As part of the first on time budget in many years, the New York State government has enacted legislation authorizing the use of design-build and public private partnerships for the construction and rehabilitation of higher education projects at state universities, not to exceed 15% of their construction budget. This ends years of almost exclusive use of multiple prime contracting in public construction in New York State. Design-build is a method of procuring construction projects of all sizes in which an entire project is administered through a single contract between the project owner/developer and the design-build contractor. This procurement method has been shown to provide better cost certainty, quicker completion, lower administrative burden and higher innovation than other construction procurement methods. As a result, it is by far the preferred procurement method for public-private partnerships.
This change in the law will have significant economic effects well beyond the creation of construction jobs. It will literally create a new branch of the construction and engineering industry in New York. The new legislation will open opportunities for private developers to construct and operate a range of facilities on New York's university campuses; jobs for design-build teams composed of engineers, architects and contractors to build and rehabilitate facilities; and finance teams to raise the money needed for the development from the private capital markets.