Wolgast Blog

Patient Flow Optimizes the Design of Your Practice Floorplan

Posted by Cory Sursely on 8/16/2021

When a patient walks through the door of a doctor’s office, whether it’s a family physician, chiropractor, dentist or veterinarian, he or she needs to easily find the check-in area to make his or her attendance known.  Patients may not know that check-in area starts off a whole path that they will follow while receiving treatment through paying their bill, also known as patient flow.

Architects that are specialized in medical office design closely analyze a practice’s patient flow to determine the location of rooms and activity areas in a practice.  An office that is inefficiently designed can cause unnecessary delays or bottlenecks in the care of patients, problems complying with HIPAA regulations, miscommunication among staff members, and possibly a frustrated doctor.  An orderly and well designed patient flow has patients moving in a circular motion, so patients don’t have to back track nor cross paths with other patients.  Doctor and staff are able to easily locate each other to communicate effectively and supply areas are easily accessible by staff members for quick set-up of rooms after each patient visit.

Wolgast Architect and medical office design expert, Rick Keith, offers two design examples, below, based on the size of your practice needs and the patient flow theories behind each.

New Construction of a Small Medical Office Small Medical Office Design

In smaller offices, a single hallway is typically used.  Although not preferable, it reduces the size of the building and the cost of construction.  The hallway should be wide enough that patients can pass each other in opposite directions, especially patients with wheel chairs or walkers.

A check-out alcove should be created so patients stand or sit out of the hallway.  Often, this alcove area is also where personal information may be gathered, if needed, from patients while they’re checking in.  Staff should be careful to avoid having two patients giving personal information at the same time.

 New Construction of a Large Medical Office

Large Medical Office Design 

In a larger office setting it’s desirable to circulate patients one way around a central business/support core.  This circular pattern avoids a bottleneck with personal intake (check-in) and check-out.  It also avoids privacy (HIPAA) issues with patients standing together giving personal information.

At the reception window, it’s preferable for a patient to avoid verbal communication with staff members.  Many offices prefer patients write their name to check-in.  The receptionist then marks through the name to avoid other patients from seeing it.

It’s preferable to have a patient step inside the door separated from the waiting room to give personal information.

Our team wants to design and construct comfortable, relevant and efficient spaces for you to provide patient care.  Please share with us any thoughts you may have about improving your practice.

 

Medical Services

Tags: Medical Office Construction, Design/Build, the Wolgast Way, Dental Office Construction

The Best Method to Build Light Commercial & Light Industrial Buildings

Posted by Cory Sursely on 8/4/2021

MetroInfusion3Light Commercial Buildings include (but aren’t limited to) medical practices, dental practices, office buildings, restaurants, banks, auto dealerships, and generally any building that is 25,000 s.f. or less and used for commercial business.

Light Industrial Buildings include, but not limited to (as defined by National Institute of Building Sciences -11/5/19), “space types used for assembly, disassembly, fabricating, finishing, manufacturing, packaging, and repairing or processing of various types of materials…spaces for printing, commercial laundry, film processing, vehicle repair, building maintenance shops, metal work , millwork, cabinetry work” and warehousing. Also the light industrial buildings are typically not over 2 stories tall.

Construction for these types of light buildings are best suited to use Wolgast’s Three Phased Design/Build Services among our construction delivery method options. Projects that are bigger in square feet or that would take a long duration to construct, (typically more than a year) are better suited to use our Construction Management delivery method.

We work with partner Architects that are licensed and highly skilled to create visually attractive and efficiently adept spaces to house either light commercial or light industrial operations. They will meet with the building owner for a needs analysis to determine specific usage and their style to create an elevation and prepare other Preliminary Phase I Documents. We use these documents to determine early cost budgets to present to an owner, so they can make an early and educated decision about their investment.

There is a nominal fee for this early pricing, but during Phase I, much preliminary work is done to advance the speed of the project should the owner decide to move forward to Phase II - Design. The benefit is that the owner doesn’t have to pay for a complete design that ends up being over budget and they will be further ahead in their schedule when it comes to the final design phase. Owners will have solid budget information earlier to determine if the project is feasible than if they used the traditional design/bid/build method.

