Latvia introduces a fully digitalized construction process due to changes to the Construction Act
In Latvia changes to the Construction Act are due to come into force. The changes aim to facilitate the transition to electronic completion of construction formalities, including submission of necessary documentation plus decision making and approval within the Construction Information System (BIS). BIS is an electronic platform (in the form of a state information system) where information is circulated between the public administration, supervisory bodies and parties to the construction process. One of the main benefits of BIS will be a reduction in the administrative burden through electronic harmonization of construction documents. Moreover, the time needed to complete a construction project will be significantly reduced and paperwork might be eliminated or reduced to a minimum.
Under the Construction Act, as of 1 January 2020, construction authorities and institutions that fulfil the functions of a construction authority will now be required to run the administrative proceedings, make decisions and coordinate construction plans via the BIS platform. The functionality provided by the BIS environment allows the initiator of a construction process not only to authorize construction professionals within construction proceedings but also any other individual. This feature will allow developers of various sections of building design, construction contractors and ‒ where appropriate ‒ legal services to be involved in the construction process.
This legal framework will affect all parties to the construction process, including construction authorities, state and municipal authorities and owners of external engineering networks. In addition, the BIS system is still being developed, and hopefully new functionalities will be added in the near future, such as building performance monitoring, energy performance management of buildings or maintenance of key characteristics of buildings and construction products.
The changes to the construction process significantly improve the construction process as they will reduce the administrative burden for everyone involved, speed up the process of realizing the construction concept, as well as contributing to improvements in accessibility of public services.