BUILDINGS - Smarter Facilities Management


The EER: Part II

BOMA International Shares Results From Its Yearly Experience Exchange Report


The Numbers Are In: How Do Corporate Facilities Rate?

Go to part 1 of this article.

Over the past decade, the cost of housing large companies has become increasingly more expensive in major metropolitan cities. Due to this rise in cost, many large corporations have moved their corporate facility headquarters out to the suburbs into less expensive, more practical facilities. Many of these locations offer better amenities, such as ample parking, but also include the same class of space available in a downtown office building for a significant savings.

Campus Style Facilities
One of the trends in corporate facility design and development over the last few years has been the growth of "campus style" facility design vs. the traditional single building design of the past. Campus style facilities have a direct impact on roads/grounds expenditures, but not on security expenses, as one might suspect.

The average roads/grounds expense in a campus style facility is $0.27/building rentable square foot or $3,949 per acre of improved land. Both figures are down slightly from last year. The associated R/G expense for non-campus facilities is much lower at $0.23/building rentable square foot. Looking at the R/G detail components, most of this difference is caused by landscaping and garage/parking expenditures.

The average security expense in a campus style facility is $0.98/building rentable square foot. Security expenses are actually a little lower in non-campus style facilities at $0.94/building rentable square foot. It is interesting to note that these expenses rose significantly from last year.

On average, the facilities responding to the supplement indicated that they have approximately one acre of improved land for every 16,518 rentable square feet of building space, with an average campus size of 35 acres.

Project Costs
Project costs were defined as improvements to or the reconfiguration of space to meet the requirements of the client/tenant. Participants were asked to divide project cost between directly expensed and capitalized expenditures and to include such expense line items as cost of labor, materials, equipment/systems, abatement costs, and administrative overhead. The average directly expensed project cost was $1.88 per rentable square foot, and the average capitalized project cost was $6.14 per rentable square foot. The average cost of a single project was $24,516.

Amenity Costs
The Table shows the average cost per amenity per rentable square foot (rsf) and the average amenity cost per office worker. Mail service is the most expensive service for a facility to provide in terms of dollars per square foot and dollars per employee.

Table: Amenity Costs
Avg. Size
Avg. Cost/
Amenity RSF
Avg. Cost/
Food Service
Fleet Service
Health Center/
Mail Room
Travel Center
*based on total building rentable square feet

Office Size and Relocation Costs
The average reported private office size was 430 square feet. Private offices are defined as offices enclosed with walls separated from other areas by a door. The average size of an open plan office (cubicle or open workstation) was reported to be 99 square feet or approximately a 10-foot by 10-foot cubicle.

An average office tenant devotes 34 percent of their space to private offices, 40 percent of their space to open plan offices, and 26 percent of their space to bullpen style offices. The amount of private office space has decreased dramatically over the past few years.

Simple moves to and from existing workspaces cost tenants $164 per move on average. Moves that included the relocation of workstations and/or furniture on average cost $907 per move. Finally, moves that required construction on average cost an office tenant $1,317 per move.

Computer Rooms and Utility Expenses
The development of computer rooms and/or data centers can add significantly to utility expenses within a facility. Fifty-four percent of the supplemental survey respondents indicated they had a computer room. On average, these buildings had utility expenses 40-percent higher ($2.42/rsf vs. $1.73/rsf) than those facilities that did not have a computer room.
The average reported size of a computer room was 16,569 square feet. These computer rooms consumed approximately 148 kWh/year per square foot of the computer room.

For more information on BOMA International's research activities, visit BOMA International's website ( or call (202) 326-6337. To order the 2002 Experience Exchange Report, go to ( or call (800) 426-6292.




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