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Design Framework for Building Services 5th Edition (BG 6/2018)

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This guide helps building services consultants and contractors and their clients, clarify and define the extent of their design activity and deliverables. The 5th edition represent a significant update from the previous edition.

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The 5th edition represents a significant update from the previous edition. The release of this new edition ensures that BG 6 continues to be the industry standard document for building services consultants and contractors to help them, and their clients, clarify and define the extent of their design activity and their design deliverables on any specific project.

The guide contains design activity proformas and drawing / model definitions that are used to support contract documentation and to encourage efficient collaborative working between building services and other designers such as architects, structural engineers and also along building services supply chains.

The structure of this 5th edition has been arranged in order to provide more information and guidance on its purpose and how to use it. This includes some examples of using various proformas, together with their corresponding Appendix B spreadsheets.

To enable design activities to be chosen to best suit the needs of a particular project, the proformas have been reviewed. This has resulted in some having been combined – proformas 3a and 3b in the 4th edition have been combined into a single proforma 3 in the 5th edition, covering the whole of RIBA Stage 3. Similarly, profomas 4a, 4b and 4c in the 4th edition have been combined into a single proforma 4 in the 5th edition, covering the whole of RIBA Stage 4. Proforma 0 has been deleted.

For notes on the use of BG 6/2018 with the RIBA Plan of Work 2020, click here to download this pdf.

Additional drawings have been included to give more guidance on electrical and public health services content, as well as some building cross sections to demonstrate coordination of services at pinch points.

The ‘Allocating model and drawing production’ spreadsheet in Appendix B has been expanded to include all outputs detailed within the proformas. The spreadsheet has added functionality to allow the selection of different levels of information, as well as alternative classification structures.

As with the previous edition, the proformas in this 5th edition of BG 6 follow the project stages shown in the RIBA Plan of Work 2013.

The following files are attached to the PDF of the guide and are available as a free download to anyone purchasing a hard copy of the guide:

  • An editable Excel workbook of the Appendix B proforma: Allocation of system-specific deliverables to project participants
  • Locked Excel workbooks of example of using the Appendix A proformas (together with the corresponding Appendix B examples), extracts of which appear in Appendix C.
  • The exemplar geometric building information model referred to in section 3.2, in Navisworks format

This guide is available as a hard copy, pdf and multi site licensed versions. The licensed version of BG 6/2018 contains:

  • An unlocked PDF
  • An editable Word version of the guide
  • An Excel workbook of the Appendix A proformas: Allocating design activity
  • An unlocked pdf of the 4th edition (BG 6/2014)
  • An Excel workbook of all the proformas from the 4th edition
  • Free updates for one year from purchase date

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Appendix A of BG 6/2018 enables the roles “Lead”, “Support” and “Review” to be allocated to project parties for each design activity. How are these roles defined?

A: BG 6/2018 does not specifically define these roles; however, the following definitions may assist with allocating responsibility:

•             Lead: The party who is responsible for carrying out the activity
•             Support: Parties who should provide input to the lead party in support of the activity
•             Review: Parties who should review the activity and provide feedback to another defined party such as the client


Please not that some corrections were made to this guide on 26th July 2018. Details of these corrections can be found on the amendments and corrections page of the BSRIA website.

Revision History

The original predecessor of this publication was TN 8/94 The allocation of design responsibilities - a code of conduct to avoid conflict, published in 1994. This was superseded in 1997 by TN 21/97 Allocation of Design Responsibilities and TN 22/97 Allocation of design responsibilities - example drawings. These were superseded in 2006 by BG 6/2006 A Design Framework for Building Services. All subsequent editions kept this title. The 2nd edition was BG 6/2009, the 3rd edition was BG 6/2012, and the 4th edition was BG 6/2014 This 5th edition was published in June 2018.

Product details

  • Published: June 2018
  • Publisher: BSRIA
  • Authors: David Churcher, John Sands & Martin Ronceray
  • ISBN-13: 9780860227625