Why Construction Projects Always Go Over Budget

čas přidán 20. 03. 2023
Not just megaprojects suffer from our inability to accurately anticipate the expense and complexity of construction...
From preconstruction costs to inflation to unexpected site conditions, there are a lot of reasons construction budgets rarely align with construction costs. Let's talk about it!
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Komentáře: 2 600

  • 🏗 Have you ever underestimated the cost of a project? Tell us the story below! 🪒 Look forward to your morning routine with a Henson razor (Code: PRACTICALENGINEERING for a free pack of 100 blades): bit.ly/3CWiWJP

    • I remember a little snippet my grandfather cut out of a magazine from the 80s on a revised version of murphy's law that stated one of the 'revised laws' as "a carelessly planned project will take 3 times as long to complete. a carefully planned project will only take twice as long to complete."

    • Omg slay

    • The code isn't working for me.

    • I always assumed that companies that estimate costs would vary above and below the actual cost. But since the lowest bidder usually wins, it'll always be one of the under estimates.

    • You are correct, projects that take years to complete, there is always inflationary costs that are commonly missed in the bid. For example: Over a ten year span there can be between 10% to 30% increase in the cost of the job simply because of the time it takes to complete. That isn't counting the unforeseen issues that may arise during the project. Just between those two issues, that could lead to an increase of more than 50%.

  • When a contractor bids a realistic number, they're almost guaranteed to NOT win the project.

    • "You should be more like Jenkins, his estimates are always reasonable." "Why don't you have him do the project, then?" "He always overruns for some reason!"

    • And when a politician signs on to support one, they get voted out of office. Any Bostonian today would tell you the big dig was worth it, but tell them how much it actually cost before it happened and the whole local govt would turn over when the taxpayers revolt

    • Unless your crew has a reputation for excellence.

    • ​@@SorieI no. Just no.

    • It’s like this in real estate sales too if you come in with a realistic number you’re almost guaranteed to not get the listing and sellers will say you’re slimy and just trying to get a quick sale. That’s why a lot of agents give them the number they want then call a week later saying we need to lower the price.

  • As someone that does construction estimating for a living I loved this video. Everyday is a constant battle to ride the fine line of expensive enough to make money but not too expensive to not get the job. When is really scary is when you intentionally price something too high so you won't get it but you end up getting it, you get really nervous that you missed something big!

    • Why would you bid something you didn't want to work on?

    • @@freeffree4133 because it is not always my choice. The salesman who works on commission wants us to bid everything and some times it is not in the best interest to do certain jobs so we quote it to keep the salesman happy. Then there are times when we tell the customer it isn't a good fit for us but they still ask us to quote it so we make it worth our while if we get it.

    • @@freeffree4133 As a courtesy if you have a good relationship with them and if you bid high and are awarded you have enough money for your "B" team to do the work or make $$ with your "A" team.

    • @@greg9794 I'm about to get contractors to place bids on my first a full gut condo rehab. How do I know if I'm getting the "A" team bids? 😂

    • @@freeffree4133 In addition to what the other guy said, if you decline to price work for people, they won't think they can count on you when they really need a number.

  • I have a short story. At my last job we had to estimate the cost of a project and give our plans. My plan cost 3.5 million dollars up front with no annual costs and would take 18 months to implement. The other project had 1 million up front, half a million annual, and would take 3 months to set up. They opted against my plan. The plan they opted for ended up costing 7 million up front, took 48 months to implement, and has annual fees of 2.5 million. Yikes!

    • What's to say yours wouldn't have blown out too?

    • @@VineFynn bc my system is a tested true system with years of experience behind it and I had people who have used and installed it for decades and a guy on my team invented it and knew exactly how it works. and their system was some proprietary thing. mine was plug and play, a known known.

    • It's called crony capitalism, someone's getting kickbacks duh...

    • ​@@repentandbelieveinJesusChrist8I forwarded this for you to the folks who rejected the op's proposals. ❤

    • ​@@Melthornalwhat do you put it down to? that the customers were ignorant of the benefit of your method or that they'd already chosen the contractor who got the contract but had to do "an open call" for bids because of the company's rules....or something else I didn't think of? thx Mel ❤

  • As a deaf engineer I appreciate the time taken to get your videos subtitled accurately.

  • Practical Engineering has been turning my entire college curriculum in civil engineering into short video form. I’m so proud of the dedication over the years. 😊😊😊

    • So true. Many of these episodes are basically a week's worth of lectures, minus the rigorous curriculum and homework, in one small video.

    • Yep. Broader context is so helpful in learning what matters; then you go back and fill in the mathematics and physics required to attend to the daily business of engineering, and it's easier because you KNOW why you need to pay attention to this or that.

    • @@paintedwings74 I literally tried that exact tact going between bachelors and masters, but no one, literally no one I could find, would hire a non-masters structures graduate.

    • @@kindlin I'm not surprised. It seems like the entire industry clings to 1950's mentalities, to varying extent. I'd go around as an apprentice and talk with the other trades about what work we'd be doing in the same space, and get the most bizarre looks from my guys and theirs. What was so wrong with talking it over briefly to decide whose stuff needed to go in first, or how we could both occupy the same space at slightly different times, to avoid time delays? But it was unheard of--HVAC and plumbing must forever compete with electrical for the easiest installations! Whenever I came up with a time-saving way to get things done, I was met with silence; too smart, too female, too collaborative, and damnit, her way works. I suspect that way will become more normal in trades, because more people are entering trades later in life, no longer subject to acculturation into the 1950's old boys' club from 18 years onward. But when it comes to higher ed degree-based elitism, is there any hope? I don't know. I live in a university town. I don't even bother with the vast majority of environmentalists from that background, unless they've worked in jobs where they interact with hunters, fishers, and trappers. People need to get de-silo'd from their superiority complexes before they're able to listen to common sense advice.

    • @@paintedwings74 You definitely took this thread in a different tact, but I agree with you, mostly. Degree's are still good. I learned a lot, but it didn't help me be a better engineer.

  • Civil Design Engineer here. I think it would do a world of good if civil design/project engineers actually had experience working at a construction site. There have been times during a design review where my manager asked me “How are they going to build this particular piece of the alignment?” I kinda shrug my shoulders and point out the reasons why I made that particular design choice and he usually agrees, but we always come back to how a contractor will build it. It really is my weakest part of my engineering knowledge. To all the future civil engineers, please do an internship with a contractor and learn from them. It will save you time in the future and imho, will be well worth it.

