Design-build-operate (DBO) offers an important expansion of the design-build (DB) project-delivery method for the water and waste-water industry. DBO comprises all of the components of DB -- including design, permitting, procurement, construction, and testing -- and also includes operation and maintenance (O&M) of the completed facility. Thus, the delivery of the project and services provided to the owner do not end at final acceptance; services continue through a defined operational term.
Water Design Build Council Blog
In furthering its ongoing research program, the Water Design-Build Council (WDBC) is seeking information identifying any type of federal project that has specifically used progressive design-build as its delivery method.
The Hopewell Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility (HRWTF) is a 50 million gallon per day (mgd) secondary wastewater treatment plant, currently treating an annual average flow of approximately 27 mgd of combined wastewater from local industries and domestic sources.
In 2013, the city of Venice, Florida needed to retrofit its existing Reverse Osmosis (RO) 4.4 mgd, water treatment plant with new RO membrane skids that could meet the existing total dissolved solids (TDS) and flow conditions. To accomplish this task, the plant also needed to have the flexibility to decrease well withdrawals by second stage treatment and increase capacity without increasing well withdrawals through increased recovery.
As a result, the city’s overall goal for the project was to optimize the existing (treatment) system for the future and get the best performance out of the membranes by installing new pumps, cartridge filters, upgrading the clean-in-place system; and providing a new state-of-the-art fully automated SCADA system.
These “Recommended Guidelines for Best Practices,” Produced by the Water Design-Build Council, summarize the directions provided in the 3rd Edition of the Municipal Water and Wastewater Design-Build Handbook.
The dramatic need for repairing and replacing the nation's water infrastructure was spotlighted last week across the U.S. by numerous organizations. But, this is not the first time, nor will it be the last!
The Technical Challenge
The City of Goodyear, Arizona, is one of the fastest growing communities in the U.S. with an average annual growth rate of 15 to 20 percent. With growth exceeding the existing infrastructure capabilities, the City developed a program to quickly grow their potable water delivery capacity. The brackish groundwater from local perched aquifers also required treatment for potable use in most cases.
A major advantage for utility and agency owners who chooses a design-build procurement process is the flexibility to optimize overall project risk to reduce cost and schedule. In contrast with design-bid-build procurement, owners are limited by the contracting approach and regulations that separate responsibilities for design and construction, and do not value overall performance.
Tags: risk allocation
In Engineering News-Record's March 30 Editorial on “Covering Risks in Design-Build” delivery, a representative of the Association of General Contractors posted the question as to whether “design-build projects were introducing industry contractors to risks for which they are unprepared?” While AGC’s statements are directed to those in the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing industries – they can seriously misconstrue and/or misinterpret the successful achievements of allocating risks in water design-build projects contracts.
Tags: risk allocation
As I reflect on this year's DBIA conference, I was encouraged by the dialogue between owners and practitioners during the General Session “Finding Common Ground Through Best Practices.” The open and candid discussion centered heavily on the key role owner's advisors (OA) and owner's engineers (OE) play during the life cycle of the project, from procurement planning through delivery and startup.