The Illinois General Assembly recently enacted P.A. 103-491 (SB 1570) authorizing municipalities and school districts to enter into design-build contracts. This authority builds on the statutory authorization to choose the
design-build delivery method that was previously given to the Chicago Park
District, and then to all Park Districts formed under the Illinois Park Code, and has now been extended to municipalities through the Illinois Municipal Code and school districts through the the Illinois School Code. 

Non-home rule municipalities and school
districts – like all units of non-home rule local government – are subject to
the provisions of the Local Government Professional Services Selection Act which
requires the unit of government to undertake a “quality-based” selection process
for contracting with design professionals (e.g., architects and engineers) and which
severely limits the ability to select a design professional on the basis of the
design professional’s fee. In addition,
other state laws mandate that certain public works contracts be competitively bid. Based on these current laws, non home rule municipalities and school districts have to follow a more traditional design-bid-build delivery method that involves the use of separate contracts – one with a design professional and one with a general contractor (or multiple contractors and a construction manager). 

With the enactment of this new law, municipalities and schools now have the option to choose the design-build
delivery method. The new law establishes a two-phase selection process that includes development of the scope and
performance criteria for design-build contracts, a procedure for selection of
contracts, requirements for submission of proposals, procedures for awarding
contracts, and requirements of reports and evaluation of contracts (and a
shorter process if the total overall cost of a project is estimated to be less
than $12,000,000). 

Post Authored by Derke Price, Ancel Glink