If the project moves forward, our Design Team completes the full design documents in Phase II – Design along with our Estimators completing final estimating, securing a minimum of two to three bidders for each trade. From here, the owner gets a guaranteed price and completion date. Building owners will know exactly what to expect during construction. This is the biggest benefit of the Design/Build process for light building owners.

This leads to Phase III – Construction. The prior two phases allow us to be ready to start construction with our team, materials and permits already ordered ahead of time. Plus with the Design and Construction Teams working together during the Phase II - Design, plans have already been reviewed and checked for issues translating them into applied Construction. We are solely responsible for getting your light commercial or industrial building completed as expected.

Design/Build is an alternative delivery method to General Construction, which typically takes longer to get through all of design, estimating, permitting, material ordering, and then to construction. With Design/Build an owner of a light commercial or light industrial building gets earlier pricing information, a guaranteed price, and an advocate to complete their building with the most value.

Additionally, companies that typically reside in a light commercial or light industrial building are the same candidates for SBA 504 Loans, which are a great opportunity to fund construction projects. Under this program, the loan requirements include 10% down by the business owner, 40% low interest, fixed loan for 20 year duration by the SBA’s Certified Development Company (CDC), and then 50% from an approved financial institution. Qualifying companies must have been in business for 2 years, have a net worth less than $15M, and an average net income less than $5M. The SBA 504 funding source is designed to assist established, healthy, expanding businesses purchase land, building, machinery or equipment, make land improvements, complete construction activities, or make leasehold improvements.

Michigan Business Owners, call 800-WOLGAST to schedule your free assessment to get your project started or use the link below.

FreeAssessment

Tags: Medical Office Construction, Design/Build, Auto Dealers, Financing Construction, Dental Office Construction, Manufacturing Construction

You Have Construction Service Options

Posted by Cory Anderson on 7/6/2021

constructionWhich construction delivery system is best for your project?

There are several unique and distinctive methods for providing construction solutions. As a business owner you have the luxury of selecting the most beneficial and appropriate delivery system for your type of project.

Design/Build

The Owner hires one firm to provide architectural design and construction services in a phased approach.  The design/builder becomes the single-source that is responsible for designing the building, estimating the budget, hiring the subcontractors and coordinating the schedule to ensure the project is completed on time and within budget.

It’s the design/builder’s sole responsibility to complete the project to the client’s satisfaction.  The architect and contractor are the same entity, which eliminates misunderstandings as they collaborate throughout the design process.  The design/builder becomes the owner’s advocate securing multiple bids for each trade and leading them through site planning, permitting, design, value engineering and construction.  The phased approach provides economical/budget information early for the owner to decide if the project is a go or no-go.

Design/build is suitable for busy owners who don't have the time to oversee construction.  It’s also a fast-track method or a fast construction process for projects with a tight schedule.

Construction Management

A construction manager’s (CM) role as part of the project team is to provide estimating and constructability review during design, and cost, time and quality control during construction.  The client establishes their team of architect, CM and owner’s representative at the onset of the building concept.  The architect is responsible for defining the building through drawings and specifications while the CM regulates and monitors the schedule, budget, materials and performance of the subcontractors.  The owner thoroughly informed by these professionals, can then make educated decisions about his or her project.

The owner must be willing to be involved in the process because by using the CM method each trade contract is signed with the owner.  The CM method is most suitable for those who construction is a recurring activity and/or their project is very large, like schools and retail chains.

General Construction

Considered the design/bid/build method, the owner typically already has plans which were prepared by an outside architect/engineer when they seek a general contractor.  They choose their general contractor by one of three methods, 1) negotiating with one or more contractors of their choice, 2) selecting a group of contractors to bid and then accepting the lowest bid, 3) advertising for a broad variety of bids and accepting the lowest.

For clients who have a simple construction project, general construction is likely the appropriate construction solution.  It’s also the right choice when it’s necessary to bid and then build a project based upon completed plans and specifications.  However, this method leaves little room for correction of design or programmatic errors, if any exist.

Leaseback

The contractor finances, builds and leases a new facility back to a qualified owner, allowing him or her to focus on his or her business.  This is the best option for businesses that are faced with the need to expand their floor-space while at the same time minimize the risk involved with tying up capital in construction costs.

Business owners who qualify and currently have all their working capital in their business without a budget for building their new space are candidates for leaseback.  By choosing leaseback, they can move their business to a prime location and get the space tailored to their design needs.  The owner has the option to purchase at a future date when the business warrants the investment.

