Facilities as an Ancillary Asset
Like many DOTs, CDOT has limited financial resources and must weigh the investment in facilities against the investment in other core transportation assets. To help determine funding needs and investment priorities for the building assets, CDOT included the building assets into AIMS, the CDOT Asset Investment Management System implemented in dTIMS. Using AIMS, CDOT determined funding needs and investment priorities for the building assets themselves. They also included the building assets in the AIMS Cross Asset Analysis, which helped them to determine effective investment levels in light of all assets included in AIMS.
CDOT maintains about 1,200 different facilities. These facilities are divided into different categories, including:
- storage sheds (355)
- employee housing trailers (108)
- vehicle maintenance and repair facilities (311)
- offices (76)
- sand sheds (189)
- traffic shops (15)
- rest areas (145) including full service rest areas and picnic shelters
- laboratories (8)
Data Collection and Performance Indexes
CDOT uses two different data collection forms for facilities: one for offices, and another for all other building types. Elements of the buildings are rated, and then those ratings are turned into indexes (as described in the following sections). The component scores are rolled up into an overall score for the building, which leads to a level of service rating of A, B, C, D or F. CDOTS performance goal is to keep 90% of all buildings at a grade of C or better.
At the structural level, CDOT examines the facilities’ glazing, roof, and exterior walls. Deighton used the weighting that CDOT applied to those individual elements with the total weighted score, divided by the number of non-zero values to arrive at the index score. A letter grade was assigned based on the results. This letter grade was the structural rating.
For the buildings that have systems, CDOT examined the HVAC units for heating, radiant heat if it existed, air conditioning if it existed, plumbing systems, and electrical systems. Each system was assigned designated weighting and received an overall system score. For example, air conditioning is currently weighted much less than heating systems.
For the site rating, CDOT examined the condition of the parking lot, including an inspection of the sidewalks and curbs, site lighting, entrance lighting, site drainage, fencing, and MS4 compliance. CDOT reviewed all of the safety regulations for compliance secondary containment, applied the appropriate weights, and assigned letter grades.
For the maintenance facilities, the major focus was the bay doors. Are the bay doors big enough to get the equipment inside in the winter, and is the bay big enough to hold the required amount of equipment? The same weighting principles were applied to storage facilities. The highest rating for maintenance buildings and vehicle storage facilities were assigned to those which fit the most equipment inside.
For the components, CDOT examined interior walls, interior/exterior doors, the condition of the bay doors, ceiling/flooring, bays, lighting, and so on. The rated components coincide with the component rating for the maintenance buildings.
In addition, CDOT must comply with extensive legislation regarding containment and safety standards, so consideration was given to the Compliance rating. Does the maintenance facility or office building have a shower, a break room, and/or change rooms? What’s the proximity to the roadway? All CDOT maintenance facilities and office buildings must be on a state highway network and close to the roadways to maintain visibility. Other compliance factors include: handrails in hallways, door hardware, bathrooms, drinking fountains, signage, and more.
The overall score is the total weighted score divided by the nonzero values.
For each of the performance measures included in the CDOT AIMS building analysis, performance models were developed to predict the ratings into the future so that maintenance, preservation, rehabilitation, and replacement treatment strategies can be developed to determine funding needs.
The performance prediction models for predicting the Structural Condition Rating were based upon the Marshall and Swift classification and the type of Property. Performance prediction models for other indexes were based upon subject matter expert predictions. A typical performance model for the structural index at a maintenance and repair facility built to classification A would see 40 years in A condition, 30 years in B condition, 20 years in C condition, and finally 10 years in D condition before moving to F. A building can stay at F indefinitely.
Facilities are designated with one of four treatment options in dTIMS:
- Minor repair: Addresses one or two of the different components when the facility is in fair condition.
- Major repair: Includes more expensive repairs from fair to poor condition.
- Refurbishment: Restoring the interior of the building but not tearing the structure down. For example, the interior of the building needs to be enhanced, or the furnishings are old, interior conditions are poor and require a total refurbishment, but not a replacement.
- Complete Replacement: Tearing the structure down to rebuild.
The dTIMS analysis predicts each of the condition indices out for 20 years and then examines them each year to develop preservation and rehabilitation strategies. A strategy may consist of one or more treatments applied throughout the analysis period. Once the strategy generation is complete, each building will have a number of alternative strategies that can be used to maintain the building over the analysis period. These alternative strategies are passed through the optimization feature to determine which strategy is best, depending on the total resources available.
Budget Scenario Analysis
The Optimization feature displays different scenarios, which can vary the amount of available funding and the distribution of funding into different categories. CDOT typically optimizes six scenarios for each asset of varying amounts, as well as 10 different scenarios for the dTIMS Slider Tool (Strategic Analysis Module). Each of the budget scenarios results in a select strategy for each building. One scenario is used to try and maintain the performance goal for the asset, in this case reaching 90% of the buildings in “C” or better condition. An example of the output from the analysis is shown in the following figure, indicating the resulting condition for the various scenarios.
The scenario analysis indicates that a significant investment is necessary to meet the goal of maintaining the building assets at 90% C or better.
By including the assets in AIMS, CDOT is able to determine the investment necessary to meet the performance goal and identify candidate projects for each of the alternative scenarios. The output from the analysis is used by the property management team at headquarters and the regions to plan and prioritize preservation, rehabilitation, and building replacement needs.