Economic Potential of Tunnel Standardization

by Delon Hampton, (F.ASCE), Pres.; Delon Hampton & Associates, Silver Spring, Md.; Prof., Dept. of Civ. Engrg., Howard Univ., Washington, D.C.,
Terence G. McCusker, (M.ASCE), Tunnel Consultant; Wayne, N.J.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Construction Division, 1980, Vol. 106, Issue 3, Pg. 247-265

Document Type: Journal Paper


An analysis was made of the economic potential of standardization in rail transit tunnel construction. The analysis shows that the potential savings from standardization is in the range of approximately 1.5% to 5.5% of construction costs, with a most probable savings of approximately 2% of same. Such savings, though significant, are small with the result that it may not be beneficial to pursue such savings. For example, there is no certainty that the total magnitude of the potential savings would be passed on to the owner. This paper also considers the impact of planning, design and maintenance on tunnel standardization. It is indicated that the greatest potential for cost savings is reducing the time period between initial submission of the grant application and completion of construction, due to the rapid rate of inflation. UMTA, the board of directors of local transit agencies, local politicians and citizen advocate groups are the principal potential sources of delayed decision making which must be addressed in this regard.

Subject Headings: Economic factors | Tunnels | Rail transportation | Building codes | Construction costs | Professional societies | Owners | Maintenance

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