Planning blocks and subdivision of blocks

Before any meaningful programme can be produced, it is essential that careful thought is given to the number and size of networks required. Not only is it desirable to limit the size of network, but each 'block' of networks should be considered in relation to the following aspects:

1 The geographical location of the various portions or blocks of the project;

2 The size and complexity of each block;

3 The systems in each block;

4 The process or work being carried out in the block when the plant is complete;

5 The engineering disciplines required during the design and construction stage;

6 The erection procedures;

7 The stages at which individual blocks or systems have to be completed, i.e. the construction programme;

8 The site organization envisaged;

9 Any design or procurement priorities.

For convenience, a block can be defined as a geographical process area within a project, which can be easily identified, usually because it serves a specific function. The importance of choosing the correct blocks, i.e. drawing the demarcation lines in the most advantageous way, cannot be overemphasized. This decision has an effect not only on the number and size of planning networks but also on the organization of the design teams and, in the case of large projects, on the organizational structure of the site management set-up.

Because of its importance, a guide is given below which indicates the type of block distribution which may be sensibly selected for various projects. The list is obviously limited, but it should not be too difficult to abstract some firm guidelines to suit the project under consideration.

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