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Construction panel tackles Olympic contract disputes

An Independent Dispute Avoidance Panel (IDAP) and an adjudication panel have been set up to try to avoid or resolve contractual disputes during construction for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The panel of construction professionals will advise the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) on potential disputes that could cause delays in the delivery of the 2012 construction projects.

The IDAP was set up to provide solutions to potential problems before they reach the dispute stage in order to avoid lengthy resolutions.

In addition, the adjudication panel has been formed to resolve any disputes that may not be avoided through consultation with the IDAP.

ODA Chief Executive David Higgins said: 'Delivering the venues and infrastructure for London 2012 is a project of unprecedented scale and complexity, equivalent to building two Heathrow Terminal fives in half the time. We are exactly where we expected to be at this stage of the project with construction due to start as planned before the Beijing Games.

'Positive and open relationships with our contractors are crucial to keeping the project on track and will be even more important as more companies come on board to start building the venues.
'This independent panel will help us and our contractors work together to identify and resolve any potential issues early.'

All parties will still be able to resort to legal procedures - in particular, the parties will have the statutory right to refer any dispute or difference to adjudication. If either party decides to challenge an adjudicator's decision, the final tribunal is the Technology and Construction Court.

The IDAP is chaired by Dr Martin Barnes, president of the Association for Project Management and originator of the form of construction contract being used by the ODA for major venues (the NEC Contract). Dr Barnes has selected a panel made up of ten construction professionals.

Dr Barnes said: 'The innovative approach of avoiding rather than resolving disputes is essential given the unique challenges that the ODA and its contractors face in delivering the London 2012 infrastructure and venues, particularly the immovable end date.

'The panel brings an independent perspective to helping ensure that the London 2012 projects are completed on time and within budget and enhance the reputation of UK construction.'

The adjudication panel is chaired by Peter Chapman and made up of adjudicators appointed by the Institution of Civil Engineers based on the nominations from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, Royal Institution of British Architects, Chartered Institute of Building and the Institution of Engineering and Technology.

For more details visit

14 April 2008


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