Design and Build

Design and build is a term describing a procurement route in which the main contractor is appointed to design and construct the works, as opposed to a traditional contract, where the client appoints consultants to design the development and then a contractor is appointed to construct the works.

The contractor is responsible for the design, planning, organisation, control and construction of the works to the employer’s requirements. The employer gives the tenderers the ‘Employer’s Requirements’ and the contractors respond with the ‘Contractor’s Proposals’, which include the price for the works.

Design and build can be seen as giving a single point of responsibility for delivering the entire project. Some clients, however, consider it is only appropriate for simple projects, where design quality is not the main consideration.

The contractor can either be appointed to carry out all of the design work, or if the client wishes to have greater influence over the design, a concept design and outline (or performance) specification can be prepared by a consultant employed by the client, and then the contractor is appointed to complete the design and carry out the construction.