Assignment of design to constructors: A discussion and direction

Responsibilities of the constructor

Complexity of design is driving an increase in the quantity of specifications dealing with the deferred design process.
Complexity of design is driving an increase in the quantity of specifications dealing with the deferred design process.

Design intent of temporary facilities has always been the responsibility of the constructor, including any engineering of temporary structures and safety systems not part of the primary building work. This responsibility does not form a part of the deferred design discussion; this is simply work the constructor does as a part of their contract deliverables. The design professional may ask to review these design components as an informational submittal, but responsibility stays with the constructor for these components. Engineering of temporary facilities is specifically excluded from the services provided by the RPR under normal contract requirements.

Forms of collaborative design

Collaborative design typically occurs during production of the drawings and specifications, but it can occur as a cash allowance component during the construction phase. It is generally incorporated as a component of the information contained within the construction documents, and requires no further delegation of design responsibility to the constructor.

Obtaining design solutions using a design-assist approach without compensation to the supporting certified/qualified contributors or the supporting registered professional demeans the value of those services and opens the RPR to scrutiny from peers if the design solutions fail to recognize the complexity of the project.

Collaborative design carries a responsibility for the RPR to maintain a competitive procurement process as well as recognize the professional’s responsibilities to the performance of the building as the co-ordinating professional of record/RPR.

The adage “you get what you pay for” is apt when obtaining design solutions from supporting certified/qualified contributors. The more complex the project requirements, the greater the need to pay for design-assist services.

DEFINITION OF ROLES
Registered professional: The entity defined by building codes as having responsibility for architectural, engineering, or interior design, and defined by provincial-level regulations and statutes as having professional responsibility for life and health safety for construction.

Co-ordinating professional of record: The entity responsible for engaging and coordinating the various registered professionals of record for design solutions required for the project, as defined by building codes.

Registered professional of record: The entity responsible for providing integral design and review of work specific to their area of discipline expertise, contributing to the whole of the project under the supervision of the
co-ordinating professional of record.

Supporting registered professional: Similar responsibilities as the registered professional of record. Services are obtained as a component of construction deliverables to provide professional engineering design solutions for components of work not part of the in-house expertise of the co-ordinating registered professional or the registered professionals of record.

Supporting certified/qualified contributors: Non-professional certified/qualified contributors providing specialist design solutions obtained as a component of construction deliverables. These contributors provide design solutions for components of work that do not form a part of the in-house expertise of the co-ordinating registered professional or the registered professionals of record.

 

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