Delving into the commercial kitchen world

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And what a vast world it is! Week two begins in the midst of the research phase. There is a lot of information to gather in a short amount of time – we have a review with the client this Friday. Over the weekend we were each assigned a certain topic to focus on, including DHEC regulations, possible construction methods, kitchen layouts, and general site analysis. I developed the graphic guidelines for the studio which will inform our future presentations. These guidelines will allow our group to work independently on project files throughout the semester while maintaining a unified and consistent look.

We met today to discuss the research gathered over the weekend. Though we are making progress, there is still much to be done. The kitchen is a unique project because of the scale of construction we are undertaking. Past Studio V projects have been semi-enclosed structures with large open-air components, but our project will need to be fully enclosed due to the nature of the program. This presents significant construction challenges. We are aiming to build as much of the structure as possible at our facilities, then transport pieces and assemble the full structure on site. During the next few days, we will generate an abundance of possible site designs and kitchen layouts to help steer the direction of our design, in addition to furthering our initial research.

As we start diving into the project, it’s important to continually remind ourselves that we have no idea what we are doing. Most of us have limited knowledge of commercial kitchen design (our professor included), and many students have little to no construction experience. We’re going to have to engage with the client, the target audience, professionals, officials, and each other if we are going to succeed in making this kitchen to the best of our ability. The entire semester will be an unpredictable journey, but also a great learning experience. I can’t wait to see where this project takes us.

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