Now viewing articles in the category Planning Process.

  • Construction and Development Pressures in Senior Living Projects

    August 26th, 2019

    Planning for an expansion project, renovation or new build is exciting, but it also comes with anxiety and stress. When undergoing a construction project, you may face any number of construction and development pressures. Here are several to consider.

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  • Summer Slammer: 4 Reasons to Hire Your Contractor Early

    February 18th, 2019

    I know it’s the middle of February, but if you need to complete any construction projects on your campus this summer, you should already be planning the work. Summer slammer projects aren’t easy for anyone involved. With so much work to be done in a limited amount of time, these projects are stressful and have big consequences if they’re not finished on time. 

    Hiring your contractor early can reduce the stress and make the process more enjoyable. If you wait to bid out your project to hire your contractor, you’re essentially eliminating the contractor’s planning phase. Eliminate time for planning and everyone’s job gets harder and more stressful. Yours included.

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  • 5 Tips to Prepare a School Community for a Construction Project

    November 9th, 2018 by Catie McMenamin

    Planning a construction project at an independent school is no simple task. Neither is preparing the community. The campus is constantly in a state of motion, filled with students and then summer campers. There is a wide range of stakeholders, from those who attend or work at your school to those who neighbor your school to those who donate to your school and everything in between. If the process of a building project is new to you, or if you haven’t done it in a while, here are five tips from our panel of experts on how to prepare your community for a construction project.

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  • 5 Lessons for Improved Lean Construction Implementation

    May 29th, 2018 by Catie McMenamin

    With the completion of athenahealth’s West Garage, we have successfully finished our first Lean project. We encountered some unforeseen obstacles during site work and foundations, but with Lean we overcame these obstacles and hit our precast erection start date. 

    With our first full Lean project complete, we learned five valuable lessons to apply to our projects going forward. 

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  • 6 steps to get the most out of your estimator during preconstruction

    August 30th, 2017 by Catie McMenamin

    The estimators in our office are extremely busy people, often working on 4-5 projects at a time in varying stages of design. As an Owner, here are 6 steps you can take to get the most value out of your estimator during preconstruction. 

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  • 7 Tips on How to Prepare your Staff and Residents for a Construction Project

    October 27th, 2016 by Catie McMenamin

    Let’s be honest, no one likes living in a construction zone. But at some point, you need to update or reposition your community. We talked to some of our clients and put together a list of their top seven tips on how to interact with your community before and during a project.

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  • 3 Reasons You Should Care about the Construction Workforce Shortage

    October 4th, 2016 by Catie McMenamin

    There’s been a lot of talk about the construction industry’s workforce shortage. And it’s not getting any better in the next 2-3 years. Here’s why you should care.

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  • Do you need to hire an Owner's Representative?

    March 21st, 2016 by Catie McMenamin

    Some businesses operate with a lean staff and know they will hire an Owner’s Project Manager (OPM) for their construction projects. Others have an entire department to manage construction work. However, lots of you fall in between. So, are you better off hiring an outside representative to manage your construction project?

    First ask yourself these two questions:

    1. Does our internal team have the time, experience and knowledge to run the project successfully without sacrificing other job responsibilities?
    2. Do we produce building projects on a regular basis?

    If you answered “no” to either of these questions, hiring an OPM may be the right decision for you.

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  • Keeping the community safe while working on an occupied campus

    January 26th, 2016 by Catie McMenamin

    Planning for a safe construction project begins before workers ever set foot on the construction site. When part of an active campus is under construction, keeping the community safe is a huge concern. Here are some of the important things we do to make sure your community is safe while we’re working on your campus.

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  • Technology's Impact on Lighting Systems

    December 30th, 2015 by Catie McMenamin

    LEDs offer the potential for cutting general lighting energy use almost in half by 2030.

    Technology is changing at a lightening pace these days affecting everything from how we work to how we live. Even the construction industry, known for its slow adoption of change, can’t resist this movement.

    One area of the A/E/C industry where technology is having a drastic impact is lighting systems. Not so long ago, you’d buy a light fixture, install it, then run the electrical line to it and you’re done. It’s no longer that simple. 


