The Capital Projects Office (CPO) provides comprehensive professional cost estimating services to the University of Washington Seattle, Bothell, and Tacoma campuses, Harborview, and all outstation and research facilities. Our estimators are skilled in preparing detailed surveys and pricing projects of any magnitude. The estimating team has knowledge of the specialized services required for a major educational and medical institution. This expertise includes everything from patient care, specialized research, laboratories, infrastructure, classrooms, offices and projects with LEED requirements, etc.
Benefits of using CPO estimating
- Specialized knowledge of educational and medical facilities
- Navigation of the intricate University processes
- Consistency in preparation and estimate format
- Collaboration with project management/controls personnel
- Access to historic unit price database
- Market trend monitoring for more accurate predictions
The level of service can be tailored to meet specific project needs and budgets. CPO provides many different types of estimating services at various phases to meet all of our client needs:
A cost estimate prepared in a building component format is the most workable. This facilitates the analysis on a “like item" or "related item" basis – the grouping together of the entire cost. This estimating method is called Uniformat. A good example is estimating the entire cost of an exterior wall system regardless of the different trades involved. We prefer this format since it facilitates the monitoring of design documents as they are developed, which then helps establish budgets for various design disciplines.
A parameter estimate can be provided when drawings that define scope are not yet developed. The project definition may be contained in a feasibility study program, which can indicate the type, size, location, function and standard of quality required. The estimate is derived from square footage and other unit factors. This information provides our clients with a cost model allowing them to make an informed decision. Given the limited specific information available, the accuracy range of this estimate is +/- 20%. This type of estimate is useful during early or initial project planning and is performed at minimal cost to the client.
This type of estimate is based on the Pre-Design report prepared by the design professional. We measure major components of the project such as gross floor area square footage, roof area, exterior wall and partition area. By incorporating other parameters we are able to produce a full estimate in Uniformat. The range of cost for the project will be refined as the project detail is developed. This provides the client with a range of costs with an accuracy of +/- 15%. This estimate allows early identification of the financial resources necessary for the project. A pre-design estimate will be more accurate than prior conceptual estimates.
Preliminary/Schematic Design Estimate
This type of estimate is prepared when preliminary design development drawings are available and supplemented by an outline specification. CPO estimators can prepare the estimate or compare the Architect/Engineer (A/E) estimate to other historic costs of projects on campus. An estimate of this type is appropriate for establishing and monitoring the project budget during the continuation of design and engineering studies of alternate methods or systems of construction The intent is not to take away the obligation of the A/E team to design the project based on the budget, but rather to verify what the project should cost at the University of Washington. This is especially important since the A/E contract is based on the construction budget. It is to the University’s advantage to verify the construction contract amount. The approximate range of accuracy for this type of estimate is in the range of +/- 10%. Value engineering studies are usually performed at this stage. This is the systematic evaluation of the cost of various building systems such as the structural system and Mechanical/Electrical/Plumbing systems in order that the best value is obtained within the funds available. CPO Estimators identify high cost areas that can be modified to suit the budget or bid as add alternates.
Construction Document Estimate
This estimate is prepared from complete working drawings and specifications that define the scope of construction work. Similar to the schematic design estimate, this enables comparison of the estimate provided to other historic projects at the University. It does not take away the obligation of the A/E team. An estimate should be prepared on all projects based on construction documents, prior to advertising for bid.
CPO estimators can review the bids to determine if the scope of work is comparable across all bid submissions for the overall cost and any requested alternates. Reviews are recommended if the bid results are wide spread, exceed the A/E estimate or are considerably lower than the estimate.
Change Order Review
CPO estimators can evaluate information concerning the cost and time adjustments that may be necessary to perform the proposed change order. This is discussed with the contractor after which we assemble the information and recommend to the owner with respect to acceptance of the Change Order request. It is University policy to review every Change Order request greater than $25,000. This can be prepared by CPO estimators or an external consultant not previously associated with the project.
CPO estimating tasks are charged at an hourly rate of $95.00 per hour and are quoted on a not-to-exceed basis. There is no charge for early cost modeling and peer review and oversight of outside estimates.
To obtain a project specific cost estimate; please work with your department administrator or facilities specialist to submit a request with a budget number to UW Project Tracker at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Sara Voogt directly at 206 543-5410. If you have any questions please contact John Barker, Senior Projects Estimator, at email@example.com or 206 897-1867. We look forward to working with you.