Cardinal Provides Value Engineering
During the schematic design phase of a project, the architect submitted a design on a building that needed to be built into the side of a hill (+/- 45 feet from the top of the building footprint to the bottom) that had one large forty-plus foot retaining wall carved into the side of the slope, separating the upper “Quad” area of the building from the lower levels. Additionally, the design did not meet one of the owner’s parameters for creating a large staging area at the same level of the adjacent building’s gymnasium floor for easy access for events (robotics competitions, etc.). Noting the difficulty and cost of building one very high retaining wall into the slope (temporary shoring, support and lay-back requirements alone were estimated at nearly $400,000) and the fact that the owner’s program requirements were not met, a Cardinal team member suggested building two smaller retaining walls starting at the outside perimeter of the upper levels in lieu of one large retaining wall starting in the middle. This strategy created an additional 11,000 sq-ft staging area at the same level of the adjacent building’s gymnasium that can also be used as flexible program space when there are no ongoing events. Since nearly all of the temporary and premium costs associated with building such a high retaining wall were avoided, the owner’s program was achieved, and additional space was added at no additional cost to the project.