Our construction attorneys have assisted multiple clients with their plans for new construction and building renovations on campus, from initial conceptualization through project completion. Our broad range of available project services includes assisting with acquisitions, development and financing, permitting, selection of an appropriate project delivery approach, contract negotiations, construction, and occupancy.

  • A full array of real estate development services, including property sale or acquisition, leasing, project feasibility analyses, environmental assessment analyses, tax analyses, financing, title and conveyancing, site planning and development permitting (including zoning, planning, subdivision, wetland and other environmental permitting).
  • Advice regarding how to design and implement education-related real estate developments in order to minimize/eliminate local zoning and land use controls.
  • Redevelopment of brownfields sites for educational uses.
  • Advice and counsel regarding how to structure the delivery of capital projects such as fixed-price Design-Bid-Build, Design/Build, Construction Management at Risk, Multi-Prime, and Integrated Project Delivery (IPD).
  • Structure and clarify “front end bidding documents” to achieve better pricing and better results.
  • Advice regarding the selection of an Owner’s Project Manager (OPM), defining the role of the OPM for any given project, and negotiating an appropriate contract with the OPM.
  • Selecting appropriate forms of design and construction contracts for any given project, or drafting manuscripted agreements and taking the lead in negotiating requested revisions.
  • Pro-active advice on how to navigate labor issues common to construction projects, the appropriateness of using a Project Labor Agreement, including the drafting and negotiation of the Agreement, and responding to labor disturbances which may occur.
  • Counsel regarding managing the safety and security risks related to on-campus construction activities.
  • Guidance on how to implement principles of sustainable construction and design.
  • Counselling on job safety and OSHA compliance issues.
  • Guidance regarding project close-out issues including final payment issues, obtaining bonding company consent, timing of release of retainage, responding to mechanics’ liens, assembly of contractual warranties, and the like.
  • Pursuit of, or defense of, any claims arising out of a project with an emphasis on early dispute resolution.


Representative Experience

Pierce Atwood has been working with Brown University to develop construction contracts for a number of capital projects using the innovative Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) approach to project delivery.  Among the projects Brown has successfully completed using IPD is the new, $90 million School of Engineering building and renovations project.  Brown is currently delivering several projects using IPD, including the much anticipated Performing Arts Center project. Brown University has taken a leading position in the New England region in recognizing the potential benefits of, and implementing, this new and exciting approach to project delivery.

Brown University Embraces Integrated Project Delivery Approach for Capital Projects

We negotiated the contract between our client Brown University and Ecosystem, the contractor, for a Thermal Efficiency Project that Brown is undertaking. The plan involves converting the university’s existing high-temperature hot water system to modern, highly efficient, lower-temperature hot water.

Contract Negotiation for Brown University Thermal Efficiency Project