The paper address a pilot project in implementation of Last Planner initiated by the general contractor, Skanska, in a construction project of 6800 square metre made up of a kindergarten, junior high school and a sports and cultural centre. Excavation work started late autumn 2008 and the utility buildings are scheduled to be delivered to the owner in June 2010. The owner is the Municipality of Kristiansand. Action research is applied as research method, where academics take part in the change processes, together with professionals from the construction project and the general contractor’s head office. This paper concerns reflections from the ongoing construction process and is based on preliminary data. The first run is broadly in accordance with the Last Planner concept as outlined by Ballard. It is, however, identified a need to improve the system to link the output from the collective phase scheduling to production planning via the lookahead schedule and constraint analysis, which has been mis-conceptualised in the early phase of the project. The most successful part of the implementation study so far is several phase planning processes, in which the technical sub-contractors have been taking active part in the collective organised planning process. It is too early in the project to see if this also leads to improved PPC in production, but it is expected that it will. However, the same quality of coordination is missing for the architect and the subcontractor for site work. It is identified a number of empirical difficulties in the implementation the process. The largest challenge seems to be the relationship between the architect, the general contractor and the owner, as the pattern in the relationship appears to be dysfunctional in order to create best possible condition for cooperation, and which need to be further studied. Moreover is it identified proposals for further improvements in the Last Planner concept.
Last planner, implementation, first run study, preliminary findings
Kalsaas, B.T. , Skaar, J. & Thorstensen, R.T. 2009, 'Implementation of Last Planner in a Medium-Sized Construction Site' In:, Cuperus, Y. & Hirota, E.H., 17th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction. Taipei, Taiwan, 15-17 Jul 2009. pp 15-30