IPD vs. Design Build

With honest unfiltered information, you the Owner are educated to make the right decision not a price decision.

IPD has taken Design Build to a whole new level.  Our designers and builders are a single team of stakeholders who take ownership of the project with you from the start. Each IPD team member is accountable for the performance of the other team members and shares in the overall project responsibility. We have developed a relational contract that allows our team members to share costs and profit and eliminate multiple mark-ups.  Our methods incentivize the best ideas and lower costs. Your priorities are understood and incorporated every step of the way.  The industry’s top professionals seamlessly integrate your ideas into reality.  We have consistently delivered a better project, under budget, on schedule, with less risk and conflict.

Traditional Design Build perpetuates an “every man for himself” mentality.

The popular construction industry vernacular includes design build, design assist or other spins on the term to try to convince the Owner he is getting better value than the traditional plans and specs project.  Rarely are the design professionals and the contractors/subcontractors engaged or onboard at the beginning of the project.  The general contractor will shop the project to multiple mechanical, electrical and plumbing subcontractors.  These subcontractors each keep their ideas close to their vests so as to not divulge the means they use to get to the lowest proposed price.

Firms in this environment are not eager to share their ideas since they don’t know who their future team mates are and they are still competing to be the low price provider. There is no incentive for free flowing ideas. The Owner may never realize the collective wisdom available.

Mechanical and Electrical subcontractors do not engage one another or coordinate with specific scopes of work and responsibilities.  They either exclude work that should be included i.e. disconnects, starters, smoke detectors, controls, etc. or they duplicate the cost of the work in their Mechanical and Electrical contract proposals.  They work in a vacuum without input from the design professionals or the other trades with no cohesive team approach.

The Owner is left in the dark and not part of the creative process.  Owners can only discern differences of the individual proposals by studying the exclusions or other qualifications of each individual subcontractor’s contract language.  Value-engineering and cheapening of the design intent may be unilaterally taken by the subcontractors in order to “get low.”  These ideas are typically not adequately explained and therefore may compromise the desired results.

Architects and Engineers are not fully engaged with the major construction trades under the Traditional Design Build scenario.  Value engineering assumptions are often pursued by the subcontractors without being validated or coordinated by the design professionals as fulfilling the spirit and intent of the Owner’s desires.  Once value engineering or other scope/price reductions have occurred, the design professionals often ask for additional fees to redesign the working drawings to reflect the contractors ideas.  This not only adds cost and time to the project but also leads to potential adversarial roles between the designers and contractors.

Integrated Project Design fully utilizes all the positive aspects of a true design build delivery method without the costly gaps and confrontational attitudes of what the market describes as “Design Build”.

Single source contractYesYes
Major players known from startMaybeYes
Major subcontractors share project and performance responsibilityYes
Single tier markupYes
Shared CostsYes
Shared ProfitYes

Value engineering built in from startYes
No contractual trade barriersYes
Mutual self-interestYes
Shared resources/manpower and equipmentYes
Cost TransparencyYes
Self-perform all MEPYes
LEAN Construction methodsMaybeYes