Condition Survey of University Campus Buildings: Case Study
Brief: Carry out a full condition survey of three campus buildings in Oxfordshire.
Property: A three-storey Victorian campus building, a two-storey detached office and training facility, and an old dairy, now used as an office and meeting room facility.
Instructed by: Professor at the campus.
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- The properties were built around 1880 and had since been extended, altered and updated through successive phases of development, with works taking place up to the present time.
- The site comprised a principal accommodation building and two office buildings. It had significant landscaped grounds containing further utilitarian structures.
- Three of our surveyors worked together on these building surveys. Between them, they held RICS Certified Historic Building Professional qualifications, had expert technical knowledge of modern construction, had extensive experience in surveying educational buildings, and had decades of specialist knowledge on period properties in the local area.
Key survey findings
- Fortunately, the properties were in good condition, although there was evidence of wear and tear, in line with the age and location of the property.
- While there was no evidence of significant defects, our client was interested in understanding the minor defects that were present. This would help them accurately forecast the maintenance budgets that would be required over the following years.
- We found 20 items that would benefit from attention in the short term, including gutter repairs and maintenance, repairing rot and decay in the timber windows, and repair of glazed doors to prevent the contravention of regulations and bring them up to current safety standards.
- A further 20 recommendations were made for works to be carried out within the next 1–3 years, and 10 recommendations were included for repairs that would be needed within the next decade, including renewing the flat roof and repointing of chimneystacks and ridge tiles.
- We also noted some structural movement in several areas of the property, but the evidence we found on site suggested that this was historic and not likely to cause further problems.
- Of course, we were on hand to support the client with contract administration of the works, offering building surveyors and structural engineers with specific experience in managing building projects in educational properties.