Still not sure which one works best for you? Call us to discuss your options.  At Wolgast Corporation, all systems are in place to provide the most appropriate delivery method. 

Tags: Medical Office Construction, Design/Build, Professional General Contractor, Schools, Construction Management, the Wolgast Way, Restaurant Construction, Leaseback, Dental Office Construction, Manufacturing Construction

New Ways to Add Infection Control to Your Healthcare Office

Posted by Cory Sursely on 7/21/2020

doctor-1149149_1920Medical and Dental practice owners you’ve taken a big hit same as most other industries due to the Covid-19 shut down. You’re still fresh to reopening and making the extended measures to provide infection control and start treating patients safely again. Your building facility can be made more effective in protecting staff and patients better, including tools for surface cleaning, aerosol infection control and social distancing.

Learning how to provide services over telehealth tools was likely a “fun” and necessary exercise to treat your patients during the stay-at-home order. Now that you’ve got the hang of it, offices are reopening and incorporating the CDC guidelines to manage infection control. The CDC’s1 steps include:

  • Educating staff
  • Communicating with patients (placing reminders for social distancing and hand washing in your facility)
  • Wearing Personal Protective Equipment
  • Installing ventilation systems to eliminate the aerosols that escape from the mouth, eyes or nose
  • Integrating easy to clean barriers in open spaces
  • Installing UVGI lighting
  • Removing magazines and toys (or other unnecessary items that could be touched in public areas)

You may be wondering how long you can sustain ongoing surface cleaning, social distancing and what you should do with those magazine subscriptions. Especially with some cleaning supplies and PPE in high demand and the varying level of concern by your patients. We have found other tools and materials with which you may not be familiar. These could be helpful in elevating the cleaning and distancing you’re already doing.

You may be aware that UVC Light is useful in sanitizing unoccupied rooms. That’s why the CDC recommends UVGI disinfecting light as an option for cleaning your unoccupied treatment rooms. However, the light is harmful to skin and eyes when exposed/penetrated, so it is critical that the room is empty of people when in use.. Recent, new findings by Columbia University have filtered the Far-UVC light from the UVC as a potential option for cleaning occupied rooms – emphasis on occupied. The wavelength range of the Far-UVC are shorter and don’t penetrate into the top dead layer of skin, or outer layer of the eye, but still are able to destroy the bacteria and viruses. Being able to use it in occupied rooms, they claim, “will prevent the airborne, person-to-person transmission of pathogens such as coronaviruses.”2 When the results are confirmed, researchers believe that it will be great to use in “hospitals, doctors’ offices, schools, airports, and airplanes” to fight transmission of germs.

Additionally, conducting ATP testing can measure the cleanliness of surfaces. In high traffic or shared spaces, the tests can tell you quickly if you are cleaning adequately. It evaluates the cleaning practices and “can be a useful tool to measure the efficiency of cleaning procedures also in environments with very low microbial counts”.

Antimicrobial Surface Coatings have been used primarily on door knobs, countertops, and wall surfaces, according to an article in Architect Magazine, “Materials & Coatings that Reduce Surface Transmission of Bacteria & Viruses”.   It’s also being added to paint and silicon based nanocoatings now. The applied material has self-cleaning functionality and can help with confidence between regular cleanings. However, the CDC has “found no evidence to suggest the products offer any enhanced protection from spread of bacteria and germs and that proper cleaning and hand washing are best for protection”. Contrastingly, there are studies that prove that the silver or other metals used in the material does reduce microbial growth.3 So at this time it should be considered extra protection in addition to a regular cleaning schedule, rather than in place of cleaning.

There are a variety of options for barriers and partitions to separate open areas, however, we found two that caught our attention. Rolascreen can be printed on to create any design that you would like with a variety of options available. It’s also non-porous, easily cleanable, portable, condensable, and lightweight. Also, EverShield Portable Partition System is an efficient way to separate lobby areas or clinics and can easily be expanded with later installments if necessary. These are both good temporary options, also know that there are other fine partition companies that can be found online. If you decide that the partitions should be permanent, please contact Michael Shepard at Wolgast Corporation to discuss remodeling options.

