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How technology is democratizing the built environment

“Democracy is messy, and it’s hard” said Robert Kennedy, Jr. about the political landscape. Current trends in the built environment may doubly merit that observation. In a democracy where everyone has a vote and a say on a wide variety of issues, decision-making can get complicated. In a very similar way, technology is democratizing how … Continue reading

Play ball: baseball arbitration for the construction industry

We have blogged in the past about the arbitration vs. litigation debate. One of the issues with arbitration is that arbitrators are not constrained by statutory and case law and a trial that is governed by established rules of evidence. This has led to a perception that arbitration often leads to decisions where the arbitrator … Continue reading

Augmented reality could improve design and construction

During the unveiling of the HoloLens 2 at the Mobile World Congress on February 24, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella talked about how the device will allow construction workers to create, view, and interact with holograms that appear as part of the physical world. The HoloLens 2 is an augmented reality headset that Microsoft is developing … Continue reading

Design firms may face problems enforcing copyright protection

The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled on March 4th that copyright owners must wait for registration before pursuing infringement claims in court. The decision settles a circuit court split wherein certain courts had previously held that merely applying for registration was enough to satisfy the statutory prerequisite for a lawsuit. Although the opinion will have … Continue reading

Construction cost volatility alert for design professionals

Project owners want certainty on both the cost of putting a capital asset in place and the time it will take for the productive asset to become available. One of the greatest sources of claims against design firms is the dissatisfaction of clients with the ability of firms to design to a budget and complete … Continue reading

AIA commissioning services agreement updated

Earlier this year, the AIA published C203-2017, Standard Form of Consultant’s Services: Commissioning. The document has been significantly updated to reflect changes in the industry that have taken place since the prior version. The changes include: provisions describing the consultant’s role to help prepare the owner’s project requirements; detailed description of the consultant’s commissioning plan; … Continue reading

Recovering after Hurricane Florence

According to a report prepared by Governor Roy Cooper, the early damage estimates to North Carolina’s businesses and infrastructure from Hurricane Florence stand at $12.7 billion. The report provides sector-by-sector assessments and discusses available funding sources. Design firms looking to provide services for recovery efforts can access the full report. As noted in the report, … Continue reading

Blockchain: collaboration innovation for design professionals

Blockchain technology continues to spark imaginations in every sector of the economy, including design and construction. About a year ago, I wrote an initial thought experiment into the possibilities. Later, I began to explore more deeply the applications of blockchain technology. And now, while cryptomarkets continue to self-correct the over-speculation of 2017 [Tech talk: crypto … Continue reading

New alternative fee arrangements for arbitration

Design firms typically use litigation or arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism. Although arbitration was initially touted as a more efficient dispute resolution method, but over the years it has become clear that arbitration can be just as complex and costly as litigation. In response to such concerns, the American Arbitration Association (AAA) has introduced … Continue reading

Military funding bill leads energy efficiency and climate resiliency

Although the federal government has been delaying or rescinding programs that address alternative energy sourcing and climate resiliency, the Department of Defense (DoD) is looking at ways to reduce energy usage and protect military installations from the effects of climate change. Last month, the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act (Act) was signed into … Continue reading