    • You’re comment is fitting for a great many well intended but misinformed people.

    • Contractor here, I've had this issue with architects/ engineers where I literally have to be correcting their works. It all looks good on paper or CAD but not realistic in the practical.

    • Yes, yes, and yes!!! Absolutely fantastic advice and 💯% correct!!

    • Sometimes it’s as simple as the access to work and challenges to maneuver efficiently as it relates to adjacent obstacles! This can look like, limited space to erect scaffolding or removing souls literally by shovels and 5 gallon buckets! This comes with experience working “in the mudd” that non-hands-on contributors wouldn’t have the foresight to anticipate. All these factors add time, creativity, and labor intensity which are equivalent to money, 💰and 💸!!

    • In Australia, you can do an electrical apprenticeship (4 years of working under a qualified electrician and attending trade school) and then the government lets you complete an electrical engineering degree in half the time because of your work experience. That way, the engineer actually does know what it's like to be the electrician doing the work.

  • There's an important aspect of this problem that was missed by this video: If you come in with a realistic, expensive bid, you simply will not win the project, if every other firm is coming in with a lower price. The entire industry is financially incentivized to under-estimate. When I was going through engineering school, we had a series of lectures specifically about the problem of cost overruns in the engineering and construction industry. The simple truth was that, for projects of the same type and scale, firms that came in with higher, more conservative bids, simply did not not win the RFP (request for proposal) bid. They lost the project to the companies that came back with lower prices, EVEN THOUGH all of those companies then went on to experience cost overruns that were GREATER than the original high bid. The data was so tightly correlated, it almost looked fake: the higher the original estimate, the lower the cost of the project in the end, while the lower the estimate, the higher the cost in the end. Like you said, Underestimating ends up costing more than the cost it takes to develop a more accurate estimate.... But all the companies who do, lose out to those with a lower bid. The whole RFP and bidding process that defines the industry is to blame. It incentivizes a race to the bottom in terms of estimate pricing.

    • Well said!

    • It's sad to hear that this is also happening in the engineering industry... our world has changed. Truth is even when we plan our home grocery trips for next week..we have to keep in mind that it may be a little more expensive.

    • And the companies who underbid and create a boondoggle STILL win the next bid because they underbid that project too!

    • I think this is a big factor. At one defense company I showed statistics for hundreds of proposals and showed the true cost was consistently about 180% the proposed estimate. The reality is if a company started adding a 1.8X cost multiplier for "accuracy" in the proposal stage they would be bankrupt by the end of the year. There is a psychological block at the level of non-technical managers that prevents realistic bids at the outset.

    • Yes this. RFP responses are pure fantasy and if funders knew what a megaproject would actually cost they would never approve it.

  • I've worked on projects that had to be rerouted multiple times because we kept finding things during the environmental survey, but it's better than not doing the survey and finding human remains in a front loader. There's so many old, abandoned, and unrecorded cemeteries in the US that sometimes we were the first people to see them in a hundred years.

  • I am also an Engineer, who has emphasized Public Works Construction, form most of my career. I spent 9-years working for a water district in the rapidly developing southwest of the 90s, and pre-crash 2000s. The construction division had a very low change order rate of 2%. I had a 0.02% rate. This is because the management, had made a decision to do project planning and design by teams of engineers. The Construction Engineers, were involved from the planning phase forward, with the assignment of making sure things were constructible, and the plans and specs clearly described the nature and scope of the work. Figured out on my first project that it was far easier to devote the time, required to have a very clear set of contract documents. Because it is far easier to devote the time during the planning and design, than to go before the commissioners and request a Change Order. I had one Contractor tell me that, when they bid my projects, they reduced their bid by five percent, because my projects were easy to build, and if there were issues, I worked hard to minimize delays.

  • I’d be interested in a series where you detail every step of the construction project from planning to execution. What actually is going on when engineers plan a design? How are those plans executed by contractors? Etc…

    • There are 5 major phases of construction - site prep, framing, rough in, finishing, and Inspection / commissioning. Note this is more of a building construction, like homes and offices, not infrastructure construction like roads or bridges. Some of these phases may still overlap a great deal however. Site prep is the part where they level out the field, knock down the trees, and dig out the foundation. Underground service entries are also installed at this time, even as the service won't be connected to the local grid / system for quite a long time. The site started as an empty field, and ended as a poured foundation in this phase Framing is the part where the structure starts gaining its... well... structure. Walls go up, and the building starts to look like a building. At least from the outside. Rough in is when MEP trades run around and install all the fun things in the walls, like duct work, water and sanitation pipes, and the wires and boxes that make up the buildings heating, plumbing, and electrical systems. When you think "busy construction site" you're thinking of rough in. This phase ends with all interior walls drywalled, mudded, sanded and painted. Finishing is installing all the things you didn't want to risk getting scratched or damaged during construction. It's installing receptacles, faucets, toilets, light fixtures, and all the devices and appliances you'll expect to be installed in a building. It starts as a building that looks almost done to a building that is done. Finally, commissioning is when the building is turned over to its owner, and the owner can (and definitely does and should) test, inspect, point out deficiencies, and request changes before the new owner actually takes ownership

    • @@Mr.Sparks.173 That is all preceded by several rounds of: Env. impact Assessment, Endangered Species verifications, permitting and site prep requirements, etc... It can take years before as single shovel full of dirt is ever moved. Our NPDES discharge permit was required to be renewed every 5 years. We started the process in year 2 just to be sure we could complete it in time. It was an ongoing process.

    • @Jim Murphy definitely, nothing I said applies to pre-construction planning and design, which as both the video and yourself have stated is almost as long (if not longer) and as complicated as the actual construction phase. Its just I'm an electrician, I'm quite familiar with the construction phase, but I don't know much about the pre-construction phase (our contributions is time and cost estimates in the form of a bid, which happens closer to the time to break earth than the projects start).

    • ok

    • "detail every step of the construction project from planning to execution" - that's basically detailing thousands of people's jobs for dozens (or hundreds) of companies, for several years. There are very few people even in active large projects that grasp every single detail. If you're interested in these details, the best way to learn is to start working in the field of construction engineering.

  • Wow this was so cathartic for me. I’m a software engineer and we have a huge problem with project estimates. The funny thing is, we tend to say this isn’t construction and therefore it’s much difficult to estimate something that’s never been done before. But it’s reassuring to know that even construction has a similar problem

    • Budgeting any big project is tough. You’re trying to predict thousands or millions of labor hours. I do it for features films, which can range from under $1M to over $100M, and it’s a best educated guess.

