Camden County municipal utilities program

a $600 million expansion without interruption of service



A $600 Million Expansion Without Interruption Of Service

Delaware Valley PMI Chapter Project of the Year Award - 1987

By: Kristy Tan, Project Research Manager, Primavera Systems, Inc.
and Wesley F. Mikes Senior Vice President, O'Brien-Kreitzberg & Associates, Inc.

On June 2, 1988, the Delaware Valley Chapter of PMI presented its 1987 Project Team of the Year award to the project team of the Camden County Municipal Utilities $600 million Wastewater Expansion Program, Delaware No. 1 Plant Improvements and Cooper River Interceptor System.


The Delaware No. 1 Treatment Plant, owned and operated by the Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority (CCMUA), is located in South Camden, New Jersey. The Interceptors and Pumping Stations for the system run throughout the County to collect wastewater and convey it to the Delaware No. 1 Plant. Interceptors were installed in the city of Camden, Woodlynne, Collingswood, Cherry Hill, Haddon Heights, Lindenwold, and Haddonfield for the Cooper River segment.

In 1972, the Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority (CCMUA) was formed by the County Freeholders in an effort to clean up the rivers and streams located throughout Camden County. At the time, there were 34 primary treatment plants discharging into the Delaware River via some of the most polluted waterways in New Jersey. The intent of the program was to collect wastewater from all municipalities in the County and convey the flow to a single wastewater treatment plant capable of providing a better grade of treatment prior to discharge into the Delaware River. The system was to eliminate the discharge of the 34 primary plants into various rivers and streams and provide a better level of treatment.

Geographical Area Served By Wastewater Collection Treatment System

Figure 1. Geographical Area Served By Wastewater Collection Treatment System.

Philadelphia, Pa, June 2, 1988- (L. To R.) DVC-PMI President Jim Kane Presents Wesley F. Mikes, Senior Vice President Of O'Brien-Kreitzberg & Associates, Inc. (OKA) The Project Team Of The Year Award. Joining Them Is DVC-PMI Committee Chairperson Kristy Tan And Jim O'Brien OKA Chief Executive Officer

Figure 2. Philadelphia, Pa, June 2, 1988- (L. To R.) DVC-PMI President Jim Kane Presents Wesley F. Mikes, Senior Vice President Of O'Brien-Kreitzberg & Associates, Inc. (OKA) The Project Team Of The Year Award. Joining Them Is DVC-PMI Committee Chairperson Kristy Tan And Jim O'Brien OKA Chief Executive Officer.


Under the leadership of O'Brien-Kreitzberg & Associates, the project team consisted of:

Speitel Associates,

Don Todd Associates,

The Lisiewski Grou,

Draftics, Inc.,

Chilton Engineering, Inc.

Each member firm of the project team brought a specific expertise that complemented other project participants, with outstanding credentials in the areas of project design, wastewater project depth of experience, or excellence in sanitary aspects of a project such as this.

In addition, the CCMUA is noted for its active MBE and WBE participation program. Therefore, the selection of these firms as members of the project team also enabled OKA to achieve these important CCMUA objectives.

In summary, Speitel Associates was selected because of their expertise in underground utility work: the Lisiewski Group was chosen for recent past and current credentials in the architectural field; both Chilton Engineering, Inc. and Don Todd Associates were selected for their experience in the field. Draftics, Inc., the WBE team participant, was selected for secretarial and clerical skills. With the dedicated commitment of all of these outstanding team participants, the project was able to move forward.

As a result of limited Federal funding, the project was divided into phases for the construction program. The first phase has been completed and in operation since September 1987. At its inception, the project was estimated at $600 million. The first phase of this program was bid competitively and was under the original estimates by 20%. The CCMUA's program for the construction of the entire system is the largest civil works project ever undertaken by the county.