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  • Advantages of Design-Build Approach

    December 8th, 2015 by Kristin Darvish

    Design-Build (D-B) is a project delivery system that includes planning, design and construction under one contract. D-B is the idea of partnering the right team, from the start, to help get to a completed project successfully and provide the highest satisfaction to the Client/Owner. Basically it’s like putting together any sports team. You pick teammates you know you can collaborate with, trust, lean on for support and ultimately win the game with. Design-Build has many advantages to ensuring a successful completed project when working together as a team.    

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  • Advantages of using prefabrication on my construction project

    October 30th, 2015 by Catie McMenamin

    The biggest barrier to greater use of prefabrication on construction projects is the design and construction culture. Typically the project is designed, then the team may – or may not – look to see if any elements may be prefabricated. Many more opportunities for prefabrication may be considered if evaluated during the design phase.

    Prefabrication can bring many advantages to a construction project including a shorter project schedule, better safety and better quality control.

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  • Construction 101: 14 More Construction Acronyms Owners Need to Know

    October 13th, 2015 by Catie McMenamin

    We use a lot of acronyms in the A/E/C industry. We’ve already covered 14 common ones but there are so many, here are 14 more. 

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  • The Basics of Lean Construction

    July 30th, 2015 by Catie McMenamin

    Lean construction is an “it” term in construction right now. And for good reason: it works. Lean construction is not a new concept. It stems from The Last Planner System (LPS), which was developed in the 1980s to improve the predictability and reliability of construction production.

    Since the 1960s construction productivity has steadily declined. Forty to fifty percent of construction projects are behind schedule and over budget, according to FMI’s Sixth Annual Survey of Construction Owners. The biggest costs impacting construction today are the inefficiencies built into the way projects are run and managed.

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  • 5 Tips to Uncover Hidden Savings in Your Construction Budget

    July 16th, 2015 by Dave Seermon

    Are you spending more money on your construction project than you need to be?

    When a project is in the final estimating stages, there are a multitude of last minute adjustments to the construction documents to attempt to capture a scope of work that satisfies the Owner’s wishes and budget. 

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  • 11 Benefits of Creating a Construction Schedule before Work Starts

    June 3rd, 2015 by Norm Fournier

    The Construction Industry Institute (CII) conducted a study and found that a positive, quantifiable relationship exists between the effort expended during the pre-project planning phase and the ultimate success of a project. A properly prepared schedule will yield many benefits for all team members.


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  • What’s The Optimal Project Delivery Method For My Next Project?

    March 12th, 2015 by Ray Caruso

    Building Owners can often improve the results they get from the design and construction process if they reconsider their project delivery choices.  The three most common delivery methods are:

    • Design-Bid-Build
    • Construction Management
    • Design/Build

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  • When Less Really Is More: Space Utilization Planning for a Campus That Will Last

    February 17th, 2015 by Jess Harris

    Don’t all schools have to have a Master Plan? The short answer is no. The term Master Plan often assumes growth, expansion, new buildings, changes to circulation and open space systems. This project label can create perceptions, expectations, and, believe it or not – limits about the process and outcomes that are unknown at the outset of the project.  

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  • Construction 101: 14 Construction Acronyms Owners Need to Know

    December 16th, 2014 by Catie McMenamin

    We’re looking for a LEED Silver project designed and built using BIM. CDs come out 1/9 for a GMP bid due 1/30.

    If you’re not familiar with construction jargon, this sentence might leave you scratching your head. We use a lot of acronyms in the Construction industry. Here are 14 every owner should know.

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  • Value Engineering: A Process that Benefits Your Construction Project

    November 4th, 2014

    “Oh no,” is a common reaction when owners and architects hear the phrase value engineering. However, the intent is not to ruin the design of the project; the intent is to maximize the project’s value. When done correctly, value engineering is a positive process for your construction project. 

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  • The Contractor Selection Interview

    July 15th, 2013 by Catie McMenamin

    How much of a role does the chemistry with the project team during the interview phase play in your final contractor selection? From what we hear, a lot.

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