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(PM-1972) Project Cost Management Prior to Conceptual Design

Primary Author: Mr Rex M Holmlin PE

Audience Focus: Intermediate
Application Type: Application
Venue: 2015 AACE International Annual Meeting, Las Vegas, NV, USA

Abstract: Achieving a scope-budget match in a project is almost always challenging. Achieving a match early in a project can be particularly difficult when often only a bare minimum of project scope and cost information is available. If a mismatch exists, as the project progresses obtaining alignment of project scope and budget will likely become increasingly problematic.

This paper describes a case study of pre-conceptual design cost management on a $75 million academic building using (1) analogous and parametric estimating, (2) the development of an initial project cost model to guide budgeting and (3) the establishment of design-to-cost targets for the architect and their sub-consultants during design.

This approach resulted in specific building size targets for architectural programming which re-sized the building from 202,000+SF at mid-programming to 155,000 SF. Establishing a target size for the building helped avoid a potential $12-$15MM budget overrun. This effort also integrated into more typical cost management efforts which contributed to the project being completed on schedule and slightly under budget.