We’re back to work at ModSpace after a great week at the 2011 DBIA Conference & Expo. I wanted to share my thoughts on the week’s events and offer a modular company’s perspective on key messages.
It was refreshing to be so succinctly reminded of the components of the true Design-Build model: Sustainability, Accountability and Partnership. These principles are evident in what I think are the 3 key takeaways from the show.
Takeaway 1: Project Partnership is a Shared Commitment
A Design-Build “partnership” implies that all parties share equal responsibility. You will be more successful when you know the capability of each partner ahead of your base bid and proposal, and when you define the relationship based on the following roles:
- Partner (few): Equal and shared value, risk, reward
- Associate (many): Signed agreement to specific scope of work within a project
- Commodity Supplier (many): Sourcing agreement to purchase material, labor at best cost
Takeaway 2: A New “Design-Build” Paradigm is Emerging
Shrinking budgets are driving state and local governments to a new performance-based infrastructure. Design-Build is morphing into a Design/Build/Finance/Operate model, with risk assumed by the contractor and designer for the length of term. Rewards are structured to equal risks.
Takeaway 3: LEED Construction ≠ High Cost
The Department of Energy built a net zero LEED PLATINUM building on a fixed budget, using a performance-based RFP and selection process. Design effectiveness was measured against project goals, and each decision was weighed against cost. Support and trust was needed from all stakeholders.
I welcome your thoughts and comments. Did you leave the show with a different perspective? Do you have experiences you can share in any of these areas? Do you disagree with the takeaways? I look forward to the conversation.