What Is a Design-Build Construction Contract?

What is Design-Build Meaning?

For starters, let’s discuss: what is “design-build”’s meaning? According to the Design Build Institute of America, design build is the fastest growing movement in the large-scale construction industry. 

The Problem with the Traditional Build Method: 

Under traditional project delivery, the owner manages two separate relationships: one with the designer, and one with the builder. The problem with this is that if anything goes wrong, the designer blames the builder and the builder blames the designer, and the owner has to act like a mediator between the two, desperately trying to get their project completed while maintaining working relationships with two warring parties. This leads to cost overruns, schedule changes, and, in the worst cases, litigation.

What is the Design-Build Method?

On design-build construction projects, the owner only has one point of contact–a “design builder”. The designer and the contractor work in tandem, under the same contract, not different contracts, and they are a team. Because of this, all that they do is on a unified front. There are no pointed fingers and shifting blame, because the group that is responsible for the build is a single entity. 

This single-source design-build concept is the essence of collaboration, and the future of construction on a large scale. No more separate contracts, but everything operating on the design-build project delivery schedule.  

What does Design-Build Mean for Electrical Construction?

According to “Design Build Methods for the Electrical Contracting Industry,” a research project conducted for Electric International—The Foundation for Electrical Construction Inc, more than 75% of electrical contractors saw increased profitability using this new design-build model. 

In practice, what happens when electrical contractors are working under Design-Build, they are working collaboratively with the designer, as well as all of the other contractors who will be working on a project. There will be no situations (if all goes to plan) where one contractor discovers that another contractor is doing something against the plan, where there will be slowdowns, and where there will be schedule overruns. 

This project management from the top down leads to cost savings because the team work that exists under a single contract under the design-build approach paves the way for a smooth operation for all involved. The design-build process will definitely be a boon for electrical engineers. 

At Cache Valley Electric we focus on excellence—the highest quality work always completed with integrity, performance, and precision.