If your BoQ has more than about 100 tonnes of steel, we can offer cost and programme savings which will greatly exceed our fees. In the past we have saved more than 60% of steel from tendered designs on many occasions, without delaying completion, and converting losses into substantial profits (see Michelin).
We have achieved comparable savings in foundation schemes (especially piled foundations), and occasionally in drainage schemes.
If we agree to take on the challenge it will be on the basis of a percentage of the savings. Our client always wins because we don’t degrade the performance of the finished structure.
The only ‘downgrade’ we might suggest is a modification to the design loading where it is clear that the original design loading was not rational in terms of the end-user requirements. Examples are plant room loadings where the plant is merely air handling units; these are often designed for 7.5kN/m², although the actual load imposed is usually less than half that figure. Office loadings of ‘5+1’ are also very rarely justifiable.
If I am safely standing on a plank spanning between two trestles, is my safety improved by adding a second plank on top of the first one? No; I have wasted money on a plank I didn’t need. A portal frame which is heavier than needed is not necessarily stronger or more robust. It is just wasteful.
If you have a large project where the structure seems over-designed, send us the complete drawing set (including Architectural drawings and other relevant details) and we will tell you within 48 hours whether or not it is a candidate for Value Engineering.