If you’ve been following The Douglas Company process in my previous blogs, you have a schematic design and a guaranteed maximum price that fits your program and budget. So what next?
The obvious solution is to proceed with design, permits, and then start construction, but that would be a mistake. To hit a schedule and a budget is much more complex. The Douglas Company recommends the following:
- First, develop a preconstruction schedule that includes everything required-design, all of the permits, financing milestones, and pricing. Assign people responsible for this to ask so that it can be tracked in weekly conference calls.
- Next, schedule weekly conference calls. These are to review design questions and the project pre-construction schedule.
- Determine the frequency of drawing check set reviews. The design can get away from the project team if all eyes aren’t looking at the drawings to determine that they are right and economical
- Keep track of changes. The architect or the owner might suggest changes that they want. These should be priced as the design is progressing so that the owner can determine for certain whether they want them, and so that the overall budget can be tracked.
- When the drawings are complete, rebid the project giving 100% of the savings to the owner. It’s possible to get reduced prices with complete drawings as many of the uncertainties are removed. But if earlier pricing was accurately and aggressively done, the savings should not be great.
If all this is done, the drawings should be completed and permitted to a budget and to a schedule, assuring best value to the developer and a successful project.
Peter Douglas, P.E.
The Douglas Company
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