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Plan | Design | Build: PDB Explained

By: Tom Mooney

The Financial Facilities Group at L. Keeley brings a wealth of expertise, experience, and innovative solutions to the table. We are a proud Plan | Design | Build firm offering the complete experience for financial institutions: strategic planning, architecture, and construction. Value added services include feasibility studies, market research & analytics, site selection & analysis, branding strategies, technological upgrades, and design development.

Our Financial Facility Group’s PDB process encompasses a three-step design process that centers on creating a trusted partnership with our clients. Fostering loyal partnerships is at the core of our mission. We believe in relationships based in culture not simply transitions. Keeley Companies CEO, Rusty Keeley, has seen the value of these partnerships firsthand:

“We've built strong partnerships with folks like West Community for a multitude of reasons. What we are able bring to the table with experience, knowledge, trust, and care coincides with what the Financial Facilities are trying to accomplish on their end. For instance, together we're involved in an annual Dodgeball Tournament that benefits Good Shepherd. We are able to have the West Community folks come over and integrate into our KeeleyU where they teach our people about buying a home for the first time. Overall, it's a relationship where you are able to get each other's cultures aligned it's pretty fantastic.”

One of the things that the Financial Facilities Team can give partners is innovative, turn-key solutions. Our unique, three step approach ensures that the customer is always kept up to date on project progress and is in full agreement to the design and scope of the project. Our goal is to bring your vision to life and give you a product that you will have for years to come.


Since the team is involved from the initial conception of a project all the way through completion, including marketing and beyond, we are able to create cost certainty that is unmatched in the industry. During the planning study process, our team analyzes data of a specific targeted area that the client is looking at. The analysis of the data allows us to give recommendations to the client to help them grow and be successful in the future. The planning study is a great tool for clients as it allows them to make informed decisions based on the recommendations that were given, helping them move forward through each step of our PDB process.


A Planning Study is often an important part of our Design Step One, impacting the size, functionality, and scope of the project.

Step One

Design Step One continues with more information gathering, going beyond listing spaces, their sizes, and relationships to include tailored considerations of industry technology and future trends. The earlier, more thorough, and well-considered this data is, the better the final solution will be. Solving problems within our PDB process is a critical differentiator for us – it is how the magic happens. The remainder of Step One is designing in the classic sense where we find a balance for all these considerations.

“Design is really a whole team effort, not an isolated mental exercise practiced by the talented few. It’s a creative process that is both innovative and iterative. It works best when all the information, expertise, and experience is available in one close collaborative partnership that includes the client.”

-Derek Maschek, Director of Design

Step Two

Solutions are embodied in conceptual design documents which includes a Cost Estimate. Once the client is happy - and only then - is L. Keeley authorized to proceed to Step Two Design Development. At this point, the design progresses with more construction detailing and engineering input, refining the scope, and construction estimate. We have a strong focus on meeting the clients’ needs at each Step, balancing these needs with as many wants as possible.

Step Three

Once we have met, and hopefully exceeded, the client’s expectations in Step Two, L. Keeley will be authorized by the client to proceed into Step Three Construction Documents. In this final Design step, we will complete the design and create a final cost estimate that becomes the lump sum or GMP contract amount. It's important to note that we understand that the words, lines, and images that we put on paper represent real-world decisions with real-world consequences. These decisions affect construction as well as the use, function, maintenance, and operation of the building well beyond completion.

Our integrated design process capitalizes on the full expertise of our team of experts, from initial concepts to final documents, to create effective, constructible, easy to maintain, and long-lasting solutions for the customer. L. Keeley’s team of planning, design, and construction experts will seamlessly guide a client through the entire project. From planning to building, our PDB process allows us to confidently present meaningful solutions that go well beyond just looking great on paper.


At L. Keeley, our build process is a little different than other companies in the industry. We involve the local subcontracting community from the start of the building phase. We also have our own in-house QA/QC group – very unique to a company of L. Keeley’s size. Along with quality, safety is our number one priority and we work hard to make sure that every team member gets home safely at the end of every day. Click here to learn more about our world-class safety culture, KeeleySafe. Lastly, timeliness is a huge factor and customers can count on L. Keeley to complete your projects on-time and on-budget to ensure they are able to be conducting business immediately upon move-in.

“L. Keeley's main differentiator is that we still value the same things that Larry Keeley founded the business on over 40 years ago. We strive for excellence whenever it comes to safety, quality, and customer service. If we don't have a happy customer at the end of the day, they're not going to recommend us to their business partners. So, that's what we strive to do so that we can maintain or even increase that level of customer satisfaction and 90% retention that we enjoy today.”

-Ryan Perryman, Vice President of Building

Watch the video below to hear from our team and learn more about the PDB process!

Click here to learn more about the L. Keeley Financial Facilities Group and take a look at some of our in-progress and completed projects.


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