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Re: Are we slow these days?

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You said, "If any of you are doing small commercial buildings, low-rise,
4,000-16,000 sq. ft. or so, please email me privately."

I interpreted this as something more than would illicit an answer of "yes."

So I said, "Are you looking for someone registered in Texas?"  I wasn't
looking for work, merely asking a question that might ultimately lead to
some clarification concerning your need.  If you wanted to compare fees, why
didn't you say, "I'd like to compare fees."?  I don't think there's anything
illegal about discussing fees; only considered "price fixing" if an
organization like ASCE were to publish fee guidelines.

I calculate structural design fees based on methods that I cannot disclose
in public.  For the sized projects you've established, and assuming $100/sf
estimated construction cost:

If the project is an Aquarium, Airport Tower, Bank, Church or Chapel,
City/Town Hall, Clinic, Club (City or Country), College Building -
Specialized (eg:  Research Laboratory, Science Laboratory, Observatory,
Medical Facility, Theatre, etc.), Communications Building, Computer Center,
Concert Hall, Court House, Food Processing Center, Gallery, Hospital, Jail,
Laboratory, Library, Long-Term Care - Medical, Medical Facility, Mental
Health Center, Museum, Newspaper Building, Playground, Prison, Research and
Data Center, Restaurant or Cafeteria, School - Specialized (eg:  Exceptional
Children, Medical School), Synagogue or Temple, or Theatre, my structural
fee would be $4,880 - $16,480 (4,000 sf - 16,000 sf).

If the project is an Airport Terminal, Auditorium, Bowling Alley, Cinema,
College Building (eg: Classroom, Administration, Gymnasium, Dormitory,
Lecture Hall), Convent, Conventional Hall, Correctional Building, Department
Store, Dormitory, Firestation, Gymnasium, Long-Term Care - Residential,
Marina, Monastery, Mortuary, Nursing Home, Office Building - Specific
Occupancy (Medical tenants in Group B), Police Station, Post Office,
Recreation Building, School (Elementary, Jr. High, Sr. High), Shop or Store,
Stadium, Station - Bus or Rail, Swimming Pool, Veterinary Hospital, or YMCA,
my structural fee would be $4,520 - $15,040.

If the project is an Administration Building, Airport Hangar, Apartment,
Armory, Bakery, Factory, Gasoline Station, Home for the Aged (no treatment),
Hotel, Laundry, Motel, Office Building (undivided space), Plant (Aircraft,
Electronics, Manufacturing, Packing, Printing, Processing or other special
facilities), Sales Agency (auto, boat, motorcycle), Shopping Center
(undivided space), or Storage (cold), my structural fee would be $4,120 -

For structures such as Band Shell, Memorial, Monumental Structure,
Residence - Custom (one to four family units), Specialized Buildings
(extraordinary study in proportion to size and cost), Factory, Garage or
Parking Structure, Housing Development (extensive repetition), Loft
Building, Plant (no special facilities), Storage (ordinary), Warehouse
(ordinary), Fixtures and Equipment, Furniture and Furnishings, Interiors and
Displays, Restorations, Site Development, Specialized Buildings (clean
room), Technical Structure, or Zoo, my structural fee would be a multiple of
direct expenses.

John P. Riley, PE, SE
Riley Engineering


> Greetings, fellow strucs.
> Recently I posted a request of this list, asking for anyone who does small
> commercial buildings to give me a holler, that I needed to ask some
> questions.
> As it happened, I merely wanted to engage in an informal "price
> as I am in the process of evaluating my fees.
> I'm afraid I let some of you with the wrong impression thereby, and I
> apologize.
> I have since received many emails, a couple of faxes and even a telephone
> message, indicating that I had left the impression I was either looking
> someone to do a job, or looking to hire someone.
> Which leads me to the question: What is up out there? Have things slowed
> down to that extent now?
> Things seem to be pretty much the same as usual around here. In fact,
> protracted months of higher energy prices have been salutary to the
> energy-based economy here in Houston (which seems to be out-of-phase quite
> often with the rest of the country insofar as the business cycle is
> concerned).
> So, are things really slow, or is this just a result of my
> William L. Polhemus, Jr., P.E.
> Polhemus Engineering Company
> Katy, Texas
> Phone 281-492-2251
> Fax 281-492-8203

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