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Why a Standard method of measurement for building projects are unsuitable for civil engineering works?

Dear Mohammed,

Thanks for your question.
There is no right or wrong answer to your question rather the fact that, the SMM for building specifically designed for building and may not serve the detailed the methodical and procedural execution process of execution of the works in Civil Engineering works enough in a way to demonstrate the risk for pricing the operations and execution of the items of the works. For example, measurement of the items of concrete works in civil engineering (cesmm) are not same with building (smm). Again, the cesmm provides an elaborate spectrum of civil engineering structures than the smm for building. In some areas or items of works, any of the smm (whether building or civil engineering) would be applicable and at such instance may be adopted. But usually,  for consistency,  it is ideal to use one single smm for a project except when practically and unavoidably not ideal to do so. One common thing to both smm is that, they both have preamble and notes on how to frame the description of the works item being measured to reflect to the estimator or the person pricing of the scope of the measured works and thereby setting a guide and limitations for its accurate pricing.

I hope am able to answer your question.


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Femi Alofe


I can answer all questions relating to the followings: 1. Contract Administration - variations, contract clauses interpretation, all post contract procedures, valuations and certificates questions, extension of time issues and prolongation cost matters. 2. Contract Practice - Any questions regarding forms of contract like JCT, FIDIC & other Bespoke forms. 3. Quantification, measurements and Estimating questions 4. Contracts and construction law questions and dispute resolutions problems. 5. All FIDIC Conditions of contracts


Out of my 24 years experience in construction industry, i have the following specific experience: 1. Contract Administration - 15 years in contract administration with over 10yrs in Managerial positions covering africa and the middleeast. 2. Contract Practice - 15 years experience with over 10yrs in Managerial and expert positions covering africa, north america and the middleeast. 3. All pre-contract procedures, Tendering, Quantification, measurements and Estimating questions - 20 years experience. 4. Contracts and construction law questions and dispute resolutions problems - 15 years experience with over 10yrs in Managerial and expert positions and 5 years expert witness and active practice in arbitration proceedings covering africa and the middleeast.

1. FAIQS - Fellow, Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors, Australia 2. FRICS - Fellow, Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, UK 3. CCP - Certified Cost Professional AACEI, USA 4. PQS - CIQS, CANADA 5. ACIArb. - CIArb, UK 6. MNIQS - NIQS, NIGERIA 7. RQS - QSRBN, NIGERIA

1. AACEI RP on Estimating, 2010

1. B.Tech (QS) 2. RICS professional course, CEM - UK 3. MSc , UK NARIC 4. Professional Doctorate ( to commence 2016)

Past/Present Clients
1. Larsen & Toubro Ltd, Dubai UAE 2. Larsen & Toubro (oman) LLC 3. Archi + Web consortium, Abuja Nigeria 4. George Dike & Associates, Minna Nigeria 5. Public works Authority (Ashghal), Doha Qatar

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