An Evaluation Of The Environmental Factors That Lead To Abandonment Of Public Building Projects
The successful implementation of building projects may be impaired without a good knowledge of the environmental factors that contribute to building projects abandonment and this abandonment makes it difficult to achieve the benefit to be derived from the projects. The aim of the study was to evaluate the environmental factors that lead to abandonment of public building projects, with a view to proffering solutions to public building projects abandonments in Abuja . The study identifies the characteristics of abandoned public building projects, examine the environmental factors that are responsible for public building projects abandonment and also assess the effects of public building projects abandonment on the environment. The research adopted the quantitative method in which the checklist was developed to obtain the inventory of abandoned public building projects in Abuja. A structured questionnaire was also designed and administered to the in-house consultants of the F.C.D.A. Data was analyzed using statistical tools like Means, Percentages and Relative Importance Index (RII) and presented using Charts and Tables. The study revealed that 67% of the public building projects are abandoned after the contract period has elapsed.
1.1 Background of the study
The construction industry contributes greatly to the growth of any nation even though it contributes less than the other industries. Therefore, it is a key player in the socio-economic progress of several countries internationally (Usman, Kamau and Mireri, 2014). Also the Nigeria construction industry is a broad variety of loosely incorporated organizations that jointly erect, adjust and restore a large range of different buildings and public engineering projects. The building industry is also defined as financial activities that center on the construction of physical projects, such as buildings and road and rail network, despite of the construction being land or maritime based (Osman, 2006). The success of a project is a very critical issue in the industry. Unluckily a lot of these projects in Nigeria are out rightly abandoned still at commencement (Olapade and Anthony, 2012). Dahlan (2001) contends that, from the development point of view, the word „abandoned project‟ refers to a project in which the construction job has been delayed, even though planning consent has been approved to the developer. Also, Olapade and Anthony (2012) defined abandoned project as a project in which the client refuse to provide maintenance and working services to a building. However, this study view abandoned building project as a project in which the construction work is incomplete and suspended. Therefore, the importance that the continual abandonment of projects would bring numerous effects on real properties and its values and the financial system cannot be overemphasized since some of the building projects provide the fundamental services that should improve the real properties developed (Ihuah and Benebo, 2014). By most accounts, abandoned buildings have numerous risks and danger associated with them. The abandonment of building projects most especially the public building projects scattered across the length and breadth of Nigeria. According to a report by Nasir (2012), there are about eleven thousand, eight hundred and eighty-six (11,886) abandoned projects that will cost an expected N7.78 trillion to complete! These shocking figures are from the statement of the Presidential Projects Assessment Committee (PPAC) set up in March 2011, by The President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria to look into cases of abandoned projects. If the government does not begin any fresh projects, it will take more than five years budgeting about N1.5 trillion yearly to finish them all – and that is assuming no cost-over runs or delays. However, Faniran, Love and Smith (2000) recommended that there is a need to build up proper management tools and techniques particularly modified to the project environment of developing countries. According to Ajayi, Ogunsanmi and Ofili (2010) the four most significant external environmental factors in declining order include community issues, weather conditions, economic situation (boom or meltdown) and government policy.
1.2 Statement Of The Problem
In developing nation, the building sector forms a high proportion of the financial system and it also represents one of the major active and composite industries environments (Rahman and Sufian, 2008). According to a report by Stanley (2014), about 437 abandoned buildings in Abuja had so far been captured. Despite the growing rate of construction activities in FCT, limited research works has been carried out to identify and tackle the problem of abandonments. Nwachukwu and Nzotta (2010) opined that the speed at which building construction projects are abandoned, some even under construction, is rising majorly in a developing economy like Nigeria. Therefore, the problem of incessant abandonment of building projects by the governments is a very important issue to be addressed. This applies to Nigeria where construction investments account for over 50% of the gross fixed capital structure. Previous studies done on abandonments had focused on other aspect. For instance, Khalid (2010) and Dahlan (2010) have done related researches but focused mainly on housing projects. Ihuah and Benebo (2014) focused on development projects while Akindele (2013) focused on residential building projects. Khalid (2010) conducted questionnaire survey, interviews and literature review relating to developers from six states in Malaysia. However, the questionnaire survey did not consider the contractors and consultants. Also, Dahlan (2010) focused on the issue of abandoned housing projects by conducting case studies and literature review on undergraduate projects and research reports but Dahlan (2010) study did not entail a questionnaire survey. Ihuah and Benebo (2014) investigated and determined the various causes of abandoning development projects and the effects of such causes on real properties and its values in Nigeria using a questionnaire survey. But the questionnaire survey did not involve the consultants. Akindele (2013) appraised the effects of landed property abandonment in Osogbo and Ogbomoso, Nigeria using questionnaire survey only. The questionnaire involved only the residents/tenants but did not involve the contractors and consultants. Base on these previous studies on abandonment, there was no known study that had focus on investigating the factors within the environment that posed greater challenges not only to projects but also to management and organizational structure. This study therefore sought to investigate the environmental factors that are responsible for abandonment of public building projects.
1.3 Objective Of The Study
The objectives of the study are;
- To identify the characteristics of the abandoned public building projects in Abuja
- To examine the environmental factors that are responsible for the abandonment of public building projects
- To assess the effects of public building projects abandonment on the environment
1.4 Research Hypotheses
For the successful completion of the study, the following research hypotheses were formulated by the researcher;
- H0: there are no characteristics of the abandoned public building projects in Abuja
H1: there are characteristics of the abandoned public building projects in Abuja
- H02: there are no environmental factors that are responsible for the abandonment of public building projects.
