Fix It Friday: DePaul University Asset Management Plan
Founded in 1898, DePaul University has grown to become the nation’s largest Catholic university. DePaul’s two main campuses are located in Lincoln Park and the Loop. The Lincoln Park Campus is home to the Colleges of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, Science and Health, and Education. It also houses the School of Music, the Theatre School, and the John T. Richardson Library. The Loop campus houses the Colleges of Communication, Computing and Digital Media, the School for New Learning, and Law. It is also home to the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business, which is part of the nationally ranked Driehaus College of Business – the tenth oldest business school in the nation.
The University enrolls around 16,000 undergraduate and about 7,600 graduate/law students, making DePaul the 13th largest private university by enrollment in the United States, and the largest private university in Illinois. The student body represents a wide array of religious, ethnic, and geographic backgrounds, including over 60 foreign countries.
Walker has had been working with the University for over 15 years.
Walker worked with DePaul University to develop an asset management plan on their Lincoln Park Campus. The plan included DePaul’s portfolio of 37 buildings in a variety of size, age, and exterior construction. They range in age from approximately 10 years old to approximately 100 years old.
What is an Asset Management Plan?
Of the many challenges facing any organization, one of the most difficult is balancing the responsibility of protecting its considerable investment in their building and parking assets. On-going maintenance and repair is required for each structure, regardless of age, in order to maximize useful service life and ensure user safety. Walker approaches an asset management plan with a key main objective: providing an effective planning and budget management tool that will maximize our clients available budget for their asset’s maintenance and repair.
Some of the critical issues a typical Asset Management Plan must address include:
- What is the current condition of each facility?
- Will the facility’s role/use change in the near future?
- How long must each facility remain open?
- What repairs must be performed immediately for public safety?
- For long-term facilities, which repairs will maximize service life?
- For short-term facilities, which minimal repairs ensure safety?
- What facility maintenance should occur, and how frequently?
- What are the 10-year probable costs of each facility’s maintenance/repair?
- What facility needs attention and in what order?
- Minimize Life Cycle Costs
- Extend Service Life
- Reduce Down Time
- Enhance Serviceability
- Improve Sustainability
The Plan for DePaul
Walker developed a conceptual repair and maintenance program that outlined the expected maintenance activities and when they should be anticipated for each building façade.
- The building portfolio requires constant attention to combat normal deterioration processes
- A systematic approach to repairs and maintenance to ensure necessary repairs are completed at the appropriate time
- To communicate scope of repairs to contractors for bidding
- To obtain quality repairs
- To comply with City of Chicago Ordinances for façade inspection
- Walker’s team performed annual walk-through condition assessments of entire building portfolio
- Identified and prioritized repairs
- Worked with contractors to maintain quality of work
- Tracked City requirements as they apply to the DePaul buildings and identify needed inspection reports to maintain compliance
By investing in and carrying out an Asset Management Plan, DePaul University will utilize its building portfolio in a way that maximizes usage for students, staff, and the community.