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RIBA Pre-Construction Information checklist now available

RIBA Pre-Construction Information Checklist now available

The CDM 2015 regulations have not set out the scope of ‘Pre-Construction Information’ to be provided by the client for H&S purposes. Now the RIBA is offering a checklist of all the information architects are likely to need, particularly when fulfilling the role of Principal Designer.

The latest RIBA benchmarking data shows that 60% of Chartered Practices are now offering Principal Designer CDM services.

The Pre-Construction Information Checklist has been developed by by RIBA Health and Safety Expert
Panel member Andy Jobling, Technical Manger, at Levitt Bernstein, where the checklist is already in use today.

Jobling says one of the main objectives of the RIBA Expert Panel is enabling the Principal Designer role to be delivered by architects as originally intended by the HSE. Collecting pre-construction information is the first task to be tackled by the Principal Designer.

Loudoun Road housing, where Levitt Bernstein acted as architect and CDM Co-ordinator, was built alongside the electrified West Coast Mainline and its retaining wall, requiring multiple safety issues to be managed. Photo © Tim Crocker

The 'Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015' (CDM 2015) which came into force in April 2015, call on the Principal Designer to plan, manage and co-ordinate health and safety in the pre-construction phase, and to help and advise the client on bringing together all of the pre-construction information that designers and contractors will need to carry out their duties.

‘The Principal Designer is responsible for ensuring that the right information reaches the right people at the right time,’ adds Jobling.

But nowhere does the HSE’s extensive guidance on 'CDM 2015 – L153: Managing health and safety in construction', set out what information should be included.

Jobling suggests using the checklist at the outset of a project to talk the client through what information is already available and what will need to be commissioned, such as surveys.

Architects should flag up any CDM pre-construction information issues that need to be managed. Jobling stresses that the list was not drawn up simply as an aid for the Principal Designer, but that it can be used as a checklist to support general project risk management, as it is at Levitt Bernstein.

‘The checklist is not a risk management register as it does not set out impacts when requirements are not met, but it can be used to flag up timings of future requirements, such as ecology surveys that need to be carried out at a particular time of the year, or arrangements for utility connections,’ explains Jobling.

‘It allows architects to stay ahead of the game by showing how information feeds into project risk management. It can be used to warn clients if there is a time or cost risk if they don’t carry out surveys, for instance, by a certain date. It can also be useful where planning authorities are making demands for information to support planning applications.’

Jobling adds that the checklist offers not just a list of information to be collected, but can be used as a tool for the project team to maintain a continuous record of what information is there and what needs tracking, helping to streamline the information management process.

Thanks to Andy Jobling, Technical Manager, Levitt Bernstein Associates Limited.

Text by Neal Morris. This is a ‘Practice News’ post edited by the RIBA Practice team. Send us your feedback and ideas.

RIBA Core Curriculum Topic: Legal, regulatory and statutory compliance
As part of the flexible RIBA CPD programme, Practice News counts as microlearning. See further information on the updated RIBA CPD Core Curriculum and on fulfilling your CPD requirements as an RIBA Chartered Member.

Posted on 7 December 2017

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