Finally, the N95 masks can be hard to find in the quantity that you’re anticipating. The FDA has identified Hydrogen Peroxide Decontamination Systems are effective in extending the life of N95 masks. The FDA states on its website that certain models of the ASP STERRAD Sterilization Systems can sterilize “compatible N95 masks”, so by verifying the match you can prolong your N95 supply.4

Wolgast is an expert provider of design and construction of healthcare offices. Please call us if you need recommendations for HVAC companies for ventilation, permanent wall barriers, a remodel or a new office built. If you have found other infection control measures that are working well for you, please send us a note so we can share with others.

1https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/dental-settings.html “Guidance for Dental Settings”

2https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-21058-w “Far-UVC light: A new tool to control the spread of airborne-mediated microbial diseases

3 https://www.architectmagazine.com/technology/materials-and-coatings-that-reduce-surface-transmission-of-bacteria-and-viruses_o “Materials and Coatings that Reduce Surface Transmission of Bacteria and Viruses

4https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/letters-health-care-providers/use-correct-cycle-and-compatible-n95-respirators-when-decontaminating-respirators-sterrad “Use the Correct Cycle and Compatible N95 Respirators When Decontaminating Respirators with STERRAD Sterilization Systems - Letter to Health Care Providers”

 

Medical Services

 

Tags: Medical Office Construction, Dental Office Construction, Remodel

The Benefit of Design/Build Phase I Drawings

Posted by Cory Sursely on 2/11/2019

plans and rolled plansPreliminary plans, such as those provided in a Phase I of the Design/Build process, are the most efficient and economical means to determine the budget for your construction project.

While there has been a shift in the numbers1, there are still many business owners out there who are skeptical of the Design/Build method of construction.  They are more familiar with the traditional Design/Bid/Build method where they hire an architect, then have general contractors competitively bid the project, and the contractor with the best price/value builds the project. 

Early on, when we’re discussing the benefits of Design/Build with those who are skeptical, they have a difficult time accepting that they need to pay the nominal fee for the preliminary drawings (Phase I Design) so we can estimate the construction budget.  Those who are accepting of it realize that they would be paying that and more at an independent architecture firm. 

In the Design/Build process, the Phase I fee is nominal to cover the team’s time to complete a needs analysis, make necessary regulatory investigations, create a preliminary design and seek bidding resources for a preliminary budget.  Having a pretty accurate, yet ball park, estimate early in the process helps an owner obtain funding earlier.  The information gained during the Phase I is accurate and sufficient to take to a bank to secure financing.  Clients never get a separate bill for the Phase I cost unless the project doesn’t come to fruition, then the fees are billed to cover the team’s time at a fraction of the cost of a full set of plans.  Furthermore, if obstacles arise while a customer is planning to build a building that cause them to change their mind, it’s less risky to commit to a portion of the cost of the design while working through the initial process.

Additionally, having the flexibility to “tweak” the preliminary design so it fits within your budget is much more economical because you don’t have the engineering elements involved, yet.  Those get explicitly defined in the Phase II drawings.

When you add a Design/Builder to your team before you purchase property, they can assess the property and available utilities to provide the best use of space.  Also, prior to purchase, a Design/Build team can help coach an owner on contingencies in the purchase agreement as a buffer or a “get out of jail free card” if there are undesirable obstacles to using the property the way intended.

Those are the main benefits to committing to Phase I Drawings, but the Design/Build process has other benefits like completing construction faster, fewer change orders, open communication, and one entity having all the low bids.  Read more about the benefits of this method in our White Paper, "Why Some Business Owners Don't Do Design/Build, but Should".

 

Why Some Business Owners Don't Do Design/Build, but Should

 

1 According to “Design-Build Project Delivery Market Share and Market Size Report” by Reed Construction Data and RS Means Intelligence, Design/Build construction delivery method has taken an additional 9% of the construction market since 2005 and General Construction has lost 10% of the market share in that same time.

Tags: Medical Office Construction, Design/Build, the Wolgast Way, Scheduling, Financing Construction, Design, Dental Office Construction, Good for Business

What Makes a Design/Builder a Dental Construction Expert?

Posted by Cory Sursely on 2/1/2019

Dr Copus, DDSI’d like to address a question that has been posed to me about what makes a contractor specialized in Dental Construction. We’ve claimed for a couple of decades now to be an expert at dental office construction, but what does that mean? There are many out there that think a building is a building, but most Dentists will recognize that a design/builder that’s versed in dental operations will make a big difference in the final building design, quality of construction and completion date.

