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These guidelines are recommended for implementation by any State Agency or Department, Higher or Postsecondary Education Institution, or local school board desiring to secure the services of professional architects, engineers, surveyors and testing services for any project under the jurisdiction of the Alabama Building Commission. These guideline apply to the selection of the primary design professional, surveyor, or testing laboratory with whom the Awarding Authority will contract directly, not consulting professionals who will be selected by the primary professional.

1. The Awarding Authority should notify the Technical Staff, in writing, of its interest in securing design professional services. This notification should include a description of the type and scope of the project to be designed, funds available, location and other pertinent data concerning the improvement. The notification should also include the name, address, and telephone number of the person to be contacted by interested design professionals and the date by which design professionals must submit their qualifications for consideration.

2. The Technical Staff will advertise this information within the design professional community on a monthly basis by publishing a memorandum listing all such notifications of potential projects received during the preceding month. This memorandum will be mailed to architects, engineers, land surveyors, and/or testing laboratories who have requested to be on the ABC’s mailing list.

3. Architects, engineers, surveyors and testing services will notify the Awarding Authority by letter of their interest in a specific project and give their general qualifications using Standard Form (SF) 254 and 255.

4. The Awarding Authority should form a Selection Committee to evaluate the letters of interest from the prospective architects, engineers, surveyors, and testing laboratories. Their evaluation should consider such items as those listed in Item 7 of these procedures to the extent possible and pertinent.

5. The Selection Committee should select at least three firms from those expressing interest for comprehensive interview, review and discussions.

6. The selected firms should be allowed the opportunity for an in depth interview by the Selection Committee. In the event the Awarding Authority has no firm to express an interest, the Selection Committee should contact at least three firms of its own choosing.

7. The Selection Committee should evaluate those firms being interviewed for:

A. General experience and competence of the firm and its principals.

B. Past performance record on other projects as regards to quality of

    work, timely performance, diligence, ability to meet budgets and other

    related items.

C. Related experience on similar projects.

D. Principal or responsible architects, engineers, surveyors and testing

    services of the project team must have adequate experience in the

    fields that the proposed services are requested.

E. Familiarity with conditions, codes, and other ordinances where such

    knowledge is essential to the proper performance of the contract.

F. Firms must be operating on a sound financial basis.

G. Ability of the firm to provide the services needed in the length of time

    required in relation of other work loads in which the firm is engaged.

H. Economic considerations (where applicable):

            (1) Accuracy of the professional's estimates compared to construction

                 cost on recent projects of similar scope.

            (2) Qualifications to determine alternative energy sources and prepare


            (3) Consideration of energy conservation and energy management

                 methods, with life-cycle cost analyses.

            (4) Ability to design within budgets, considering logical choice of

                 materials, efficiency of plan and systems and regard to aesthetics

                 without ostentation.

             (5) The professional shall address the subject of fee stating the basis of

                  his fee as it is affected by the scope of the work considering the

                  project size, complexity, cost, repetitions, etc., in accord with

                  Chapter 4 Supplement of this manual or other documents controlling

                  the Awarding Authority.

             (6) Ability of the professional to design within 10 percent of tentative

                  budget allocation and agreement to redesign at no extra cost if

                  construction bids exceed 10 percent of budget allocation.

             (7) Basis of cost of extra services not covered in basic fee described in

                  H (1) above.

              (8) Fees should not exceed the fee schedule of Chapter 4 Supplement.

                   For projects to be administered by the ABC, fees may not exceed 

                   the fee schedule of chapter 4 Supplement without advance approval

                   of the Director, Technical Staff.

I. Proximity to site improvements.

J. Qualifications of consulting engineers, architects, specialists, surveyors, or testing laboratories proposed to be employed by the firms under consideration.

K. In an effort to distribute work among all qualified firms, the Selection Committee should give consideration to the Awarding Authority’s current and past workload with the firms under consideration.

8. Based on the evaluation of the firms, considering the criteria deemed appropriate by the Selection Committee, including those criteria listed in Item 7 above, the Selection Committee should rank the firms. The most qualified firm will be selected based upon this ranking. The Selection Committee should notify the other firms interviewed, in writing, of the firm that has been selected for negotiation.

9. If the Selection Committee is unable to negotiate an acceptable agreement, the Selection Committee should:

A. Terminate negotiations in writing.

B. Negotiate with the next best qualified firm originally interviewed (Item 6).

C. Upon failure to negotiate with any of the firms referred to in Item 6, select additional firms to interview.

10. Exceptions:

A. Where federal funds are involved and procedures have been established consistent with federal guidelines of a particular federal agency, the federal guidelines prevail.

B. An architect, engineer, surveyor or laboratory may be retained without regard to the guidelines set forth above when, due to an emergency or other exigencies of time, it is in the best interest of the Awarding Authority to retain an architect, engineer, surveyor or laboratory as rapidly as possible.