Now more than ever, upfront collaboration is crucial to designing and building a space that provides consumer confidence in safety and cleanliness, while also serving the needs of the owner. With news and updates on Covid-19 coming in by the minute, it’s imperative to have the key project stakeholders—client, architect, and construction manager—working together from the start of a project so the construction manager can provide feasibility reviews as it’s being designed.

To start, real-time constructability reviews and budget checks ensure nothing is put into the design that might need to be removed later, thereby eliminating time lost and the cost of a redesign. If last-minute updates need to be made—such as enhanced air filtration systems or cleaner materials for customer and employee safety—the construction manager can provide input into methods and materials while also providing feasibility and budget checks.

While it’s understood that corporate governance can require bidding out projects, upfront collaboration can satisfy this by providing certainty for the schedule, budget, and overall value. In this ever-changing environment that effects workforce and supply chain, engaging the construction manager from the start allows for as much control as possible over subcontractors and material procurement. With a thorough understanding of the project and its needs, the construction manager can vet and select the best subcontractors, gathering multiple estimates and bids to ensure the most competitive price. Critical paths can be identified from the outset, and procurement can begin as soon as possible, allowing for the best material to be locked in at the best value.

Prior to the pandemic, upfront collaboration—including design assist and design build—have proven effective on multiple Shawmut projects, including PUMA's Fifth Ave flagship, Times Square Theater, Nobu Scottsdale in Scottsdale Fashion Square, Eleven Madison Park, Esports Stadium Arlington and the Warriors Shop at the Chase Center.

In uncertain times, it’s important to have a true partner that can provide the highest value and produce the best final product—on schedule and on budget—and working collaboratively will help achieve these goals.

By Jim Scarpone, Director - Retail