Life Cycle Costing Updates
Most of India's habitat and civil infrastructure is yet to be built. The existing ones need rehabilitation and to be built better. The "LiFE mission" without enabling and integrating the construction industry is incomplete.
The LCC of a Project needs to evolve and follow frameworks and a baseline. ISO: 14040 provides a broad framework that ensures that LCC is conducted rigorously and transparently.
ISO: 15686-5: 2017 guides the practitioners in defining the goal and scope, fixing system boundaries, reference study period, discount rates and sensitivity analysis parameters. The relevant costs and calculation methods are done in the Life Cycle Inventory phase. Analysing costs, comparing results, and drawing conclusions is the interpretation phase of the Life Cycle. The concluding, reporting, and critical reviews of LCC analysis are perhaps the most important aspect of the whole exercise. The method details, assumptions, limitations, and implications of LCC must be followed up for validation. All phases of LCC require expert judgements which would get refined with every new project.
Besides Mission LiFE, Sendai Framework on Disaster Risk Reduction and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) framework is shaping and evolving new professional challenges on resilient and cost-effective infrastructure. One size won't fit all projects, and adopting Life Cycle Costing would be more challenging than ever.
The National Building Code of India does not explicitly cover provisions on the Life Cycle Costing or assessment, but this should not deter the Construction teams from going for the Life Cycle costing of Projects. As defined in part Zero of NBC, collaborative teams must gear up to resolve all Life Cycle Costing issues and create and integrate value delivery.
An ounce of practice is better than tonnes of theory. In her PhD dissertation, Dr Priyanka Kochhar evaluated three CPWD Institutional Buildings, which provide us with many practical aspects of the above theory. I wish the analysis part had been done in Excel, enabling the practitioners to create their own scenarios. Even then, there is no valid reason why all government construction procurements should not follow the Life Cycle methodologies in decision-making.