H2: there are environmental factors that are responsible for the abandonment of public building projects
1.5 Significance Of The Study
The study will give clear insight on an evaluation of the environmental factors that lead to abandonment of public building project. The eradication of abandonment shall develop the provision of housing for all particularly low-income earners, establishment of employment opportunity for professionals in the building industry, decreasing the wastage of public funds, human and resources on the aspect of the client, as well as improved physical and socio-economic growth of the nation amid others (Olapade and Anthony, 2012).Therefore, the abandonment of building projects has resulted in several unfavorable consequences to the economy, the public and environment. Cost-effectively, it is a waste of valuable resources (Yap, 2013).According to Ahmed and Ahmed (2014), the problem of abandoned projects is a global occurrence and this issue is a harmful factor to the stakeholders of those projects. However, the prevailing and continual abandonment of building projects are disturbing that it creates numerous harmful effects to the values of real property, as well as, to the owners, inhabitants, the surroundings and the economy as a whole (Ihuah and Benebo, 2014). According to Parameswaran (2006), there are unforeseen environmental factors beyond the control of the organization that has caused project abandonment. Based on these facts, it therefore justify why the environmental factors that are responsible for building projects abandonment and the overall effects of building projects abandonment on the environment should be thoroughly investigated.
1.6 Scope And Limitation Of The Study
The scope of the study covers an evaluation of the environmental factors that lead to abandonment of public building project. The researcher encounters some constrain which limited the scope of the study;
a) Availability Of Research Material:
The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study
The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.
c) Organizational Privacy:
Limited Access to the selected auditing firm makes it difficult to get all the necessary and required information concerning the activities.
1.7 Definition Of Terms
Evaluation is a systematic determination of a subject’s merit, worth and significance, using criteria governed by a set of standards.
Environment is everything that is around us. It can be living or nonliving things. It includes physical, chemical and other natural forces. Living things live in their environment. They constantly interact with it and adapt themselves to conditions in their environment.
Abandon means to give up or discontinue any further interest in something because of discouragement, weariness, distaste, or the like: to abandon one’s efforts. Relinquish implies being or feeling compelled to give up something one would prefer to keep: to relinquish a long-cherished desire
A building used by the public for any purpose, such as assembly, education, entertainment, or worship.
1.8 Organization Of The Study
This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows
- Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), historical background, statement of problem, objectives of the study, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope and limitation of the study, definition of terms and historical background of the study.
- Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature.
- Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study.
- Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.
- Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study
Summary, Conclusion And Recommendation
It is important to ascertain that the objective of this study was to ascertain an evaluation of the environmental factors that lead to abandonment of public building project. In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations made which in the opinion of the researcher will be of benefits in addressing the challenges of environmental factors that lead to abandonment of public building project
This study was on an evaluation of the environmental factors that lead to abandonment of public building project. Three objectives were raised which included: To identify the characteristics of the abandoned public building projects in Abuja, to examine the environmental factors that are responsible for the abandonment of public building projects,to assess the effects of public building projects abandonment on the environment. In line with these objectives, two research hypotheses were formulated and two null hypotheses were posited. The total population for the study is 200 staff of ministry of building and construction, Abuja. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made supervisors, administrators, senior staff and junior staff were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies
- Based on the characteristics of abandoned building projects, the research concluded that:-
- Majority of the public building projects are abandoned after the contract period has elapsed as a result of the delay encountered during the execution of construction works on site.
- Lack of funds contributes greatly and immensely as one of the factors affecting the completion of public building projects as a result of non-provision of funds by the clients.
- The survey also revealed that none of the abandoned public building projects are half completed as at the time the projects are abandoned.
- Based on the environmental factors leading to public building projects abandonment, the research concluded that:-
- The economic and financial factors variables indicated that the inadequate working capital is considered to contribute immensely to the abandonment of building projects as a project cannot be executed successfully without regular provision of funds and this has been proven by so many researchers in their works.
- In the survey the importation of materials and equipments is a very important variable among the construction technology variables. This contributes to abandonment of building projects in case if there is no supply of such materials and equipments from the neighboring countries. iii. The survey also revealed that instability in governance is also a crucial variable among the political factors variables contributing to most abandonment of public building projects as the new government always abandoned the projects embarked upon by their predecessor but not completed before they leave office.
- The survey also considered the types of contract as one of the most significant variable that contribute to abandonment of building projects because the traditional type of contract is still the most commonly used despite the challenges associated with it.
- The survey revealed that another important variable that contribute greatly to the abandonment of building projects most especially in the host communities is the civil conflicts or disturbance by the youth in the area where the project is located, the youth demand for compensation before the project can commence or kidnapping of some project officials.
- The survey considered the unexpected geological condition encountered on the site where the project is located as a critical variable contributing to project abandonment. This may lead to unbearable consequences especially if work has started before they are discovered.
- On a general note, the survey revealed the adverse effects of abandonment of building projects as it affects the growth of the nation’seconomy as a whole. From the research findings, Cost overruns ranked the first among the effects of abandonment of building projects as the final cost of the building projects is greater than the initial cost of the project as a result of the non-completion of the building projects at the exact completion date
Based on the findings of this study, the following recommendations were made with a view to overcome the environmental factors that could lead to abandonment of public building projects.
- The research recommends that further studies should focus on preparing a more comprehensive programme of works in order to fast track the completion of public building projects in Abuja.
- The research also recommends that further studies should focus on improving working capital, timely delivery of materials and equipments, stability in governance, type of contract, prevention of civil conflicts and geological conditions of the site.
- Finally, the study recommends that further studies should focus on carrying out proper cost analysis of the project to be embarked upon.
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