What Does a Structural Engineer Do?

What Does a Structural Engineer Do?

While it might sound like a specific job, the term “architectural engineer” is actually an umbrella term covers a number of different job roles. One type of job that falls under the architectural engineer umbrella is a structural engineer. While all engineers are trained to prioritize the safety of any construction project, structural engineers focus on building stability. Below, we cover three specific job duties of a structural engineer and how these duties might relate to a remodel or construction project.

Photo of a ruler on a blueprint.
The structural engineer will develop a design intended to ensure the structural stability of the construction project.

One of the most important duties a structural engineer performs is site analysis. Before any relevant demolition is performed, the structural engineer will visit a construction site, inspect the space, and take  measurements. Those observations and measurements, along with geographical and topographical information relevant to the site, will inform the calculations they need to perform in order to determine a safe structural plan for the construction site.

Once the structural engineer has all the information they need about the project, they will begin developing a design that offers adequate and code-compliant support. If the contractor has pulled permits for the project, these designs might go to the city for approval. Otherwise, the structural engineer will deliver their plans to the contractor. Additionally, they will often offer guidance for how the contractor should proceed with demolition and framing work to achieve the structural design plans.

As their designs are carried out by the general contractor or a subcontractor, the structural engineer will sometimes make site visits to inspect the progress on the project. Or, they may make a site visit once all the necessary work has been completed. Again, if the contractor pulled permits, a city inspector would likely take on the post-framing inspection role to ensure the work was completed in a way that ensures stability, safety, and compliance with municipal codes.

At Creative Innovation Developers Inc., we  are proud to offer architectural engineering services to our clients to ensure their homes are safe, durable, and able to withstand environmental hazards common to Southern California. If you’re interested in starting a project and want the advice of a structural engineer, get in touch with us today!