Matching Items (2)

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Early Design Decisions in Building Materials for Higher Performing Buildings

Description

High performing and sustainable building certification bodies continue to update their requirements, leading to scope modification of certifications, and an increasing number of viable sources of environmental information for building

High performing and sustainable building certification bodies continue to update their requirements, leading to scope modification of certifications, and an increasing number of viable sources of environmental information for building materials. In conjunction, the Architecture, Engineering, and Construction (AEC) industry is seeing increasing demand for such environmental product information. The industry and certifications are moving from using single attribute environmental information about building materials to lifecycle based information to inform their design decisions.

This dissertation seeks to understand the current practices, and then focus on strategies to effectively utilize newer sources of environmental product information in high performance building design. The first phase of research used a survey of 119 U.S.-based AEC practitioners experienced in certified sustainable building projects to understand how the numerous sources of environmental information are currently used in the building design process. The second phase asked two focus groups of experienced AEC professionals to develop a Message Sequence Chart (MSC) that documents the conceptual design process for a recently designed building. Then, the focus group participants integrated a new sustainability requirement for building materials, Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs), into their project, and documented the adjustments to their specific design process in a second, modified MSC highlighting potential drivers for inclusion of EPDs. Finally, the author examines the broader applicability of these drivers through case studies. Specifically, 19 certified high-performance building (HPB) case studies, for reviewing the impact of three different potential drivers on the design team’s approach to considering environmental product information during conceptual design of a HPB, as well as the projects certification level.

LEED certification has changed the design of buildings, and the new information sources for building materials will inform the way the industry selects building materials. Meanwhile, these information sources will need to expand to include a growing number of products, and potentially more data as the industry’s understanding of the impacts of building materials develops. This research expands upon previous research on LEED certification to illustrates that owner engagement and commitment to the HPB process is a critical success factor for the use of environmental product information about building materials.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018

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Contract Administration Functions and Tools for Design-Build and Construction Manager/General Contractor Project Delivery in U.S. Highway Construction

Description

The demand for new highway infrastructure, the need to repair aging infrastructure, and the drive to optimize public expenditures on infrastructure have led transportation agencies toward alternative contracting methods (ACMs)

The demand for new highway infrastructure, the need to repair aging infrastructure, and the drive to optimize public expenditures on infrastructure have led transportation agencies toward alternative contracting methods (ACMs) such as design-build (DB) and construction manager/general contractor (CM/GC). U.S. transportation agencies have substantial experience with traditional design-bid-build delivery. To promote ACMs, the Federal Highway Administration and the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCRHP) have published ACM guidance documents. However, the published material and research tend to focus on pre-award activities. The need for guidance on ACM post-award activities is confirmed in NCHRP’s request for a guidebook focusing on ACM contract administration (NCHRP 2016).

This dissertation fills the crucial knowledge gap in contract administration functions and tools for DB and CM/GC highway project delivery. First, this research identifies and models contract administration functions in DBB, CM/GC, and DB using integrated definition modeling (IDEF0). Second, this research identifies and analyzes DB and CM/GC tools for contract administration by conducting 30 ACM project case studies involving over 90 ACM practitioners. Recommendations on appropriate use regarding project phase, complexity, and size were gathered from 16 ACM practitioners. Third, the alternative technical concepts tool was studied. Data from 30 DB projects was analyzed to explore the timing of DB procurement and DB initial award performance in relation to the project influence curve. Types of innovations derived from ATCs are discussed. Considerable industry input at multiple stages grounds this research in professional practice.

Results indicate that the involvement of the contractor during the design phase for both DB and CM/GC delivery creates unique contract administration functions that need unique tools. Thirty-six DB and CM/GC tools for contract administration are identified with recommendations for effective implementation. While strong initial award performance is achievable in DB projects, initial award performance in this sample of projects is only loosely tied to the level of percent base design at procurement. Cost savings typically come from multiple ATCs, and innovations tend to be incremental rather than systemic, disruptive, or radical. Opportunity for innovation on DB highway projects is influenced by project characteristics and engaging the DB entity after pre-project planning.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2019