Construction Delivery Methods

A construction project is an inclusive process that includes planning, design and build. The best way to approach design and construction saving resources, time and money and at the same time improving and achieving comfort level in the building is having a clear construction delivery method for the project and involve the construction team in all stages of the Project.

So, let’s see which are the different roles that we can find in commercial construction:

1. Project Owner: This is the client of the prospective building or project and is responsible for securing the funds to develop the project.

2. Design Team: The project owner or developer engage directly or through a contracted construction manager, the services of building design professionals, to create and develop construction drawings and specifications of how the building is to be made and of what. Depending on the project and scope of work, the design team may include architects, mechanical and electrical engineers and design consultants.

3. Building Product Manufacturers and Suppliers: The owner usually hires a general contractor, who find different suppliers to provide the materials for the project.

4. Construction Manager: Hired by the project developer at the beginning of the project, providing input during the design stage and working directly with subcontractors to provide more realistic costs and timelines. They work on behalf of the owner overseeing the entire project from start to finish, planning, organizing and controlling all the activities of construction.

5. General contractors: Once construction begins, a general contractor oversees the process and is the prime contractor responsible for coordinating and managing daily activities.

6. Contractor or subcontractors: Hired by the general contractor or construction manager. They are responsible for performing many portions of the construction work, such as framing, carpentry, electrical, HVAC or plumbing work.

An owner wishing to complete a building facility, remodelling an old office or another type of Project, needs to choose which construction delivery method is suitable to complete the project at the lowest possible cost and on a realistic Schedule, achieving a good result in design and quality.

We already know the different roles in a construction project; now let’s take a look at the 3 most common delivery methods used to build commercial projects.

1. Design-bid-build: This is the most standard delivery Method. It involves the design and a construction team; responsibilities remain between these two through the completion of the project. This system consists of 3 stages:

  • The design: Which requires design services to create drawings and technical specifications.
  • The Bid: This is when the general contractor comes into the project to supervise the entire construction process.
  • The Build or Construction: Is when the construction phase begins. The design team continues to provide inputs and the subcontractor comes in to execute significant portions of work for the project.

This system provides a good understanding of responsibilities and direct communication between the owner and the design team.

2. Construction Management at Risk: In this Method, the Construction Manager commits to the entire project performance within a defined budget and schedule. The people involved are the design team and the construction manager who is chosen by the owner at the beginning of the project (design phase) and assumes the responsibilities of a general contractor.

3. Design-build: In This delivery Method, one entity (design-builder) assumes responsibility for both design (architectural/engineering/design) and the construction portion.

The advantages of this method are the single source of responsibility for all aspects of the project. Which allows for a better construction scheduling, cost and control.

Remember, the goal is to build efficient, healthy and sustainable buildings.

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