architect implements a quality-control process. Sometimes there is institutional pressure to engage unproven or unqualified individuals or finns, a practice that the committee found to be a source of major problems. If a design professional firm lacking appropriate qualifications must be retained (e.g., because of institutional contracting policies), serious efforts should be made to ensure that the laboratory design work is handled by a qualified design professional finn. Additional advice on selecting a design professional is detailed in Appendix D. Finding and engaging the right laboratory design finn is one of the most critical steps in the renovation/construction project.
The design professional often selects the engineering or architectural and engineering design finn, which is another reason the correct choice of the design professional is critical to the success of the project. If the design professional finn is an architectural finn with in-house laboratory programmers, it may provide the architectural or A&E design services. If it is a laboratory programming firm, the A&E design may be done by the selected architectural finn, preferably one that has worked successfully with the selected laboratory programming finn. In any case, it is important that the engineering design firm be as highly qualified as the design professional, and that it be involved early in the design process, along with other appropriate consultants and experts in specialties such as fire, access and other facilities for the disabled, ventilation, and safety and environment. It may also be advisable to engage a consulting contractor for review of the constructibility of the proposed design. The selected design professional firm often recommends many of these other participants for the client's approval.
The members of the design group will form committees and teams with members of the client group, such as staff architects and facilities personnel, as discussed in Chapter 2.
The construction group, illustrated in Figure 1.3, includes the general contractor, subcontractors, and, in some cases, suppliers of specialized materials and equipment. For large or complex projects a construction manager is often hired by the client group and so is a member of that group. The construction manager is often more familiar with local building costs than the architectural design firm and therefore can better estimate the cost of the project as well as coordinate the different stages of the construction.
The choice of the general contractor is critical because laboratory construction requires an attention to detail beyond that necessary for many building projects. As is the case with the design professionals, the experience and previous work of potential contractors should be carefully evaluated. If project time is short, it may be advisable to involve the contractor at an early stage of the design process for input regarding the availability of materials and personnel.
In the construction phase, this group will form committees and teams with