Water Design-Build Council Blog

Linda Hanifin Bonner, Ph.D, Executive Operations Manager of Water Design-Build Council

With nearly 30 years of experience in the water/wastewater industry, Linda Hanifin Bonner provides a unique blend of organization, governance, and financial management experience to the Water Design-Build Council. Dr. Hanifin Bonner’s professional career has been dedicated to developing pragmatic and strategic oriented approaches through education to the factors influencing water and wastewater industry projects. Originally an environmental planner for Montgomery County, MD, her work over the years has been supporting federal, state, and local government agencies, the engineering community, and private industry.

Recent Posts

What Decisions are Needed to Prepare Your Organization to Use Design-Build Delivery?

The questions most often raised by utilities or agencies who want to pursue design-build delivery for their pending project range from “What are the decisions I need to make in the procurement process?” to “How do I prepare my organization to make the right decisions about the best collaborative delivery approach for my project?” Answers to these questions, which were addressed recently in an education session with a large metropolitan utility, also provide the opportunity for us to share the results of WDBC’s 2017 research on what public officials say they have learned from pursuing a design-build project.

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Topics: design-build

What are the Differences Between Collaborative and Design-Bid-Build Delivery?

The water design-build industry defines collaborative delivery methods as approaches to procuring and delivering a capital project that involve close collaboration among the owner, the designer, and the contractor—from design through completion. These include construction management at-risk(CMAR), both fixed-price and progressive design-build, design-build-operate (DBO), and public-private partnerships (P3).

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Topics: design-build, Collaborative Project Delivery

Could You Pass a Quiz on Design-Build Terms?

Last week I reviewed a presentation featuring design-build concepts and methodology. Actually, I had to read it twice, because most of the terms in the document are no longer being used – and I was stymied as to how to approach the author with constructive feedback. While startling coming from a government official, it is not an unfamiliar situation. I hear similar outdated language and address questions about the terms used for design-build delivery methods at WDBC’s education sessions all the time.  

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Topics: design-build

How Can Education Address Impediments in Using Design-Build/CMAR Delivery for Water and Wastewater Projects?

Primarily due to efficiencies with schedules and the overall work process for both utility owners and municipalities during the past five years, the use of design-build and CMAR delivery for water and wastewater projects has increased. As the WDBC’s recent research report revealed, the use of collaborative delivery methods is continuing to gain significant momentum in the water sector because of the education process. The other good news is that WDBC’s research data shows that external impediments – such as legislative and regulatory requirements - are decreasing and progress continues within the states on that specific challenge.

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Topics: Collaborative Project Delivery

Stephen R. Gates, PE, BCEE, Elected 2018 President of Water Design-Build Council Board of Directors

The Water Design-Build Council (WDBC) announced that Stephen R. Gates, PE, BCEE, Brown and Caldwell Senior Vice President, has been elected as its 2018 President of the Board, receiving the gavel from 2017 President John Doller in Dallas, TX. Transitioning from the role of the First Vice President/Treasurer, Gates chaired the Budget/Finance and Research Committees, and is in a leadership role on the Technical Practices Committee. He is responsible for development of Brown and Caldwell’s collaborative project delivery business, focusing on design-build, CMAR, and remediation services related to the environmental, water, wastewater, and energy markets provided to municipal, federal, and private organizations throughout North America.

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WDBC Announces 2018 Officers

At its annual meeting in Dallas, TX, on December 7, 2017, the WDBC Board of Directors elected its officers for 2018.

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What are the Differences Between Collaborative and Design-Bid-Build Delivery?

The water design-build industry defines collaborative delivery methods as approaches to procuring and delivering a capital project that involve close collaboration among the owner, the designer, and the contractor—from design through completion. These include construction management at-risk(CMAR), both fixed-price and progressive design-build, design-build-operate (DBO), and public-private partnerships (P3).

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Topics: design-build, Collaborative Project Delivery

A Collaborative Delivery Method with 2 Variations

One of the frequent questions occurring in the Water Design-Build Council's education session is understanding how to apply the terms – prescriptive and performance – in a “fixed-price” design-build project. 

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Topics: design-build, water design-build project, Collaborative Project Delivery, Owners

Where do I get a contract to use for my design-build project – and what does this “off-ramp” mean?

If you’ve ever attended one of the WDBC education sessions, you’ll recall that instructor Mark Alpert likes to immediately inform you that there are some key terms he is going to be persistent in getting you to remember: GMP, RTFC, off-ramp, and a few others. The reason he is so persistent is that without a good contract in place, and understanding what the terms in the document mean, the project is definitely going to encounter unforeseen issues. But we also learn in these sessions that there are often numerous misunderstandings about how to approach the contracting process and the dynamics that occur, potentially leading to the “off-ramp.” When an organization attempts to “retrofit” their existing contracts or doesn’t know where to locate a good template or model, the problems begin.

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How Can Education Address Impediments in Using Design-Build/CMAR Delivery for Water and Wastewater Projects?

Primarily due to efficiencies with schedules and the overall work process for both utility owners and municipalities during the past five years, the use of design-build and CMAR delivery for water and wastewater projects has increased. As the WDBC’s recent research report revealed, the use of collaborative delivery methods is continuing to gain significant momentum in the water sector because of the education process. The other good news is that WDBC’s research data shows that external impediments – such as legislative and regulatory requirements - are decreasing and progress continues within the states on that specific challenge.

Read More

Topics: Collaborative Project Delivery