Following the construction industry and related legal topics in the United States.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

"Design-Build Lite" May Lead to Trimmer Project Budgets

In the category of "I should have thought of that," the ENR reported on November 13, 2006, that a large mid-western contractor has tweaked the traditional design/build project delivery system by successfully applying it only to mechanical-electrical-plumbing (MEP), fire protection, or structural work. This approach has resulted in better pre-construction coordination, time and cost savings, and more satisfied builders and owners. Poor up front coordination and resulting field conflicts can result in large claims by owners and contractors alike stemming from the cost of inefficiencies and delays. This hybrid approach may eliminate that risk.

James McHugh Construction Co. in Chicago has achieved good success after having completed 12 such projects. It's Senior Vice President observed that the process "resolves potential conflicts during the construction phase and helps accelerate the preconstruction process." Control is important, as is excellent communication among the architect, contractor and owner.

The jury's in on Design-build lite and it should definitely be considered as an option on large or complicated projects. It makes great sense. (This entry was published by Laura Luger of Womble Carlyle's construction and real estate development group.)


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