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Construction Contract Templates

As a new recipient of federal aid for a construction project, a critical step is to develop construction contracts that keep projects on time, on task, and on budget. These legally binding contracts, or project agreements, define the roles, responsibilities, terms, and conditions of the project’s delivery.

Contract Templates as a Starting Point

For organizations that lack the internal resources to create contracts "in house," commercially available (“off the shelf”) contract templates and model language can provide a starting point to accelerate successful delivery of transportation projects. Contract templates can also provide a basis for discussion of matters such as project scope, timelines, deliverables, payment structures, and risk allocation, as well as legal provisions and regulatory requirements.

Commercially Available Products

To provide practitioners with options that support development of project agreements, the Project Delivery Center of Excellence conducted a scan of commercially available products related to transportation contracting. The results of that scan are shown in the table below, listing templates and model language that are transportation related, off the shelf, and from a high-quality source.

High-Quality Sources

High-quality sources are considered to be a company or organization that produces products related to the design, construction, and/or maintenance of transportation assets (e.g., professional associations, government agencies, and design or construction firms).

Source Description Link
American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) This for-purchase source contains multiple construction contract templates that apply to transportation.
American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) This for-purchase source contains multiple construction contract templates that apply to transportation.
Design Build Institute of America This for-purchase source has multiple contracting templates available, with a targeted focus on the Design-Build project delivery method.
Engineers Joint Contract Documents Committee  This for-purchase source is a joint committee created by three partnering national associations (ACEC, ASCE, and NSPE) to develop construction contract templates.
Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) FHWA offers many resources related to construction contract administration, including sample templates for alternative contracting methods such as Design-Build or Construction Manager/General Contractor.
National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) This for-purchase source contains multiple construction contract templates that apply to transportation.
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) USDA’s Rural Utilities Service (RUS) Program Office has worked alongside the EJCDC to develop a series of preapproved construction contract templates for use on USDA RUS projects.

Please note: A contract template is a tool to help develop and conceptualize requirements for the project agreement. When using a contract template, consider the following:

  • Work alongside experienced counsel to tailor them to your specific needs and requirements.
  • Ensure that all applicable procurement laws for the jurisdiction where the project takes place have been incorporated.
  • Modifications and customizations to the content, format, and/or details may be necessary to best suit your project. Modifications should be performed by experienced counsel.

Disclaimer of Endorsement 

  • Provision of these templates should not be construed as and does not constitute legal advice or guidance by DOT.
  • The information posted on DOT web sites may include hypertext links or pointers to information created and maintained by other public and/or private organizations. DOT provides these links and pointers solely for our users' information and convenience. When users select a link to an outside web site, they are leaving the DOT web site and are subject to the privacy and security policies of the owners/sponsors of the outside web site.
  • DOT did not create nor does it control or guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of information contained on a linked web site.
  • DOT does not endorse the organizations sponsoring linked web sites, and we do not endorse the views they express or the products/services they offer.
  • DOT cannot authorize the use of copyrighted materials contained in linked web sites. Users must request such authorization from the sponsor of the linked web site.
  • DOT is not responsible for transmissions users receive from linked web sites.
  • DOT does not guarantee that outside web sites comply with Section 508 (Accessibility Requirements) of the Rehabilitation Act.

For More Information

For more information, to provide feedback, or to submit a template for consideration, please reach out to Patrick Raistrick.