Announcing the Winners of the Inaugural Cogence Drive Awards

Cogence Alliance announces the winners of the inaugural Cogence Drive Awards.

Cogence created the Drive Awards to honor the best in project collaboration. The awards highlight the critical role and immense value that collaboration and innovation bring to building projects. The awards also demonstrate to the A/E/C community how their contributions are improving project outcomes.

Cogence accepted submissions for two categories: the Project Award and the Individual Award. Submissions were evaluated by an independent, national jury representing owners, architects, engineers, and construction teams.

The awards were presented Friday, November 10, at the first Cogence Town Hall, in Cleveland, Ohio.

 

Drive Award, Project: Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Center

Cleveland Clinic designed and built the Taussig Cancer Center with the same care and attention to detail that drives its commitment to Patients First. During the project, Cleveland Clinic engaged individuals, focused on quality, and relied on collaboration.

Taussig Cancer Center is a seven-story, 390,000-SF facility that combines exam rooms, treatment spaces, and physician offices under one roof. The construction cost was $194 million. In the award submission, the team listed 46 companies as collaborators on the project.

In their evaluations, the jurors highlighted many components of project success, including:

  • The effort the team put into learning and practicing collaboration throughout the project. Cleveland Clinic delivered the project using its Owner Controlled Team Project Delivery (OCTPDSM) practice model. OCTPD is an owner-led, collaborative delivery method that cultivates trust, respect, and accountability. The project team also committed to Lean processes, including pull planning and colocation.
  • Their use of design-assist. The project had 11 design-assist partners, and the MEP teams used a prefab warehouse for select portions of assembly.
  • The outstanding financial results because of the collaborative approach. The final project cost indicated an overall savings of $21 million, $17 million of which can be directly attributed to the collaborative efforts of the design and construction team.

In the submission, the team also noted that “the response from visitors, patients, caregivers and the community is overwhelmingly positive. Upon entering the main lobby for the first time, most patients are in awe of their new surroundings and smile in appreciation for the new environment.”

 

Drive Award, Individual: Ronald J. Lawson

Ron Lawson has been a pioneer in collaborative project delivery at Cleveland Clinic. As a founding board member of Cogence, he has demonstrated his commitment to improving outcomes for the industry as a whole.

Lawson recently retired from his role as Director of Construction at Cleveland Clinic, a position he held for 16 years. Lawson led the creation and implementation of Cleveland Clinic’s Owner Controlled Team Project Delivery (OCTPDSM) method. With OCTPD, the owner leads a team of industry experts to deliver the project in a transparent, collaborative team fashion. The culture is one of trust, respect, and accountability. In the past several years alone, Lawson managed $1.55 billion in projects delivered collaboratively.

Lawson’s nomination for the Drive Award received resounding support. While the entry requirements called for only two letters of recommendation, Lawson’s nomination included 10. Letters came from all the roles that exist on a project: owner, architect, engineer, construction manager, trades, and allied consultant. They speak powerfully to Lawson’s influence and legacy.

  • “Simply put, Ron became the agent for that change. Single-handed at first, but step by step and person by person, he led the charge to change the long-held ‘silos’ of design, construction, and ownership.”
  • “Ron understands that this [collaborative] spirit is important to communicate throughout the entire team, not only at the management level. Throughout his career he has committed to push these concepts down to the trade level, and he is is highly respected by union leadership.”
  • “His expectations for continuous improvement using new tools and technology have resulted in a great opportunity for the younger project stakeholders to embrace and therefore lead the solutions to these new challenges…Future generations are now positioned to continue the journey forward as the next leaders of this improved collaborative delivery vision.”

Honor Award: Pamela J. Neckar

Pam Neckar is the founding president of Cogence Alliance, as well as Project Coach and CFO of Bostwick Design Partnership, a Cleveland-based architecture firm.

The Board of Directors surprised Neckar with an Honor Award in recognition of her dedication to Cogence.

Pen Wolf, Vice President of Cogence, presented the award. He praised Neckar for her vision, her insistence that the team do the work, and the “incredible amount of work” she has done for the organization.

As Neckar accepted the award, she turned attention back to the Town Hall attendees.

“Today is a very important day for Cogence,” she said. “This is the start…of something that will really change the industry.”

“I’m excited because of all of you and your contributions.”

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