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Article
Publication date: 4 April 2016

Mikko Kantola and Arto Saari

The purpose of this paper is to identify the risks and challenges related to the change in building construction projects to the European Union (EU) zero-energy building…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify the risks and challenges related to the change in building construction projects to the European Union (EU) zero-energy building (nZEB) decree in the year 2020. Another goal was to create solutions to those risks and challenges.

Design/methodology/approach

A workshop method was chosen to gather up-to-date information from the construction cluster in Finland.

Findings

In the workshop, the main concern was the level of knowledge and know-how with all the parties working with construction projects. As an answer to this challenge, serious and substantial education in the organisations and competence requirements for designers and piloting as much as possible in the next few years was offered. Commissioning consultant was also seen as vital for nZEB project. Tight schedules and unfit project delivery systems were also seen as a risk for nZEB projects. However, modern project delivery systems were seen to be problematic in practice even if they were functional in theory.

Originality/value

The results of the workshop are valuable for all parties working with building construction projects in Finland and the whole EU area.

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Article
Publication date: 25 November 2019

Ulrika Uotila, Arto Saari and Juha-Matti Junnonen

This study aims to present property management challenges that municipalities have encountered regarding a public building with noted building-related symptoms. The study…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to present property management challenges that municipalities have encountered regarding a public building with noted building-related symptoms. The study goes on to provide reasons for the failure of attempts to manage the symptoms and discusses the current challenges concerning the process.

Design/methodology/approach

A participatory case study was used as the research methodology to identify the current challenges concerning a municipal approach to managing the building-related symptoms in a case-study building. The researchers scrutinised the history of the health symptom management process and attended the project planning meetings focused on the investigation of the condition of the building.

Findings

Multiple challenges concerning maintenance and omitted or postponed repair actions, as well as vagueness in the management process were found. In addition to this, it was noted that the complexity of the initial design of the building and vandalism have resulted in challenges for the maintenance and moisture performance of the building structures. According to the study, more orderliness and a more systematic process is needed when managing a municipal property.

Practical implications

The identified property management challenges may be of practical value for the facility managers and the property owners, especially when managing the building-related symptoms and a damaged building.

Originality/value

This study highlights the importance of having an in-depth understanding of condition assessments as well as proper maintenance and timely repairs for the successful management of the building-related symptoms in a municipal building. This is a pilot project in a larger project of management of building refurbishment.

Details

Facilities , vol. 38 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 14 May 2020

Ulrika Uotila, Arto Saari and Juha-Matti Junnonen

Public authorities are required to organise new facilities to respond to changed user demands in terms of a public-owned school. The number of pupils attending the case…

Abstract

Purpose

Public authorities are required to organise new facilities to respond to changed user demands in terms of a public-owned school. The number of pupils attending the case study school will increase in the following years, as will the number of children attending a day nursery located on the present campus. In addition, the users of the campus have complained of building-related symptoms. This study aims to understand the municipal decision-making process in organising the school’s facilities, in particular, the factors used for decreasing uncertainty around a project.

Design/methodology/approach

This study is a case study undertaken through an action research approach. The researchers participated in the project planning meetings concerning the future activities to take place in the building.

Findings

Over a 13-month period, multiple stakeholders participated in the project planning meetings providing a deeper understanding of the space demands posed, current challenges and opportunities offered by the existing building. In addition, the alternative solutions generated were evaluated. The problem identification and information gathering periods lasted over nine months, which was far longer than predicted. Thus, generating alternative solutions and evaluation of the solutions also delayed. As the entire process was delayed substantially, the final decision on organising the facilities was not made during this research.

Practical implications

This research may be of practical value for a property owner and a project team for decision-making concerning changed facility demands.

Originality/value

This paper provides information about how public authorities are making decisions on facility organisation during conditions of uncertainty.

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Article
Publication date: 16 August 2018

Jussi Matias Savolainen, Arto Saari, Anssi Männistö and Kalle Kähkonen

Design management plays a significant role in value creation in a construction project. Within the last few decades, new design tools such as building information model…

Abstract

Purpose

Design management plays a significant role in value creation in a construction project. Within the last few decades, new design tools such as building information model have been introduced, which supposedly enhance design productivity and quality. However, no such revolution of design quality has emerged. Therefore, more research on how design management affects the quality of construction project is needed. The purpose of this paper is to better understand the connection between design management procedures and quality.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a case study with a mixed-method approach. The data collection strategies used are quantitative user satisfaction survey and qualitative analysis over the documentation of the case project.

