Green Terms Defined: The 4 C’s

Since I entered the construction profession I have known CSI (Construction Specifications Institute).  I was fortunate to start my career in a firm deeply involved with CSI. I give credit to this involvement to my learning the importance of the 4 C’s to a successful construction project. However, this may in fact be the most difficult part of creating a green project. You have to be able to effectively convey the information from design to construction in a Clear, Concise, Correct, and Complete method.

Changing a simple word in a project manual can change the intent of the design. Placing a note that does not effectively convey the design intent on the drawings may cause the performance of the building to suffer upon completion. Missing a note that should have been on the drawings could cause the contractor to install in inferior product that does not meet the goals for the project. It sounds simple, but making sure you follow the 4 C’s in construction document creation may be the most critical aspect of creating a green project.

The Construction Specifications Institute (CSI)is a national professional association that provides format standards to meet the construction industry’s need for a common system of organizing and presenting documents. CSI also provides technical information and publications, continuing education, professional conferences, and product shows to assist the professions involved in creating and sustaining the built environment. Founded in 1948, CSI is the only organization that serves all the major disciplines involved in facility design and construction.

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