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PLANNING PHASE COMMISSIONING ACTIVITIES
 
 
 

General

Planning Phase Commissioning aligns with the project’s programming phase.  There are several outputs from Planning Phase Commissioning:
  • Establishment of a quality process (i.e. Commissioning) as an integral project component
  • Develop the Scope of Commissioning
  • Selection of a Commissioning Authority (CxA)
  • Commissioning Team Development
  • Develop the Owner Project Requirements
  • Establish a Quality Process

    Establishing Commissioning as an integral component of new building construction at the project inception yields the maximum value to the project.  Since commissioning is only now becoming mainstream component in the new building construction process, this truism is often only understood once an owner has completed a project that incorporated commissioning as an integral project component.

    Develop the Commissioning Scope

    In the conceptual phase of the project, the commissioning scope can be defined in broad terms.   The building type and intended use can be a guide with a general assessment of risk associated with the intended building systems.   Studies have shown that HVAC and Building Control systems have a high potential for installation deficiencies. Including these systems in the Commissioning Scope is good practice.  LEED and other certification systems may dictate additional systems, such as Lighting, Lighting Control, Renewable Energy Systems and Domestic Water Heaters as requiring commissioning.

    Establishing Commissioning as an integral component of new building construction at the project inception yields the maximum value to the project.  Since commissioning is only now becoming mainstream component in the new building construction process, this truism is often only understood once an owner has completed a project that incorporated commissioning as an integral project component.

    Select a Commissiong Team Leader

    Selection of a commissioning authority can follow naturally to development of a thoughtful commissioning scope.   Potential candidates as the commissioning authority include:

  • An Independent Third-Party Commissioning Firm
  • An A/E Firm
  • A General Contractor
  • The Project Construction Manager
  • The Owner's Personnel
  • Develop the Commissioning Team

    An effective commissioning team includes every project stakeholders that has, or will have, responsibilities or usage of the systems that are included in the commissioning scope.  Chief among these are the owner project and maintenance representatives, the building occupants, the design professionals and the construction professionals.  Vendors of complex and/or specialty equipment are also encouraged to be active team participants in proportion to the impact that their equipment may have on the building operation.  Assigning a dedicated representative, with decision-making authority, for each entity in the commissioning project team will provide continuity throughout the project development, construction, acceptance, and occupancy.

    Develop the Owner Project Requirements

    The Owners Project Requirements is a document that details the owner’s functional requirements for a project and expectations for how it will be used and operated. These include project goals, measurable performance criteria, cost considerations, benchmarks, success criteria, and supporting information.

    The commissioning agent or design team may assist the owner in developing or reviewing the Owners Project Requirements documentation for the building. The owner’s objectives may be developed through a meeting of owner stakeholders with the design team and commissioning agent in attendance.  At a minimum, the commissioning agent reviews the Owners Project Requirements for clarity and completeness.

    The Owner Project Requirements is often a living document that is modified and updated as the design development progresses and budget/schedule analysis are conducted.  The commissioning authority assists to assure that updates to the Owner Project Requirements are documented and communicated to all project stakeholders.

    For additional information, see our White Paper, "BUILDING COMMISSIONING - The Early Project Phases"


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