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Vision for the Built Environment aligned with core Project 13 Principles

Melissa Zanocco
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Dale Evans, Chair Project 13 and member of the Vision Steering Group, explains how the Project 13 Principles align with the Vision and how Project 13 will play its part in making it a reality.

Our Vision for the built environment’ released today (22 April 2021), reinforces the direction advocated by Project 13.  With contributions from over 75 industry leaders and endorsed by more than 35 industry bodies spanning the built environment, the vision describes the future we want: a built environment whose explicit purpose is to deliver better outcomes for people and nature.

It recognises the significant opportunity we are presented with, in now having the tools, technology and delivery models to make this future vision a reality.

Outcome-focused collaborative delivery models

The Vision calls for ‘approaches to the delivery of interventions that are able to deal with complexity, and enable effective integration of new assets into the existing systems. Outcome-focused collaborative delivery models leverage input from across the supplier ecosystem, bringing together engineering and technology to deliver intelligent solutions.’

The built environment has traditionally been seen as a series of unconnected construction projects focused on short-term outputs.  Suppliers construct individual assets, delivering solutions predetermined by the owner.  The resulting delivery processes and relationships are formed narrowly around the scope of this new asset.  By the time delivery teams are brought together, there is little recognition of the outcomes required of the solution.

The Project 13 Principles require that the end-to-end process of development is focused on improving outcomes; so maintaining the focus on the purpose of the intervention, aligning teams around a common purpose and creating greater opportunity for creativity and innovation. This marks a significant shift from the traditional approach that focuses on projects and building stuff - and where success is defined in terms of project metrics and cost.

The Project 13 Enterprise delivery model allows owners and operators to:

  • Focus on the better outcomes we are trying to achieve for people and nature;
  • Recognise that an understanding of the existing system increases the opportunity to achieve these outcomes through better and more efficient use of the system;
  • Ensures that where the required intervention does include new assets, they are integrated effectively with the existing system.

The Vision is aligned with Project 13 in calling for the alignment of outcomes; from global and national strategic priorities, through to investment decisions for individual interventions. The Project 13 Principles advocate owners developing processes that provide a clear understanding of local requirements; the voice of the customer, the communities and the environment. The dialogue that takes place to agree the desired outcomes is crucial in creating alignment and clearly articulating the outcomes required.

Making the Vision a Reality

The Vision calls for everyone involved in development of the built environment to contribute to this new approach. As the Project 13 Community, we aim to do just that. In 2020 the number of Project 13 Adopters doubled, and the Project 13 Network, launched in March 2021, already has over 750 registered members, demonstrating the commitment to leading the change required and to helping the industry make this shift.

Project 13 is also contributing to the Infrastructure and Projects Authority on the Transforming Infrastructure Performance: Roadmap to 2030 to be published later this year, which will help to translate the Vision into policy.

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