LICENSED RESTAURANT DESIGNERS & ARCHITECTS
Each country, state, county has dramatically different codes and
laws governing design and architecture. As a result, the
permitting process for a new project can take from a few weeks
to several years. Navigating through this mineﬁeld of bureaucracy
can be challenging. Ultimately, all restaurant design plans must
be submitted to these boards via a licensed architect. They must
be “signed and sealed,” meaning a senior licensed architect has
reviewed the design, the architecture and the mechanical,
electrical and plumbing plans (often referred to as the MEP*).
The location of your selected consultants is less important
than specialization. This process can and often is completed
at a distance (i.e. architects in New York creating buildings in
Dubai, or a specialized restaurant designer in Orlando doing a
project in Mexico, or wherever).
That said, it is often advised for complex projects to also
retain a local architect who is familiar with the codes in
some jurisdictions and has the relationships to physically
“walk the plans through permitting.” Although it shouldn’t be
the case, the “locals” sometimes get special treatment.
Familiarization with local codes and ofﬁcials, however,
shouldn’t be more important to you than the big picture in
your selections. We recommend hiring locals to augment
the team on bigger projects, not to necessarily run them.
We have several licensed architects we have worked with
and can recommend. We also serve as advisors and
project-lead for restaurant concept development in
articulation with your own selected licensed designer.
*[NOTE: Aaron Allen does not represent himself as a licensed interior designer or licensed architectural ﬁrm. We are restaurant design “consultants” specializing in overall restaurant design strategy,
branding, concept development and comprehensive integration of projects as Restaurant Consultant.]
© 2014, Aaron Allen