In 1982, O'Brien-Kreitzberg & Associates, Inc.(OKA) was chosen to provide the Value Engineering for the entire program. This was performed in a series of 40-hour Value Engineering Workshops as the Design Engineers progressed with their work. As the project neared construction, OKA was again selected by the CCMUA to provide comprehensive construction management services for the program.


The services provided by OKA, from the inception of construction in 1984 through the completion in 1987, included:

Assist during the bidding period, Coordinate with the CCMUA; Coordinate with the contractors and agencies; CPM scheduling; Monthly project meetings; Daily work inspections; Coordinate with the Design Engineer; Process monthly payment requisitions; Maintain daily logs and records; Maintain up-to-date files; Maintain change orders and modifications; Monitor Equal Employment Opportunities/Minority Business Enterprise/Womens Business Enterprise participation; Monitor and coordinate operations and maintenance manuals; Final inspection; Testing lab services; One-year follow-up; Coordinate training; Assist CCMUA with claims and litigation, and, other miscellaneous services.

Project Team Organizational Chart

Figure 3. Project Team Organizational Chart

As the construction manager, OKA had full responsibility for contract administration, contract coordination, and quality control inspection. Serving the project as the focal point for all correspondence to and from the various parties, OKA also chaired all meetings. In addition to handling all contractual matters including payment requisitions, change order negotiations, time extensions, etc., on a daily basis, OKA was responsible for regular reporting to the CCMUA, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Agency, as well as the US Environmental Protection Agency.

The Final Sedimentation Tanks Which Contain 23,000 Cubic Yards Of Concrete And 300,000 Lbs. Of Reinforced Steel

Figure 4. The Final Sedimentation Tanks Which Contain 23,000 Cubic Yards Of Concrete And 300,000 Lbs. Of Reinforced Steel.


At the time that OKA made the commitment to manage the project, the company considered numerous consulting firms for potential project participation. OKA conducted a formal evaluation to assess the ways each consulting firm would enhance the project team. The team was subsequently assembled, each firm with a specific expertise that complimented the other members of the team, and with such expertise as design experience, wastewater experience, sanitary experience, etc. In addition, OKA had to comply with CCMUA's stringent requirements for both MBE and WBE participation.

Construction Incentive Change Proposal

Each of the original Cooper River Interceptor Program contracts contain a Construction Incentive Change Proposal (CICP) clause. During the course of construction on the thirteen original Cooper River Interceptor Program contracts, eight contractors submitted CICPs. In addition, three contractors submitted more than one CICP. Of thirteen CICPs submitted, eight were ultimately approved and processed. These approved CICPs resulted in savings of approximately $1,900,000.00 (nearly 3% of the original bid total of $72,000,000.00) with the contractor's shares totaling nearly $945,000.00

On a contract-by-contract basis, the following indicated the individual contract savings and a brief description of the CICP.

Contract #301

CICP Value: $421,500.00

The contractor proposed a rerouting of a six-block stretch of 96” Interceptor to avoid costly relocation of overhead electrical services. The rerouting required the relocation of several underground utility systems which could be performed by the contractor's work force concurrently with the Interceptor installation.

Contract #302

CICP Value: $134,200.00

The 302 contractor suggested a revision in the pipe support detail which eliminated the necessity for piles. The Interceptor pipe was bedded on stone encased with fabric in lieu of piling.

Contract #305

CICP Value: $650,000.00

The contractor actually implemented three separate CICPs into the work. The first involved the substitution of timber pile caps for concrete pile caps; the second called for the open cut of an unused section of railway line in lieu of tunneling; and the third raised several sections of the 54” force main, avoiding the necessity for deep trenched while requiring only minimal relocation of shallower utilities.

Contract #307

CICP Value: $178,000.00

This proposal involved pile substitution with pipe bedding detail similar to that used on Contract 302.

Contract #308

CICP Value: $497,000.00

This proposal also involved pile substitution with a pipe bedding detail similar to that used on Contract 302

In summary, the Construction Incentive Change Proposal clause was successfully implemented on five of the original Cooper River Interceptor Program contracts with benefits resulting to the Authority, the contractors, and ultimately and perhaps more importantly, the users -- the citizens of Camden County.

