Buildings usually undergo fit-out works in order to incorporate current living and / or work environment requirement and to bring the working and living space up to current standards.
The exact motives can vary and can be a combination of the following factors:
- Different / change in activity than the one it was originally designed for.
- New owner with new requirements, needs and standards.
- Construction life-span, mandatory need of refurbishment.
- Upgrading the building as to make it compliant with current standards and requirements.
- Requirement of a more efficient building in terms of operation and maintenance.
- Going green, requirement for a sustainable building.
A building need to be upgraded in order to require the sustainable standards / to achieve their sustainability aspirations, green certificates or just to accomplish the definition of refurbishment: “to make neat, clean or complete as by renovating, reequipping or restoring”.
Nowadays, the refurbishment process needs to minimize the environmental impact and upgrading the performance of an existing building in order to meet tenant requirements. For this point of view the refurbishment approach becomes advantageous as it creates opportunities to add sustainable value for the building improvements.
Factors Influencing Building Refurbishment Project Performance
Refurbishment projects have different objectives and needs compared to new built developments and it is essential to determine the factors that will bring success in refurbishment building projects.
- A short description of the factors
A good definition for refurbishment is extending the useful life of existing buildings through the adaptation of their basic forms to provide a new or updated version of the original structure. (Riley, Cotgrave, 2005)
Some of the factors influencing the successful delivery / outcome of a refurbishment project are:
- The condition of the existing structure
- The shape and size of the existing structure
- The location of the structure
- The intended use of the structure
- The amount of work required to the existing structure to enable compliance with current Building Regulations
- Whether the building is listed
- Adequate funding for the works
- Whether or not the works can be carried out safely.
There are plenty of buildings that are outdated and redundant in very good, even prime location in cities, which are ideally locate in terms of facilitating a perfect work / leisure life balance. Many of this buildings are very well constructed and in many cases structurally sound. You should never judge a book by its cover is a common phrase, but often a book with a poor cover is never opened. However in some instances when the buildings are surveyed in detail, and, the potential developers and buyers are dealing with well constructed and structurally sound buildings. These buildings in turn provide a perfect basis for refurbishment to be carried out.
One of the main advantages of refurbishing a building ahead of a total new build is that in most cases, new accommodation is available in a much shorter period of time.
In general, it is believed that in most cases the time which is spent on a refurbishment job (including pre contract planning and planning permission) is only a half to three quarters of the time which is needed to complete a demolish and new build construction. I.e. if the existing building is not in need of sever consolidation of its structure.
Because of the time saved on the refurbishment of the structure there are financial rewards such as; the shorter development period reduces the cost of financing the scheme and also the client receives the building sooner which he in turn receives revenue sooner from renting etc. (Highfield, 2000)
Environmental aspects are being managed to a degree, in terms of the effects, problems and concerns of global warming. We are very aware of the world’s huge consumption of energy and the need to re-use, re-place and re-cycle our present resources much more so as to decrease our rate of using up our energy resources and to slow down global warming.
Whenever a building is recycled, by opting for refurbishment rather than demolishing and rebuilding the structure then a large amount of energy is being saved by avoiding the need to extract raw materials and convert them into a replacement building.
Another advantage of choosing a renovation project is the aesthetic and architectural advantages that can be obtained if attractive older buildings are chosen to refurbish.
Managing the fit-out works & refurbishment process like an EXPERT
- Short list of Recommendations
As to assure the refurbishment project is being implement and delivered successfully the following criteria need to be taken into consideration:
- Project scope is well defined, benefits and challenges are clearly understood, measurable and quantifiable.
- Project finance is secured and in alignment with the required budget.
- Client, tenant, end user requirements are clearly understood and integrated into the design brief and are being reflected into the final design.
- Risk and opportunities are captured, monitored and managed.
- All required surveys have been undertaken and incorporated into the process.
- All required approvals can be obtained in good time.
- Stakeholder management is very important, continently leasing / consulting with authorities and all project influencers / parties that are involved and can influence the project.
- Assure that the supply chain can respond to project requirement, defining a correct procurement strategy.
- Value engineering, preferably during design phase as the cost of change will be less and value engineering more effective.
- Implementation programme clearly defined and managed. A clear and correct baseline that can be used to report back to in terms of project performance.
- Monitoring and managing costs.
- Identification of any potential hazardous materials and arrangement removal by specialist contractors in good time, eliminating any health and safety issues.
- Assurance that the building can be brought to new requirements within the agreed budget and time.
- Applying lessons learned.
- Planned commissioning and hand over process.
Conclusion and a short presentation of the service offered by Brisk
Building refurbishment is a must in the current leaving environment, current cities context, and it comes with a lot of benefits, cost, time, aesthetical, and environmental to name a few.
Our project and cost management service will see the project is on target from inception to completion, ensuring an integrated construction process according to design. By outsourcing the project and cost management process to us you can have peace of mind that the project is completed on time, on budget, at the specified quality, according to plan. At Brisk Group we ensure excellence and with our expertise in the industry our clients are satisfied every time.
At Brisk Group our fully qualified team of professionals allows us to Project Manage a large variety of projects.
For tenant improvements and coordination, a Project Manager of Brisk Group will be your advocate and advisor, charged with coordinating work letters and related lease provisions, managing construction costs, communicating base building definitions, ensuring schedules and commencement dates are met, and identifying landlord obligations and commitments from the start-up phase to the completion of the project.