Electronic construction logbook and digital book of the construction object, Nieruchomości C. H. Beck

Alicja Sławińska

Electronic construction logbook and digital book of the construction object

On 10.8.2022, the Act of 7.7.2022 amending the Act – Construction Law and certain other acts (Journal of
Laws of 2022, item 1557; hereinafter ZmPrBud22), aiming to digitise the investment and construction
process, came into force. As a continuation of the legislative intentions, on 27.1.2023 the Ordinance of the
Minister of Development and Technology of 22.12.2022 on the Construction Log and the Electronic
Construction Log System (Dz.U. of 2023, item. 45; hereinafter DzBudSystElektrR), while on 1.1.2023 the
Ordinance of the Minister of Development and Technology of 15.12.2022 on the construction site book
and the Digital Construction Site Book system (Dz.U. of 2022, item 2778; hereinafter
KsObBudSysCyfrR) became effective.

Legislator’s ratio legis

The above-mentioned normative acts constitute an important element of the government’s project to
digitise the Polish economy. The assumption of digitalisation is to improve the management of the
investment and construction process by its participants. Transparency, compliance with generally
applicable laws and regulations, as well as time savings and a reduction in the costs of dealing with cases
are the basic postulates of digitisation in the construction industry. The amendment responds to the
demand of citizens and participants in the investment sector: “The change of approach in the investment
process, which introduces full digitisation of the construction process, is not just a pro-environmental
alternative or a sudden revolution, but a solution that has been awaited for years by many parties in the
process. The elimination of dualisms and the simplification of regulations, is a natural evolution that puts
in order the tools and procedures already in place.1”
To date, several changes and modifications have already been introduced in this area, which include:
1) e-Construction – the government’s official application for the construction process,
2) Modernised Compulsory Inspection Register and Construction Disaster Register,
3) the completed Central Register of Construction Authorisation Holders (e-CRUB).
In turn, the next stage of the digitisation of the investment and construction process is the Electronic
Construction Log and the Digital Book of the Construction Object.

The electronic construction log in practice

The construction log is the most important document in the construction process, which records all
significant events and the course of construction work accompanying the investor’s project. In the case of
the obligation to appoint a construction manager for a specific construction project, the keeping of a
construction log becomes obligatory (Article 45 of the Act of 7.7.1994. – Construction Law (consolidated
text Dz.U. of 2023, item 682; hereinafter PrBud). Consequently, it is the responsibility of the site manager
or works manager to ensure the accuracy of the entries made in the construction log, its condition and its
proper storage on the site.
The validity of the construction log as an official document is evidenced by the strength of the entries
made in it: “It thus has the force of evidence of what is recorded in it. The content of the construction log
enjoys the presumption of the veracity of the data contained therein (Art. 76 KPA).1” The legislative
solution of the amendment is, among other things, the Electronic Construction Log (hereinafter: EDB),
which is a tool for the electronic recording of entries for the construction log, with the amendment
changes in the keeping of the construction log not limited to the digitisation process. For example, closed
areas, as defined by the Minister of National Defence in the regulation of 18.7.2003 on closed areas
necessary for national defence (Journal of Laws No. 141, item 1368), have been excluded from the
operation of the EDB system.
The EAD system and its basic principles are:
1) adherence to strict security rules,
2) ease of making entries from the course of construction works,
3) the EBD application does not require any special software or hardware,
4) the EBD application is intuitive, mobile and convenient to use,
5) participation of individual participants in the investment and construction process,
6) speed and ease of issuing the construction log using the app.
In practice, operating the EBD system requires one of the following trust services:

