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A perspective on public spending.

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default A perspective on public spending.

Post by Hairyloon on 5th May 2010, 2:42 am

The thing is about public spending is that it is hard to get a good handle on: a hospital may cost £20million... is that a lot? I have not a clue: too many factors about which I have too little information.
But I do have some idea what it takes to sort out a garden.
So I was quite interested when a residents group convinced the council to commandeer a bit of abandoned land and make it into a park.
This is it:
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So far they've spent over £12,000 on architects fees, and they're proposing £100,000 to do the work...
That seems like a lot to me. :?
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Post by Adrian on 5th May 2010, 10:29 am

Yes indeed, way too much

Thats $224,000 here. If it was a commission of mine, it would be around $10,000 in design fees (5 thousand pounds) and about $50,000 in landscraping fees.

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Post by Mike on 6th May 2010, 2:33 pm

That might be about right (not far off 10% of the total project).

Whether that is sane or not perhaps depends on whether that architect's fee is just for the artistic design or including all the engineering details. For example, that abandoned land to me looks like surrounded by roads. Did that £12,000 include what the survey cost to determine where all the buried pipes and wires were and so determining where safe or not safe to dig holes?

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Post by Hairyloon on 7th May 2010, 12:58 am

Mike wrote:That might be about right (not far off 10% of the total project).
I can't see it myself.
Whether that is sane or not perhaps depends on whether that architect's fee is just for the artistic design or including all the engineering details.
There is sod all artistic design involved: replace the fences, thin out the trees, dig up the undergrowth, install a couple of flowerbeds and a path. Besides, the public told him what they wanted. All he had to do was draw a couple of pictures of it. Probably took him all day, assuming he knocked off at lunchtime.
For example, that abandoned land to me looks like surrounded by roads. Did that £12,000 include what the survey cost to determine where all the buried pipes and wires were and so determining where safe or not safe to dig holes?
The only holes required are to plant bushes in. I would expect pipes and wires to be buried a little deeper.
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Post by Mike on 7th May 2010, 1:27 pm

Hairyloon wrote: The only holes required are to plant bushes in. I would expect pipes and wires to be buried a little deeper.

Precisely ---- they should be. Now who checked on that? Maybe doesn't happen over your side of the pond but here not all that unusual to hear about some problem because the checking was skimped or faked.

It does not good to argue later "it's the fault of that idiot who laid the undeground that shallow" or "it's the fault of the idiot who didn't place that above ground marker exactly back where it belonged last time it got lnocked down". At least over here we get instances of major damage, a water line hit, a gas line hit, a fibre optics cable cut, etc.

And land use change from urban lot to park can mean needing to redo some of that underground work. A drain line safe enough (deep enough to resist crushing, tight enough to resist leaking) might not be all that safe planting trees above which can have their own ideas about where their roots should go.

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Post by Hairyloon on 15th May 2010, 10:40 pm

Mike wrote:A drain line safe enough (deep enough to resist crushing, tight enough to resist leaking) might not be all that safe planting trees above which can have their own ideas about where their roots should go.
Did you look at the picture?
The big fluffy green things are what we over here call trees.
Now I know that compared to some of wht you've got over there, they barely rate as ground cover, but them's what we've got, and if there's pipes underneath, it is already way too late.
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