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    Can A&E services be bought as commercial services under FAR part 12? We do understand that we have to use FAR part 15 processes as required under FAR part 36. We have researched the issue and have not been able to find a definitive answer as to the commercial question. We looked at ACQuipedia to define A&E services and FAR part 2 for the definition of commercial services. We believe that A&E falls under commercial services but need clarification. Thank you for any assistance you can provide.


    Answer

    The simple answer is no. A&E Services cannot be contracted for using
    procedures in FAR Part 12. The below FAR 2.101 definitions are applicable.
    The key words in all three definitions are "real property". The definition of a
    commercial item excludes real property. The definition of construction
    provides examples of construction projects and then states  "other real
    property" which indicates the examples are real property as well. The
    definition of A&E services in (2) below states services for " research,
    planning, development, design, construction, alteration, or repair of  real
    property".
     
    A&E services are acquired and managed in accordance with The Brooks Act  as
    implemented in FAR Subpart 36.6. In addition, FAR 36.601-3(b) states:
    Sources for contracts for architect-engineer services shall be selected in
    accordance with the procedures in this subpart rather than the solicitation or source
    selection procedures prescribed in Parts 13, 14, and 15 of this regulation.
     
    "Commercial item" means -- Any item, other than real property, that is of a
    type customarily used by the general public or by non-governmental entities
    for purposes other than governmental purposes, and--
     
    "Construction" means construction, alteration, or repair (including
    dredging,
    excavating, and painting) of buildings, structures, or other real
    property....
     
    Architect-engineer services," as defined in 40 U.S.C. 1102, means--
     
    (1) Professional services of an architectural or engineering nature, as
    defined by State law, if applicable, that are required to be performed or
    approved by a person licensed, registered, or certified to provide those
    services;
     
    (2) Professional services of an architectural or engineering nature
    performed by contract that are associated with research, planning, development,
    design, construction, alteration, or repair of  real property ; and
     
    (3) Those other professional services of an architectural or engineering
    nature, or incidental services, that members of the architectural and
    engineering professions (and individuals in their employ) may logically or
    justifiably perform, including studies, investigations, surveying and
    mapping, tests, evaluations, consultations, comprehensive planning, program
    management, conceptual designs, plans and specifications, value engineering,
    construction phase services, soils engineering, drawing reviews, preparation of operating
    and maintenance manuals, and other related services
     
    If you require additional information or explanation, let me know.
     

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