On the surface it sounds like a great idea. Hire an environmental graphic design firm to create a signage and wayfinding package, send the created package out to “pre-qualified” manufacturers and work with the low bidder to implement the package. If this process works so well, why do design/bid projects have major implementation and support issues?
Consider the Benefits of Design+Build
A qualified Design+Build signage and wayfinding firm will have a full-time environmental graphic design staff, full-scale manufacturing capability and the ability to implement and service what it designs and fabricates. Working with a qualified firm brings many benefits to signage and wayfinding projects of any size.
· Early involvement from the signage and wayfinding partner ensures that structural and support elements (electrical, etc) are incorporated into new designs or accounted for in renovation projects.
· Integrating a signage and wayfinding partner early in a project can greatly reduce delays through concurrent development of design concepts and wayfinding logic/messaging.
· Omitting multiple bid phases (design and fabrication) not only eliminates the need for development of specific bid documentation but also saves the time normally needed for bid preparation, review, negotiation and reward.
· Permitting and potential signage variance issues can be addressed early helping to avoid post-bid delays due to the application and approval process.
· Establishing a budget in collaboration with the chosen firm removes all financial guesswork and risk through managing the design, wayfinding and implementation process.
· Working as in integrated project delivery team greatly reduces messaging errors and client design review cycles.
· Direct collaboration between the design and fabrication teams ensures the greatest efficiencies in initial fabrication, material usage and modularity.
· By better understanding the long-term needs of the installed wayfinding system, the team can further reduce product life-cycle cost.
Improved Quality and Service
· Establishing a design and budget based on known materials and capabilities eliminates the risk of installed products not conforming to specifications.
· Addressing long-term needs for changeability and material availability in the design process ensures consistency will be maintained as the system is updated.
· By eliminating the gap between bid documents/specifications and creation of a fabrication-ready package by an awarded bidder, you can ensure that the integrity of the product design and wayfinding logic make it through to fabrication and installation.
The goal of any Design+Build project is to maximize client value and decreased the life-cycle costs associated with signage and wayfinding systems. We recently completed implementation of a Design+Build project in New York for Orange Regional Medical Center (ORMC) that is featured in the October 2011 issue of Health Facilities Management magazine. Click on the following link to view the article: http://www.hfmmagazine.com/hfmmagazine_app/jsp/upfront.jsp