Renovation Guidelines

Renovation Projects at a Glance


Campus renovation projects include, but are not limited to office, laboratory, classroom, and interior renovations that involve new furniture and carpet.


Facilities Management is responsible for the design and management of renovation projects with budgets up to $2,000,000. As your source for campus renovation projects, we strive to provide a number of services to meet your customer needs. These services range from providing low cost budgeting program studies to fully coordinated construction documents.


Delivery time for projects can vary depending on the scope and size of the project. As a general rule, we recommend you submit for a renovation work order as early as possible to ensure timely project delivery. This will ensure your renovation project is completed by your desired occupancy date, and will allow for an adequate time to design and obtain proper approvals before the project is routed to construction. At a Deans or Vice Presidents request, a project may be assigned a priority status as a measure to further expedite the design and construction process. Communicating your needs clearly with Facilities Management is key to any successful project, and our staff is ready to provide the assistance needed to ensure the proper resources are available for your project.


To help Facilities Management better meet your needs, the following information and guidelines are provided to assist you in submitting your project request.


Initiation of New Renovation Projects


Step 1: Identify the scope of the project


Identifying your scope of work is a critical first step when initiating a new renovation project. This involves confirming the intended needs of the space and verifying equipment that needs to be supported. For lab renovations, updating any commodities intended to be used in the space will assist in our preliminary code review. Having this information ready before you submit for the work will help minimize the time needed to coordinate the design. Once these project requirements have been verified, a decision on the priority of the project should be made. Deans and Vice Presidents are authorized to set priorities on a scale of 1-4, with each department having the ability to assign these priorities. Assigning priorities will assist Facilities Management in scheduling work and resources appropriately.


Once requirements and priorities have been determined, the project budget should be confirmed. With your scope, priorities, and budget all determined, you are now ready to formally submit your work order.



Step 2: Identify design option that best fulfills your needs and submit a work request


Facilities Management offers a number of alternatives for providing renovation services:


  • Option 1 - Program Study (for budgeting purposes only)

If the project is conceptual in nature and is being considered as part of a grant submission or is an alternative project based on possible funding, then a Program Study should be requested. Program Studies provide a basic outline of the project that includes a sketch of the project site, a detailed listing of the scope of work and a range estimate based on historical costs. The Program Study is intended to provide this information in a timely manner, usually less than two weeks and is priced at a fixed cost of $300. Program Studies are closed immediately after completion. If the customer subsequently decides to pursue the project, then a new service request referencing the Program Study should be submitted at the time funding becomes available.


  • Option 2 - Full Design

A project that has previously had a Program Study done or one that has funding immediately available should be submitted for a full design. Full designs are comprehensive and will result in a full set of construction drawings and cost estimate at completion. All costs associated with a full design effort are fully billable to the customer.


  • Option 3 - Unestimated Projects

Projects that are of extremely high priority or which the nature of the project makes the need for an estimate unnecessary can be submitted as an unestimated project. Projects submitted as unestimated will not have a formal cost estimate approved by the customer and will be completed on a time and materials cost reimbursable basis.


Once the work order has been received by the Facilities Management Design Team, detailed discussions will occur to ensure that the design meets the needs of the customer.


Renovation Projects Design Process



Phase 1: Preliminary Design and Cost Estimate


After the customer has requested a full design for a project, a preliminary design and cost estimate by Facilities Management will be produced. The preliminary design is schematic in nature and is intended to define the scope of the project. More than one design may be required to determine the best solution to the project's goals. After the preliminary design is approved, a preliminary estimate is developed to establish a rough cost for the project. Departmental approval is required for these documents. Depending on the scope of the project, the preliminary design and estimate may be sequentially approved, combined for approval, or skipped entirely. Small projects may jump directly to the final approval step.



Phase 2: Final Design and Cost Estimate


The duration of this step is directly proportional to the size of the project. Detailed construction drawings are developed for architectural, mechanical, electrical, plumbing and other trades as required. In addition to the information shown in the preliminary drawings, actual dimensions, materials, and details are pulled together to provide documents that are complete, coordinated and clear. Any changes during this stage to the scope, cause major delays and increased cost. This final design drawing package and from it a final estimate (if requested) will be presented for departmental approval. Other approvals (i.e. Safety, UT Police, etc.) may be required by the Handbook of Operating Procedures.



Phase 3 - Project Package


After approval by the department, any final comments are posted to the drawings and a final internal review by the design team of architect, mechanical, and electrical engineers is performed. Drawings are then sealed and sent for printing. As required by law, drawings and fees are sent for review to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. Required specifications are prepared to supplement the drawings and special purchasing requests are released for long delivery items. A final package of drawings, specifications and purchase requisitions are sent to the Project Management Office for scheduling and execution.



Phase 4 - Scheduling

After the design is complete and all reviews and approvals have been obtained, the project will be forwarded to the Project Management Office for scheduling and execution. Once a Project Manager has been assigned, a schedule will be developed in coordination with the customer. Projects will be completed via in-house personnel, contractors or a combination of both.


Renovation is a very dynamic activity with many variables and speculative characteristics. Estimates of cost, resources and schedules are not exact and become more refined only as the project moves through the project delivery process. It is therefore of paramount importance that good communication occurs between Facilities Management and a single representative from the client organization from the beginning to the end of the project delivery process.


It is equally important that the client's representative keep all client stakeholders informed regarding their project. Furthermore, any client changes to the specifications or scope of work after the preliminary estimate is completed will require additional time and cost to complete the project. Departments need to agree upon the scope of the project and specific requirements early in the planning stage.


Design Standards That Must Be Considered


Customers should be aware that there are sometimes standards that must be followed when designing and developing renovations. The requirements are often driven by law such as the Americans with Disabilities Act. Other standards are set by the Health Science Center. One particular standard of interest concerns renovation of office space. Based on Health Science Center policy, the following are the maximum sizes of offices when created or altered during renovation:


  General Office
120 sq ft
  Division Chief and Directors
150 sq ft
  Department Chairs and Assistant Vice Presidents
180 sq ft
  Deans and Vice Presidents
250 sq ft


Standard finish selections may be accessed here.


Exceptions to these guidelines require the approval of the Executive Vice President for Administration.


If you have any questions concerning these guidelines, contact Reuben Pinkson, Director, Project Management & Design, at 210-567-2911.