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Comparative Analysis between AIA and DBIA Contract Documents:

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2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Indianapolis, Indiana

Publication Date

June 15, 2014

Start Date

June 15, 2014

End Date

June 18, 2014



Conference Session

Construction Contracts, Law and Ethics

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

24.294.1 - 24.294.12



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Paper Authors


Megan Renae Miller

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Megan holds a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Oregon and a Master of Science in Construction Management from Colorado State University. She currently works for a top construction management firm in Denver, CO focusing on the design and construction of building envelopes.

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Carla Lopez Del Puerto Colorado State University Orcid 16x16

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Carla Lopez del Puerto is an assistant professor in the Department of Construction Management at Colorado State University.

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Rodolfo Valdes-Vasquez Colorado State University

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Assistant Professor
Department of Construction Management

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Kelly Strong

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Comparative Analysis between AIA and DBIA Contract Documents: AIA Transitional Contract Documents A295 & DBIA Document No. 535Integrated design and construction has emerged as a leader in project delivery methods in thepast decade, partially in response to the challenges the construction industry is facing in today’stough economic climate. Projects have become more complex with tight budgets and morestrenuous schedules. Integrated design and construction fully integrates project teams in order totake full advantage of the knowledge of all the project’s team members, including the Owner,Architect, and Contractor; to maximize a project’s outcome. Integrated design and constructionoccurs when integrated practices are applied to more traditional delivery approaches includingDesign-Build contracts (ACG of America, 2011).In response to this trend the American Institute of Architects (AIA) released a new set oftransitional documents in 2008 unlike anything it has published before; A195, B195, and A295are geared towards integrated design and construction as opposed to AIA’s traditional Design-Bid-Build (DBB) agreements. AIA Document A295, General Conditions of the Contract forIntegrated Project Delivery outlines the roles of the Owner, Architect, and Contractor with anumber of similarities to the Design-Build Institute of America’s (DBIA) Document No. 535,Standard Form of General Conditions of Contract Between Owner and Design-Builder. Inaddition to the similarities, AIA’s set of documents also contains a number of very noticeabledifferences. While there is very limited information available on whether or not any projectshave been completed using one of AIA’s new transitional documents, they have stirred upnumerous questions among professionals in the industry in regards to how it compares toDBIA’s widely used set of documents. The objective of this paper is to compare AIA document295 and DBIA document 535 to highlight the similarities and differences between the twodocuments. This contributes to the body of knowledge by allowing owners to make educateddecisions regarding which document to use for their Design-Build projects.

Miller, M. R., & Lopez Del Puerto, C., & Valdes-Vasquez, R., & Strong, K. (2014, June), Comparative Analysis between AIA and DBIA Contract Documents: Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--20185

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