City council discussed changes to contracted city projects for contractors, architects, and engineers

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo.– Springfield City Council discussed changes to the way general contractors, architects, and engineers are contracted for city projects.

Council members heard a presentation from Chris Dunnaway, Chief Engineer for Stormwater Management, during the City Council lunch on Tuesday.

The changes involve adding CMAR, Contract Manager At-Risk, as a project delivery method for the city in certain projects in the future. It would also bring the city’s statutes in line with state statutes for CMAR, which was adopted in Missouri in 2016.

Right now, the city mainly uses Design, Bid, Build and Design, Build project delivery methods, which creates separate contracts for architects/engineers and general contractors on city projects. The general contractors typically bid after the design phase is 100% complete, and if chosen, are not included in the design process.

This proposal would adopt the CMAR method, changing the bidding strategy, and allowing general contractors to be engaged after 30% of the design phase has been completed. Architects/engineers and general contractors would still have separate contracts but would be required to work together throughout the design and building process.

Although there are disadvantages and advantages to both project delivery methods, Dunnaway claims CMAR would work well for projects that are not straight forward have still have some unknowns or flexibility in design. Dunnaway gave the City Hall renovation and the Jordan Creek Daylighting project as examples.

Dunaway says CMAR could potentially save time and money on certain projects because contractors would be able to voice their concerns and provide feedback in the early stages.

The CMAR method would also do away with bidding, and instead require businesses to submit a request for qualifications, and later, a request for an official proposal.

In the lunch today, Springfield Mayor Ken McClure says he hopes the CMAR method would give more local contractors opportunities at getting contracts with the city.

Based on state statutes, the CMAR method could only be applied to civil works projects that exceed $2 million and non-civil works projects that exceed $3 million.

City Council plans to vote on this proposal in it’s June 29th meeting. If passed, CMAR would be added as an option for project delivery methods, and the city would choose which method is best on a case by case basis.

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