טכניון מכון טכנולוגי לישראל
הטכניון מכון טכנולוגי לישראל - בית הספר ללימודי מוסמכים  
M.Sc Thesis
M.Sc StudentPartouche Rebecca
SubjectA Lean Model for Construction Management of Tall
Office/Commercial Buildings
DepartmentDepartment of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Supervisors Professor Emeritus Aviad Shapira
Professor Rafael Sacks
Full Thesis textFull thesis text - English Version


Abstract

A ‘tall building’ is defined for the purpose of this research as a multi-story building with a height of at least 35 meters or with at least 12 floors. Since tall building construction projects have repetitive patterns of activities, low variability, low uncertainty and frequently require the use of innovative technologies, one would expect that their construction should exhibit best performance. However, the rate at which tall buildings are built appears to be decreasing. A possible reason seems to be that traditional management approaches appear inadequate given the continuous increase in the complexity of the tall buildings themselves and of the construction industry that builds them.

Conscious of the construction industry’s dysfunction, researchers of lean construction have initiated new thinking about management methods to improve production systems in construction. This research thesis is based on the lean theories, concepts and tools developed to better design, build and manage modern projects.

The main objective was to build a lean management model for the construction of tall office/commercial buildings, expressed as a coherent set of recommendations essential to achieving smooth and controlled flows.

A thorough analysis of the international record (in terms of construction speed), set in New-York in 1931 by the Empire State Building, was achieved through reconstitution of the project schedule as planned in 1930 subject to a flow analysis based on recent management understanding. Identifying the success factors that led to the project’s efficiency leads to innovative definition of a mass construction management system.

The construction of modern buildings’ process map highlights existing problems and orientations for solving them. In the design phase, the main issues are the communication and information systems as well as the activities’ sequence. In the construction phase, the buildings systems’ complexity and the management of the whole production system are the main difficulties.

A generic discrete event simulation model of tall building processes test the impacts of different management strategies, of different resources’ status and of different production system quality. The implementation of a ‘pull’ (or ‘WIP minimization’) management strategy, with the right number of resources and a high quality production system, is the most efficient system since it reduces the project duration, the floor cycle time and the work-in-process; it increases the labor capacity utilization and creates a smooth work flow.