© Photo by Jack Hobhouse

International engineering and construction giant Laing O’Rourke used Powerproject from Elecosoft for its planning and programme management on Oxford University’s Beecroft physics building. As principal contractor for the Beecroft Building it took a one team approach that sustained the client relationship, minimised environmental impact and ultimately delivered a multi-award winning project, and a stunning state-of-the-art science building for Oxford. The precision of the programme management and delivery was one factor in securing its project leader a prestigious Construction Manager of the Year Award.

The spires of Oxford are home to some of the best physicists in the world and Laing O’Rourke has given the city a world leading physics building in which to work. This technically challenging project, which sank five storeys beneath the ground, not only saw deep excavation but involved tight tolerances. It delivered a beautiful, bronze and glass clad, timber rich, highly functional set of spaces within which scientists can explore the universe.

Tight programme management was essential on this complex 119 week project, which involved digging a 16 m deep basement (the deepest in Oxford), 155 m of high speed data cable, nearly 11 km of pipework, 72 km of electric cable, and 760 tonnes of steel.

Project Leader Rob Cooper gained Gold in the Higher Education category of the Construction Manager of the Year Awards, sponsored by Elecosoft. He and Principal Planner Ola Odusote relied on Powerproject to plan, progress and manage construction to meet high expectations and some significant change needs.

© Photo by Jim Stephenson

Powerproject is one of the preferred planning software packages Laing O’Rourke uses across its projects as Rob explains:

“We use Powerproject almost daily for communicating, sharing information, and for analysing scenarios to see the impact of changes. We are intensive users, because we are constantly reviewing the build programme, inputting changes and analysing the effect on the end date, in order to mitigate the impact of those changes on the programme.”