Water Design Build Council Blog

Managing Risks in Design-Build Delivery

Posted by Mark Alpert, Water Design-Build Council Executive Director on Thu, Sep 22, 2016 @ 05:25 PM

Findings in the research study of "Lessons Learned from Owners Using Design-Build Project Delivery" emphasizes that the key to successful design-build projects is an active and continuous collaboration between and owner and the selected project team.

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Topics: design-build

Optimizing Power and Control Solutions on Collaborative-Delivery Projects

Posted by Christopher Peta, Schneider-Electric on Mon, Sep 12, 2016 @ 03:17 PM

Delivering maximum value to the owner, at minimal cost, is the key to success of any collaborative-delivery project.

This value can be measured in many ways, including long-term cost of ownership, initial capital cost, the effectiveness of the solution, reliability and resiliency; and, in our current global environment, the safety and security of the installation and the people running it.

No stage in a project poses more risk for delays and cost overruns than the startup of a plant, specifically with the control systems. These risks can be significantly minimized through the expertise and knowledge of a technology partner (to the contractor or owner) that can optimize controls design, minimize construction and installation time, and reduce the complexity of bringing multiple vendors together in the late stages of a project. Such a partner should have extensive water/wastewater expertise in addition to SCADA, instrumentation and control (I&C), electrical and software technologies and capabilities.

Having an integrated power and controls solution, with fewer interfaces, has repeatedly proven success in collaborative-delivery projects. A dedicated project manager that leads the owner’s integrated team from the earliest stages of design conceptualization, through equipment manufacturing, delivery, and startup, has also proven critical to a project’s success.

In today’s technology environment where the subject of connectivity is of paramount importance, the industrial internet of things (IIoT) presents even more new opportunities for effective and efficient operations. At the same time, and unfortunately, it also brings new challenges, as the convergence of information technology and operational technology can make a plant very susceptible to cyber-attacks. Navigating this convergence, and implementing cyber-security measures within the control design, is without a doubt, a mandatory task.

Finally, the ability to design and implement technologies and systems that connect the plant team (management, operations, maintenance) with these critical operations procedures and historical data, together with using proven technologies will ultimately lead to safe, efficient, and cost-effective operations throughout the plant’s lifetime.

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Topics: Collaborative Project Delivery

What Are the Financial Trends of Municipalities in Funding Water and Sewer projects?

A featured topic of discussion at the recent August ACEC Environment & Energy Committee meeting was Identifying Financial Trends from Federal, State, and Private/Public Partnership (P3) sources. Committee members sought to gain insight and perspective from other groups and organizations also in attendance (Council of Mayors, WDBC, engineering and financial firms).

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Topics: Wastewater Infrastructure, Education, ACEC, municipal water

What Stimulates Innovation in Design-Build Projects?

Posted by Kevin D. Waddell, P.E. Estimating Manager - Civil | Foley Company on Mon, Aug 22, 2016 @ 10:30 AM

Innovation, what is it? Change, alteration, ingenuity, inventiveness. These are all words that describe the process and results of being innovative. 

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Topics: Black & Veatch, water design-build project

The Principles of Open-Book Pricing

Posted by Leofwin Clark, WDBC President and CH2M Vice President on Wed, Aug 17, 2016 @ 08:30 AM

Several of our industry’s best collaborative-delivery methods— namely construction management at-risk (CMAR) and progressive design-build — rely on an open-book process for developing cost and pricing during preconstruction.

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Topics: CMAR, design-build

Design-Build in the Industrial Sector

As we observe the growth of design-build as a project delivery method in the municipal water market, I am reminded that our industry was a late adopter of collaborative delivery. In those early days of delivery method evaluation, some of us would point to the success achieved in the industrial markets using design-build as a reason to consider “alternative project delivery” in the design-bid-build world of water. But what is the reality of the industrial design-build market? 

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Topics: risk allocation, design-build, best practices, Collaborative Project Delivery

How Much Risk Should an Owner Transfer to a DB Firm on Their Project? 

One of the benefits of collaborative project delivery is that it allows owners to transfer risks to the design-builder that they would normally have to retain in a standard design-bid-build project delivery framework; however, owners should resist the temptation to divest themselves of all project risk and transfer everything to the design-builder.

Rather, owners should carefully weigh the cost/benefit of risk transference and develop a project risk allocation strategy.

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Topics: risk allocation, design-build, water design-build project

The North Davis Sewer District Biosolids Progressive Design-Build Project

With Utah’s population expected to nearly double by 2050, several of the biosolids treatment processes at or over capacity, and outdated technology hampering overall efficiency, North Davis Sewer District (“the District”) needed to expand and improve its facility.

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Topics: Collaborative Project Delivery

Design-Build Delivery: Not Just for 'Big' Water Projects

Quite often, many of the examples of publicized projects about design-build delivery are larger projects – which is not always an accurate representation of what is going on in the industry. For instance, a few months ago, I was partaking in my normal perusing of Google alerts for online items relating to projects in the water sector, when I spotted an intriguing newspaper headline from a small Ohio village.

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Topics: design-build

The Common Language between Utilities of the Future and Design-Build Delivery

This piece was originally published here on April 1, 2016.

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Topics: Collaborative Project Delivery