It is also interesting to note that two of the CICPs were rejected as CICPs because they were not innovative; however, they were then implemented as changes with substantial cost savings to the Authority, totaling nearly $400,000.00.

Prior to the selection of the team members, all resumes were reviewed and selected interviews were conducted by the project director and project manager to ensure the individuals current capabilities for filling new team positions to be created. No major changes in staffing were made throughout the life of the project.

On premises training sessions were held on a regular basis during lunch hours for staff member's convenience. These well-attended seminars included a wide variety of topics, such as Claims Avoidance and Mitigation, CPM scheduling, Value Engineering, etc. The seminars were either directly related to the team's responsibilities or were topics for personal team member enrichment.


The Delaware No. 1 Plant was originally scheduled to go on-line in April, 1987. Due to change orders, unforeseen site conditions, and permit delays that the project experienced, the system was actually put on-line in September, 1987.

An example of an unforeseen site condition encountered was the discovery of uncharted disposal that precipitated the need for an archaeological examination and delay of all construction in the disposal area.

Another example is the delay experienced as a result of municipalities that would not issue permits, due to constraints caused by certain state requirements. This resulted in schedule changes for state review of various safety requirements in the pumping stations.

Owner-generated project changes also contributed to scheduling adjustments during the project.

The contracts for the Cooper River Interceptor System included a clause which permitted the contractors to submit Construction Incentive Change Proposals (CICPs). This allowed the contractors the opportunity to submit cost-savings alternatives in which the contractor would share 50% of the savings. A number of CICPs were submitted and approved during the life of the project.

Delaware No.#1 Administration Building Which Contains Administration Areas, State-of-the-Art Laboratory And Computer Center

Figure 5. Delaware No.#1 Administration Building Which Contains Administration Areas, State-of-the-Art Laboratory And Computer Center.

Apply Value Engineering On A Construction Project

Value Engineering (VE) resulted in $7.5 million reduction in capital costs during the Phase I construction at the Delaware No. 1 plant. This saving is after redesign costs for implementation of the VE recommendations.

These were the recommendations approved by the designers and the owner from the 253 VE team recommendations that totalled $52.5 million in value. Additionally, substantial operating cost savings were realized permitting CCMUA to achieve benefits from the VE studies in the 20 years ahead.

In 1982, as the first designer arrived at the stage of the 30% completion, and within a 12 months period, 18 individual, 40-hour VE workshops had reviewed all elements for each project at both the 30% and 70% design levels.

The goal in value engineering is not simply to cut costs, or cut quality, or to reduce the program. The improvement of project value, without sacrificing its quality is the key objective. In the VE process, life cycle costs must be considered as seriously as capital costs.

An example of a more typical VE study that showed impressive cost savings that were recommended and accepted by the project designers concerned the sludge handling building. This building included two 60 ft. dia. sludge thickeners, a 10,000 gal. scum storage tank, sludge/scum blending tank, odor control system and pumping equipment. The VE team had proposed that the sludge handling building be eliminated. Two thickener tanks would be enclosed with fiberglass domes, while a small structure would house the sludge/scum pumps and blending tank.

Compared with the $2.3 million cost of the original building, the value engineering recommendation reflected a reduced cost of $1.3 million in addition to obvious reduction of overhead and management costs. The original building location was carefully studied. It allowed access by rail spur to both the sludge handling and the chlorination facility. A disadvantage was the trucking operation proposed to move dewatered sludge over to the sludge mixing area.

Use of continuous conveyors to eliminate on-site trucking was investigated by the VE team. However, the conveyors would need to be enclosed, which would tend to restrict maintenance of the system. Advantages and disadvantages were evaluated from the viewpoint of 20-year operating costs as well as capital costs. These analyses indicated eliminating on-site trucking would save $2 million over the life of the plant.

