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Russell W. Wood, CSI, CCS
Senior Member
Username: woodr5678

Post Number: 144
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Wednesday, September 16, 2009 - 09:40 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

In a green spec, if you ask for something under Part-1, Submittals, such as VOC data, Recycled Content, or Local Materials, do you also have to ask for the same in Part-2? Most green specs I'm seeing ask for say Local Materials under submittals but do specify Local Materials as a requirement in Part-2. To get a submittal on a product characteristic don't we have to specify that characteristic in Part-2?
Ralph Liebing, RA, CSI
Senior Member
Username: rliebing

Post Number: 1060
Registered: 02-2003
Posted on Wednesday, September 16, 2009 - 10:32 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

I would think that Part 1 is the place to state general expectations and ask for the documentation and verification of those expectations and the product requirements set out in Part 2; i.e., Part 1 is a generalized set of requirements, modified [upward] in the specifics of Part 2.
Robert W. Johnson
Senior Member
Username: robert_w_johnson

Post Number: 40
Registered: 03-2009
Posted on Wednesday, September 16, 2009 - 11:12 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

I don't think specifications are about "expectations" - how do you enforce an expectation?

The purpose of a submittal is to document compliance with a requirement. If a requirement is not specified or indicated on the drawings, what is there to document? If there is no specified VOC limits, information on VOC's in a submittal is basically meaningless - provides general information but does not relate to a requirement.

Specified products should obviously comply with all specified requirements, otherwise you have a conflict in the documents.

Requirements can be specified in locations other than within the section. For instance general VOC requirements covering many different products that are used in multiple sections may be specified in a Division 01 section rather than repeated in the various product sections.

In terms of LEED requirements, some of them (recycled content, regional materials) may be specified as a general requirement for the total project in Division 01 allowing the contractor to decide how the overall requirement for the project will be met by the selection of particular products. In that case, a section may require a submittal for a LEED requirement even though the section does not include that particular requirement for any products in that section. This is only in the case where the contractor is given that responsibility. The products specified in the various sections still have to be able to meet the overall percentage requirement of the Division 01 section.
Anne Whitacre, FCSI CCS
Senior Member
Username: awhitacre

Post Number: 904
Registered: 07-2002

Posted on Wednesday, September 16, 2009 - 12:07 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

to answer the original question: yes, put the requirements in part 1. If you are listing specific product suppliers, or products in this section, then yes, anything you specify must meet those requirements or you look like you didn't do your homework. However, if the product is a commodity (such as concrete) then you really don't need to repeat the criteria again in Part 2. Keep in mind that if you are requiring the "local" requirement, you should know that its possible to be met.

As for Bob's suggestion that all the criteria be in Division 1, I've found that because of how the documents are handled, that is difficult to work with. We all know that the contractor parcels out the documents (or the subs read only their sections) and if the requirement isn't in the section, then it most likely will not be complied with. The contractor will not verify before bidding that the sub has complied with the LEED requirements, and it will be a problem during construction trying to enforce a requirment (or even the paperwork submittals) from a sub who didn't budget for that work. I've found that putting the specific LEED requirements in each section simply saves a lot of backtracking and headaches during construction.
Phil Kabza
Senior Member
Username: phil_kabza

Post Number: 400
Registered: 12-2002

Posted on Wednesday, September 16, 2009 - 09:34 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Although Anne's solution to the LEED enforcement problem has its practical side, if we were to put all the requirements typically found in Division 01 that affect subcontractors bids into the individual sections, we'd end up with a spec that needed wheels. Why stop with LEED requirements, which are fairly trivial in the grand scheme of things?

The trend in specifying is to maximize general requirements, and stop placing repetitive requirements in each section. That means that subs have to learn to secure complete bidding documents, and read them, or suffer the consequences. After the first round of suffering, I think they'll find reading more palatable. I've been tempted to feed all the general LEED requirements into the individual sections, too, but what about the substitution requirements, the warranty requirements, the general execution requirements, etc., etc. So we need to keep trying to drag our subcontractors to CDT classes so they can learn how to do their jobs, and we can do ours.
Anne Whitacre, FCSI CCS
Senior Member
Username: awhitacre

Post Number: 905
Registered: 07-2002

Posted on Thursday, September 17, 2009 - 03:18 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

because.... meeting LEED requirements may often restrict sourcing of the item, which directly impacts THAT subcontractor. if we have a restriction for distance from project, or recycled content, we are essentially putting requirements on which products a subcontractor can bid on, and that's not a division 1 requirement. its not the same as a submittal or a quality control thing, which would apply to any product, procurred from anywhere.
There are a number of examples out there that if the subcontractor in all good faith bids based on his own product selection and the owner has requirements other than those stated, the subcontractor can successfully get a change order for the increased price and/or processing because the requirements were not easily discernible. I just don't think we need the headaches of that...
Phil Kabza
Senior Member
Username: phil_kabza

Post Number: 401
Registered: 12-2002

Posted on Thursday, September 17, 2009 - 03:58 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

I agree Anne has identified a very real problem. Any time a contractor withholds contract information from a subcontractor, or a subcontractor fails to incorporate all applicable information related to their sub-bid, there is potential for this problem, whether it is LEED requirements or any other pertinent requirements. The subcontractor often naively proceeds based on a fax of their section only. When there's a dispute, the contractor attempts to step aside and engage the architect directly with the subcontractor.

In the case of the general LEED requirements, the architect can assume responsibility for idenfifying specific products that must be used to obtain credits related to the distance requirement, recycled content, rapidly renewable resources, or certified wood. To do so will place responsibility for accurately predicting procurement details and costs on the architect. This is hard to do. For example, predicting which of several plants the recycled content gypsum board will be available from at the time it is procured is challenging, and a moving target as manufacturers change product lines over a 12 or 24 month project. I don't know why the architect would want to take on this responsibility, when the contractor is expert in procurement and costs, and should be developing the LEED project plan and directing the subcontractors on which items they are looking at incorporating under those credits. I think the architect is assuming inappropriate risk by dictating to the contractor how the general LEED requirements are to be met.

For this sort of problem, Roscoe Reeves insisted on keeping that annoying, non-Manual of Practice statement at the beginning of each MasterSpec section that all specifiers like to delete - the one that references the Division 00 and Division 01 documents. I tend to keep it in, because, like Anne, I just don't want to get involved in these disputes; let the contractor and the sub solve them, then tell us how they will meet the project LEED requirements.

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