Last edited 04 Sep 2020

Construction works

Civil engineering procedure, 7th edition, published by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), defines 'the works' as:

What a contractor has undertaken to provide or do for a promoter (client) - consisting of the work to be carried out, goods, materials and services to be supplied, and the liabilities, obligations and risks to be taken by that contractor. It may not be all of the project, depending on what is specified in a contract.

The CDM regulations suggest that 'construction works' means '...the carrying out of any building, civil engineering or engineering construction work and includes:

But does not include the exploration for, or extraction of, mineral resources, or preparatory activities carried out at a place where such exploration or extraction is carried out.'

The Building Regulations suggest that the word 'building' refers to:

...any permanent or temporary building but not any other kind of structure or erection, and a reference to a building includes a reference to part of a building.

And so the specific term 'building work' means:

The Town and Country Planning Act 1990 considers that 'building operations' includes:

The EU defines works as the outcome of building or civil engineering works taken as a whole which is sufficient in itself to fulfil an economic or technical function. In other words this is the construction of a built asset such as a road, an office block or school. Ref Guidance for public sector contracting authorities on the procurement of construction works, published by the Scottish Procurement and Property Directorate on 21 Dec 2018.

The UN Procurement Practitioner's Handbook, produced by the Interagency Procurement Working Group (IAPWG) in 2006 and updated in 2012 defines works as: ‘ All activities associated with the construction, reconstruction, demolition, repair or renovation of a building, structure or activities such as site preparation, excavation, erection, building, installation of equipment or materials, decoration and finishing, as well as services incidental to construction such as drilling, mapping, satellite photography, seismic investigations and similar services provided pursuant to the procurement contract, if the value of those services does not exceed that of the works themselves.’

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