Food Plant Construction: The Design-Build Method Continues to Grow

According to a study by FMI Corporation, the use of design-build firms in construction projects is on the rise, with design-build now accounting for nearly half of all construction projects in the US. The study shows that design-build is expanding across sectors and regions, and owners who have used this project delivery method are more satisfied due to advantages such as innovation and quick speed to market. Key findings from the study include:

1. Growth in design-build spending: Design-build spending is expected to grow by 17% from 2018 to 2021, reaching a market share of 45% in the nonresidential construction market. The Mountain, Pacific, and South Atlantic regions are anticipated to have the highest growth rates in construction activity.

2. Increased interest in alternative construction methods: Changing project demands have led more owners to explore alternative methods like design-build. Factors influencing the choice of project delivery method include delivery schedule, owner goals and objectives, contractor experience, and initial cost. Over half of the owners surveyed plan to use design-build in the next five years.

3. High satisfaction with design-build: Owners reported excellent or very good experiences with design-build projects. The top benefits identified were increased opportunities for innovation, the ability to fast-track projects, a collaborative process, adherence to budget, and high-quality service. Design-build is increasingly used for smaller projects with budgets under $25 million.

As more owners become aware of the benefits of design-build, it is expected that this collaborative delivery method will continue to be utilized to streamline projects, save costs, and improve safety through innovative solutions.

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