Findings

A deductive analysis was conducted to four suggested indicators of beneficial collaboration. An explanation was found for how the quality of the project outcome can be forecasted from the management style and procedures.

Research limitations/implications

The research was conducted as single case study, and therefore, greater data would enable further development of the indicators.

Practical implications

The indicators have wide range of applicability: the clients can forecast the quality performance by evaluating the management procedures already during the project instead of waiting until the end of project. The indicator system also provides societal impact as it guides the clients to use the kind of managerial practices that improve the ability to create value in projects that are difficult to evaluate in money terms.

Originality/value

The research provides a novel way to gain a holistic view with analytical indicator tools. The research contributes to lean design management literature by providing insight to the underlying mechanism of beneficial collaboration.

Details

Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology, vol. 16 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1726-0531

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 28 April 2014

Mikko Kantola and Arto Saari

The purpose of this paper is to show the results of the task given by a major research program concerning low-energy building and indoor environment. The task was to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to show the results of the task given by a major research program concerning low-energy building and indoor environment. The task was to develop contracting document model layouts to be used in zero-energy building (ZEB) and nearly zero-energy building (nZEB) construction projects.

Design/methodology/approach

A workshop method was chosen for gathering information and developing the layouts.

Findings

In the debate in the workshop three main topics arose: the selection of project delivery system, the use of performance controller for the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems and making innovation possible by making the call for bids as loose as possible.

Research limitations/implications

The use of performance controller could be investigated more, and more accurate information and knowledge about the best practices on nZEB construction can be captured as the industry moves in that direction and more projects will appear.

Originality/value

The goals of the research program were met and also the main issues of nZEB construction contracting were documented, which can be utilized by the whole industry of house building.

Details

Facilities, vol. 32 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 8 February 2011

Arto Saari and Hanna Tanskanen

Senior buildings have been designed as purposeful space programs. Therefore the elderly need coherent information about different senior housing concepts. The study seeks…

Abstract

Purpose

Senior buildings have been designed as purposeful space programs. Therefore the elderly need coherent information about different senior housing concepts. The study seeks to set out a method for measuring the quality level of senior housing.

Design/methodology/approach

The method includes measuring four different factors: local services, building and yard, apartment, and on‐site services. Measuring the quality level of two separate residential areas and senior housing facilities demonstrates the use of the quality level measurement system.

Findings

The overall quality level of Facility 1 was significantly lower than that of Facility 2. The lower quality level measurement for Facility 1 was primarily the result of the lack of premises for lease to commercial or other tenants and the lack of on‐site services. The quality level measurement system is a successful tool for assessing the functioning and quality standard of residential areas and housing facilities in the point of view of elderly people.

Originality/value

This study has developed a unique application for measuring the quality level of residential areas and senior housing facilities. The measurement system is useful for estimating the quality level of a facility and also for analyzing different quality level factors to identify possible problems. While the intention is to provide a method primarily for expert assessments, seniors and their relatives could also use the method as an aid in weighing up the suitability of different senior housing facilities.

Details

Property Management, vol. 29 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-7472

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Article
Publication date: 29 February 2008

Arto Saari and Tarja Takki

Numerous studies have shown that indoor environment affects health and performance, which in turn affect productivity. Property owners have not utilized Indoor Environment…

Abstract

Purpose

Numerous studies have shown that indoor environment affects health and performance, which in turn affect productivity. Property owners have not utilized Indoor Environment Quality (IEQ) as a value‐added factor to market the office spaces. On the other hand, tenants have not had a tool to demand certain indoor conditions. The paper aims to present one market mechanism for including IEQ in office space supply: the office lease contract model entitled Indoor Environment Quality.

Design/methodology/approach

The research included a constructive search for a lease contract model for the problems presented above. The need for this novel lease model is proved by the financial calculations.

Findings

The lease contract procedure whereby a lessor issues a condition guarantee to a tenant consists of: technical building audit process; and entering the terms of the indoor condition guarantee in the lease contract. It makes sense for the owner to invest in a favourable indoor environment if the benefits are shared. An owner's monetary benefit from improved IEQ is also greatly related to longer lease periods. When tenants stay longer in the same facility there is less empty office space and less need for alterations by new tenants. Therefore, rental income is higher and alteration costs are lower, which in turn lead to higher profitability of the property owner's business.

