South Glasgow University Laboratories

  • Client: Brookfield Multiplex/Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board
  • Role: Full Quantity Surveying Services
  • Value: £75 million
  • Programme: 2009 - 2012
  • Procurement: NEC3 Option C Target Cost with Activity Schedule
  • Location: Glasgow, Scotland

Project Description

The project provided accommodation for approximately 21,000m² of highly serviced Medical Laboratory Space to support Blood Sciences, Medical Genetics, Medical Pathology & Micro-Biology within 3 primary accommodation units distributed around a central secure service yard linked to Facilities Management and the National Distribution Centre servicing the new South Glasgow University Hospital. In addition to this the brief extends to include the new Glasgow City Mortuary.

Our Role / Scope

On this project we undertook the following services:

  • Cost Planning
  • Value Management
  • Value Engineering
  • Risk Management
  • Whole Life Costing
  • Commercial Design Management
  • Procurement
  • Actual Cost Auditing
  • Post Contract Quantity Surveying services

Technical Capacity

The team comprise of the following:

  • 2 Project Directors; and
  • 2 Lead Quantity Surveyors

Benefits To Client

  • Cost and Design Management: The bid price was based on Stage D design information with the NHS taking design development risk to Stage E. When the Stage E information was issued Doig+Smith carried out a costing exercise that indicated an increase of approximately £7 million which was agreed with the NHS’s PQS. This level of cost increase was clearly unacceptable to the Client particularly since planning permission was in place, the programme was set and the users had approved the design.

    Doig+Smith led the Design Team, and Client in extensive value engineering exercises to reduce costs closer to the bid level. We targeted early and large value packages to give the Client confidence that the project could proceed. We delivered savings of £6.3 million without compromising building form and functionality. Examples:

    • Reconfiguration of basement tunnels - £800k saving
    • Removal of interstitial floor - £250k saving
    • Value engineering of M&E services - £3.3 million saving
    • Reduce parapet height - £125k saving
  • Risk Management: We developed package specific risk registers which fed into a project level risk register. This allowed for a top down / bottom up approach to the management of risk ensuring that the project was delivered well within the allocated risk allowance. We managed the risk register through weekly risk reduction meetings.
  • Infrastructure Planning: We worked closely with the Project Team to advise on the cost of project specific costs such as phasing on the new infrastructure associated with the project. On projects within live environments these costs are what tend to impact the project the most and must therefore be identified and minimised. For example we commercially managed the phasing to ensure the impact on the programme and cost was mitigated whilst also minimising the impact on the public.
  • Commercial Design Management: It is important that as the design develops cost reviews are carried out to ensure budgets are maintained and best value is achieved. This did not happen on this project between stages D – E (prior to our involvement with the project) and the Stage E design was clearly far in excess of the Stage D information. As a result, much of the design to Stage E was abortive with re-design back to Stage D being at the consultant’s cost.
  • Doig+Smith ensure all elements of a project are reviewed at an early stage and by challenging the design and looking at alternative options as the design develops we ensure budgets are maintained. We prepare design and cost checks prior to each gateway and undertake 60%, 80% and 100% cost reviews, along with ‘What If’ analysis, to ensure that the design and costs are aligned before each sign-off. The goal should be that the design and cost work together through the various stages therefore negating abortive work. We undertake proactive cost management not reactive cost reporting.
  • Whole Life must Be considered: Cheaper is not always better! One of the important lessons on this project was that swapping out quality products with lesser quality products may provide cheaper capital cost at the outset but will increase the operational and maintenance cost. Doig+Smith worked with the design team to undertake whole life analysis on the design, such as the cladding materials, to ensure that performance was not compromised for lower capital cost.
  • Importance of Maintaining Records on NECS Option Contracts: We quickly learned the importance of maintaining accurate records of the construction stage and liaised closely with the construction team to ensure that these were maintained. With the NEC3 Option C contract it is essential that accurate records, such as defective works, are maintained to ensure that any disallowable costs are identified. We worked closely with the team to develop a system to ensure that disallowable costs were captured.