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Delivery Methods

Since each construction project is different, the project delivery system should be tailored to the individual requirements of that unique project. Typically the owner chooses the project delivery system that will be employed, but relies on MP Kelly’s professional input in design and construction to determine which project delivery system will best fit the project. Selection of a delivery method is typically based upon how your organization operates, internal resources available and their level of expertise or knowledge, funding requirements and overall schedule for delivery.

MP Kelly Offers:

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


In Design/Bid/Build, also known as the general contracting project delivery method, the process is linear, where one phase is completed before another phase is begun. Under the design/bid example, the architect is selected under a separate contract that is based on a negotiated professional fee. The construction firm is most often selected based on the lowest bid, and there may be many subcontractors under his contract/direction.


The hallmark of a Design-Build project is that one organization is solely responsible to the owner for both design and construction of the facility. In the design project delivery method, a single point of contact has been proven to foster better communication, reduce adversarial roles between design and construction, and accelerate project delivery.

Perhaps the biggest advantage of the design process is speed of delivery. Because construction is occurring concurrent with design phases, the delivery of the project can be sped up by 25 percent or more as compared to the design/bid method. In addition to providing the owner with one source of accountability for the entire project development process and speed of delivery, using design fosters a team effort to achieve cost and schedule savings and to enhance overall value to the owner.

Construction Management – Agency

In the CM-Agency (CMa} project delivery method, also known as “Pure CM,” the construction manager acts as an extension of the owner’s staff and the general contractor role is eliminated. In this scenario the owner, rather than the general contractor or construction manager-at risk, holds all subcontracts. Essentially, each subcontractor becomes a prime contractor and is responsible for cost, schedule, quality, and safety on the project. The construction manager oversees these tasks in the role as a consultant. The construction manager competitively bids the different elements of construction to trade contractors (or subcontractors}, such as electrical, mechanical, plumbing, framing, etc.

Construction Management – At Risk

The CM -At Risk (CMc) method of project delivery is increasingly being utilized by private and public sector clients, since it blends assessment of pricing, scheduling and qualifications while limiting the owner’s risk. This method features a cohesive three-party team of owner, architect-designer, and the construction firm serving as the construction manager. Under separate contracts, both the architect-designer and construction manager are chosen via the qualifications-based selection process.

The CMc firm enters into a GMP contract with the owner, which assures the project will be constructed for no more than the amount designated in the signed contract, and no longer than the agreed completion date. Utilizing a GMP provides peace of mind to the owner, since any budget overruns on the contracted scope of work in excess of the GMP is assumed by the CMc. If the project is delivered below the GMP, cost savings are typically shared between the owner and the CMc.

Getting past budget concerns allows the project to proceed with regular open communication and the knowledge that the CM always has the owner’s best interests in mind. A previously established scope of work designates pre-construction services, such as estimating, scheduling, constructibility reviews, value analysis, specification review, and quality control review, that save the owner both time and money.

Vendors and subcontractors can be pre-qualified based on bonding, experience and performance requirements. In the case of public sector projects, this exercise can greatly enhance the participation by local suppliers and subcontractors who will be included in the competitive bidding. Contracts with the subcontractors and vendors are then held with the CM firm, who assumes responsibility for their performance.