Westraven: design stage support systems

Leon S. Erkelens, F. Kanjaa, Magdalena Obermair, J. Teunizen, H.H. Vrieling

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The assignemnet was to evaluate the design process of Westraven in Utrecht. This design is made by Cepezed architect in commission of the Dutch Rijksgebouwendienst (Rgd), the Government Buildings Agency, and concerns a renovation and new construction of an office building for Rijkswaterstaat (RWS), the Government Hydraulic Engineering Agency.The purpose of research was to deliver the client organization RGD a set of management tools and a set of implementation suggestions. Each of the five management tools corresponds to a specific research area identified in the analysis.From the analysis of the process and project course the good and bad practices led to the definition of five research areas. Literature was studied in order to find relevant information for the development of management models. In both the analysis and literature phase interview were held to relate to the organization of the RGD.1. Design Risks The chapter 'design risks' is primarily interesting for project managers of the Rgd, who are interested in dealing with risks in the design phase. As a result of the analysis of the Westraven project some points of interest have been recognized for research. One of the interesting research areas was the area of design risks. The research question that is formulated concerning this research area is: 'In what way can the complete range of design risks be structured, based on rational choices concerning the legal organization of the design team?'In order to control design risks deal with all these 'problems' in this research is tried to develop a framework in which the various responsibilities of involved parties are enunciated. Besides, the liabilities of parties are set out in the Design Risk Matrix (DRM). The client now clearly sees which risks a particular party controls and which administrative measure in terms of legal options can be used to be sure that this party is really capable of dealing with that responsibility. Finally, the Design Risk Matrix is the input -variable for choosing a particular procurement plan. This is on the basis of rational thinking and deliberation advantages and disadvantages.2. Integrated Quality ManagementThe quality management of the Rgd is fragmented and therefore it is hard to improve the total quality by adjusting the different quality systems. In this research a simple model was developed for managing integrated quality. This model is for the project manager of the Rgd for managing integrated quality in the design phase. The quality model gives an overview of the different quality systems (organization, project and product level) and the interaction of these systems. The project manager has to follow a procedure and make use of the quality products in order to manage integrated quality.The quality model makes it possible for Project department of Rgd to evaluate the integrated quality management and improving it. The procedure and quality products are defined and can be adjusted if necessary. However, the quality model is no blueprint and should therefore be seen as a framework for the project manager. Also more literate and case study should be done on different quality systems that are available and on critical factors to integrate them.3. Improving Design ManagementThe improvement of the Rgd design management focuses on the management of processes. The aim is to improve the efficiency of the design team and to improve the control in the design stage on costs and quality. The set up of the design stage, the control of the design stage and the implementation of alternative processes into the design team are the central issues in structuring the management of design. These issues are further elaborated in the descriptions of the process steps, which are supported by recommendations.The recommendations for the set up and the control of the design stage are founded primarily on the literature of the management of processes. Recommendations for the control of the design stage are also founded on risk management literature. Two options to intervene in the course of the design stage are given. The first is to adjust the process of the design, the second is to make adjustments in the unfinished results of the design.The implementation of the alternative management is supported by a recommendation. The suggestion to actively use individual promoters to stimulate planned process innovations is treated as an integral aspect of the set up of design stages. Finally the continuous improvement of the set up of a design stage is a point of attention in the improved design management loop.The Design Management Support Tool is presented as a model that can be used to assist in planning and monitoring the agreements for the project manager and the design team. Furthermore it can be used to plan and monitor the delegation of managerial responsibilities. 4. Innovation: decision based on pros and consInnovation is an important issue for the Rgd. As a public body, one of its missions is to stimulate innovation and to set up and example for the market. Innovation generally is accompanied by uncertainties and risks. The pros and the cons of innovative products need to be clearly defined within construction projects in order to make balanced decisions about applying them. The Pros-Cons MCDA (Multi Criteria Decision Analysis) represents a framework for the Rgd and its clients to get a well-defined insight about the impact of applying an innovative product. Comparing the innovation with alternatives from two different points of views, the positive ones (Pros MCDA) and the negative one (Cons MCDA) will provide such insight. A list of assessment criteria is made, which visualizes important aspects for assessing construction products. Relevant criteria are chosen and weighted, based on their significance for the construction process and the project. Especially, criteria influencing the lifecycle costs of a building are important. The innovative product and the alternatives are the subsequently scaled on the criteria. Possible weaknesses and uncertainties for the construction process and project become explicit. The Pros-Cons MCDA is and easy and user-friendly tool. When first applied the weighting of the criteria and the scaling of the options may need some practice in order to ensure consistency. The Pros-Cons MCDA can be made on different levels of detail.5. Property Management and Client DemandBecause of the importance of client satisfaction the Rgd develops projects in close communication with the client. For a large part of the office buildings such as intensive process is not necessary when rather standard solutions will satisfy the clients'needs. The goal is to realize a marketable office building that supports the productivity of the end-users. With systematic Post Occupancy Evaluations it is possible to link the specific user demand to rather generic solutions known from other projects. The model focuses on the role of the project manager in the Pre Design research. In this model it is his task, in cooperation with the account manager of Front Office, to structure the user demand in a way that it is compatible with the Post Occupancy Evaluation results. The support matrix is presented as the instrument to connect a checklist of needed information with six methods of acquiring this information from the user. Comparison of the demand with the generic solutions shows the generic quality of demand.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEindhoven
PublisherTechnische Universiteit Eindhoven. Stan Ackermans Instituut
Number of pages115
ISBN (Print)90-386-1656-2
Publication statusPublished - 2005

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