U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590
202-366-4000


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Alternative Contracting Methods

Design-Build (D-B)

DB Flowchart

What is the Design-Build (D-B) Method?

Compared with the traditional Design-Bid-Build project delivery method, the D-B offers potential time and cost savings. The D-B projects combine the design and construction phases of a project into a single contract. This reduces costs without reducing quality, since construction can begin while the plans are still being developed. Since the Design-Builder is responsible for both design and construction activities, this reduces the potential for cost increases due to design errors, and/or for discrepancies between design plans and construction activities.

A D-B contract can be awarded as either "low-bid" or "best-value," which is an important advantage. While low-bid is used for most traditional contracts, best-value selection permits the consideration of additional factors, such as experience, qualifications, innovation, technical approach, quality control methods and project management. Often this can reduce costs as well as increase quality.

D-B Resources

D-B Enabling Legislation

D-B Sample Manuals of Instruction

D-B Skill Sets: Essential project management knowledge required by public owners

D-B Procurement Strategies

D-B Contracting

Request for Proposal (RFP) templates
Key elements of D-B construction & services contract

Risk Registries and Risk Allocation Guidance

Performance Measures to Gauge D-B Success

Post Award

Change Orders
Contract Administration
Quality Assurance
Safety

Other Handy D-B Resources

Excel files can be viewed with the Excel Viewer
Word files can be viewed with the Word Viewer
PDF files can be viewed with the Acrobat® Reader®
Updated: 11/21/2014
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000