Competitions and More Competitions?
This post promotes the use of engineering competitions for buildings. Given the total cost of ownership of a building, the services solution(s), is nearly as important as the Architectural solution.
Many clients hold competitions to get the best Architectural design. They recognise there are many brilliant Architects out there and a competition allows for the idea and not the company to shine.
Why doesn’t this occur for the engineering services for a building?
It’s a given the Architectural solution has the biggest impact on all of us, in a community and place of work or home sense.
Once the Architect is on board the rest of the design team seems to be selected on the usual grounds…fees and the usual due diligence and sometimes just the usual ‘friendlies’.
Each building has its uniqueness and opportunities and at any given time there are individuals and companies who will have the right and best solution.
Benefits and Losses
Bare with me if you’re a visual only person…. from a buildings operational point of view, occupant comfort and cost of building ownership, the services engineer has a massive impact. The right engineer with the right system will bring untold benefits to the project.
Usual Benefits include:
- Services design works
- Life expectancy of services in line with building type
- Running costs of building
- Health and well-being of occupants
- Thermal comfort
- Visual comfort
- And so on
Not so usual benefits include:
- Winning edge to a team’s bid
- Ability to enter and win awards
- Low energy consuming building (happy everyone)
- Reduced spatial needs
- Free energy systems
- Adoption of cutting edge technology and remaining ahead of the curve
Going to competition on services will ensure the best solution is put to the client, for that building.
A competition will in effect act as design development by the market place and removes design development by an engineering company, with fee constraints leading to a formulaic solution.
Author: Jorgen Knox