By Ethan Gibble
Blog contributed by Chip Kent.
Making good business investments has always been important, but it is perhaps even more so today as you consider where to spend your precious capital dollars. If you are considering spending those dollars to enhance, remodel, or re-image your Dining Service Areas, please be sure to carry out a comprehensive planning process.
The Starting Point
Prior to engaging your qualified, food facility design expert, be prepared to provide a written plan that should Drive your Design and provide the solutions that will best fit your budget!
- Identify all current and future trends that you may want to address; bring your team into the process
- Develop a desired menu and type of service
- Establish a ballpark budget so you don’t waste design time and dollars
- Model operational and staffing requirements for desired services
- Evaluate ability of current staff to perform certain skills
- Develop Financial Pro Forma of the venue—can your operating budget support this long-term?
- Identify food preparation functions that will be performed in the venue
- Discuss availability of kitchen areas to support the particular venue
- Establish desired traffic flow for diners and staff
- Identify structural and utility characteristics of the space
Now that you’ve outlined the basic Design Drivers, you can dream a little and let your imagination run wild. Be careful though, because this is where projects often times get sucked into the productivity death spiral. Symptoms of this scenario include lack of agreement among decision makers, numerous redesigns, and meetings that many times result in conclusions that were originally made.
Looking for a way to combat this classic pitfall? Consider 3D renderings and visualizations. Using state of the art computer modeling, a black and white line floor plan can be converted into a photorealistic image. For a relatively small investment, these renderings can quickly draw attention to design flaws and oversights. It also helps those who have a hard time visualizing the end result become comfortable with the design and gives them the certainty of what the finished product will look like!
Ask your food design expert if they offer rendering services. Most importantly—know and address your Design Drivers for a Successful Project Journey!