    • With software engineering, you can limit the effects of budget overrun by using the agile methodology. You can't really get away with something like that for construction.

    • @@Upload098765432 Actually ... yeah that is actually a very good point. The one thing that's limiting about Agile is that it doesn't really take the company as a whole right? Like, it assumes Engineering lived in a vacuume. Sales needs to know when a feature is being delivered. Marketing needs to prepare for a product launch. Management needs to know how much overall effort is something going to take and whether it's worth investing in a major product. But at least we have a lot more flexibility that a construction project.

  • My double-take perfectly lined up with 0:59 😂Well executed, I tip my cap

  • I’ve written several papers about this so it’s always great so see more people talking about it. I would like to add one thing I’ve talked about a lot, and that is the way construction bids work they favor lower costs and hence underbidding. If you make a budget that covers those extra expenses you will likely get underbid by someone that says we won’t need those.

    • I would be interested in reading some of those papers... What are some of their titles? (I ask just about the titles because I don't know how CS-tv handles links in comments)

    • Facts.

    • @@vetlehenrikhvoslef1692 me too

  • 15:30 This was my only real takeaway in project management class: Don't be fooled by low costs at the start of the project (=the planning process). Make sure you spend a lot of money there.

  • We have one of the largest civil engineering earth-moving projects in the western hemisphere located here in eastern Kentucky. The Pikeville Cut-Through moved 18,000,000 lbs of soil (the Big Dig moved 15m), rerouted the major highway, rerouted the railroad tracks, and moved the route of the river. Additionally, it created 390 acres of usable land for downtown development. It was completed in 1987 at a cost of $77 million.

  • 🎉Thank you Grady. Every person in project budgeting and budgeting money management should watch this. In fact, most people should watch this. I was in the specialty contracting business for over thirty years and I never heard this stated so clearly. I always said “We are in the left over business- what’s left over is what we get to keep”.

  • Thank for your insight. I do appreciate you putting these together. Being involved in a number of large construction projects over my career. What you said here was great. How we budget and bid projects really needs to change. My personal opinion is that. Establish what is the goal, and the life cycle, maintenance, operational characteristics, length of construction, and perhaps a few other parameters. Then put it to contractors to provide bidding based on these parameters. Make them responsible for oversite and unforeseen stuff. Make them responsible maintenance and operation for 10 years. And at the end of that have 3rd party bond release to prove it is on path for life cycle. And bond it for life cycle. You would need to allow for innovation so the construction costs could be mitigated where possible. We proposed a system on a large scale project that would have saved as much as 30% in direct cost on the foundation and cut 6 months from the over all schedule. We were willing to prove the concept at our cost with 3rd party oversite. But the answer was "we have a way of doing things and this doesn't fit". There wasn't an incentive to save money. It makes me suspicious. The savings may have been $40m or more. Wasn't the first or last time I bumped up against that type of mentality. It happened in my own company. So, I retired early as did another bright person I know. Until we change things we should expect things to continue as they are. Again thanks for posting these CS-tvs I find them informative and it keeps me thinking even if I am not involved. Mike

  • "The first 90% of the project takes 90% of the budget. The last 10% of the project takes the other 90% of the budget." That was the advice we gave clients when I worked as a Project/Program Manager for KPMG.

    • Both money AND schedule at times.

    • ok

    • ok

    • The first 90% of the project takes 90% of the budget, the next 90% of the remaining 10% takes another 90% of the budget, the next 90% of remaining after that takes another 90%, to infinity or until good enough.

    • What is kpmg

  • As a former Bostonian, I'd say that the Big Dig has had an very positive impact on the city.

  • I definitely see a correlation between the fee I have to do drawings and the number of change orders later. It's really easy to move a wall digitally!

  • this video is amazing it's nothing this good has ever been on TV. You're far from the only one that has videos that far and exceeds what I've ever seen on TV, At least for nonfiction. this is videos with literal and metaphorical everybody read between the lines

  • An interesting case study is Heathrow Terminal 5; this was a £4 billion project that was completed mostly on time and under budget. What they did was change how they handled contractors, normally contractors take on the risk with their work, but BAA chose to hold all of the financial and legal risks themselves, which meant that contractors could focus their energy on getting the job done rather than ensuring they were legally protected from delays. They also offered a bonus scheme to contractors to encourage them to complete on time and within budget. The lack of risk also meant that vendors were encouraged to work together to find solutions rather than play the blame game on who should bear the cost of the solution. As Brady mentioned in this video, the T5 project also benefitted greatly from an extensive planning phase to find problems before they occurred and mitigation plans.

  • I LOVE the Big Dig! I was a construction equipment loving kid while it was going on, and adored going to the exhibits at the Boston Science Museum and Children's Museum (back when it had those awesome climbing cages, the big coffee mug, and the Arthur the Aardvark green screen!) and of course driving through it on the way there! Having grown up and despite not being someone you'd think would be chummy with old skool construction guys and other folks who were on-site, that project going so long and so expensive kept the guys well-paid and having a good time on site. Man, gotta hand it to the old skool types, someone who loves their job is absolutely the best one for the job. Some of them still talk about how they'd love to have another one like it come around someday.

  • My favorite engineering estimation joke goes something like this. There's a project manager who's projects are always on time and under budget. When someone asks him what his secret is he tells them that he goes to the best three engineers and gets an estimate from each one. The person asking the question then says, "and then you average them?" And the project manager says, "no, I add them up." I'm pretty sure I've never estimated a project correctly.

    • ❤ that beats the hell out of the "you can't spell geek without an EE".😂

    • This is a funny joke

  • Great video Grady. The scale of the unknowns is truly hard to comprehend at the beginning and hard to explain why they weren't considered at the end. Another point I would add is, often estimate are right and projects do finish on time and on budget, but since what happened is what was supposed to happen, it's unremarkable (and not news worthy). People only remember the extremes, Thanks for another great video!

  • Thanks to you and your videos, I have been able to understand civil engineering to a much deeper level. I have been watching your videos for +5 years, and they are always amazing!

  • I think almost every project I've worked on in the last 2 years was budgeted 3-4 years before their start. As a result all of them were over budget before engineering even started. I also end up having a lot of clients who want to change or add things to the project which add cost and then are amazed that the new estimate is higher than the number they had pre-enginerring. Then they ask you to do anything you can to cut costs putting me in an awkward spot where I have to figure out which of my standards I can skimp on without actually compromising the safety or functionality of a project. I think this is why there are so many awkwardly designed things in the world that I question.