Dental Building Design

When an architect is familiar with dental operations, they create floor plans that help a Dentist, staff members and patients flow seamlessly through the office. The elements that an architect considers include efficient means for staff to complete tasks, organized patient flow, space and regulations for special equipment, time-saving communication, and aesthetics to make everyone comfortable. An architect that understands how to design a Dental Office that incorporates all the efficiencies listed above will create a layout that allows for less wasted time to move throughout the building, enabling the Dentist to spend more quality time with patients and less time moving around the office to communicate with staff or find tools. When dealing with specialty equipment to take x-rays, distribute med gases, or recover mercury, an architect has to consider spatial issues, electrical needs and regulations. Without an understanding of how this equipment fits into an operation or the regulations involved, a mistake on the plans could trip up the construction phase schedule.

Construction of a Dental Office

For the construction phase, you’ll need a Project Manager and Supervisor that are familiar with the goals and operation of the Dentist. They’re there to oversee the proper installation of the various trades and maintain the schedule and budget. On the same notion as the architect, the Project Supervisor should have experience with x-ray shielding, mercury recovery, and med gases. A Project Supervisor with dental experience is also important to the schedule if a Dentist is renovating an occupied building and needs to continue seeing patients during construction. Your Project Supervisor can create temporary areas to keep chairs open. Regardless if it’s an occupied or new/unoccupied building, the Supervisor and Manager will be monitoring the schedule so that areas are ready in time for equipment delivery.

The Wolgast Way

Wolgast is specialized in the design and construction of Dental Offices. Dentists that we work with feel comfortable knowing that their chair side traps and amalgam separators will be installed without a problem and that their staff and patients will be comfortable in the new space as it’s completed on time and their scheduled move-in date is uninterrupted.

 

WeBuildDentalOffices

Tags: Design/Build, the Wolgast Way, Scheduling, Dental Office Construction

How to Make Owning Your Medical Office More Lucrative

Posted by Cory Sursely on 1/19/2016

MedOwner.jpgFor most business owners, the short-term benefits of leasing their building are attractive, but we’re guessing that most owners would favor owning their building and having control of their business use at a fixed cost. For doctors who own their own practice and will likely stay in their location for 7 or more years1, owning their building can be a great investment for their future while allowing them to have a fixed expense until the building is paid off. As a contractor who specializes in both construction and leaseback services, we can educate doctors on how to leverage programs, accounting processes, and legal structures to make it more lucrative to own your medical office.

Note: we are passing along the knowledge that there are building ownership options and programs available, however, we recommend and advise that you contact your CPA and/or attorney before taking the steps featured here.

Help with purchasing the building

Most medical practices would qualify for the SBA 504 loan, which requires a lesser down payment (as low as 10%) then funds 50% of the cost through the Certified Development Company (CDC) at a lesser, fixed interest rate for 10 – 20 years. The remaining 40% is financed through a traditional commercial loan.  This program works well for small businesses who are growing, but don’t have a lot of working capital to expend on real estate, improvements or equipment. Being able to finance 80-90% of the cost couldn’t be a better deal for these businesses. For more qualifying information visit the SBA website or read our blog on the topic.

Lease the Building from Yourself for a Tax Reduction

By forming an LLC to purchase your medical office, your medical practice will be able to lease the building from your LLC, deduct the payment on the practice’s taxes, and your LLC members would be taxed on their individual taxes as a pass-through. This would eliminate the tax for your practice and LLC members would be taxed at a lesser rate for the building2.

Cost Segregation for Tax Savings

For business owners who purchase or build a building, a CPA can complete a cost segregation study to determine elements of a building that can be depreciated on a different schedule than the rest of the building. For instance, parts of your building that are considered "personal property or land improvements" can be segregated (i.e. desks, chairs, light fixtures, accent lighting, sidewalks, and landscaping). The cost of these portions of your building can be taxed on different tax schedules, 5, 7, or 15 years rather than the 39 year schedule your building will span. (Wikipedia) This will allow you to defer taxes and help you improve current cash flow3.  An even more in depth and professional explanation from a qualified CPA is included through the following link. Is there cash hidden in your building?

