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Accelerating the Path to Procurement: Design-Build Process Yields Efficiency and Cost Savings

When it comes to a city’s major capital improvement projects, city managers are often faced with tight budgets, inflationary pressures and looming deadlines. Add to that the need for stable and safe infrastructure that encompasses economic development through building revitalization, and long-term sustainability—all of which can lead to a lengthy and complicated procurement process.

At Energy Systems Group® (ESG), our processes are specifically designed to balance our design-build approach to project development and execution that is structured to promote efficient decision-making for our customers and a quicker path to procurement.

Saving Both Time and Money

Delivering a project as design-build means self-performing design and estimating in parallel with introducing specific contractors into the process early to maximize value. Doing so minimizes risk and time for design, scope development, cost estimates and, ultimately, the bidding process, if warranted.

This approach has proven to reduce the overall project delivery, including procurement and decision-making. ESG provides cost certainty through firm, fixed cost contracts where we take the cost risk, a particular value in the present, highly-variable, inflationary market.  ESG leverages this design experience to provide our customers with guaranteed building performance to maintain operating budgets and support sustainable construction.  Our approach expedites delivery through a design-build approach along with performance guarantees to create what we term  a sustainable capital improvement program.

Single Source of Accountability

The City of Vandalia is an example of having a single point of contact for risk and cost accountability. When a problem developed in a mission-critical building, ESG managed the details and took full responsibility to resolve the issues. Our relationships with equipment suppliers allowed ESG to leverage an effective and timely solution.  Similarly, we seamlessly delivered a project for the City of Huber Heights.  We protected them from costly change orders while addressing manufacturer delivery and quality issues – we owned it.

What’s Best for Your Budget

ESG’s goal is to help cities find ways to enhance revenue, save energy, and reduce capital and operating costs. Our depth of experience working within detailed, transparent project budgets maximizes value. Further, ESG has a committed team specifically engaged in identifying all available special funding, grants, and rebates to help support the project to minimize the need of appropriating money from future budgets.

ESG has the pleasure of working with the City of Fairborn where the project will use funds from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). This project centers around repurposing an old, out-of-service fire station into a community space, providing amenities to help attract developers to invest in market rate housing in downtown Fairborn. The City capitalized on a sustainable capital improvement program to move through the procurement process quickly, which will position the project to be completed quickly and cost-effectively. Bringing this building back to life as quickly as possible will help the City of Fairborn support the revitalization of their downtown and create a connection to the corridor as this project becomes an important bookend to the development of downtown.

Taking Advantage of the Inflation Reduction Act

Another benefit ESG brings to the table is helping cities take advantage of federal dollars from the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) to enhance facilities and lower operational costs. The IRA, newly rolled out in 2023, provides numerous tax credits to local government aiming to reduce their energy consumption and transition to renewable energy. ESG can help local governments navigate this complicated process, ensuring use of the $369 billion in federal funding and tax credits afforded through the Act.

Much like the iconic big, red Easy Button, ESG’s sustainable capital improvement program provides an easy solution for local governments. ESG’s “easy button” offers the benefits of cost savings and a quicker path to procurement, in addition to our understanding of legislation, funding and energy efficiency.

To learn more about how ESG can help determine if design-build is the right approach for your next project, contact Keith Valiquette, CEM, PE, LEED AP, Business Developer, at or 937-602-6630.