A number of alternative site plans were prepared and possible relocation of the building was studied, but the configuration of the existing facilities would not permit this. If the project had been a totally new design on a clean site, relocation of the sludge handling facilities would have been recommended.

The existing services building, which housed administrative personnel, operations, maintenance, laboratory and preliminary treatment facilities was the focus of another VE study. The designer intended demolition of most of the building, retaining only the sludge dewatering facilities so they could remain in continuous operation during construction. Functional areas would be moved into new facilities and the remains of the existing building would then be renovated for administrative office space.

Alternatives to reduce both demolition and reconstruction that would permit the building to be used for its original functions were investigated. Additional space was proposed where areas were too small and a separate administrative wing was recommended.

The new wing would house all office space while allowing garage areas, shops, etc. to remain in the old structure. This arrangement was proposed to save about $2.5 million, comparing the designer's cost of $9,318,000 with the VE estimate of $6.8 million.

Value engineering was also applied to the overall construction management. The Delaware No. 1 Plant, while being a single contract, was divided into three major elements: sludge facilities, secondary treatment facilities and additions, and modifications to the support facilities. Each segment had a different completion schedule and such phasing also received VE team review.

Alternative VE recommendations included pre-purchase of major equipment, construction of the temporary outfall so that it could be completed prior to the start of major construction, early foundation or piling work, and major excavation. Cost savings of these alternatives were estimated at $1.8 million.


Before each segment of the project started, a scheduling consultant was assigned to work with the appropriate contractors to develop the logic for their CPM schedule. The initial scheduling of the work was the responsibility of each contractor. After contractors provided the construction manager with their schedules, the construction manager input all the information into a scheduling program on the computer and maintained it thereafter.

All schedules were cost-loaded, and maintained for payment purposes. The contractors were required to submit monthly progress reports, which were the basis for the contractors to be paid for the completed work on the schedules.

If a contractor requested a change in the schedule, he was required to submit a written change request to the construction manager. Upon arrival, the appropriate changes would be incorporated into the computerized schedule. However, if the changes were unacceptable, a meeting would be held between the construction manager and the contractor to resolve the differences.

A level of reporting and procedures, was established at the outset of the project which included the USEPA, the State Environmental Protection Agency, the Corps of Engineers, and the CCMUA. Briefings were held on a regular basis and required reports at different levels of detail to different parties. Presentations were also made to the CCMUA commissioners every month to keep them apprised of the current status of the project.

Besides communicating to the owners, authorities, and contractors, the construction manager also set up a communications network for the community. Because the 20 miles of Interceptor Pipe were mostly placed in residential areas during the construction period, it was necessary to adequately inform and notify residents, police, fire, ambulance, and some other community services of the location of the construction at every stage of the project. A community liaison representative was assigned to the project and was responsible to coordinate this effort.

During public meetings which were held in various communities prior to the start of any work, the construction manager was able to brief the community on the details and schedules of the project and construction. In addition, a hot line telephone number to the construction manager's office was established to adequately address the residents' concerns and questions.

Because information flow and communication needed to be both organized and effective, an extensive document control program was established at the outset of the project to control correspondence, shop drawings and submittals, change orders, claims, and payments.

A computerized system was implemented for all incoming and outgoing correspondence. Key information from each piece of correspondence was entered on the computer for easy retrieval.

A shop drawing log was also kept on the computer. This enabled the construction manager to immediately identify the status of all submittals as to the date received and date returned to all parties involved in the shop drawing process. All shop drawings were forwarded to the construction manager who, in turn, distributed them to the appropriate design firm for review and approval. Upon completion of the review, the drawings were then distributed to the contractor and the appropriate inspectors for construction and verification.

40,000 Square Foot Service Deck Which Encloses The Oxygen Enriched Aeration Tanks

Figure 6. 40,000 Square Foot Service Deck Which Encloses The Oxygen Enriched Aeration Tanks.