  • I’ve said it many times before, but your channel is so thoughtful and thorough. It’s a real treat to get to listen to you.

  • I’ve really come to enjoy the topics you cover in your videos and how it relates to things I’ve learned working in the commercial construction industry. Keep up the good work

  • This is the most painfully relevant video Grady has put out. I found myself laughing and crying and pausing to shout “YES Somebody Said It!” I’m also an engineer who has wildly underestimated costs based on only conceptual designs and a site walk through…The secret is to write everything down and document every decision.

    • Bless you..I think being an engineer is as hard as being a soldier. Thank you for keeping others safe💜

    • I guessing what you are saying in simpler terms is that we should all try to be more liable and responsible.

    • Even if you've got everything right, realistically and accurately, there's always scope diffusion while the project is underway, to fundamentally muck it all up beyond recovery.

    • This is true for most projects - pulling Network cable, websites, design jobs, catering. You name it. Plus bidding low to get the job in the first place.

    • If it's early enough in the planning, in addition to the base estimate, it's worth adding a high end estimate and disclaimers of the assumptions used for the base cost estimate. High end estimates are common with contractors who are asked about expected cost prior to doing a time and material job. When you estimate high and come in under budget everyone is happy. Having the two numbers would be good for engineering firms because everyone would be expecting the possibility of the higher number but be shooting for a design that minimizes the cost to as close to the lower value as you can get.

  • I do plant level project engineering, doing this process for 15 to 20 projects a year. Really good summary of the challenges of it!

  • Here in Germany the big companies often purposefully lower their estimates by excluding items they know are needed but not obvious to the bureaucrats administering the bidding process. That allows them to be lowest bidder. Later the public discovers that the bridge across river x actually didn't include a road surface on the top etc

  • You’ve done a great job covering all aspects of cost overruns. I work in building construction and can vouch for the complexity. It’s like planning a car journey from Europe to Australia and trying to design and plan for all the known roads, known towns, border crossings, ferry rides, etc. then you begin and find roadworks, rough seas cancelling boats, civil unrest breaks out, cyclones, etc. The most successful projects I’ve worked on are Early Contractor Involvement / Engagement where there is an early tender process for rates, markups, attributes, and value proposition. From here, a Contractor can add much more meaningful value with realistic budgets, timelines, build complexities, etc. And the myth that it turns out more expensive is bollox. Clients can save thousands in PM and QS fees if the Contractor is doing it. Then I’m construction, the Contractor is usually open-book and has his reputation to uphold in keeping within his own budget.

  • I work in software engineering, and I am not surprised at all. We do mainly in-house development within a medium size corporation. Most projects take more person hours, and also more actual "calendar" time than initially estimated. I think the main reason is that many complexities only truly unfold when you actually do the work. Also, more often than not, our customers wish more functionality than originally planned, so the final product is better than expected, but also more complex.

  • A quip I remember from my 'Project Management' Course; the Platypus is the output of the first attempt at a 'Beaver' project.

  • There's always something a little ridiculous about budgets. Let's say you have a project in mind, and there's a 35% chance it costs $100k, 30% chance it costs $150k, 20% chance it costs $200k, and 15% chance it costs $300k, due to various possible contingencies during the project. If you wanted to provide a single number to the decision makers, you could give them the 'expected' cost of the project by multiplying and adding those together to get an Expected Cost of $165k, but if you've budgeted your contingencies properly, there's 0% chance it will cost $165k! And as Grady said, you can factor in inflation, but since the 2008 crash a lot of countries have implemented good governance regulations that outlaw back-of-the-napkin guesses since they can be used to nefarious effect. Speaking of nefarious, history has had more than a few cases of the underhanded Robert Moses tactic of "Tell them it'll cost 1/3 of what it will actually cost; then once a politician's staked their career on this project, you tell that politician they need to find the rest of the money or else the public will blame the failure of the project on them."

    • Hello Frank Underwood

    • Robert Moses was not a good person, that's for sure.

    • @@RCAvhstape When I was reading that I was like, "Is this actually a real story?" Honestly, he sounds like a second Edison don't @ me...

    • @@calencrawford2195 Edison actually brought about lots of useful things. Moses just wrecked NY City at the expense of solid neighborhoods and their residents. He referred to the people who protested being kicked out of their home as "animals who got stirred up". He is the quintessential urban central planner.

    • @@calencrawford2195 @

  • The trap I fall into, and that I'm always trying to get better about not falling into, is estimating based on everything going perfectly. Things almost never go perfectly. Now a days when someone is planning a budget and asks me how long something will take I take the first figure that pops into my head and almost double it and I often end up being much, much closer to reality.

  • I have estimated many projects and I was directed to underestimate all projects in order to win the bid. My real estimates were always close. Also, I focused on the time rather than the costs to complete the projects. Time is always more important than price. There is no incentive for an engineer/estimator to over estimate a job and lose the bid. Also, especially government jobs, management/clients cannot keep from meddling in the project inevitably increasing time and money

  • I really like the objective practical approach to this video. You’re statement about a lack of practical experience could be applied to a great many people who are well intended but highly inexperienced. Thank you!

  • I'm a senior project scheduler, having worked in the heavy construction industry (think power plants, etc) for over 2 decades. Cost & time estimates are often more art than science. I keep a sign in my office "Remember Cheops' Law" (Nothing ever gets built on schedule or within budget - thank you Heinlein.)

  • I worked on designing temporary support structures for the Big Dig. They deliberately under estimated the project so that they could get it through the legislature. Previously, as a town engineer, I designed and ran my own small bridge replacements. I did them for less than 1/3 of what the DOT estimated and only took 3 months to replace the bridges. I started construction the day after the last school bus went over in June and had it open again before school started. Consultants complained that I was denying them work so the DOT banned me from doing bridges. All of a sudden, large bridge projects that I estimated at $500,000, became $3,000,000. I'm now glad that happened because it was just before chinesium started taking over and causing problems. A very good and thorough video. Yeah, the idiots don't understand that construction escalates at a much higher rate than the government estimates inflation. When I was a combat engineer bridge builder we were taught to add 25% for losses, on our estimates. I carried that over into my civilian estimating. I hope that young engineers are watching your videos. Good Luck, Rick

    • I ran into issues of the nature doing IT for a US state government. State laws required we contract out a lot of work despite having the capability in-house. My all time favorite was for a campus portal project of a major public university where parts were contracted, months later the contractor said they could not deliver, we wrote it in-house, and when the auditor (same company as the contractor previously mentioned) reviewed the service they failed it declaring "we can do it better."

