Redline vs. Plan Sets

October 3, 2023

collection of blueprints for ready for redline review and plan sets

When entering any industry, it’s important to learn all of the specialized terminology. In structural engineering and architecture, one crucial aspect of this is understanding what a redline review entails and how it differs from a structural plan set. 

What Is a Redline Review?

Picture an engineer reviewing blueprints for a house and using a red pen to show that a window needs to be moved three feet to the left. This mark is a redline, communicating a change that must be made before construction begins.

Often, architects, builders, or designers create their own structural designs where they determine the sizes of footers, joists, beams, posts, and other components for a particular project. Subsequently, if they lack the expertise needed to analyze and validate the structural engineering components of that project, they send their designs to Spoint1. We then conduct a redline review and meticulously assess what they’ve sent us. We ensure the proper placement of each component and analyze the sizes to confirm the integrity is suitable for the anticipated loads. This process helps to guarantee safety and compliance.

Examples of a Redline

Imagine a scenario where a homeowner designs an addition for their house, including the placement and size of load-bearing support beams. At Spoint1, our redline review examines these plans to verify their structural soundness and avoid any potential safety issues.

What Is a Structural Plan Set?

This is a comprehensive collection of drawings, documents, and specifications that provide detailed instructions for construction. It encompasses all aspects of a project, from the foundation to the roof. Unlike redlines, which focus on changes and modifications, structural plan sets are complete guides for builders.

At Spoint1, we receive architectural designs from architects, builders, or remodelers. Our role is to develop and draft the necessary structural sheets required for a comprehensive permit plan set. We handle all aspects of structural engineering, starting from the ground up. Our services encompass drafting and specifying critical components, such as foundations, wall framing, roof framing, floor systems, beams, posts, and load evaluations. Through the creation of a structural plan set, we can ascertain whether an architect’s design is sound and capable of supporting the intended loads.

What is an As-Built Plan Set?

A third component of design is an as-built plan set. This represents a floor plan of an existing structure, illustrating dimensions and conditions, along with sections and elevations of the building before any proposed additions or renovations begin.

These are required for every permit submission that involves an addition or remodel undergoing the permitting process. These plans serve a dual purpose by providing valuable insights to both structural engineers and builders, helping them understand the project’s scope and existing conditions.

Key Distinctions: Comparing Redline Reviews and Structural Plan Sets

It’s crucial for those in the architecture and structural engineering industries to understand the differences between a redline review and a structural plan set. A redline review involves customers drafting and then submitting structural sheets with component sizes for review. Structural plan sets on the other hand are provided by Spoint1, encompassing the drafting of structural sheets and the calculation of component sizes. This latter approach is more comprehensive and ultimately better for ensuring performance and safety.

Are you ready to streamline your project’s success? Contact Spoint1 Engineering today for expert guidance on redline reviews, structural plan sets, and more.  Let us help you ensure your project is structurally sound and up to code!