A Guidebook for Post-award Contract Administration for Highway Projects Delivered Using Alternative Contracting Methods
There has been much
research and writing completed in the past decade regarding project delivery
using alternative contracting methods (ACM) such as design-build (DB), Construction Manager-at-Risk
(CMR), Construction Manager as General Contractor (CM/GC), Alternative
Technical Concepts (ATC) and other nontraditional delivery methods. However,
the bulk of the work has been accomplished with a keen focus on the preaward
procurement and project delivery method decision process. The literature is
fundamentally devoid on research focused on best practices for administering
ACM contracts after they have been awarded. The FHWA’s Every Day Counts Program
(EDC) has increased the need for guidance on administering ACM contracts by
increasing the visibility of DB, CMGC, and ATCs specifically in a series of
nationwide summits in 2010 and 2012. Additionally, MAP 21 legislation contains
a provision whereby a state’s share of a federal-aid funded project that is
delivered using an ACM is cut in half. The combined effect of the two programs
has been a large increase in the use of ACMs by DOTs which have not used them
before. Therefore the timeliness of this research is high to fulfill an urgent
need for guidance on how to execute ACM contracts after award.
However, NCHRP Syntheses 376,
402, 429, 438, and 455 (all were focused on various aspects of ACM) found that
contract administration issues comprised the majority of the case law in ACMs.
For example, Synthesis 402 found that failure to coordinate the consultant
design contract with the CMGC preconstruction services contract created a
situation where the engineer and the contractor developed an adversarial
relationship. Synthesis 376 on DB QA found that most DOT DB projects did not
require the design-builder to submit a design QC plan and that DOTs routinely
assumed unnecessary design liability by the way they conducted design reviews.
Synthesis 429, which looked at DB geotechnical issues found that differing site
conditions claims were prevalent because the DOT had not ensured the
design-builder’s geotechnical investigations were well coordinated with final
construction documents. The list of post-award issues goes on and on. Suffice
it to say, that the need for the research has grown in the same proportion as
the use of ACMs has grown throughout the nation. Therefore research is urgently
needed to benchmark the state-of-the-practice in ACM contract administration
practices, critically analyze DOT experiences including the costs and benefits
associated with various contract administration approaches and produce a
guidebook which contains the information necessary to fill the current void in
the body of knowledge on ACM contracting.
The proposed research should address the following questions: (1) What are the best practices for post-award contract administration for ACM projects? (2) What should be contained in ACM preconstruction services contract? (3)
How should the design contract be modified to support ACM project delivery? (4) What are the advantages and disadvantages of current post-award ACM contract administration approaches? (5) What training do in-house design and construction assets need to effectively administer ACM design and construction project delivery?
Therefore the objective of this
research is to benchmark the state-of-the-practice in ACM contract
administration practices, critically analyze DOT experiences including the
costs and benefits associated with various contract administration approaches
and produce a guidebook which contains the information necessary to fill the
current void in the body of knowledge on ACM contracting.
Task 1 – Define
the state-of-the-practice in ACM contract administration through a comprehensive literature, the
collection and analysis of relevant procurement documents, ACM design and
construction contracts, review of enabling legislation and barriers to ACM contract administration implementation;
Task 2 – Select a
of case study projects from public transportation agencies with ACM contracting
experience that can be studied in depth to identify both best practices and
Task 3 - Prepare a research work plan that
describes the details of the research methodology and methods for identifying ACM contract administration best practices
and developing conclusions;* *
Task 4 - Execute the research work plan
and prepare an interim research report that articulates the data collection and
analysis as well as emerging conclusions, best practices, lessons learned and a
proposed outline for the guidebook;
Task 5 - Prepare the draft guidebook for ACM contract administration. Incorporate
review comments as required and validate the guidebook’s efficacy on actual ACM
Task 6 - Publish the final guidebook and a
final research report that details the full results of the research.
Task 7 – Develop
training and workshop packages to support adoption or exploration of ACM
contract administration by interested DOTs.
anticipated budget and schedule are based on assumptions for required resources
to support on-site collection of ACM contract administration case study project
data, the assembly of the contents of the guidebook and validation of the
guidebook in the field directly with the case study DOT. .
The intent of this project is to furnish a uniform set of guidelines for ACM contract administration at time when state DOT ACM programs are rapidly increasing. This guidance on ACM contract administration is needed immediately to complete the full set of project delivery tools that DOTs need to be able to deliver their infrastructure improvement programs.
The payoff of this research is likely to be significant through better contract administration and the provision of tool to benefit from the experiences of other DOTs. The enhanced uniformity will pay dividends in being able to benchmark ACM project delivery and compare project performance metrics between states
|Sponsoring Committee:||AKC20, Project Delivery Methods
|Research Period:||24 - 36 months|
|RNS Developer:||Douglas D. Gransberg, PE, Professor, Iowa State University firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Index Terms:||Benefit cost analysis, Best practices, Contract administration, Design build, Project delivery, Road construction, State departments of transportation, Construction manager at risk, |
Administration and Management