Facilities Project Budgets and Construction Cost Estimates


Upcoming dates coming soon!

Take this course when it’s offered next!

Course Overview

Project engineers and managers in capital construction projects are responsible for preparing project schedules and budgets, and monitoring progress. Facilities operations personnel need to budget for recurring service and maintenance costs, yet there are often competing interests that make this a challenge. 

Learn how to prepare a comprehensive budget, understand how contractors estimate projects, recognize the merits and concerns with various project delivery methods, manage schedule and cost changes to schedule, review plans and specifications to identify potential cost drivers, and evaluate and present cost data to upper management.

Who Should Attend?

  • Owner’s project representatives
  • University project managers
  • Government procurement personnel
  • Capital budgeting administrators
  • Facilities operations supervisors
  • Architects and project team members
  • Mechanical and electrical engineers
  • Construction managers and contractors

Course Outline

Day One

Welcome and Student Introductions

Facilities Project Budgets

  • Components of Total Cost
    • Construction cos
    • Architects, engineers, and consultants
    • Owner’s representatives
    • Internal operations
    • Fixtures, Furnishing, and Equipment (FF&E)
    • Testing and abatement
    • Contingency
  • Related projects

Plans and Specs. Review

  • Design process tools
  • Sample checklist overview
  • Quality Assurance activities
  • Comparison to projects and benchmarks

Project Delivery Methods

  • General Contractor (GC)
  • Construction Manager (CM)
    • Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP)
  • Design / Build
  • Integrated Project Delivery (IPD)
  • Lean construction

Contract Relationships

  • Owner agreements
  • Construction phasing
  • Sub-contractors
  • Testing
  • Direct purchasing
  • Assigned vendors
  • Release of retainage
  • Warranty types and duration
  • Bonding and liquidated damages

Construction Front-end Costs

  • General Conditions & General Requirements
  • Pre-construction investigations
  • Overhead and profit
  • Fees and insurance
  • Contingencies
  • Payment terms / cash flow
  • Contractor risk


Day Two

Estimating Considerations

  • The bid process
  • Cost estimating data libraries
  • Material quantity takeoffs
  • Unit costs and allowances
  • Supplier substitutions
  • Labor rates and location factors
  • Transportation and deliveries
  • Overtime and schedule mitigation
  • General requirements and safety


  • Uniformat II
  • What a “Systems” Format is, and is not
  • Why a Systems approach is needed
  • (very) Brief history of Uniformat and the “come-lately” adopters
  • The System components
  • Uniformat applications

Value Analysis

  • Value Analysis (Engineering): Not just slash-and-run
  • Function and Value Considerations
  • When to apply VA(E)
  • How a VA session is organized
  • Examples of Targets and Outcomes

Cost Estimating Procedure

  • Preparing a square footage takeoff
  • Variability of unit cost databases
  • Availability of materials and labor
  • Construction schedule implications
  • Allowances and contingencies
  • Reconciling independent estimates


Day Three

Hands-on Estimating Exercise

  • General Conditions
  • General Requirements
  • Labor rate variations
  • Estimating calculations
  • Subcontractor trade costs
  • Summary presentations

Change Management

  • Forms
  • AIA documents
    • Architect’s Supplemental Instructions (ASI)
    • Proposal Request (PR)
    • Request for Information (RFI)
    • Construction Change Directive (CCD)
    • Change Order (CO)
  • Project substitutions
  • Change management elements

Operations and Maintenance

  • APPA maintenance
  • APPA cleanliness
  • APPA grounds
  • Routine maintenance
  • Utility consumption
  • Capital maintenance
  • Deferred maintenance

Financial Analysis and Codes

  • Comparison of Measures
    • Simple Payback
    • Net Present Value
  • Life Cycle Cost Analysis
  • Green Building Guidelines
    • Life Cycle Assessment
    • Life Cycle Inventory


"Overall a great course with something for every level of experience." 
—Dean, Director of Parks and Recreation, City of Appleton, Wisconsin

"I liked all the content, especially the rule of thumb discussions and information that allows you to have discussions with contractors regarding bid, etc."
—Richard, Police Facilities Manager, City of Milwaukee, Wisconsin

"Was not expecting hearing from a GC, Arch, PM — this was very interesting hearing (sometimes differing) points of view and their specific challenges." 
—Kevin, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois

"Will use to look at proposals to see if enough has been budgeted for, and justify what the various costs are being applied to."
—Saeng, United States Olympic Committee, Colorado Springs, Colorado

"Sessions made me think in ways that I have not thought of in a while." 
—David, Senior Design Manager, Blain Supply, Inc., Janesville, Wisconsin

"Good info. Nice to be able to ask questions and learn from others' experiences."
—Kim, Principle Engineer, Metro Transit, Roseville, Minnesota


Arch Currie

Arch Currie, AIA, is a registered Architect, LEED AP BD+C, and Certified Historic Architect. His company, No Left Turn, located in Norwalk, Connecticut, consults to designers, owners, contractors, and others involved with facilities and capital programs. His practice calls upon his years of experience as Director of Project Management at Yale University, as well as leadership roles at Ellerbe Becket Architects & Engineers, Beyer Blinder Belle Architects, and Newman Architects. Arch is a graduate of the School of Architecture at McGill University in Montreal.

Thomas Giola

Tom Giola is the Vice President of Standard Builders Inc. in Newington, Connecticut, a self -performing construction management and general contracting company that specializes in occupied renovations serving the institutional, corporate and healthcare Markets. Giola has been active in the construction industry for over 35 years. He has a bachelor’s in Civil Engineering, is a LEED Accredited Professional, and is ASHE Certified in Healthcare Construction. He has managed new construction and renovation projects of all types from residential additions, public roadways, commercial buildings, retail centers and clinical renovations within active operating room suites, ranging in size to over 430,000 sq. ft. with budgets to $98 million.

Mark Malkin

Mark P. Malkin, PE, is a program director in the Office of Interdisciplinary Professional Programs in the College of Engineering at UW-Madison. He is a registered Professional Engineer with over 25 years of experience in university facilities project management and HVAC systems design. His course offerings include HVAC, plumbing and fire protection fundamentals, building code reviews, and design and operation of science labs, data centers, museums and libraries. Mark received his bachelor's in Mechanical Engineering from Cornell University, and his MS in Mechanical Engineering from UW–Madison.

Joe Chadwick

Joe Chadwick is an architect licensed in Connecticut whose current practice is involved primarily in the Northeast. He has over 35 years’ experience as a licensed Architect with ten prior years as a design-build contractor. Eighteen years were dedicated to academic facilities including contract development, procurement process management, and project management. His current professional practice involves trouble shooting during construction administration, failure remediation, building code consultation, document reviews, and the preparation of specifications. He has designed and managed academic research laboratories, historic preservation projects, and medical facilities. He received a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from Temple University and a Master’s in Architecture from Yale University.

Lewis Finkel

Lewis Finkel, F.C.P.E., is a Certified Professional Estimator with over 50 years of construction experience. He is President of Professional Construction Services, a company that does estimating for Architects, Facilities Managers, Municipalities and Construction Managers. Mr. Finkel graduated from Drexel University with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering with a Construction Management Minor. Mr. Finkel is a past National President and a Fellow of the American Society of Professional Estimators and a past National President of the Consulting Estimators Round Table (CERT). Lew serves as a Board Member Emeritus of the Construction Institute and is a retired Adjunct Professor at Central Connecticut State University.

Upcoming dates coming soon!

Take this course when it’s offered next!

Program Director

Mark Malkin

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