Originality/value

The lease model proposed forms guidelines for taking account of the indoor air quality in lease contracts.

Details

Facilities, vol. 26 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 30 May 2008

Arto Saari

The purpose of this paper is to develop a systematic refurbishment design procedure that allows precision refurbishment and thus enables the preservation of existing…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop a systematic refurbishment design procedure that allows precision refurbishment and thus enables the preservation of existing structures and their component parts.

Design/methodology/approach

The participatory research method was chosen and was used to develop and test a precision refurbishment procedure. This involved preparing the programming and design documents of an ongoing refurbishment project in cooperation with the designer. The actual refurbishment work was carried out using the documents developed in the study.

Findings

The principal finding was that a thorough, objective analysis of the condition and functioning of the structures in question is essential for determining a precision refurbishment procedure of the type presented here. With the refurbishment design incorporated into the contract, including precise product specifications and drawings, the client will be in a strong position in relation to the contractor during the actual refurbishment process. The way in which the product specifications were presented in the refurbishment specification allows systematic and precise depiction of the content and focus of the refurbishment. At the same time, the level of detail in the product specifications can be easily “regulated”.

Originality/value

The paper offers a tested systematic method for drawing up precise and unambiguous refurbishment designs for building refurbishment projects.

Details

Structural Survey, vol. 26 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-080X

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Article
Publication date: 6 March 2007

Arto Saari, Matti Kruus, Aimo Hämälainen and Juhani Kiiras

Nowadays it is typical that the precise use of a building becomes clear during construction. Current building processes do not support this in Finland. The objective of…

Abstract

Purpose

Nowadays it is typical that the precise use of a building becomes clear during construction. Current building processes do not support this in Finland. The objective of this study is to present a novel systematic management of the design process for flexible construction projects, from the project programming stage through to overall design, detailed designs, procurement, and handover, in a situation where the final use of the building becomes clear only during construction.

Design/methodology/approach

The development work included a constructive search for solutions to the problems presented above. The process developed in this study is illustrated with two case projects analysed retrospectively.

Findings

According the open building principle, buildings should be divided into two parts: a permanent base building; and modifiable interior spaces. This division should apply throughout the building's entire life cycle, starting from the beginning of the construction project. The start of the project is the time when goals should be set for the flexibility of the building. The first step in this goal‐setting procedure is to define the flexible modifiable spaces, and the second step is to dimension the permanent base building. A design procedure for this open building procedure has also been developed in the study. The study concludes that traditional boundaries and the content of design packages must be changed. These boundaries should be compatible with the appropriate bid packages and should support implementation of the construction work. The bid packages should follow the division to base building and spaces too.

Originality/value

The procedure proposed forms guidelines for flexible programming, basic principles for design and procurement processes. In addition, it is the starting point to transforming the Finnish standard scope of work for design corresponding to the open building approach.

Details

Facilities, vol. 25 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2014

Mikko Kantola and Arto Saari

This article aims to reveal the benefits and opportunities that commissioning procedure has to offer for nearly zero-energy building (nZEB) projects. Another goal is to…

Abstract

Purpose

This article aims to reveal the benefits and opportunities that commissioning procedure has to offer for nearly zero-energy building (nZEB) projects. Another goal is to sculpture the commissioning process and, especially, commissioning consultant’s tasks to fit nZEB projects.

Design/methodology/approach

The idea was to incorporate the literature from two fields: commissioning and nZEB, and find out if commissioning would fit nZEB projects. Challenges offered by nZEB technology were pointed out and the solutions offered to these problems by commissioning were established. Expert interviews were used to test the findings.

Findings

Commissioning was found valuable for complex nZEB projects and even worthwhile investing to in simple nZEB projects. Quality assurance is a huge task when the change to nZEB construction happens in 2020 and commissioning can be a valuable tool to prevent large-scale quality problems. A number of additions were made to the example commissioning process used in Finland today.

Originality/value

This article gives evidence for economical usability of commissioning procedure in nZEB projects and reason to start investigating the possibility to attach commissioning as a mandatory procedure to all nZEB projects.

Details

Construction Innovation, vol. 14 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

Keywords

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