Working With the Preliminary Budget

2m 51s

Jorge Barrero of HKS takes us through the schematic design phase of Prince Sattam University teaching hospital in Al-Karj, Saudi Arabia.  He will explain how the economical and cultural conditions in Saudi Arabia influenced the building’s design. Additionally he will talk about the building program, budget, and materials used.  

When we started the project, you know, we always ask the question what the budget it, and sometimes the clients do know what it is, sometimes they don't. In this case, the client who was the School of Medicine they had a preliminary budget for the project, which was relatively flexible. Mostly because the funding that the university gets it goes through approval by sort of the local government but being that it is a kingdom, it's not a process like here in the U.S.

And so, the dean in conversations about budget, you know he was very clear that, you know we needed to design to a per square-foot budget but there was definitely flexibility in terms of the materiality as well as sort of the scope as long as it met their needs.

They were never very forthcoming in terms of what the budget to design should be, and that's not atypical of many projects we work with and more often than not, we don't have a good gut-check of how much a project is gonna cost until we have a good set of documentation that gets to be priced. Now, we did not have a contractor on board early on in this project, but we did work with a local architect who had a fairy good pulse on costs and so they were giving us feedback and guiding us in terms of certain mechanical systems, materials, what would be feasible that would not push the budget, you know, to a place where we just couldn't afford to build those ideas.

So we do work with a local pawner that helped give us a local perspective in terms of construction costs comparable to other hospitals and teaching facilities as they - that they work on for us to design to a budget even though we didn't quite know what that budget was so primarily it was deigned to meet the program with some fair assumptions that would make it a reasonably costed building but at the same time we didn't want to, you know, handicap ourselves and propose some ideas that would in the long term save them some money as well.

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From the course:
HKS Chicago - Prince Sattam University Hospital

Duration: 34m