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On-Site Training - Design Build Contracting

Design Build Contracting (pdf)


Purpose and Background

In the last decade, the Design Build (DB) method of contracting has been increasing steadily. Since 1982, the volume of domestic DB contracts has grown from $6 billion to $56 billion and now represents 23 percent of the non-residential U.S. market. Both private and public owners are using this method to accrue savings in both costs and time by streamlining the project delivery process. The Department of Defense Non-appropriated Fund projects showed savings of 18% in costs and 14% in time (DBIA, 1996).

A Florida DOT study found that DB projects change order costs were reduced to only 1.99% of award cost compared to DBB cost growth of 8.78%. The study also showed that average DB construction time was 21.1% shorter, and most strikingly, actual DB procurement times (i.e. from concept to turnover) were 54% shorter than conventional projects. To achieve these returns, the DB project concept must be well developed, and the design process must be totally coordinated with the construction. This seminar will help you to understand the dynamics of this innovative process and will impart the technical management skills you will need to capitalize on DB's potential.

This seminar is a series of learning modules that have been developed to break down the DB decision-making process into its component steps and reassemble it into a straightforward, logical methodology for the development of DB projects from the owner's standpoint. The seminar will alternate between lecture/discussion periods and short, high-impact team exercises that are designed to reinforce the preceding lecture's learning objectives. Additionally, case studies of actual DB projects will be used to illustrate many of the seminar's points.

Seminar Benefits

  • DB risk versus DBB risk: Participants will assess the exposure the owner has to typical types of risk inherent to the design/construction process. Through discussion and evaluation, they will develop an understanding of differences in contract administration practices that must be made to implement DB as a project delivery method.
  • Scoping the DB project in functional terms: The idea that DB allows the owner to compete innovative design solutions will be introduced. Participants will learn to develop definitive performance criteria to describe the project in functional terms that permits industry to propose creative design solutions without a loss in owner control over the form of the final product.
  • DB RFQ/RFP preparation and evaluation planning: Before an RFP can be written, the owner's representative must know how proposals will be evaluated to ensure that the right combination of information and technical data is requested from potential DB contractors. The concept of optimizing the combination of cost, time, qualifications, and quality will be shown to provide the participants with a model from which to develop realistic DB proposal evaluation plans. The pieces of the DB RFP will be covered in detail, and participants will learn to correlate the project scope and the evaluation plan to write an unambiguous RFP.
  • DB Proposal Preparation: RFP interpretation and proposal preparation strategy will be covered to furnish participants with a foundation on which to make the critical "Bid-No Bid" decision for DB projects

Summary Outline

Earn 1.4 Continuing Education Units (1.4 CEUs)

  • Pre-Award Phase
  • Introduction to Design-Build
  • Scoping the Project
  • Writing Performance Criteria
  • Performance Criteria Writing PE
  • Discussion of PE
  • Preparing DB RFQs and RFPs and evaluation plans
  • DB RFP Case Study and Discussion
  • Post-Award Phase
  • DB Project Proposal Preparation
  • DB Proposal Evaluation
  • DB Contract Administration
  • DB Quality Assurance/Quality
  • Control (QA/QC)
  • QA/QC Case Study & Discussion
  • DB Progress Payments
  • DB Fast-Track Issues

Who Should Attend

This course is designed for owners, construction managers, contractors, and engineers and architects who represent owners wishing to procure a project using Design Build Large public and private owners who have in-house technical expertise and contract for their own design and construction services.

Seminar Instructors

Douglas D. Gransberg, Ph.D., P.E., CCE, FRICS, M.ASCE, is the Donald and Sharon Greenwood Professor of Construction Engineering at Iowa State University. He received both his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Civil Engineering from Oregon State University and his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is a registered Professional Engineer in Oklahoma, Texas and Oregon, a Certified Cost Engineer, a Designated Design-Build Professional and a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors in the UK. Before moving to academia in 1994, he spent over twenty years in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers retiring at the rank of lieutenant colonel. In his final posting, Professor Gransberg was the Europe District's Area Engineer stationed in Ankara, Turkey where he managed an annual design and construction program that exceeded $200 million. He teaches courses in integrated project delivery, cost estimating, project controls, and project management. His research is centered in the delivery of infrastructure/ transportation projects. Dr. Gransberg is currently leading the effort to develop the AASHTO Guidelines for CMGC project delivery and Guidebook for Alternative Quality Management. He was also one of the co-authors of the AASHTO Guide for Design-Build Contracting.

Keith R. Molenaar, Ph.D., A.M.ASCE is an Associate Professor with the Construction Engineering and Management (CEM) Program in the Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is responsible for teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in construction. His research focuses on alternative delivery strategies for constructed facilities and infrastructure. He has conducted design-build and project delivery research for the US General Services Administration, the Federal Highway Administration, the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials and other public and private agencies. With funding from the National Science Foundation and participation from 56 Federal, State and Local agencies, Dr. Molenaar developed a Web-based advisory system to aid public sector agencies in successfully implementing design-build delivery of constructed facilities. Upon completion of his B.S. in Architectural Engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder, Dr. Molenaar worked for Architectural Resource Consultants, Inc. where he specialized in pre-construction planning for owners and designers. Dr. Molenaar then received his M.S. and Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is a Designated Design-Build Professional. Before returning to the University of Colorado as a faculty member, Dr. Molenaar was employed as an assistant professor in the Construction Engineering and Management program in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Dr. Molenaar is currently Subcommittee Chair of Member Education for the Design-Build Institute of America's (DBIA) Education Committee and an active member of the DBIA Infrastructure Committee. He was recognized with the Distinguished Academic Leadership Award by the DBIA in 2000. He is currently the Secretary for the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Construction Research Council. He is also a member of the Construction Management Association of America (CMAA) and the Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering International (ACCE)

Contact Information 

All of ASCE's face-to-face seminars are available for On-Site Training. For details and/or needs-based training programs, please complete the online request form or contact:

John Wyrick
Senior Manager, On-Site Training Worldwide
ASCE Continuing Education
1801 Alexander Bell Drive
Reston, VA 20191-4400
Tel.: 703-295-6184
Lauren Obermeier
Senior Coordinator, On-Site Training Worldwide
ASCE Continuing Education
1801 Alexander Bell Drive
Reston, VA 20191-4400
Tel.: 703-295-6432

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