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Design Build

 
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Old 07-31-2015, 08:16 PM   #1
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Design Build


I have a question-
When a design build contract is awarded and the plans are finished what ensures that the customer gets fair value? In other words what stops the contractor from designing poor quality or cheap portions of the design so as to pocket more $ What ensures the project appraises for what it cost to build it where there weren't any plans finalized until after the contract was awarded?
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Old 07-31-2015, 09:09 PM   #2
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Re: Design Build


I've been on the sidelines of a couple of successful design build projects and a couple of failed ones. In both of the good ones, the owner (or owner's rep in one case) had a strong, long-term relationship with someone on the builder's side, and the owner didn't mind paying some extra to get additional back and forth on the design.

In the bad cases, one owner had chosen design-build out of some sense that it would be fashionable, and the other because it was "the right way to do that kind of project." In neither case did the owner have a close relationship with the builder, and both projects ended up in court.

The two that were successful were cost-plus, and went waaaaaay over budget.

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Old 07-31-2015, 09:52 PM   #3
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Re: Design Build


It just seems to me that the client is completely at the mercy of the contractor. The client contracts for x amount and the contractor designs and builds them what he feels like.
Obviously the design has to meet the programming but the programming is pretty loose as far as details go.
I'm just watching my town get raped on our city hall build. Right off the excavator was 40k under what was budgeted so immediately the contractor was 40k over budget on the footings. He agreed to get 3 bids (his being one) but the other bids were from company's 300 miles away and were outrageous (of coarse). He refused to get more bids and did the footings himself- at about $65 a foot. All the local foundation guys would have done them at $12 a ft.
It was an obvious move to grab the 40k he saw laying on the table.
I know there's corruption at all levels of government but damn! It Pisses me off to see it at home. That's why I'm running for city council this November. Someone needs to throw a wrench in this corrupt machine
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Old 08-01-2015, 12:29 AM   #4
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Re: Design Build


Construction companies make a lot of money off of building public projects. The deal around here usually goes some group of citizens decide a new building is needed. The PD, FD, school, or whatever is all for it - they like new buildings, too. The local construction guys are all for it, for obvious reasons. So, it's off for a study - a key goal of the study is to come up with a number that voters will approve.

SO, now there's is money and contingency budget in the event of overruns. Time to get the bids and choose who does what. This has already been worked out by the contractors - one of the keys to successful group pie baking is for everyone to know who gets what slice before the pie is baked.

OK, time for the actual build. Wait - the soil has been disturbed - we have to do a lot more site work (as if the houses with full cellars that had to be demo'd out wasn't a clue). OOPS! We hit ledge - that's going to cost a lot more. I guess the rock outcroppings on 2 sides might have meant something after all...

It's pretty much in everyone's interest to spend as much as possible without getting the boot from the taxpayers. There are some very cozy relationships between the building community and local officials. especially at the higher levels

Regarding design / build, the AIA has some information on their website as to how they think it should go from the architect's view. It's interesting
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Old 08-01-2015, 01:10 AM   #5
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Re: Design Build


Look into public spending any where, any time, under any political system, and you will find the same thing. Design-build might make it a little easier, but isn't really the culprit.
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Old 08-01-2015, 07:07 AM   #6
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Re: Design Build


City should have an owner's agent to ensure they are getting what they paid for.

If the city contracted for a specific dollar amount and he's still tracking there (regardless of some lines being over or under), I don't see the harm. No promises are made that the build will come in under budget. I'm in this industry to make money.

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