Search Technique for Project Sequencing

by C. Anthony Tsou, (A.M.ASCE), Engr.; B. C. Hydro and Power Authority, Vancouver, BC, Canada,
Loring G. Mitten, Prof.; Commerce and Business Admin., Univ. of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada,
Samuel O. Russell, (M.ASCE), Asst. Prof. of Civ. Engrg.; Univ. of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada,

Serial Information: Journal of the Hydraulics Division, 1973, Vol. 99, Issue 5, Pg. 833-839

Document Type: Journal Paper


A shortcut method is presented for finding the sequence of projects that will meet a projected growing demand at minimum or near minimum discounted cost, given estimated costs and outputs for the candidate projects. Many planning problems can be formulated in this way, at least in the preliminary phases of a study. Examples are the development of the hydroelectric potential of a river basin or the supply of water to a growing city. A sensitivity testing procedure is given for computing the amount by which the cost of any project would have to change to enable it to occupy any position in the optimal sequence. This procedure forms the base for an efficient planning strategy for the case in which the engineer is particularly interested in correctly selecting the next few projects, but being sure that they are compatible with the overall scheme of development.

Subject Headings: Construction costs | Urban areas | Hydro power | Rivers and streams | Basins | Water supply | Municipal water

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