Tuesday, March 18, 2008

What is so great about ConsensusDOCS 300?


The ConsensusDOCS 300 Standard Form of Tri-Party Agreement For Collaborative Project Delivery (ConsensusDOCS 300) is the only integrated or collaborative project delivery industry form contract currently on the market. The model for the ConsensusDOCS 300 is the Form of Integrated Agreement (FOIA) used successfully on completed and ongoing Sutter Health Projects that also are extensively utilizing building information modeling (BIM) and lean construction techniques.

The ConsensusDOCS 300 is groundbreaking for several reasons. First, the ConsensusDOCS 300 is a Tri-Party Agreement where the Construction Owner, Designer and Constructor are equal parties and come together to form a Management Group to collaboratively manage and make decision on projects (Article 4). This is unlike design/build project delivery where the Architect is usually a subordinate party to the contractor. Also unlike design/build contracts, under the ConsensusDOCS 300, the Construction Owner continues to be intimately involved with all aspects of the project as part of the Management Group, including with scope, schedule and costs right to the end of the project. Under design/build delivery, the construction owner often loses control over final project scope and cost in exchange for a shifting of risk to and obtaining a guaranteed maximum price (GMP) from the design/builder that is usually anything but guaranteed. Also in contrast to design/build which tries to lock in the GMP at 20 to 30% of design, the ConsensusDOCS 300 locks in the construction cost or Project Target Cost Estimate PTCE with an amendment to the ConsensusDOCS 300 at 100% design (Article 8).

Other truly innovative features of the ConsensusDOCS 300 are that prior to locking in the PTCE, the Agreement promotes collaborative and a value-based design and cost modeling around a master BIM that includes key subcontractors under working agreements (Articles 6, 7 and 8). Among other things, this collaborative, BIM centered design process during preconstruction virtually eliminates costly and time-consuming contractor requests for information, change orders and re-work during construction. Under the ConsensusDOCS 300, the Designer remains the Architect-of-Record and has the final design say and BIM control (through a detailed BIM protocol that is part of the Agreement) and the Constructor remains responsible for construction means and methods (Article 3). Also, the ConsensusDOCS 300 permits risk sharing within certain limits (e.g., a percentage of profit for the Designer and Constructor) and a sharing of cost savings up to specified levels--both keys to a Best For Project focus (Article 11)! Last but surely not least, lean construction best practices and principals are the foundation of and found throughout the ConsensusDOCS 300.



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