Blog Archives

10 Features of Good Construction Documents for Massachusetts Filed Sub-Bids

Scope clarity is the highest priority when it comes to developing documents for Filed Sub-Bids. Massachusetts General Law (M.G.L. c.149) establishes requirements for Filed Sub-Bids on public building projects. Separate Filed Sub-Bids are mandated for certain trade-specific classes of work

Posted in Construction Administration, Construction Documents, Project Management, Specifications

Last Minute Fix for a Technical Ground Grid

Our fast-track, high-tech building project was nearly complete. The tenant’s incredibly expensive computer equipment was rolling in, and the sophisticated equipment power system was being tested. Then the electrical contractor reported a problem. The technical ground grid did not test

Posted in Construction Administration, Construction Documents

Please Follow the Wood Ceiling System Specifications…

Suspended wood ceiling systems can look very nice and can earn LEED credits for the right wood, but all components of the system must work together in order for the ceiling to stay up. A few years ago in a

Posted in Construction Administration, Project Management, Specifications

The Power of Approval

If your experience with construction contract administration is like that of many, you may think of it as “being jerked around” more than “administering”. You may be confounded by flood of RFIs and feel you are unable to do anything

Posted in Construction Administration, Project Management

In a punch list inspection, look for the missing

Project punch lists can grow into volumes of pages listing paint blemishes, scuff marks, and bits of dust, while neglecting to note significant missing items. On one project the punch list team had tagged and noted as many as 20

Posted in Construction Administration

Planning Construction Site Visits

Construction activities and materials change with stages of construction, so it is useful to consider the activities and products you should expect to see on a given site visit before you go. If, like most construction administrators, your job is

Posted in Construction Administration, Practice Management, Project Administration, Project Management

Learning from Building Envelope Failures

Recently, I had the pleasure and honor of delivering a 1-hour HSW continuing education presentation on “Learning from Building Envelope Failures” to the Vermont 2014 ACX, a collaborative event organized by Vermont Chapter CSI and AIA Vermont. The presentation included

Posted in Building Repair, Construction Administration, Construction Documents, Design, Project Administration, Project Management

The Devil in the Details: Installation of Vinyl Composition Tile

When we think of the “Devil in the Details”, we may think mostly of drawing details, but there are other types of details that can affect a project. The following situation illustrates the importance of installation details to the quality

Posted in Construction Administration, Specifications

Design-Build Risks for Architects

When an architect is a sub to a contractor leading a Design-Build team, the architect’s primary allegiance is typically to the contractor and not to the owner. The Design-Build contractor is likely to control the architect’s scope of services and

Posted in Construction Administration, Design, Practice Management, Project Administration, Project Management

SIP Building Performance Depends on Effective Moisture Management

Structural Insulated Panels (SIP) have enjoyed growing popularity as interest in building energy conservation has increased. With its large, prefabricated, factory insulated panels, SIP construction offers nearly continuous insulation, fewer joints than conventional frame construction with stud-cavity insulation, and possibly

Posted in Construction Administration, Construction Documents, Design, Practice Management, Project Management, Specifications


The content provided on this site and in the Posts is intended to be entertaining, thought-provoking, and educational. It is not intended as direction or recommendations for the design or construction of any specific building project. The information is provided in good faith but without assurance as to its completeness, accuracy, or suitability for any particular purpose. If you are considering using information provided on this site, you are responsible for verifying its appropriateness to your needs, and you assume all risk for its use.