Best Practices Construction Law

Best Practices Construction Law

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Matt has written articles and given presentations on all aspects of construction law. Find a resource here.

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Best Practices top posts include claims preparation, contract drafting, and litigation pitfalls. You don’t want to miss these ones.

Matthew DeVries

Matt is a construction & litigation attorney at Burr & Forman LLP and father of seven young kids.

Category Archives: LEED

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Healthcare Is Fastest Growing Market for Prefabrication and Modular Construction

Posted in Environmental, Green Building, Healthcare Construction, LEED
Timing is everything!  As I was preparing for a LEED for Healthcare presentation this week, one of my partners sent me a piece about the innovative use of "pods" to cut building costs. The article by Mike Boyer focused on a team of two plumbing and mechanical contracting firms who want to transform how the… Continue Reading

An Explanation of the Proposed (and Unofficial) LEED 2012 Requirements and Credits

Posted in LEED
In what has been unofficially called LEED 2012, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) opened the first public comment period from November 8, 2010 to January 14, 2011 for the next version of the LEED rating system.  Yes, that means the first public comment period closes this Friday. According to the USGBC’s LEED Rating Development page, the… Continue Reading

Cost v. LEED Certification Debate Continues: One County Finds Middle Ground

Posted in Green Building, LEED, Legislation
It really is impossible to put your arms around the number of green building and energy performance policies and codes that are sprouting up all across the nation.  When a project involves private commercial development or public investment, one of the most discussed issues is whether the cost of obtaining LEED certification from the U.S.… Continue Reading

What Are the Benefits of LEED Certification? Some Say Benefits Don’t Justify High Costs

Posted in Green Building, LEED
As a follow-up to my post yesterday about the costs of LEED certification, I was not surprised to read the following lead line in a local newspaper in Cary, North Carolina: "Cary wants to be green. Just not certifiable." According to the article, the local town council voted to skip the green building certification process because of the high costs.  "If the… Continue Reading

What Are the Real Costs of LEED Certification? You May Be Surprised.

Posted in Green Building, LEED
Most owner and developers would imagine that the most significant costs of LEED certification are the front-end registration and back-end submittal costs.  Are they correct?  Depends. Environmental Building News prepared a primer on the costs of LEED certification for commercial construction.  As noted in the article, LEED certification includes various costs that must be considered separately in order… Continue Reading

Austin’s First LEED Platinum Home Featured at ABA Construction Forum Breakfast

Posted in LEED, Texas
I am in Austin, Texas this week attending the ABA Forum on the Construction Industry’s annual meeting.  One of the ways that I got more involved in the Forum was participating in the activities of one of the twelve divisions.  I am a member of Division 10: Legislation and Environment, which helps assemble information regarding case law and legislation… Continue Reading

Vancouver Olympic Village Receives “Platinum LEED Medal” in Winter Olympics: Is the Price Worth It?

Posted in Green Building, LEED
For the next couple of weeks, the only thing you will see on our living room television is the Winter Olympics.  Luge…daring!.  Freestyle moguls…awesome!  Snowboard cross…cool!  Figure skating…good time to surf the Internet! Last night, while watching figure skating surfing the Internet, I stumbled upon this article about the Olympic and Paralympic Village in Vancouver having received the highest certification… Continue Reading

Hot Off the Press: ConsensusDOCS Releases Green Building Addendum

Posted in Contract Docs, Green Building, LEED
As much as possible, I like to highlight various forms of construction contract documents.  In most of my green building presentations over the past few months, I have talked about the "soon to be released" Green Building Addendum from ConsensusDOCS.  Well, that day has finally come! Based upon my preliminary review of the 310 Green Building Addendum, I… Continue Reading

Father of LEED Says: “Green Buildings Only Bright Spot in Construction Industry”

Posted in Green Building, LEED
I am certainly not the first … and certainly won’t be the last … person to write about Robert Watson’s webinar presentation yesterday afternoon entitled, Building a Sustainable Future: Progress & Trends Toward Improving the Environmental Footprint of Commercial Buildings. Watson, Executive Editor for, is most commonly referred to as the father of LEED… Continue Reading

The Problem with Words: They Can LEED to Miscommunication

Posted in Best Practices, Building Information Modeling, Claims and Disputes, Contract Docs, Document Management, LEED, Legal Trends
I have my Google reader set to search various blogs, news sites, and Twitter feeds to help me keep current with the latest trends in the construction industry.  There remains one major problem: the words we use have different meanings for everyone.   Take, for example, my search of Twitter feeds (above) for Building Information Modeling (BIM).  If you were to do the… Continue Reading

Are You Ready to Rumble? USGBC Says Yes! Ready to Tackle Building Performance “Head On”

Posted in Green Building, LEED
When discussing the short and long term building performance of a green project, the issue generally comes down to the following question: Is there any identifiable or measurable gap between the predicted building performance (in the design and construction phases) and the actual bulding performance (during occupancy, operation and maintenance)?  This issue has been addressed in part… Continue Reading

Nashville Ordinance Seeks to Allow Alternative to LEED Certification

Posted in LEED, Legislation
A few weeks ago I tweeted about the local building code in Nashville "under review."  Actually, those words were a little weak.  What about these words: "Contractor Leads Attack Against Nashville’s LEED Legislation" … the exact words used by my colleague Stephen Del Percio, attorney and author of Green Real Estate Law Journal.  A good analysis by… Continue Reading

Green Building for Attorneys: Is It Merely Hoopla?

Posted in Claims and Disputes, Green Building, LEED, Legal Trends
I realize that the title to this post may scrunch some “What you talkin’ about, Willis?” eyebrows to the many LEED AP-construction-green-building-attorneys out there. However, the title really conveys the first words that ran through my mind as I read Gary Cole’s post on The Real Green Goblin – Emerging Legal Liability for Green Design… Continue Reading

LEED Legislation Wrecks Havoc: BIM Saves the Day!

Posted in Building Information Modeling, Green Building, LEED, Legislation, Technology
That’s not exactly how the headline reads … but close enough.  The actual title is BIM Promotes Sustainability: Practitioners are Finding Paths to Green through Interoperable Software.  As reported by McGraw Hill Construction, this article demonstrates the practical utility of Building Information Modeling (BIM) on a construction project … a green one!  MH reports about the restoration… Continue Reading