Construction Law Committee – Built Environment Series Recap & Materials

21st Century Construction, 20th Century Construction Law

The goals of this page and the reports and events featured on it are straightforward: to educate the public regarding the need to modernize the State’s archaic public construction procurement laws and to discuss the types of revisions that should be made. The current laws prevent public owners from avoiding costs due to the mismatch between service delivery methodology and project needs. The laws’ exclusive focus on initial project costs to the exclusion of life cycle costs contributes to the continuing pattern of delayed maintenance, leading to increased capital needs over time. Ultimately, the public owner’s inability to avoid costs in construction incrementally increases non-discretionary debt service costs, which can crowd out discretionary—or programmatic costs—during times of budget stress.

This page features the work of the City Bar’s Construction Law Committee and includes information on their Built Environment related events, including event materials and links to relevant committee reports.


To view reports in the Construction Law Committee’s series “21st Century Construction, 20th Century Construction Law”, click here.


Modernization of New York’s Built Environment Laws: If Not Now, When?

November 12, 2014 educational event which featured multiple panel discussions focusing on the need to modernize the built environment laws in New York State for all participants in construction-from owners, designers and architects to engineers and constructors. The objective was to provide a foundation to advance the dialogue among policymakers and stakeholders to overhaul New York State’s outdated and archaic system of construction laws.

Event Materials and Video

Building in the 21st Century Series
Case Studies in Public Construction Procurement: At the Intersection of Built Environment Regulation and “On the Ground” Reality

October 21, 2011 conference sponsored by the New York City Bar’s Construction Law Committee, AIA New York State, the Government Law Center of Albany Law School and Town+Gown

Event Materials

Building in the 21st Century Series
Developing the 21st Century: Land Use, Construction Law and Project Finance in the Built Environment

On January 25, 2011, the Construction Law, Project Finance and Land Use Planning and Zoning Committees of the New York City Bar Association jointly sponsored a multi-disciplinary investigation of several critical issues in the Built Environment entitled “Developing the 21st Century.” This day-long event was the latest in a series of Built Environment educational events that were inspired three years ago when the Construction Law Committee released its report, “21st Century Construction 20th Century Construction Law.” The report has been updated.

This multi-disciplinary investigation of critical Built Environment issues explored community benefits agreements and the “disconnect” between local land use practices and regional smart growth and sustainability agendas; the need for, and the manner of, modernizing public construction procurement laws for all public owners as a first step to move New York construction law into the 21st Century; and necessary statutory conditions for modernizing public finance laws, in particular the authorization of public-private partnerships.

Event Materials