Summer is fast approaching and that means folks are spending more time outdoors, which includes shopping in open-air retail centers.
In addition to the allure of summer sales and fine dining, you can help shoppers linger longer with well-maintained parking areas and drive lanes.
These five tips will help you maximize every dollar spent on your commercial paving projects:
- Planning – Inspect your pavement assets. Walk your lots (or hire a professional) and take note of defects. Those in well-traveled areas should take priority over those in less conspicuous locations. If you have more than one property, you can rank each site based on the number of high-priority repairs, which helps organize the timing of maintenance within your portfolio.
- Specification – Consult with a paving contractor that is local to your site(s) to determine which materials are ideal. He or she will have an intimate understanding of the unique geography, climate, and land quality in which your site or sites are located. This information can be used to produce custom specifications for the bidding phase (see #4).
- Budgeting – Develop and maintain a paving budget. Once you have prioritized your portfolio and produced custom specifications, it’s possible to create a highly accurate budget spanning 2 to 3 years ahead. Maintaining the budget will help you predict future expenditure based on past spend, drivers of cost, and other variables specific to your organization.
- Procurement – Present the same specification to all contractors bidding for your job(s). This ensures all bids are compared equally on an objective basis. Next, consider the contractor’s expertise and specialization (this can mean the difference between a job well done and a job that is done, but requires more expensive remedies after the temporary fix has failed). Other factors include proximity to job site and grouping of jobs. It pays to select a contractor that is close by, which will decrease mobilization and travel costs. If you can use the same company for a cluster of jobsites, you can also save on material expenses.
- Project Management – Have a presence, whether someone from inside your organization or a hired partner, during all phases of the job from the pre-job meeting to post-job inspection. This ensures that all details from permits, traffic control, scope, and specifications are carried out according to plan and that the repairs produce predicted results.