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Construction Project Life Cycle

A construction project life cycle is the series of steps that take a construction project from its creation on a blackboard or computer screen through its completion in reality. The construction project life cycle is an extensive project that, in some cases, takes many years to finish its journey.

The first step in a construction project life cycle depends on the delivery method used. If the traditional/design/bid build approach is in use, the first step of the construction project life cycle would be the hiring of an architect. The architect would be tasked by the property owner to develop a design for the project; once that design was completed, the owner would then put the project out for bids, taking the lowest bid from a construction contractor and hiring them to construct the project designed by the architect. If the design-build method is used, the first step would be for the owner to put the project out for bid, as they would later select from a contractor-architect team to design and build the project.

The pre-construction process is the next step in the construction project life cycle. This can be work done solely between the architect and the owner, or the architect, contractor and owner. During pre-construction, changes are made to the design, schedules are set and budgets established. The role of the contractor in this step depends on which construction method is used.

The next step in the construction project life cycle is the construction of the project itself. Here, the contractor takes charge of the project, working with subcontractors to complete all steps of the architect's design. The contractor is responsible for every step of the construction stage--even the work done by the subcontractors--from the laying of the foundation to the finishing touches of the interior of the building.

Post-construction and delivery are the final steps of the construction project life cycle. Once the work on the project is done, the owner has the right to review it and request that changes be made. If the changes are due to mistakes made by the contractor, they are not charged for them. Once the product meets with their approval, it is formally turned over to the property owner.

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