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the technical resource consultant....
"Design Oriented Architectural & Engineering firms" want to work with.

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More than
$5 billion in construction projects
in the last 6 years

 

 

NEWS:

NEW L.A. Area Office Location

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DTR Consulting Services has moved our Los Angeles Area Office to better serve our A/E Clients in the Southern California area. The new location provides for future growth and easier access to area freeways.

Overseeing this office is the Firm’s Managing Principal, Thomas Berger, RCI, CSI, CDT, SCIP.   In addition to running the new Phoenix Area Office, he is overseeing the expansion of this office.  DTR Consulting Services continues to work with Architectural and Engineering Clients in the Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego Area since early 2006.  This move allows DTR to build on our current client base and to expand our Firm to better serve our current and future A/E Clients.

Tom will be evaluating and recruiting the best new staff, the area has available.  He will be in charge coaching new staff members into the existing DTR Culture and provide training for both experienced and junior members in the DTR approach to serving our Architectural Clients. DTR will be looking to hire both Building Envelope Engineers, Specifiers and Quality Control Staff.

Michelson Dr

Please help us Celebrate this new Office Location…

 

Updated: Sept 2013

Industry News:

4 specs

Recently

Dynaflair Corporation - name change to Security Closures
Irwin Telescopic Seating Company - merged into Irwin Seating Co.
Compudyne - changed company name to Norment Security Group, had previously combined Norshield Security Products
Dynamic Lighting - name change to Amerlux Exterior
Alcan Composites USA - name change to 3A Composites USA
Oldcastle Glass is now Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope

Updated: January 03, 2011

Professional Events:

Conferences & Seminars

Contractor-Architect image

Green California Summit & Exposition- Sacramento, CA
April 19 - 20, 2011

AIA National Convention - New Orleans
May 12 - 14, 2011

CSI Construct 2011 - Chicago, IL
September 13 - 16, 2011

Cal Green Seminars - California
January thru April 2011

Updated: January 16, 2011

Frequently Asked Questions

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  1. Does DTR write specifications for product manufacturers?
  2. What is your experience with Rainscreens or Green Roofs?
  3. What makes DTR different from other independent specification writers?
  4. Do you carry Professional Liability Insurance ?
  5. We have a Door Hardware Manuafacture provide our specifications at no cost.  Can DTR provide the same service?
  6. Do you have Corrections/Detention project type experience?
  7. Does DTR perform Regulatory Plan Checks?
  8. How can a Consultant be better than an in-house Specification Writer/QC Person?
  9. We used an independent specification writer in the past, but when he/she was out sick, on vacation, out of town (or overloaded), our project went on hold and we were forced to complete their work. How is DTR different?.

Does DTR write specifications for product manufacturers?

  • No.  DTR Consulting Services clients are Architects & Engineers, not manufacturers. Our professional services are geared toward project specific specifications and other technical architectural/engineering services. There are many independent specification writers that do write specifications for manufacturers, however, we have always felt that it would be a conflict of interest to be doing both and have chosen to be above reproach.   We select or recommend products to our clients daily and felt that should always be done based on the merits of the product, not a financial incentive from the manufacture.  Lastly, DTR does not take any funds from any manufacturer, nor have we ever done so.  Not all specification writers can say the same.

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What is your experience with Rainscreens or Green Roofs?

  • DTR has widespread experience with both technologies. Rainscreens have become much more common, on all types of buildings, as more U.S. manufactures are bringing technology used for years in Canada and Europe. We have experience with many projects (both public & private) incorporating this principal using exterior materials from metal wall panels, glass wall panels, wood siding to composite skin materials. We recommend products manufactured in both the US and Canada.
  • As for green roofs, this has also received a greater acceptance, with many roofing and waterproofing manufactures making materials/systems available to help facilitate the design requirements. We have "tray systems" which can essentially be installed over a typical roofing applications (new or existing) to "Extensive" and "Intensive" green roofs which install "planting media", not dirt, over a series of material (System) with planting media installed on top deep enough to plant trees, or as the landscape design requires. DTR experience will help you make the right system selections and incorporate the proper language in the specifications to ensure proper installation and protection of the roofing system.

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What makes DTR different from other independent specification writers ?

  • First and foremost, we provide a full range of professional services, not just specification writing services and that reflects on the overall value of the team.  DTR’s Founder & Managing Principal, brought to the firm, a world of architectural/engineering and construction experience and a core philosophy that “it’s all about our clients”. 

    DTR is organized and operated much the same way our clients operate.  Our firm is comprised of many employees, not one or two who work out of their home.  Our clients can always reach someone in our commercial offices.  Multiple staff is assigned to each project to assure deadlines are met and quality assurance is maintained. 

    DTR Staff, each with specialized experience, continue to grow within our environment unlike any other firm. This is due in part because of our open studio atmosphere which fosters a collaborative approach in addition to both the volume and diversity of projects we are engaged in on a daily basis.  Therefore, our staff brings more experience, resources and knowledge to your project team than any other….

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Do you carry Professional Liability Insurance ?

  • Yes…  We carry highly rated professional liability (E&O) insurance, underwritten by subsidy of Lloyds of London. Typically our insurance meets the same levels of coverage as our A/E clients, as well as other liability insurance to meet all project needs.  Certificates of insurance are issued through our insurance broker on a project by project basis..
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We have a Door Hardware Manuafacture provide our specifications at no cost. Can DTR provide the same service ?