Similar computerized systems were established to monitor the change orders issued, the contractor claims submitted, and the payment requisitions received. The computerized system helped expedite the change orders. No progress payments would be made until a change order was settled, for completed work that was on an unapproved change order. Therefore, it was extremely important to reach a settlement between contractor and owner in a timely manner.

Besides communicating to the owners, authorities and contractors, the construction manager also set up a communications network for the community.

At the beginning of the project, a procedures manual was distributed to all parties involved. This manual specified all standard operating procedures, a project directory, and an organization chart, and it included standard forms to be used by team members to communicate with each other. The manual clearly defined all communication channels or procedures.


As one of the responsibilities of the construction manager, a full-time engineer was assigned to the project to see that all contractors maintained and adhered to both federal and state regulations. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection also had environmental inspectors who would visit the various construction sites on a part-time basis, and to interface with the construction manager's inspector. Environmental concerns encountered were addressed on a case-by-case basis, such as the removal of asbestos, CBs, and contaminated soil.


The design teams for the project utilized the state-of-the-art materials and innovative design ideas. In addition, value engineering was provided, in accordance with the EPA regulations during the design phase. Value engineering sessions were held for each project at the 30% and 70% design levels. These sessions provided the design firms with expertise over and above their own staff's capabilities for the most cost-effective and innovate design techniques.

In accordance with the Federal EPA regulations, a program for Construction Incentive Change Proposals (CICPs) was included in the construction documents. This CICP system, the first to be implemented in New Jersey under the EPA construction grants program, encouraged contractors to submit changes which would improve systems, made by the contractors. In order to be eligible, the total value of the CICP had to result in $100,000 of cost savings, entitling the contractor to 50% of the cost savings.


Currently, the first phase of this project is completed and in operation. This phase includes 22 miles of interceptors, 5 pumping stations, and a 38 million gallon-per-day wastewater treatment plant. During the construction, the State and the Corps of Engineers monitored the progress of the project, on a quarterly basis, to review quality control, safety management, documentation, etc. A major project review was held on an annual basis to examine all project procedures in further detail. At approximately mid-point of the construction of this program, the State of New Jersey indicated in their report that it was the best managed project currently under construction in the State for USEPA wastewater programs.


Superior management practices and procedures that were enforced during the life of the project were the major contributors to the success of the project team. They were also the major contributors to winning the Delaware Valley Chapter's 1987 Project Team of the Year award.


April 1989 pm network



Related Content

  • Project Management Journal

    Investigating the Dynamics of Engineering Design Rework for a Complex Aircraft Development Project member content locked

    By Souza de Melo, Érika | Vieira, Darli | Bredillet, Christophe The purpose of this research is to evaluate the dynamics of EDR that negatively impacts the performance of complex PDPs and to suggest actions to overcome those problems.

  • Project Management Journal

    Validation of a New Project Resilience Scale in the IT Sector member content locked

    By Rahi, Khalil | Bourgault, Mario This article aims to present the concept of project resilience and to validate, through quantitative analysis, to assess its two key dimensions: awareness and adaptive capacity.

  • Project Management Journal

    Coordinating Lifesaving Product Development Projects with no Preestablished Organizational Governance Structure member content locked

    By Leme Barbosa, Ana Paula Paes | Figueiredo Facin, Ana Lucia | Sergio Salerno, Mario | Simões Freitas, Jonathan | Carelli Reis, Marina | Paz Lasmar, Tiago We employed a longitudinal, grounded theory approach to investigate the management of an innovative product developed in the context of a life-or-death global emergency.

  • Project Management Journal

    Narratives of Project Risk Management member content locked

    By Green, Stuart D. | Dikmen, Irem The dominant narrative of project risk management pays homage to scientific rationality while conceptualizing risk as objective fact.

  • Project Management Journal

    Navigating Tensions to Create Value member content locked

    By Farid, Parinaz | Waldorff, Susanne Boche This article employs institutional logics to explore the change program–organizational context interface, and investigates how program management actors navigate the interface to create value.