    • The fact that everyone wants their cut is a very real part of doing business with taxpayer dollars. Its very similar to organized crime.

    • Examples like this is exactly why I think the US is going to fail as a country. It's system of governance is rotten with bureaucracy & special interest groups. It is squandering public funds & being inefficient with its resources. Taxes must be raised to accomplish the exact same thing & it becomes a less competitive business environment. People rightfully think "I'm not getting what I pay for" & move their businesses overseas where the grass is greener & taxes are lower. It's a shame, personally I don't think some big super power will outright replace the US, rather regional powers will rise & decrease America's share of global influence. It's a shame that countries like China & India will control the world in the future...

    • This is what I always figured had happened. Everyone knew it was needed but also knew no one would vote for it if they knew what it would cost so they low balled it to get it started and then slowly asked for more money as time went on. Easier to ask for forgiveness than permission as they say.

    • Maybe you lost business for being a bigot?

  • In the UK there is a rail project called HS2 that was originally going to cost £30-£36 Billion and is now costing around £100 Billion. The project started around 2010. The first phase is estimated to be completed in 2029-2033 and the second phase 2035-2040

  • What hurts the most is although the estimate is wrong, I’m responsible for the overage as the civil and structural construction manager and that causes more stress on the project than you can ever image. There’s a trickle down effect into the core craft group that can lead to loss of qualified tradesmen on site. The stakeholders don’t care why, they just care that it went over and they need to find the extra money, and it can snowball when stakeholders try to hold the budget down when the professionals are screaming for more trying to get it done.

  • Great video! Very insightful for entry level project engineers. Keep up the good work 🙂

  • Just out of engineering school I was given a cost estimate project by my boss. A section of a steep hill/ cliff cut was to be set back and anchored where necessary. It was a fairly simple project but the unknows of the rock type and the stipulation that the project owner decided on the type of construction to be used as the project progressed made it impossible for me to make an accurate estimate for the project. I was able to make estimates of cost per foot for each of the types of construction that could be called for by the owner but not for the entire project. We didn't get that job but, my boss told me the company that did had a person whose sole purpose was to fille change requests with the owner to increase revenue.

  • This super informational video is yet another reason why this remains my favorite CS-tv channel. You explain a complex topic so concisely and make it very interesting. 👍

  • The other thing worth mentioning is that there's almost always some kind of competitive bidding going on that provides an incentive for parties to underestimate costs. A bidder who bases their estimate on everything going perfectly is obviously going to have a lower bid than one that realistically considers the risks...

    • Good point

    • As an engineer turned builder, this is what I came to say. There's pressure on GCs to keep their bids competitive in order to get the job. Bit of a double edged sword that can be ironed out through contract qualifications and a more detailed Schedule of Values with bid packages

    • And to select someone else than the lowest bidder in a process like this means you have to do a huge amount of paperwork to justify the decision

    • Company A underbids and gets 10 contracts. Company B does not underbid. The government still gives company A the 11th contract. There is no incentive to be honest, and 0 credit is ever given for being on time or under cost. If you are $1 under on a bid you win.

    • A simple fix would be to cap the amount a bid can be off to 10%. Off more than that, and the company has to pay the costs, even if it causes the company to go bankrupt.

  • There's a lot that wasn't brought up here too. I work in consulting engineering, we absolutely see other companies underbid us and the client coming back to us to finish the job when the consultant that underbid us basically doesn't finish the job because they didn't bid high enough. Its often a communication breakdown. For example the client says build me a car 2 different consultants will give two different estimates. One for a Ford raptor one for a Yugo. The client selects the Yugo because cost and not reading in depth enough. Then the client has to come back around to upgrade the suspension and add an infotainment system.

  • Best informative vidio I have seen in a long time ! Unforseen circumstances and costs ! Are always overlooked ! But I have a new approach to projects now after years of cost overruns! And it is very simple to start with but gets more complex the more into a vision ! Rule one that I try to follow is this ,the right way not his way or her way but the right way with proper science! Number two ! Have meetings then leave the meeting without commitment to anything don't sign anything or agree to anything but to sleep on it ,let the problems and issues sink in and come up with solutions and then adjust the right way! It can't always be done but some people are good at pushing hidden adgenders and bulldozing projects thru to get you to sign up for their benefit not yours ! Also be careful of chair persons at meetings that push the meeting along without all the facts being tabled ! And these days a chair person can be paid to push your topic off the adgenda before you have got to the crunch point ! Chair persons can be bribed before a meeting to work for opposition ! The truth is utmost importance! And that normally is the right way ! It's a dog eat Dog world out there !

  • Here in Australia our biggest and most recent megaproject was the National Broadband Network (NBN) Project to supply Broadband to ALL of Australia. In 2007 it was estimated to cost about $20 Billion. Then we wanted to do Fibre to the Premises FTTP which was estimated to cost $38 Billion. By 2009 the estimate was $43 Billion and completed by 2020. By 2019 it had cost $51 Billion and in 2020 they added another $4.5B to the budget to make it significantly faster for about 1/3 of the country. All up it's estimated it ended up costing us $57 Billion dollars.

  • The fact I follow your content and also live in Boston- the immediate pairing of that thumbnail with the title really hit home. I started studying at Emerson college in 2014- I forget the exact timeline… but they were supposed to have completed the Longfellow Bridge in maybe two years MAX- I don’t think it was finished until after or around when I graduated in 2017 😂

  • You could compare the cost overruns of large projects undertaken by corporations vs. that of government bodies to see if there is a significant difference (I.e. new office building vs. new city hall)

  • I’m a retired construction superintendent who managed commercial building projects up to about $12 million (todays dollars about $20 million). The thing that drove me crazy was low bid was the deciding factor. My grandfather and father were also supers and in their day low bid and high bid were dismissed and the middle bidders were then analyzed for ability to perform. Near the end of my time general contractors I worked for would rush out to sign the lowest bidder before they had time to find their mistakes

    • I also don't understand the "lowest bidder gets the contract" approach. The people making the rules DO know that this lowest bidder will just bring cost overruns, right? And if there are penalties for cost overruns, then doesn't that max amount (before penalties kick in) just automatically "become part" of the bidder's bid?