  • Most manufacturer (sales) representatives do offer these services, on a limited basis for free, or at least on the surface it appears free.  These folks are paid on commission and therefore have a strong interest in writing not only a proprietary (closed) specification, but also specify hardware that excludes competitors or components that guarantee their company obtains the highest profits.  We see this all the time.  Not only is this not complementary to your services to your client, but often is detrimental to your project in so many ways (too many to mention here).   Listing other manufacturers in Part 2 of their specifications does not mean that these specifications are open or non-proprietary. True hardware services should specify a product that works best for the intended use, not because there is a profit motivation.  These services should also include detailed coordination with the Architect’s and Security Consultant drawings/schedules with the availability to interact with your client’s facility staff, coordinate with door access security systems and other building components.  As an example, the client may want locks to be keyed alike or keyed to the building such as site access gates, knox boxes, rolling grilles, access panels, casework, etc.

    Lastly, if that manufacturer did not get the job, you're on your own when it comes to cross-referencing submitted hardware against that which was specified, questions submitted by the contractor or owner and fully liable for any and all mistakes made by the so-called-free consultant.

    If we provide these services, your specifications and drawings will developed around what is best for the project, specific uses of the openings and the requests of the building owner and architect. DTR will be there no matter who wins the bid and will be with you throughout the process. In a recent survey, door hardware caused more change orders and additional aggravation and lost time (profits) than many other building products. Yes… we can do it better.

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Do you have Corrections/Detention project type experience?

  • Yes…  DTR has worked on numerous projects throughout the US with various security levels, under various oversight agencies; coordinating requirements with the Jurisdictions.   Many projects with these needs include police stations, courthouses, border crossing stations, visitor centers, holding facilities, detention centers and on a more limited basis, hospitals. Because of the specialized nature of these areas, we always recommend an Architect/ Developer brings DTR on early in the planning process to assist with the design of the overall facility.

     

  • These types of projects are truly specialized construction.  DTR incorporate special requirements on contractors installing building components in these secure areas.  Because of possibility of severe injury to staff, the public, as well as detainees, Architects should include consultants in the early stages of the project.

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Does DTR perform Regulatory Plan Checks ?

  • No, not for regulatory authorities.  However, DTR’s “Complete Check” services do include review of code check compliance in many areas, but ultimately we provide a peer review/ constructability review of construction documents whereas we work with your firm to provide feedback that allows you to maintain an optimum level of quality.  In addition to identifying code issues, we identify many interdisciplinary coordination issues, identification of constructability issues, verify document references and verify that the owner’s facility building standards have been met.

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    Some reviews include field review to assist in the elimination of potential conflicts, thereby reducing the time consuming questions during construction and more importantly, eliminate potential change order claims.  Deliverables are purposely packaged to allow you to get information to your consultants quickly.  Unlike some Constructability Reviews by Construction Management firms, we simply yet thoroughly identify issues real issues.  We never pretend we are the Designer, Architect or Engineer by second guessing your design or material selection, nor do we tell engineers how to do their work.  We identify which disciplines, materials or components are in conflict with specific references and let your firm decide which corrective measure is appropriate.

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How can a Consultant be better than an in-house Specification Writer/QC Person ?

  • An independent consultant has the unique ability to look at your project with fresh eyes and may see a better approach to the details.  We can also focus on particulars with more intensity which may be skirted over by an in-house professional due to an overburdening workload and doing things the same way day in and day out. 

    We maintain an extensive product library and if need be, take the time to contact a product representative, one on one, based on our on-going relationship with many manufactures.  We are also aware of changes to existing and introduction of new products based on our volume of work with many designers throughout the Western U.S.  Our extensive knowledge base on Green Building products and installation requirements is backed by the more than 80 projects over the last few years that were pursuing LEED certification. This extra effort may help to determine if there something new and better on the market to specify on your project. 

    Lastly, as noted more extensively throughout the website, unlike the traditional in-house specification writer, project architect or construction manager, we work on more than 30 projects a year at a construction costs of near a $1B dollars.  Our staff routinely will obtain the knowledge and experience in a single year that an in-house individual would gain to over a six to eight year period.  Combine that with the resources and reference material we have from national licensed venues such as AIA MasterSpec, hundreds of manufacturer’s representatives, thousands of manufacturers manuals, LEED documents and the experience we gain from working with hundreds of project architects/ engineers, designers, consultants, cost estimators, geotechnical engineers, attorneys, building owners, contractors, printers, etc… we will produce better results reducing your staff manpower needs “improving your firm’s profitability”.

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We used an independent specification writer in the past, but when he/she was out sick, on vacation, out of town (or overloaded), our project went on hold and we were forced to complete their work. This is not acceptable.

  • DTR strives to maintain a balanced project schedule to make certain our clients work is given sufficient quality time in order to maintain delivery deadlines.  The assignment of multiple professionals on each project ensures that several people are in the loop so that answers to questions and issue resolution are handled promptly and efficiently.

    All firms needs to send its staff to educational seminars, training and out in the field.  If you are working with a one-person shop, working out of their home, you are going to run into issues.  DTR has the resources to move around manpower to cover its projects, assigns multiple people to the project that can also call on administrative staff to help facilitate less technical requests. 

    DTR understands that your reputation is on the line.  We have been on that side of the fence and understand the importance of having reliable consultants.  Larger consultants have more to bring to the table and can how the resources to pull you through...
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