Posts by Best Practices Construction Law
Earlier this week, I received an alert that "Five AIA Contract Documents are going green!" Developed using AIA’s flagship documents as a base, and incorporating concepts and model language from the AIA’s Guide for Sustainable Projects, the new documents address the unique roles, risks and opportunities encountered on sustainable design and construction projects.
“The development of these new documents for sustainable projects is a natural next step following the release of the Guide for Sustainable Projects in the spring,” said Ken Cobleigh, Managing Director and Counsel for AIA Contract Documents Content. “We continue to see a demand for incorporating sustainable elements in projects. The AIA Contract Documents program continues to revise existing ...
The following headline caught my attention this past weekend as I was reading the April issue of the ABA Journal: "The Trouble with Terabytes: As Bulging Client Data Heads for the Cloud, Law Firms Ready for the Storm." It piqued my interest not only because I am a lawyer who follows technology, but also because I represent construction contractors who are grappling with paperless project questions: Should we head to the cloud to back-up our document management system? Should we go entirely paperless on our projects? What are the risks?
Although the Terabyte article is focused on the struggles for law firms that are considering cloud solutions, there a number of practical tips for the construction industry. Whether you are a general contractor, a
This New York Times article by David Barboza suggests that China "aims to become the world’s civil engineer" through its involvement in the construction of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge.
"Modularization" is a construction delivery system that is gaining increased national attention in both the industrial and commercial construction economy. Dealing with modularization in this country will require new forms of contracts between parties that have not previously worked together in direct contractual relationships.
The assembly work in California, and the pouring of the concrete road surface, will be done by Americans. But construction of the bridge decks and the materials that went into them are a Made in China affair. California officials say the state saved
According to a new analysis of federal employment data released last week by the Associated General Contractors of America, construction employment declined in 179 out of 337 metropolitan areas between April 2010 and April 2011. AGC officials noted that despite recent increases in private-sector construction activity, the layoffs are occurring as public investments in infrastructure decline.
Reductions in the size of a workforce have always been a fact of the construction industry. The use of a trendy name (downsizing, rightsizing, RIF) does nothing to alleviate the painfulness and complexity of this process. The human side of workforce reduction often comes to mind first. With careful planning, and a dignified approach to the process, most construction
My transition to a new law firm has come with a few new perks, such as working with a tight-knit group of construction and environmental lawyers who practice both nationally and internationally.
One of our bright young stars, Lauran Sturm, recently compiled a comprehensive list of global codes and standards governing sustainable design and green construction. Here is the list so far:
- Green Star has rating tools for the following types of buildings: education, healthcare, industrial, multi-unit residential, office, office interiors, retail centre, office design, and office-as-built. Green Star has pilot rating tools for convention centre design, public buildings, and custom buildings (i.e., those that do not fall into any of the other categories).
- The National
Initially filed as a class action suit in October 2010 against the USGBC, Henry Gifford's lawsuit took a turn this week when he filed an amended complaint. The original lawsuit alleged violations of the Sherman and Lanham Acts for “deceiving users” of the LEED rating system. The lawsuit questioned whether "LEED buildings use less energy than conventionally-built buildings.”
Gifford's amended complaint ([pdf) focuses on claims of false advertising under the Lanham Act and state law, as well as a claim for deceptive trade practices under state law. Again, it is no longer a class action, but instead alleges certain damage to Gifford and a few others as professionals in the industry. The amended complaint states:
The Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant program was created under the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act (ARRA) with a $1.5 billion dollar multi-modal discretionary grant program. It was designed to provide support for innovative transportation projects of national, regional, and local significance. The TIGER program included projects that were often difficult to fund under the traditional transportation programs. In 2010, the program received over 1400 applications, totaling almost $60 billion and awarded 51 projects.
When I first heard about the TIGER program, I could not get the words, "They're great!" out of my mind. As if Tony the Tiger had anything to do with either transportation or construction projects.
I recently discovered that eight out of ten of the top key word searches on this site over the past few months included variations of the following words: construction, iPad, technology and apps. The searches were referred primarily to a blog post I did about my favorite apps for the construction industry. Construction apps are more than just fodder for technology and construction bloggers ... they are being used regularly by some as project management tools.
According to an article by the Tennessean last week, "[t]he most important tool if you're building or remodeling a house is no longer a hammer or a saw; it's a home computer, iPad, smartphone or other electronic device." The article explains how contractors, designers and owners are collaborating on the
In what has been unofficially called LEED 2012, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) opened the first public comment period from November 8, 2010 to January 14, 2011 for the next version of the LEED rating system. Yes, that means the first public comment period closes this Friday.
According to the USGBC's LEED Rating Development page, the "next version of LEED will be an update and expansion of the technical content from LEED 2009. Your comments help to ensure that LEED continues to be at the vanguard of innovative design construction and operation of buildings and communities. It is expected to be released in late 2012." A second public comment period is scheduled for July 1 through August 15, 2011.
I have not digested all of the new draft, but there are
When asked about potential cost overruns on the Music City Center almost year ago, the Center's representative Larry Atema stated bluntly, "There aren't going to be any." True to that commitment, Anne Paine of the Tennessean reported this past weekend that the Center's "green roof has grown less green."
According to the article, two pieces of the Center's green roof have been cut from the design to stay within the project's $585 million budget. The roof is approximately 14.5 acres and, even with the reduction, the green portion will comprise 178,000 square feet or 28% of the entire roof.
Green roof benefits. The Center is committed to (and as required by Metro Codes "required to") attain LEED Silver Certification. For the Music City Center, the proposed