Accelerated Depreciation for More Tax Savings

Your building has a set period of time for useful life, by which the building depreciates each year. Accelerated Depreciation is an accounting process that allows you to depreciate the building more in the beginning of its useful life. Paying the larger amount in the beginning lowers your net income, which you are taxed upon. So having a lower net income in turn would lower your taxes. Good resources to better understand this process are http://crfb.org/blogs/tax-break-down-accelerated-depreciation and http://content.moneyinstructor.com/1509/calculatingdeprectiation.html .


Return on Your Investment

Probably the most enticing part of owning your own building is the opportunity to make a profit on the sale of it when you no longer need it. Another option would be to lease it to a new tenant when you retire and bring in ongoing income when you’re retired from the practice.

Buying a building doesn’t work for every doctor who owns his or her practice, but we wanted to make sure that you had considered all the facts. Whether it’s construction, remodel, or leaseback, we are able to accommodate your needs. Call Michael Shepard, Dr. PH, to discuss your building options. His background in the medical and construction industries will help guide you as you contemplate the future of your practice.

1 Fitsmallbusiness.com http://fitsmallbusiness.com/buying-vs-leasing-commercial-real-estate/

2 Beckner & Associates http://www.becknerassociates.com/Should%20I%20Own.htm

3 Ernst & Morris (www.costseg.com/cost-seg.html).

Medical Services

 

Tags: Medical Office Construction, Financing Construction, Dental Office Construction

Why Design/Build Works Well for Doctors

Posted by Cory Sursely on 1/6/2015
Medical OfficeIn this blog, I’ll explore how the Design/Build method of construction is well suited to medical doctors, more so than general construction.  To start, the D/B method was really created to suit the needs of busy business owners, which includes doctors, because it requires less attention from an owner and that owner can set their involvement as much or little as they see fit.  Some customers like to be more engaged in the process than others and we are happy to accommodate each client’s unique desires.

The basic difference of D/B over general construction, is the relationship between the architect and builder.  In this project delivery, they are on the same team.  A doctor only needs to work with one entity to design and then build his or her office.  Also in this scenario, the doctor is protected from any discrepancies from the architect’s drawings to contractor’s application.  With D/B, the contractor and architect are consulting on budget, application and material quality throughout design, so when construction starts there are very little interruptions or change orders.  Should there be a discrepancy, the design/builder will work it out without involving the owner unnecessarily.  This protection is valued by doctors who oftentimes aren’t as familiar with construction, nor have the time to deal with these issues on site.  All of these reasons are exactly why Design/Build was created as an alternative to general construction.

Additionally, medical offices are not simple buildings to design or build.  It takes a specialized architect and builder that each knows the regulations for HIPAA, med gases, ADA and Certificate of Need specifications to design your building correctly.  Also, an architect with knowledge of patient flow helps with the design for efficient productivity of your staff members and privacy of your patients.  On the same note, a builder who understands and is familiar with medical office construction will complete your project with fewer delays.  At Wolgast, we know how to prepare for specialized equipment and how to plan for your workloads on an occupied site.  Scheduling for make shift, yet private, exam rooms during construction will allow you to keep seeing patients without interruption when renovating or adding on space.

The final feature of the D/B delivery method is that it allows the design/builder to be the advocate for customers who aren’t familiar with construction.  We use our expertise, connections and resources to help our clients get the best value for materials and applications of those materials.  We design and manage the construction of your building as if it were our own and demand excellent performance from our subcontractors.

A design/builder will become your representative to handle your building design through construction.  You’ll be able to keep your daily schedule the same while your building is built and Wolgast will apply our medical expertise to deliver your building on time, by regulation and within budget.

Design/Build  the Wolgast Way

Tags: Medical Office Construction, Design/Build, the Wolgast Way, Design, Dental Office Construction, Good for Business

Popularity Increasing for Design/Build

Posted by Cory Sursely on 9/3/2014

PlansAs an update to this blog originally posted a few years ago, we have new information to add  from the June 2018 Design/Build Utilization Report funded by Design/Build Institute of America. Findings in this report determined that popularity continues to grow for this delivery method. The results showed, "Design/Build Construction spending in the assessed segments is anticipated to increase 18% from 2018 - 2021", and will likely represent 44% of construction spending by 2021. Researchers determined that the education of building owners on Design/Build benefits is gaining traction, and more owners are experiencing enjoying the benefits first hand.  Additionally, FMI Corporation, a management consulting and investment company, had released a report in March 2019 titled 2019 AGC/FMI Risk Management Survey, whereby they found that "38% of contractors were <planning> to increase their in-house design capabilities last year and 43% this year".  So there will be more collaboration, less risk, and more competition among design and construction moving forward.