1) a trusted profile,
2) an e-card,
3) a bank account with a bank providing a trust service.
Pursuant to the amended wording of Article 47c(3) of PrBud, the construction log in electronic form shall
be kept in the EBD system. The investor decides on the form in which the construction log book is to be
kept, with the proviso that if the EDB is chosen, it is the final version of the document. It is important that
the introduced legal regulations make it possible to continue in electronic form the construction log
established and maintained so far in paper form. However, the described dispositions unambiguously
indicate that the legislator’s intention is to rely on the final electronic form of the document.
In practice, in the case of construction commenced prior to the effective date of DzBudSystElektrR, i.e.
prior to 27.1.2023, construction logs in the traditional form remain valid and maintained under the current
rules. The main modifications in the administration of the construction log after 27.1.2023 are that there is
no distinction between construction, demolition or assembly logs and no requirement for double
construction log pages dedicated to entries. In contrast, in the situation of the construction log in the EDB
system, the demands are:
1) that persons authorised to make entries have an account in the EAD system,
2) to provide the developer with the power to deprive electronic access to the EDB under the rules
provided for in DzBudSystElektrR,
3) for obvious reasons the EDB is not in the form of volumes as in the case of a paper version of the
4) the intuitiveness and user-friendliness of the EAD application allows for instant retrieval of the
requested data by entering criteria, e.g. the date of construction works or the position of the construction
process participant authorised to make entries in the electronic log,
5) The EDB is maintained separately for each building requiring a building permit, demolition permit
or notification (in the case of linear facilities, a separate construction log may be maintained for each
section of construction work).
A considerable convenience for the investor or the client is the possibility of direct verification of the
entries documenting the progress of construction of a specific project using the EDB2 system. The
obligatory place for storing the construction log in the traditional form is the construction site. In practice,
the possibility of verifying the entries monitoring the progress of construction work using the EDB system
saves time and costs associated with visits to the construction site. In addition, it strengthens the position
of the investor or contracting authority as an entity equipped with an instrument empowering it to check
the successive progress on the construction site in detail and without interruption. Furthermore, it
eliminates the undesirable risk of losing an important document or making entries that are not in
accordance with the actual state of affairs or by unauthorised persons.
The amendment introduced new technical solutions and remains in harmony and compatibility with the
current construction law regulations (it streamlines the system of the investment and construction
process). Consequently, the substantive postulates on the subject of the EAD as a document in the
construction process remain unchanged, and the responsibility for its maintenance in accordance with
generally applicable regulations and legal requirements rests with the construction manager. The persons
authorised to make entries in the EDB are:
1) the construction manager or works manager,
2) other participants in the construction process within the meaning of Article 17 of PrBud,
3) the surveyor performing surveying activities within the scope of the construction investment,
4) authorised representatives of building supervisory authorities or other inspection bodies.
In practice, the operation of the EDB resembles a system for managing an investment project and in this
respect it is worth noting the functionality of the system. The investor, as the key participant in the
construction process, entrusts individual persons with specific tasks in the implementation of the
construction project, and these persons approve in the system the acceptance of these tasks by the
specified deadline for completion through an appropriate entry in the GAD. On the other hand, the site
manager, as the person responsible for keeping the construction log, will, upon completion of the
construction work, independently set the EAD to “closed” status by means of the EAD system without
any additional formalities.
It is the responsibility of the investor or contracting authority to attach the relevant certificates confirming
the construction authorisations of the employees involved in the construction project, e.g. the site manager
or works manager, the investor’s supervision inspector or the designer performing the author’s supervision.
The EAD system became operational on 27.1.2023. However, the legislator provided for the possibility of

maintaining the construction log in the traditional, paper form until 31.12.2029. Although there is some
concern in the industry environment about the complete withdrawal of the construction log in the
traditional form and its replacement by an electronic version in a relatively short period of time, the high
cyber-security standards applied to the EAD system fully protect the interests of the interested parties and
the construction investment data stored in this way.
A comparison of the legislative solutions from before the amendment with the changes introduced after
the digitisation of the construction log, clearly speaks in favour of the electronic form of the document.
Digitisation of the investment and construction process in the discussed scope contributes to elimination
of the risk of cost overruns in the construction project and greater transparency of the progress of works
on the site. The EAD system, analogous to a construction project management application, forces the
participants in the construction process to be self-disciplined by means of up-to-date entries for individual
construction works, as failure to comply with the obligation in this respect constitutes a serious deviation
and requires appropriate justification recorded in the EAD.

Digital Building Log Book in practice

Establishment and maintenance of a building facility register (hereinafter referred to as the Building Log
Book) is obligatory for buildings whose architectural and construction design is subject to verification as
to their compliance with generally applicable laws, including technical and construction conditions
(multi-family, industrial, warehouse or factory buildings). By analogy, according to the criterion indicated,

a building work book is not necessary for buildings with a simple and uncomplicated construction (single-
family buildings, outbuildings or storage buildings, notifiable construction objects).

