DCD Technical Articles
What is it? Why should you care?
When parties to a construction project find themselves in a dispute, there are a
few options to help find a resolution. These can include: engaging in informal
settlement discussions, taking the dispute to an initial decision maker
identified in the contract, or hiring a third-party mediator to help the parties
find a resolution. If the dispute does not settle at that point, the parties can
turn to the courts and engage in litigation.
Going Digital: Virtual Plan Rooms and Project Collaboration
The construction industry has been making great strides in updating
traditional planning and documenting methods to make project communication more
efficient and less costly for companies and for the environment.
Is architecture an art or science? Is conceptual estimating an art or
science? Actually, each is both but far more science than art and becoming even
more so. If you don’t like the idea of changing from an artist into a scientist,
you have advances in technology to blame. Modern information technology is
providing access to much more data than ever which is pushing out the guesswork.
The days of relying on people’s experience and intuition alone are over. Like
driving a car guided by a GPS, we still need human judgment to make course
corrections, but we can now improve the efficiency of the trip by reviewing
alternative routes and avoiding issues like traffic. In this article, I’d like
to introduce you to a scientific approach that leverages technology to combine
design exploration with cost estimating and value engineering in order to find
more optimal building solutions.
Does Your Software Think Like You Do?
The construction industry is well-populated by software that meets about
80 percent of users’ workflow needs. Companies leverage that last 20 percent by
using software from construction experts who develop integrated software that
thinks just like a contractor. The workflow of software should square nicely
with the workflow of contractors. It’s not rocket science: Software must be
intuitive to the user’s day-to-day processes.
Automating the Pre-Construction Process
In the modern age of technology, it is surprising how many general
contractors are not automating their pre-construction process. Recent polls show
that 45% of commercial general contractors still send out bid invitations and
addenda notices using their own email program and fax machine, and then track
who is bidding in an Excel spreadsheet. Not so surprisingly, we couldn’t find
one general contractor that switched back to the Stone Age (their old
conventional methods) after migrating to an automated bid invitation software
Solarban® 67 Solar Control Low-E Glass by PPG
Solarban 67 glass represents an entirely new vision for transparent,
solar control, low-e glasses, featuring a soft, almost imperceptible, neutral
coating that endows commercial buildings with a crisp, clean and brilliantly
clear exterior appearance, along with the excellent solar control performance
architects have learned to associate with the Solarban glass family.
Leveraging Software to Faster Bids, More Profit
By implementing software to automate the construction takeoff and
estimating processes, contractors are realizing a significant return on their
technology investment. With seamless solutions, construction companies can save
valuable time and improve accuracy, as estimators can bid more jobs quicker with
a competitive edge and profit margin. Also, the software helps contractors to
submitting future bids that best fit the type of work using insight gained from
historical data analysis of each bid, how the company performed the work, the
costs posted, the profit ultimately realized on the job, and more.
Construction Cost Trends for 2013
The construction landscape is improving with residential
leading the way. Total construction is up around 15% over last year, and is
headed for even more positive territory for Q3 of this year. However, public
works spending continues its decline and will not add to the rise. The economic
pressures on all forms of government spending will negate this segment and put
all the pressure for growth on the private sector which is up 20% over last
year. Housing starts are still strong and foreclosures seem to be under control.
Look for a good year in the construction market.
Trends Archive |
The DCD Medical Square Foot Cost Guide
Design Cost Data™ magazine includes a Building Sq. Ft. Cost
Guide in each issue. These square foot cost guides have been assembled from
projects in our database, the DCD Archives™ online at DCD.COM. These guides are
provided to the industry by DCD as a benchmark for future building costs.
DCD is based on the philosophy that actual buildings, when
coupled with up-to-date cost indices, are the most reliable basis for future
building costs. The buildings appearing in this guide reflect square foot costs
that have been escalated to April 2013 and targeted to a historical location
factor of 1 (escalate these projects and more online at
DCD Cost Guides
Case Studies Case Studies Archive
Oaks Mall Redevelopment and Plaza
Volunteer Fire Station
Technical Community College, Building E
Raleigh, North Carolina
Franklinton, North Carolina
Research & Education Center Institute of Food & Agricultural Sciences
University of Florida
Regional Medical Center Expansion and Renovation
Shepherd Catholic Church
Homes Retirement Community
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