Original blog article:

According to the May 2013, “Design-Build Project Delivery Market Share and Market Size Report” by Reed Construction Data and RS Means Intelligence, Design/Build construction delivery method has taken an additional 9% of the construction market since 2005 and General Construction has lost 10% of the market share in that same time.

We recognize that the movement isn’t happening at rapid speed, but almost 10% brings it up to 40% of the overall market share.  Another study, “The State of Design-Build”, December 2010, by Design Build Institute of America uncovered that Design/Build professionals believe the biggest reason building owners haven’t rapidly adopted Design/Build is because it’s unknown to them and therefore seems risky.  Is that true? 

Wolgast was the first to bring Design/Build to mid Michigan in the 1970’s.  We saw early on the benefit of having the architect and the contractor on the same team.  It meant more continuity and collaboration, which would create a smoother construction project and therefore protect our clients from discrepancies in plans and change orders to remedy the parts that don’t translate during construction. Also, the cost for construction is determined earlier, so business owners can make an educated decision for their business without getting too far into the design process.

In actuality, Design/Build works so well because the construction experts are reviewing the plans while they are being drawn to ensure their constructability.  Therefore, once a shovel hits the dirt, there are very few setbacks, which in turn creates a quicker construction schedule, a reliable budget, and a happy building owner.

No setbacks mixed with the ability to get permits, pricing and materials earlier, makes Design/Build the fast track to construction delivery.  In some instances, the project can be completed months earlier than if it were delivered via General Construction Delivery Method.

As we are able to educate more people about what Design/Build is and the level of efficiency involved in constructing the building, we believe that it will continue to grow its market share.  To gain the insight that you will need to help you make a business decision, download our white paper, “Why Some Business Owners Don’t Do Design/Build, but Should”, or “Fast Track”.  We can also answer any of your questions, so please leave a comment or call us, 800-WOLGAST.

Tags: Medical Office Construction, Design/Build, the Wolgast Way, Dental Office Construction, Good for Business, Risk Management, Manufacturing Construction

What is the Design/Build Method of Construction?

Posted by Cory Sursely on 8/25/2014

Design/BuildWe've been providing Design/Build services for almost 40 years and we're curious if it's a well known term among those who haven’t previously been involved with the construction of a commercial building.  Have you heard the term before?  In a nutshell, it’s a method of construction delivery in which the building owner executes a single contract with one entity to provide architectural/engineering and construction services.

In other words, a building owner hires one company to interpret and define the project scope, provide architectural design, bid the project, obtain permits, and then construct it.  The Design/Builder handles the entire project on the owner’s behalf per open communication and agreed upon contractual parameters.

This method uses the same qualified and licensed architects that a building owner would use in other construction delivery methods and provides the same caliber of design.  However, with the architect and contractor as one entity, there is frequent collaboration on the constructability and the budget during the design phase, which helps the project run smoothly or with very few surprises during the construction phase.  Fewer surprises equals a budget and schedule that you can rely on throughout the project.

This team collaboration during design allows for permitting, material ordering, and when needed demolition or site work to start earlier than with the traditional General Construction method (a.k.a. Design-Bid-Build).  That’s why it’s considered the fast track to construction, which means the project can be completed, months faster than with General Construction.

Design/Build is best suited for busy business owners including doctors, dentists, manufacturing, banks, and other businesses who don’t have their own construction department on staff, or who may not be familiar with commercial construction.  The Design/Builder becomes the construction department for these busy firms and the advocate for all things construction.

Hopefully this blog has clarified how the Design/Build method can help business owners efficiently build or renovate their office or plant, if not, here is the perfect opportunity to ask your questions.  Or for more information on the benefits and how Design/Build saves time and money, download our white paper “Why Some Business Owners Don’t Do Design/Build, but Should”.

 

Why Some Business Owners Don't Do Design/Build, but Should

Tags: Medical Office Construction, Design/Build, the Wolgast Way, Scheduling, Dental Office Construction, Good for Business, Risk Management, Manufacturing Construction