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PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Pannone Lopes Devereaux & West, LLC (PLDW), and the Design-Build Institute of America, New England Chapter, held “Navigating Design-Build: Best Practices and Principles from Owner Representatives and Process Experts” on Aug. 26, 2010, at the Officer’s Club in Newport, R.I. Attendees at the day-long seminar, sponsored by AECOM, United Water, and TCM, learned valuable lessons and opportunities from owner representatives and process experts about design-build, one of the nation’s most effective and efficient alternative delivery methods of construction that bridges the public and private sectors in partnership. The conference host was PLDW associate Robert Knychalski.

Keith Stokes, executive director of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation, presented welcoming remarks on behalf of the state of Rhode Island, and laid the foundation for the growing importance of design-build as a method for enhancing economic development. The first panel discussion, entitled "Lessons Learned From Owners’ Representatives," featured:

From left to right: Conference panelists: Commander Gregor Bo, naval station Newport public works officer; David Guertin, director of public works, town of Provincetown, Mass.; Julia A. Forgue, P.E., director of utilities, city of Newport, R.I.; and special guest Keith Stokes, executive director of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation.

•Commander Gregor Bo, naval station Newport public works officer
•Julia A. Forgue, P.E., director of utilities, city of Newport, R.I.
•David Guertin, director of public works, town of Provincetown, Mass.
•Steve Coutu, public works director, city of East Providence, R.I.

Each panelist discussed the challenges and opportunities of their ongoing or completed design-build project, how they were able to get their design-build project off the ground from contract development, procurement, and environmental and operational function areas, examples of issues or problems that arose in the use of design-build and the procurement process, and the role of design-build consultants in their projects, including engineers and legal advisors.

“After 50 years of residents voting ‘no’ and five special acts of legislation, the town of Provincetown finally had approval to use design-build as an alternative to construct its new sewer system,” said David Guertin, director of public works and featured panelist. “The design-build-operate project delivery system worked, saving the town time, money, and effort. The design and construction took only 24 months to complete start to finish and we are now considered a model for other cities and towns looking to construct a sewer system. I encourage municipalities with an interest in keeping costs down and efficiency levels high on construction projects from inception to completion to consider design-build.”

The first panel was followed by a luncheon presentation on ‘How to do Business with the Military’ and a second panel of design-build process experts featuring William A. Lawrence, associate at PLDW; Michael J. Walsh, P.E., BCCE, of CDM, a global consulting, engineering, construction, and operations firm; and Steven Torres, corporate council for the city of Fall River, Mass.

“By all accounts from those in attendance, the conference was one of the most important learning and information sharing events for participants looking to utilize the design-build alternative delivery method and for those looking to successfully market and secure new clients with their design-build business services,” said Teno A. West, PLDW partner and leader of the municipal infrastructure team at PLDW. “The opportunity to network and talk one-on-one with owner representatives and experts in the field of alternative delivery methods of construction is a key component of succeeding with design-build projects.”

For more information, visit www.pldw.com or www.dbia.org.

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