    • And when the low bidder goes over budget and the budget doesn't get adjusted, the LLC will just be sent into bankruptcy - and the next shell ccompany will be incorporated for the next project. Contractors in big public projects never bear any risk, but they do keep the difference. It's a disgrace, honestly.

    • That old way sounds much better. Sigh

    • There's fraud in high bids as well, though. Going with the low bidder increases the likelihood of change orders, yes. But going with higher bidders will lead to contractors padding their budgets more.

    • My Superintendent on my project also told me that back in the day, government agencies used to accept low bids up to a certain point, meaning if they saw that a bid was way too low compared to the estimate (which they would not provide), then they would throw out that bid. I believe USACE still works this way… not sure.. And I agree with your comment. Today, bids are all about being the lowest and in a fast manner, not being able to catch your mistakes and getting burnt during the course of the project.

  • My brother does HVAC and he's working on a huge hotel/luxury residency, etc... that building has been flooded 3 times from the folks doing the piping and its racking up tens of millions of dollars each time.

  • 5.5 km tunnel complex which is partially under water and has many entries and exits - 43B CZK and 8 years. Just putting 4 concrete blocks on road to create a "roundabout" 7M CZK and 2 years of planning.

  • i remember talking to my cousin who was head of facilities at a large hospital. they were putting in a new wing . i talked to him about budgets and remember him saying matter of factly oh yah they add 1.5 million for the lawsuits into the cost estimate. he said there are always lawsuits from contractors.

  • As a design professional, I relate to this so much - so many factors go into the budget for a project and there are so many variables that can affect the budget. Even if one can get certain costs with reasonable certainty, time escalation and market conditions will change things with the passage of time. Projects take many years between feasibility and actual construction, original budgets escalate significantly over 5-10 years. The client and/or funder never really wants to see the costs going up and the need for a bigger budget either.

  • There's a fair amount written about how the Hoover Dam came in 2 years early and under budget (despite being the largest dam ever built at that time that required new construction techniques) that makes for interesting reading on this topic. For example, it was awarded to the lowest bidder, but the difference between the two lowest bids was due almost entirely to a single line item (estimated cost of concrete) and the bidder's cost was only $24K higher than the government's estimate (out of a $49M bid cost)! The key incentive in the contract was a $3K/day penalty for being late on any of the 5 portions of the project. The six companies involved in the bid had collectively completed over $400M of projects prior to bidding on the Hoover Dam, so had a wealth of experience to bring to bear, and they picked the right man to lead the project.

  • Speaking of miliary costs. True story. My buddy in the army told me about how everytime they go out for training that the squad uses all the ammo regardless if it's for the actual training. The paperwork to put back ammo is longer form than to take it out. One time they blew up a whole box of grenades because it was easier than to return it. This happens every single time for everyone. Probably half the military budget is just wasted because the paperwork is a pain.

    • It's the same with health and safety paperwork. A guy cuts his finger open and then spends hours in interviews with H&S reps while they fill out the paperwork about how it happened and which machine it was. This is why so many employees hide an injury to avoid paperwork.

    • ​@@caravanlifenzI do this all the time. Safety paperwork is a horrible, tedious, waste of time. Whoever is out there pushing more and more invasive standards probably had their heart in the right place at one point, but it is now outrageous in both cost and inefficiency.

    • Taxation always produces waste Because there is o reward or value to being frugal

    • Consider how much it costs The paperwork almost costs nothing compared to the waste Hideousness of people morals And reward of waste Communism always produces this - institutions that steal and force themselves to be the only one who can Hense no reason to be honest

    • A lot of these sorts of systems seem tedious or over-complicated because they have to apply to an enormous variety of edge cases. Sure, 99% of the time all that extra work is unnecessary, but all of those regulations have to be in place for the 1% of the time when it does matter.

  • I've always been impressed by the way you break down complicated topics and provide just the right degree of detail with am eye to what's practical. So I suppose I shouldn't have been surprised to see this topic. But my first thought was "Oh man, how is he going to cover something this huge". Amd honestly, you nailed it! Thanks for another great video!

  • Excellent summary! As a civil engineer and project manager, I was involved in cost control in various roles on all sides of the table, and I can relate to these explanations. However, even fellow engineers do not understand why infrastructure projects today apparently always run over the budget, while in the past, that was (allegedly) never the case. And the recommendation around the 15 min mark is really to be considered. Every € you try to save by cutting corners in the planning phase, you will likely pay 10 times more in the construction phase. Of course, in large critical infrastructure projects, you sometimes do not have the time for complete planning but need to start asap and fill the gaps later.

  • What a fantastic overview of project costs and the uncertainties within. I work in excavation on highway jobs and this will be my go to video whenever anyone asks why did this road or that project take so much longer or cost so much more?

  • If it ever gets completed, would love to see you do a case study on the Eglinton crosstown project in Toronto.

  • Excellent video. This aspect of construction is not shared enough with those outside of the industry. Keep up the good work.

  • I learned this lesson the hard way when building a bed frame for a customer, did everything I could to properly estimate the cost including calling the lumber yard and getting the most up to date price. I get the customer to confirm the project about a week later go to pick up the lumber and now the lumber prices are up by a third and the "saftey" money I had calculated into the project wasn't even enough to cover the diffrence. I can't imagine trying to plan 10 year infrasturcture project because there it literally no way to know what something is going to cost a week from now, let alone 10 year!

    • I suspect that large contracts have pros and cons that apply vs your example, such as bulk discounts (pro) and need to source a large volume of material that the local market may not have handy (con)

    • Price shouldn't got up by a third in only a week on any product. That's a bad economy.

    • @@jliller COVID-shutdown related shortages combined with people forced to stay home and deciding to tackle home reno projects played havoc with lumber prices in 2020-2022. The cost of a sheet of plywood doubled in certain areas over a very short period of time.

  • Workers just found an abandoned mines unstable air vent under one of the roads near me during relatively minor construction. Needless to say, unforeseen circumstances increase costs and cause delays. The road was closed extra long due to the extra work needed to cap and backfill the hole.

  • I loved that you added the note about how it's a good thing we increase the direct costs of projects by involving more people and restraints, because it stops us from externalizing those same costs to others. Very well put! That's a good reminder in an age where some of us are getting increasingly hostile towards even mild bureaucratic process.

