Capital Projects and Planning FAQs
- What is the difference between a maintenance project and
an in-house project?
In-House projects are funded by the initiating department. Maintenance projects are paid for and managed by Facilities.
Most construction/renovation projects conceived and funded by an initiating department will end up being a project. When a project request is received, it will be reviewed for many different factors including codes, future use of space, and feasibility. If a minor project request is reviewed and would be an appropriate work order request or maintenance repair, it will be re-routed to Facilities. Some small projects may be handled through a maintenance work order, but would still be charged back to the requesting department due to request for services provided. When in doubt, please submit a project request.
Malfunction or breakdown of an existing building system or restoration of an existing condition (building finishes) caused by such malfunction should be addressed through a maintenance work order request. This may be submitted through the Facilities and Business Services website:
- Does it cost anything to request a project?
No. There is no cost associated with requesting a project. A cost estimate will be developed for the requested project scope. Funding must be in place prior to beginning any work on a project or ordering any materials.
- Once I submit a project request, am I committed to the project?
No. There is no commitment in requesting a project. Once the cost estimate is developed, a project can be accepted with the appropriate signatures and funding source.
- Who should be listed as Project Requestor and what is the
role of a Project Requestor?
A Project Requestor is the person within a department responsible for coordinating project needs and requests related to a project. Please only list a Requestor within the requesting department who will be informed about project goals and requirements and be able to coordinate on behalf of the department. The Project Requestor will be the only person contacted with project information (forms, approvals, clarifications, etc.) The Requestor should coordinate this information within their department if supervisors or others need to be informed.
- How do I know if my Project Request form requires the
signature of the Provost or a Vice-President?
If a project cost is likely to exceed $5,000, the signature of the department's Vice President is required.
If you are unsure of a project's cost, please obtain the additional signatures as a precaution.
- When should I make my project request?
Project requests are taken on a first come, first served basis. Projects require time to plan, schedule and execute and it is always beneficial to plan ahead for your desired completion date. Especially when it is necessary to complete a project during busy times (summer and breaks), it is important to allow ample time for the project to be planned, approved, and for materials to be ordered prior to work beginning. Submit your project request as soon as possible after conceiving of your project.
- How do the Project Forms work?
The Project Request form is filled out and initiated by the requesting department.
The Project Estimate form filled out by the Project Manager and forwarded to the Requestor for approvals.
The estimate does not have to be accepted – if changes are necessary, the Requestor should work with PM to issue a new estimate. The Project Request may be withdrawn by simply not signing or returning the form, although your Project Manager will appreciate the notice that you’ve decided not to pursue the project!
The Project Change Order form (CO) is filled out by the Project Manager if any changes are made to the project after initial approvals by either necessity or desire. Most projects never require a Change Order.
Sometimes CO forms only document a change in scope.
CO may be required if hidden conditions are encountered or if the Requestor chooses to add additional work not previously identified.
If there is additional cost associated with the Change Order work (whether or not work is requested) funding will need to be identified, approved, and transferred prior to the work being performed.
The Project Completion form is filled out by the Project Manager at the completion of a project. Signatures by all parties indicate satisfaction with the project and agreement that the project is complete.
Please also see the Typical Project Flowchart.
- Will my department's unused funds be returned at the end of a project?
Yes! At the completion of a project, time is allowed for final invoicing to be received both from outside vendors and through the university warehouse. A Completion Form will be circulated for final approvals similar to the initial approval process. After all invoices have been paid and the Completion Form executed, any remaining funds in a project account will be returned to the original funding index number. Funds cannot be transferred to a different index number.
- Can the Project Manager order materials for my project before
final approvals to be ready to start construction when
approvals come through?
No. Funds may not be spent on any project until approvals are final and funds have been transferred into the project account. This includes both physical materials and labor. We recommend early project requests to allow for processing time, especially when project schedules are tight.
- What if I don’t like the project scope documented on my Project Estimate? May I change
the form directly and initial the changes?
No. If there is something about the estimate scope or pricing you don’t like, please communicate directly with your Project Manager to make any changes to the estimate. There may be a reason for the reduced or altered scope and the PM will be able to explain that. If forms are altered during the signature process, they will need to be reissued as a new form and recirculated for approvals.