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JimB
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In addition to the problems already noted, here are two more that I find misused and often unfair to one or both of the parties. Insisting that the same Unit price apply to both added OR deleted work. Often there are fixed costs applicable to an item that will be incurred regardless of the in place quantity of the work. Example: Depth of a drilled pier. The reinforcing has been purchased and tied into a cage. The drill rig, crane,casings etc have been moved to the location of the next pier. If there is a significant reduction in the depth of the pier, the deduction will be excessive relative to actual cost. Knowledgeable writers of bid documents recognize this and provide for both add and deductive unit prices. Another problem is the use of a unit price for an item whose cost is extremely varied within the project. Example: Concrete. This may be O.K for a bridge if both foundation and deck prices are requested. But for a typical building project, concrete can vary from massive retaining walls to combination curb & gutter on a winding access drive. This cost can varies from $150 to $1000 per CY. And unless there is a provision that some significant and realistic quantity of the item must be included in the lump sum base price for the project, it is a moot point since it does not affect the contract award leaving the matter to be argued later if indeed it even becomes an issue.