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Summit Design + Build: Building Spaces Where People Thrive

The Benefits of Design-Build for Commercial Construction

If you’ve been tuned into the news at any point over the past few years, you’ve undoubtedly seen how construction costs continue to rise. Expensive materials, labor shortages, severe weather, and a host of other issues have caused large-scale projects to miss deadlines and break budgets with regularity.

If any of these challenges have you holding your breath prior to an upcoming commercial construction project, there is a viable solution at hand: partnering with a design-build firm. In this article, we will explore the benefits of design-build and how it can potentially help keep project costs under control.

What Is the Design-Build Concept?


Design-build is the idea that a single entity will be in charge of all aspects of the construction process, from early design planning to completion. Many construction projects piece out responsibilities in a design-bid-build, or hardbid, construction process. This results in inefficiencies in terms of cost and completion times. Choosing to partner with a design-build firm removes many of the moving parts common to a construction process.

Advantages of Using Design-Build in Commercial Construction

Design-build streamlines many of the most challenging aspects of a construction project, such as communication between stakeholders and scheduling the myriad contractors.

With the design-build method, the contractor assumes most of the risk for staying on budget and meeting deadlines. This gives owners incredible peace of mind.

  • A few more specific advantages of design-build include:
    Integrated budgeting, scheduling, and building from the early stages of planning, guaranteeing that all stakeholders and contractors are on the same page.
  • Due to everything being done in-house with a unified vision, certain projects can be green-lighted and started ahead of time, resulting in significant time savings.
  • With an extensive pool of trusted contractors and subcontractors, the design-build firm guarantees that the project is always expertly staffed by the highest quality professionals in the industry.

At the end of the day, while the streamlined communication and collaboration lead to a better process that results in time and cost savings, it also adds up to the greatest benefit of all: better buildings.

How Design-Build Can Lead to Cost Savings


When looking at cost savings, it is beneficial to compare design-build over the more traditional design-bid-build, or hardbid, method of construction. The design-build concept offers several potential cost savings over hardbird, which requires stakeholders to enter into contracts with separate entities for both the design and construction processes.

Design-build is usually more economical than hardbid because you’re only hiring one company. In hardbid, you hire an architect and a contractor separately, which means you’ll have to pay not only for their time and services, but any associated fees and administrative costs that are standard for each company, resulting in cost inefficiencies. In design-build, the same company will handle all aspects of your project. This makes it easier to keep track of costs and budgets.

Design-build can also save money by eliminating some steps in the process. In hardbid, the architect and contractor must communicate back and forth with each other throughout the project. This can take up valuable time and resources that could be better spent elsewhere.

Finally, design-build can also save money by eliminating some of the risks associated with construction projects. With hardbid, there are more chances for errors or miscommunication between different parties involved in the project. In design-build, there is only one party involved in all aspects of the project, which streamlines processes and increases efficiency in communication, which has the potential to lead to cost savings.

Trends to Execute in a Design-Build Project


Some people may erroneously think that choosing an inclusive, all-in-one design build firm will in some way limit the kind of building concepts they can employ.

This is not the case at all.

Design-build firms are well-equipped to handle some of the most innovative, cutting-edge trends in commercial construction and the materials that make them possible.  Some of the trendy concepts that design-build can effectively execute include:

  • Open interiors that increase natural light flow and use acoustic wall panels to stylishly limit sound transfer
  • The highest standard in safety with ADA accommodations, modern glass stair railing around all elevated areas, innovative fire suppression systems, and an infrastructure of safety doors and credentialed access
  • Functional exterior spaces that use roof deck tiles to create rooftop hangouts, permeable pavers to promote drainage, and attractive stone facades for outdoor break areas

All in all, pairing with a modern design-build firm allows stakeholders to execute a wide variety of trends and associated materials to create any type of structure they envision.

The Benefits of Design-Build for Commercial Construction


The streamlined communication and collaboration made possible with the design-build concept can result in major time and money savings for project owners. If you are still in the planning process for a commercial construction project and want to further explore the ways that design-build can help you out, contact Summit Design + Build today for a consultation!

Natalie Akins is a freelance writer that loves sharing her knowledge and expertise on interior decorating and remodeling. She lives in her hometown of Austin, Texas where she enjoys spending time with her husband and decorating with her children. Natalie’s work as a freelance writer can be found on Building Product Advisor, a new construction industry resource site.