Bearing in mind the disposition of Article 60a in connection with Article 62 of PrBud, annotations and
information on periodic inspection of the technical condition of the building object, installations and
ducts, technical inspections and expert opinions, repairs or other construction work and any circumstances
affecting the use of the owner or manager’s building object shall be included in the KOB.
With effect from 1.1.2023, the digitisation of the NOB began with the c-KOB system, which allows the
aforementioned annotations and information to be placed electronically and managed in an efficient and
mobile manner by owners or managers of building facilities. As in the case of the EAD system, closed
areas as defined by the Minister of Defence in the decree of 18.7.2003 have been excluded from the
operation of the c-KOB system.
The person responsible for maintaining the c-KOB shall make an entry immediately, but no later than
within seven days of the occurrence of the event under pain of sanction for an offence. Pursuant to the
amended version of Article 60f of PrBud, in the event of a breakdown or interruption in the c-KOB
system, an entry shall be made immediately after the cessation of such obstacles in the electronic system.
Consequently, an exonerating circumstance for failure to make an entry on time is provided for, which
may be a significant circumstance in practice. It is clarified that the c-KOB is set up and maintained by
the owner or manager, who is responsible for this (alternatively, an authorised person is appointed to make
the entries).
The c-KOB system and its objectives are:
1) to enable the establishment and maintenance of a building book free of charge,
2) making it easy and intuitive to enter entries in the building log book,
3) storage of data concerning a construction object for a period of 10 years,
4) the system administrator is the General Inspector of Building Control (hereinafter referred to as
GINB), responsible for the digital security of the system,
5) ensuring the integrity and accountability of data and logbook entries.
“The c-KOB system is also to guarantee that only entities authorised to do so and only to the extent of the
entries they have made may update the data or correct the entries made. In addition, the GINB is to ensure
compliance with the handling of documentation in electronic form in the EDB system (…) The site book
will be individualised in the system by means of a unique number generated by the c-KOB system. “1
The establishment of a building facility book in the c-KOB system requires the indication of verification
information reserved for the owner or manager of the facility and the property, in particular the legal title,
constituting the owner’s or manager’s right to the requested building facility. Closure of the building work
book document by means of the c-KOB system should take place within one month of the demolition of
the building.
In practice, the maintenance of the digital building work book and the operation of the c-KOB application
requires one of the following trust services:
1) a trusted profile,

2) e-card,
3) a bank account with a bank providing a trust service.
Both the amendment of the KOB and the c-KOB system became effective on 1.1.2023. The legislator
stipulated that the owner or manager of a property is entitled to set up a building book in the c-KOB
system until 31.12.2023. “The law envisages the introduction of an electronic version of the book only
eventually. Each building object will receive an individual number in the electronic c-KOB system. In
order to be able to use it, the developer will have to have an account in this system. “2 According to the
transitional regulations, the owner or manager of a building object who already maintains a KOB in the
paper version is obliged to set it up in the c-KOB system by 31.12.2026.
The aforementioned demands aim to eliminate the traditional form of the document and replace it with an
electronic version in order to standardise and manage the system more efficiently. As of 1.1.2027, the only
acceptable, valid and honoured document will be the electronic site book.
In conclusion, the digital form of the building work book maintained in the c-KOB system allows the
owner or property manager to manage the required technical inspections or other inspections of a building
more efficiently (especially when managing more than one building). As a result, this translates into safety
and comfort for the occupants of the building facilities covered by the c-KOB system, which serves the
common good. Analogous to the EDB system platform, in the case of the digital c-KOB, mobile
management is more efficient and convenient than the traditional verification of a paper building book.
Up-to-date technical inspections and inspections also means eliminating the fear of paying administrative
penalties for the improper technical condition of a building and out-of-date technical inspections.
Currently, during the operation of both forms of the document, the c-KOB system is subject to constant
improvements and modifications that aim to make the electronic form of the KOB more efficient. Out of
an abundance of caution, in the event of the destruction of the building work book in its traditional form,
the reconstruction of the content or reconstruction of the documentation is a difficult and time-consuming
process. However, such a danger can be avoided by saving the contents of the building work book using
the c-KOB system.

Conclusions and conclusions

First and foremost, it is important to emphasise the fact that the legislative changes in the topic of the
digitisation of the construction sector are a dynamic and progressive process (rather than an accomplished
one), and the relevant legal and electronic instruments have been launched relatively recently. The
phenomenon of the digitisation of the investment and construction process from the perspective described
above raises conclusions and observations.
Well, the digitisation of the construction sector in Poland is a natural order of things and a necessary
derivative of the ubiquitous digitisation in the construction area in Europe. As a result, the implementation
of electronic solutions and technologies has become a requirement (rather than a choice) in order to
correspond with European standards and competition on the foreign market. The market demand for the
introduction of digital technologies is also dictated by the need to reduce costs and streamline the
investment and construction process.
The use of electronic tools and platforms has positively influenced the dynamics of construction projects,
unification of all documentation required during construction and the parties involved in the investment
procedure, including the work of administrative bodies and officials. Many activities can be dealt with
virtually, bypassing bureaucracy and formalism, which also translates into an increase in the business
initiative of entities operating in the construction segment. During the implementation of applications
handling the construction logbook or the building site book, no obstacles preventing the launch of these
electronic systems were noted, which also testifies to proper preparation from the legal and technical side
as well as social civic awareness.

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