Architectural Terms

Learn standard nomenclature and abbreviations used on Frank Betz Associates house plans.
  • Architectural Abbreviations and Definitions

    WC - West Coast lumber

    BTR - better

    R/L - random length

    SPF - spruce pine fir

    SYP - southern yellow pine

    KS - Knee Space

    PAN - Pantry

    WIC - Walk in Closet

    FPL- Fireplace

    WD - Washer/Dryer

    Surf Unit- Surface Unit

    DW - Dishwasher

    REF - Refrigerator

    VLT - Vaulted Ceiling

    PDR - Powder Room

    PDS - Pull-down stairs

  • 1 1/2 Story Home

    A home with one full lower level and a partial upper level. The majority of these homes have the master suite on the first floor.

  • Tray Ceiling

    A decorative ceiling treatment used to add volume and/or height to a room. 2 Common types are: 1) Angled area toward the center leading to a flat ceiling surface, and 2) Stepped square edged leading toward the center of the ceiling.

  • Vaulted Ceiling

    A ceiling that angles upward on one or both sides to create volume in the room.

  • Coffered Ceiling

    A ceiling with recessed square panels, bordered with trim for ornamental purposes.

  • Barrel Vault

    A vaulted ceiling of semi-circular shape, creating a dome-like appearance.

  • Niche

    A recess in a wall, usually designed to contain ornamental statues or other decorations.

  • Transom Window

    A horizontal, rectangular window placed directly above a door window. These small windows are often sectioned by trim and allow additional light to enter the home when placed above an exterior window. When placed above interior doors, the purpose of transoms is usually ornamental.

  • Radius Window

    A window with an arched top.

  • Plant Shelf

    A decorative feature approximately 8 feet above the floor, normally associated with volume ceilings that add high spaces/shelves to use for decorative purposes.