  • This is an excellent summary. I come from the contracting side, and while I was never involved with bids, I was involved with 'finding' extra costs during construction. In theory the contractor gets paid whatever he bid, but of course that depends on the type of contract. For larger civils jobs there is always going to be a degree of uncertainty, so there is an agreed method of paying for extra, unforeseen, work. But there are also fixed price contracts for smaller works. In this case the theory is that the contractor takes the hit for unforeseen costs. But of course there are always means to be creative. Go back to the drawings and schedules to find something not clearly specified and give the client the option of paying for something substandard he hadn't anticipated, but what you have priced for. Or give him the option of paying for what he was expecting, but adding a nice markup. Creativity isn't always that hard. One of my first jobs was on a site for the UK ministry of defence - a submarine base. We were building jetties with a few brick structures and service roads. The detailed drawings showed they had specified a certain brick manufacturer and brick type and finish. We had priced for this but when we told them we had only priced to cut standard bricks to the angles needed, they demanded special bricks be made for e.g. 45 degree corners. As we hadn't priced for specials I prepared a huge schedule of specials for the manufacturer. Of course the MoD had specified one manufacturer, so they added a huge markup, as did we. This was probably a small gain, but multiplied over several other claims, turned a high turnover, low profit job into a healthy one for us! Others have pointed to low bids as being a problem. Yes, there are contractors who will bid low in the hope of claiming extras, but it is a fraught time-consuming process, not something any contractor wants to do if they could get a reasonable return without it. Saying clients should accept higher, more realistic bids is easier said than done. Those higher bids are probably from contractors who already have enough work in the pipeline. They bid to stay in the game for future contracts, but know that others will bid lower, so don't expect to get the work.

  • I can not agree more with the end of the video. I work for very large and complex transport projects (new subway lines with fully automatic subways, most clients being public agencies). So it's very similar to the example chosen at the beginning of the video. We also go over budget almost every time. I am myself a huge sponsor of more transparency towards our clients regarding our hurdles and uncertainties. I am convinced that it will improve the way clients see us. I had a long discussion with my manager this week, regarding a particular issue we had, and I managed to change his mind only partially but he agreed to follow something I proposed. There is no small victory and I was quite pleased with his reaction.

  • I'm studying a short professional course in project management, and this video put a big smile on my face. This is beautiful.

  • There is a way to avoid this problem: inform the bidders that NOT the lowest bid but the next-to-lowest bid will be accepted. Suddenly the bids become more realistic.

    • They chose low bids not the lowest. I get where you are going but that would not work.

    • ​@@Max-ns8lc Either that's what they already do or it wouldn't work. Which is it?

    • @@PrezVeto Why do you think it can't be both? The whole reason this video was made was because whatever they're doing isn't working or at least isn't working completely to eliminate the problem.

    • @@rupert274 If they meant it wouldn't work _better_ than the current method, that would've been a much clearer way of expressing that idea. The suggestion made, however, _is_ a proven way of improving the sincerity of bids in auctions.

    • CSP - competitive sealed proposal. A weighted criteria which helps select “best value”. The GC who wins could be the lowest price or they may not. This is a good delivery method for construction projects. Or CMAR.

  • I like how you tried to keep a straight face saying on time and under budget. I agree there are a lot of variables when comes to big projects.

  • perfect explainnation of construction costs and the problems. greetings from an austrian civil engineer.

  • A mate of mine who’s a Builder doing home renovations taught me how to quote. 1 - Run the numbers as you see them regarding materials and labour. 2 - Double that number. 3 - Add 20%. That gets him pretty close most of the time. 👍

  • Hello Grady...I just watched your video on why buildings need foundations, and I thought that a video on building foundations of the buildings in a city 6 ft below sea level with very little if any bedrock, using hundreds of wooden piling. I lived in New Orleans for several years and alway liked 'sidewalk supervising',supervising,. Great videos, please keep them coming.

  • Awesome video. Really brings alot of things to light.

  • Massholes and Chicagoans are so used to seeing "billions" in construction budgets that anything less than US$750 Million is seen as a huge discount.

    • 😂😅🤣 fellow Chicago person here.. you are so right.. the best part..MASSHOLES😊

    • Makes sense

    • “What’s a million?”

    • @@debbie9792 Being in Boston for a while made me realize the infected in The Last of Us are more upstanding citizens than real Bostonians

    • @@jtgd you are right too..prices have gone up🤔😉 payoffs are part of the economy in IL... they go up too with inflation...

  • A new building was being made next to my school when they suddenly discovered old artifacts. They ended up digging like, twice or thrice as deep, delaying the project by quite some time, then put all that dirt back to continue

    • And THAT'S why you do cultural resource consultation and survey early in the process (if you're smart)!

  • A good example you've not covered: Columbus Ohio's sewer bypass. It only goes 5 miles 100' down, but it took over a decade to build because somehow ALL the boreholes missed groundwater intrusion. It finished up, I think, around 2016, and they're currently adding another leg to it. The whole thing provides a reservoir into which sewer overflows can be retained until processing can get through them. The big problem was the tunnel boring machine they ordered from Germany wasn't designed to operate as a submersible. Once they'd got going, the tunnel filled (I believe) completely with water. Hundreds and hundreds of boreholes were drilled before the project started, and somehow they all came up dry.

  • Thanks a lot Man, this is the kind of material I was hoping someone Post. useful as hell

  • Really enjoy your videos. “...need to find ways to improve...” cost estimates. THAT really struck a cord. Someone once said that projects always come in late, over budget, or both. A few notes: Inflation was mentioned, but the time value of money was not. Design and planning were mentioned, but “project management” was not; or I missed it. Risk management was mentioned (👍), but the various methods, limitations, range of applicability, continuing research - not mentioned. Quality and related trade offs in cost and time were not mentioned. Engineering economics was not mentioned. The first book on engineering economics was published in the 19th century, and was about building railroads. I no longer recall the exact words, but the author wrote something to the effect, “Any fool can build a railroad, but can they do it without wasting money?” In studying management, project management, risk management, quality, economics, policy and engineering economics, I repeatedly found that “we” - government, the military, construction firms, manufacturers, society in general - allocate too little to planning/research & development. Research and publications of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE), as I recall it, stated that 11%-12% of total life cycle cost should be allocated to that initial phase of planning/R&D. It really pays off. Or as Einstein put it, “Genius is 90% perspiration and 10% inspiration.” I know, it’s not exactly analogous, apples-to-apples. However, upfront planning pays off big time. Put in the hours, the sweat and tears, or expect MANY more problems and MUCH higher costs. Yes, there will always be some, but good planning can greatly reduce the number and impact of problems. Identify as many issues, unresolved problems, possible problems, etc as possible, and allocate resources to research them and resolve them. Employ a range of costs and probabilities, rather than a single estimated time and cost. Restrict late changes, improvements, etc., to later phases if at all possible. Late changes and rework are EXTREMELY expensive. It would help if engineering schools would place more emphasis on these issues and topics. US Army (Retired) Systems engineer, program manager and adjunct professor (Retired) “One of these days I’ll figure out what kind of work I really want to do.” For now, my focus is on family and woodworking. Again, I really enjoy your videos. Thank-you, have a good day and stay safe.

