoning/ Local Code Analysis to see if the garage can be converted to another use.
Second Stage- Will need to survey the space to see what are the pre-existing conditions (Structural footings + foundations/ Insulation/ structural integrity of the garage/ existing finishes/ HVAC + MEP
Third Stage- Architect/ Designer > Client meeting to go over what the scope of work will be.
Fourth Stage- Design Development Drawings (GC and/ or other consultants can be involved in this process as well)
Fifth Stage- Final Design Approval/ Construction Documentation for Permitting Submission
Sixth Stage- Permit Submission + Approval, Issued for Construction.
Final Stage(s) - Construction Administration > Completion of Project.
How can someone tell if their loft is suitable for conversion?
‘First, make sure you have enough space – as a general rule, your loft needs to be at least 6'-8" at the highest point, usually in the center. If you do not have this head-height, do not be put off, as there may be alternative solutions, one being to lower the existing first-floor ceilings. Where head-height is at a premium, ensure that the loft company will commit to lowering the new suspended loft floor structure as much as possible (in between the existing floor joists) to capitalize on every extra inch of space. In a property with ample head-height, the possibilities are endless, and you could gain at least two extra rooms.
‘A property’s age does not pose a real issue. If the weight of the new loft-floor steel structure is designed to be distributed on the outside fabric of the existing building, then the added weight of the conversion is simply lost via these external walls. If the loft is designed to use some of the internal walls, then the structural engineers could ask the loft company to expose the foundations to make sure the internal load-bearing walls are adequate to take the additional loads. Always ask for a new steel structure design to bear onto the external/party walls of the property.
‘When designing a loft conversion, deciding to change your existing roof shape to either a dormer or mansard is often the most important decision to make. Due to planning restrictions, no alterations (apart from adding rooflights) can be made to the front elevation or any side of your property that directly overlooks a public highway. However, if you can extend within permitted development rules, a dormer window to the rear will allow you to maximize floor space, as well as be creative with the amount of glazing you incorporate into your dormers, as an example.
Run us through the different stages in the loft conversion process - what’s involved?
1. The roof space is inspected for suitability
2. An architect or surveyor will confirm suitability and create plans
3. The loft is cleared and prepped
4. Rewiring is assessed
5. New floor joists fitted
6. Floors are insulated
7. Floorboards laid
8. Rafters reinforced
9. Dormers installed (if applicable)
10. Rooflights installed
11. Staircase fitted
12. Dormers tiled and vents fitted
13. Windows fitted in dormers
14. The roof is insulated
15. Partition walls erected
16. Wall plates and first fix
17. Electrics upgraded
18. Access panels for water, electric, and eaves storage
19. Walls are plasterboarded and architrave/skirting fitted
20. Bathrooms clad and extraction fitted
21. Second fix, heating, and finishes
What’s your interior design process?
step one - client consultation
During the programming phase, the client's needs and objectives are identified. Questions regarding the specific function(s) of the space, who will be using the space and furniture and equipment requirements will be discussed. Measurements and photos are also taken at this time.
step two - schematic design
In the schematic design phase, space planning and furniture layouts are developed. Circulation patterns and minimum clearances are considered and applied to the floor plan. Rough sketches and elevations are created, preliminary furniture and finish ideas are developed and then presented to the client for review and revision.
step three - design development
After final approval of the schematic design, the designer develops floor plans, elevations, and other related items in greater detail. Colors and finishes are refined, furniture, fabrics, and equipment are selected and cost estimates are prepared. The resulting design is presented to the client for review, revision and final approval.
step four - construction documentation
In the first phase, the specific details of the work to be completed are documented. These details include millwork specification, finish selections such as flooring and paint, lighting plans and fixture selection, plumbing location and fixture selection, and electrical layouts in regards to the total scope of work to be completed. In the second phase, bids are obtained, contractors selected, and purchase orders are issued.
step five - construction administration
This is the final stage where things are built and installed. The designer is often onsite during "installation" to ensure items are received in good condition, installed correctly, and that documents have been followed properly.
Which interior design styles can you cater for?
We can cater to any design style that the client desires. Co-currently we can also suggest interiors which the client(s) may gravitate towards but have our client 100% content is our primary goal.
What do you love most about your job?
What I (we) at GSA love most about our jobs, is that it is not a job. We genuinely love to design/ build/ document and more importantly discover new ideas/ people/ cultures through the process.
What inspired you to start your own business?
"To be in inspired is great but to INSPIRE others is what it's all about." With over 18 years experience working with other great architects/ designers; calling your own projects yours, is what drove us to start our own business.
Why should our clients choose you?
Very simple: we are a young firm/ competitive pricing but with that, we are the best at what we do. There is a very big importance to detail and ownership. Every project we work on is as if it were our own personal project. Our goal is to not leave the client a 100% satisfied but to deliver 120% and exceed their expectations.
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