Real-World Case Studies of Effective Construction Estimation

No doubt, a construction project has to pass through multiple challenges and complexities. In its estimation, accuracy plays a critical role to take the endeavor toward the path of success. Effective construction estimation provides ultimate assistance to the estimators in keeping track of all the heads of construction. On this basis, they make budgetary plans, ensure resource allocation, and supervise the gap between the estimated time and actual time for the project completion. In this article, we will illuminate the importance of correct project estimation with the help of real-world examples. You will then develop a clear understanding of what material takeoff and other components have to do in the whole process.

Case Study 1: San Francisco International Airport (SFO)

The scenario of the San Francisco International Airport (SFO) Terminal 1 renovation project is an ideal case for effective construction estimation. The working area of the project comprises two portions. First, the renovation of the existing terminal. Second, the new construction of a boarding zone, ticketing hall, and baggage claim. The project has shown up on time and on budget completion. The credit goes to the competency of the estimator for accurately estimating the project cost.

The process of cost estimation involves several procedures. It includes project management for quantity takeoff, value engineering, and cost modeling. The material takeoff process started with the measurement of all the project’s elements’ dimensions. These incorporate walls, floors, and ceilings. Further, the calculated measurement of the quantities is then multiplied by the unit rates for each item. The cost modeling concept was employed for the identification of the cost drivers in order to create a baseline estimate for the project. Value engineering is always a valuable model in the field of construction estimation. In this, it helped in identifying the opportunities for cost reduction without compromising quality.

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Through the effective implementation of these techniques in the project construction, the estimation team became able to figure out accurate project costs. Not only this, but they have also identified probable cost-saving opportunities. The project was completed within the budget, and the value engineering techniques helped save over $3 million.

Case Study 2: National September 11 Memorial and Museum

The National September 11 Memorial and Museum in New York City is the other masterpiece of correct construction estimation done by construction estimators. The project entailed the construction of a memorial and museum to tribute to the victims of the 9/ 11 attacks. Hence, the on-time and within-set-budget project accomplishment is accredited to the precise cost estimates of the evaluators.

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The cost estimation process of such a project also involved several techniques, including material takeoff, cost modeling, and risk analysis. The material takeoff, being an integral part of any construction project, was done with supreme proficiency. The dimensions measurement of all the project parts, i.e., boundaries, windows, walls, floors, ceilings, etc. were calculated first to determine the requirement for material needed. Cost modeling, applied in this project, created a valid baseline estimate. The risk analysis factor exhibited in the project has assisted in recognizing potential risks. On the basis of such findings, a solid contingency plan was brought into place to mitigate all dangers.

By applying these practices, the project team was able to estimate the cost of the project accurately and identify potential risks. Consequently, the project was not only completed within the budget but also the risk analysis has helped mitigate possible risks that could have resulted in delays or cost overruns.

Case Study 3: Burj Khalifa

The Burj Khalifa in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, is, unquestionably termed the tallest building in the world. This is another real-world case example of effective construction estimation. The project involved the construction of a 163-story skyscraper. An exact project cost estimation has led this building to finalize within a set time and budget.

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Like before, the cost estimation process of this project also involved the techniques of takeoff estimation, cost modeling, and value engineering. As mentioned before, the material quantities required for ceiling, walls, floors, etc., were estimated according to the ground rule at first to set the remaining requirements of the project. Similarly, all the cost-driving factors were added to the evaluation with the help of the cost modeling technique. Like a pro, the contractor of Burj Khalifa has focused on quality over quantity and maintained this agenda by applying value engineering in the estimation.

With the help of these concepts, the project team was able to make up the project an ultimate success with respect to accurate estimation and potential cost-saving modes. Thus, the project was completed within the budget, and the value engineering has helped save over $1 billion.

Final Words:

Undoubtedly, effective construction estimation plays a pivotal role in the success of any construction project. Real-world case scenarios of San Francisco International Airport, the National September 11 Memorial and Museum, and Burj Khalifa are the true evidence of such conception. Without a correct roadmap or schematic planning, an estimation process can bring to a halt. Thus, turning it into a disastrous attempt.


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