Get to know us a little better.

What is DGA?

d. graham ARCHITECTURE inc. operates out of Sidney, BC. delivering services in specification writing, product evaluation including ‘green’ products and sustainable design for architectural firms and other members of the construction community including building owners.

Our firm also develops Master specifications for offices and government agencies.


In today’s complex, changing construction industry, a competent specifier is a vital part of the Design Team
— Construction Specifications Canada (CSC)

What is a Spec?

If drawings tell us where building materials are placed and how big they are, the technical specifications provide all other aspects of the building, but mostly specify quality - the Work result.

Technical Specs

Technical specifications are organized according to Masterformat, a widely used North American format for consistent organization and numbering of the project manual.

These documents are numbered Division 02 - Division 49 and known in the project manual as technical sections. These sections include the work results and product standards expected to be carried out by the Contractor.

The front end

We also write administrative, procedural and temporary requirements specification sections, known in Masterformat as Division 01.

Simply, Division 01 outlines the duties, responsibilities and serves as an agreement between the building’s Owner, the Consultants and the Contractor.

Generally, we use the Canadian Construction Document Committee (CCDC) documents as a basis for defining these roles, however other methods and standard documents can differ.

WHo needs a spec?

Today, the building and construction process is complex, involving many moving parts and requiring people with very different sets of skills to work closely as a team.

This team generally consists of:

  • an Owner

  • a Client or Tennant

  • Design Professionals

  • Contractor(s) and Sub-Contractors

The project team is supported by a myriad of advisors and other consultants such as financiers, insurers and legal counsel.

The Specification Consultant

This is where a having a Specification Consultant prepare contract documents and technical specifications becomes invaluable. A specifier is able to review drawings and construction details in concert with specifications to investigate and even advise on product selection.

In short, the Specification Consultant conveys a message to people responsible for constructing a project by rephrasing the requirements clearly, simply, and unambiguously, using words that do not require a dictionary or legal consultant to decipher.

It is the job of the specification writer to research technical information about products and materials, absorb the information presented on drawings and interpret the Owner’s requirements to build a simple document that each and every team member can understand.