A design-build delivery approach can offer many benefits for both owners and contractors. Here are a few key things you should know about this process.
What Does the Process Actually Involve?
Design-build in construction is an approach to the design and construction process that allows the owner, design professionals, and contractor to work together as a team from the very beginning of a project.
Here, there's no need for a separate design phase followed by a separate construction phase. Instead, design-build allows the design and construction teams to work together from start to finish. It is seen as an alternative to the more traditional design-bid-build method and has continued to gain in popularity in recent years.
The Main Advantages
One of the reasons design-build has become popular is that it can save time and money since the design and construction phases are compressed into one. This can eliminate the need for a separate design phase and the associated costs, such as design development and construction fees. It also means that construction can begin sooner, even before the design phase is complete.
The design-build also reduces the overall risk for the owner. With the traditional design-bid-build approach, the owner contracts separately with the design professional and the contractor. This can create a situation where each party is more concerned with protecting their own interests rather than working together for the good of the project.
However, under design-build, all parties work together from the start towards a similar goal. This arrangement ensures that everyone is on the same page and that the project is completed according to the owner's vision.
Are There Any Challenges?
The design-build process is not without its challenges. For starters, it may be difficult to find a design-build team that is a good fit for your project. The process requires a high level of trust and cooperation between the parties involved. But if you work with an experienced design-build firm, this should not be a problem.
Take some time to interview potential design-build firms and make sure that you are comfortable with their team. Once you've found the right firm, you can be confident that your project is in good hands.
Also, because design-build compresses the design and construction phases into one, there is less opportunity to make changes during construction. The design is essentially set in stone once construction begins.
This can be an advantage or a disadvantage, depending on your point of view. On the one hand, it can lead to a more efficient construction process. On the other hand, any design changes that need to be made will likely be more expensive.
Overall, design-build offers many advantages, but it's important to weigh the pros and cons before you decide if it's the right approach for your project. But when done right, a design-build approach can be a great way to get your project completed on time and on budget.