    • Forgot to mention assumptions - very important!

  • I always love watching Grand Designs and taking bets with whoever is watching with me on how much longer it's going to take and how much over budget it's going to be. As a general rule of thumb 1.5x the Time & Money is a good result, most is 2x and I've seen it go up to 3-4x on other projects.

  • Grady, thanks for putting this issue in perspective. I once managed an environmental remediation project which I estimated to be $850k. At about the $700k figure I warned the client that the final cost would probably break $1m based on field work to-date. The final cost of the project ended up ~$1.2m. Thankfully, my client had the ability to fund the project to completion. I, however, felt very bad that my initial estimate was so inadequate.

    • The moment you add the word 'environmental' all the variables start to go wild. Was your estimate truly inadequate or did the unknowns creep in?

    • Ditto what cr01 said: if you ever give advice to other people in your field putting in bids for remediation, share that story and tell them all: warn your clients up front that any bid you give them can quickly multiply, because "environment" means in this case "wild," and wild "beasts" aka remediation projects are so unpredictable, there is no knowing if they're going to bolt off in a direction you couldn't have predicted. Then sit down and do the estimate the best you can, and run a few scenarios of "if the beast bolts in this direction, added costs might look like this, as an example, but only an example".

  • Except on the Faroe Islands. They’ve used the Norwegian subsidiary of the company NCC since the year 2000 to build their undersea tunnels, to connect different islands. They are almost always done before time and usually cheaper than budgeted, lol.

  • 4:45 This problem has a solution. 2 simultaneous rfp processes. One contracts an industry entity (some primary contracting company) to carry out the design phase, estimating costs, drawing up plans, etc. They are then disallowed to bid on phase 2 with the implementation of the project.

  • 0:41 I had to go back and turn on captions to be sure I was hearing him right.🤣🤣💀

  • So going off on the construction side of costs. In an RCA I assisted with for a simple MCC change out project we determined a huge cost was all the little things no one planned in, not having enough bolts, nuts washers. The connectors for pecker heads weren't the exact type, the local supply house not being in stock with the right material. It was determined the 5k we went over material gathering was a huge portion of that. But no one is calculating every single bolt, strut strap, ect. And this is just on the electrical side of a relatively small industrial project

  • I'd be really interested to see a video at some point on the Vogtle expansion in Georgia, which highlights many of these issues as well as raising some really interesting questions about new nuclear

  • There are a lot of incentives to under-estimate and not a lot to over-estimate. There is also the fact that it is easy to forget about something that adds costs but you rarely forget about something that lowers the cost.

  • I converted to a Henson when the cost of cartridges got ridiculous. It took a bit of getting used to, but now I wouldn’t shave with anything else. It does a really good job for a tenth of the cost. I get ten decent shaves out of every blade. It is easy to keep clean and to swap blades. My kit came with lots of blades, a disposal container, shaving soap, alum for nicks, and after shave cream. I already had a brush, so swapped for more shaving soap. Set for life.

  • Over here in the UK we have a contract called actual cost. All risks are included in the Contractors price. When I say all risks it's all risks except changes instructed by the Client. All risks include design conoketion, unforeseen ground, sub contractor insolvencies, bad weather, inflation and anything else. The downside is the Contractors price is above the client budget.

  • Many projects are released for bid with 80% completed drawings. That means there is a lot of opportunity for vague cost estimates. Then as soon as you cut into the soil you start to discover "unforeseen circumstances"

  • That was amazingly informative. Thank you.

  • Me and my dad once worked for a big private job. We are the enginner, the estimator, the fabricator, and the project manager for the steel structure part of the construction. Even with the complete trust from the project owner and almost complete control over the process, we still bear losses (I think, or at least we didn't made as much as predicted). Reason? Someone "assumed direct control" and changes the workflow overnight without warning, and nobody told us for a week because "it made sense". Because of that, we have to cut and adjust every single steel members in one section. It was both amusing and mind-opening.

  • As a project engineer in Solar Rooftop business where most projects are just cookie cutter of another one and there's a lot less complexity compared to construction. My team still runs into overbudgeting issue as no roof is the same, and clients are very diverse. And the bean counters wants us to underestimate as lower cost usually gets the contract. It's a never ending cycle.

    • The entire concept of lowest bid gets the job is sketch. When I get some bids from a few contractors for a house project (I'm pretty handy, but some things I don't do), I will literally question the lowest bidder, "Why is your bid so low? What makes you so sure you can out perform the other contractor's I've talked to?" And they usually don't have a good answer.

  • Yes and thank you for addressing the huge wooly Mammoth in the room , I think low bids are a danger because of the way they go about it the wrong way, well to me. The old saying that is so true, too many cook's spoil the dinner or soup depending on who is in charge. I always have penciled in every penny and I still do that because I still don't have the funds to spend crazy.

  • I live in Boston and grew up in Boston. The big dig was absolutely worth it imo. It was amazing for the city, not just the commute. There is now vast Greenway where the highway once was. There are bike paths and the ability to walk the whole city. The tunnels themselves are mind-blowing, 4 lane highway that go all the way under the city. Traffic on the bridge leading to the tunnel is worse then anything in the tunnel itself. Even in the worst tragic it moves, and most of the day one can drive 50 or 60 mph safely and go under the whole city and out the other side in 5 minutes or less

  • Thank you for being humble and genuine 🙏

  • I was in charge of the cement team of a renovation project but the budget was at 75% spent when the completion was only 35% done. After that we had to stop entirely the most expensive part and just focus in the cosmetic part of the project. Over time the cosmetic part became under budget also. In my opinion it was cheaper to make a new bridge other than renovate well at least the bridge is not used for traffic anymore just a pedestrian bridge now.