Chunnel Project

Topics: Project management, Channel Tunnel, Cost overrun Pages: 37 (9442 words) Published: October 5, 2012
Project Management Institute

Case Studies in Project Management

The Chunnel Project

By:

Frank T. Anbari, PhD, PMP, Paul Giammalvo, MSPM, CCE, PMP, Paul Jaffe, MSPM, PMP, Craig Letavec, MSPM, PMP, Rizwan Merchant, MSPM

Edited by:

Frank T. Anbari, PhD, PMP

The George Washington University

This case study was originally prepared as part of Project Management Applications, the capstone course of the Master of Science in Project Management in the Department of Management Science at The George Washington University, by the graduating students listed above with the supervision of Professor Anbari.

This case study was adapted to make it a learning resource, and might not reflect all historical facts related to this project.

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Case Study

The Chunnel Project

Table of Contents

Introduction .....................................................................................................................................3

The Inception Phase.........................................................................................................................4

The Development Phase ................................................................................................................12

The Implementation Phase ............................................................................................................17

The Closeout Phase .......................................................................................................................22

Summary of Project Assessment and Analysis .............................................................................26

References .....................................................................................................................................27

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Case Study

The Chunnel Project

Introduction

The Channel Tunnel (Chunnel) project, undertaken to create a connection between England and France via an underground tunnel, represents one of the largest privately funded construction projects ever undertaken. It required the cooperation of two national governments, bankers underwriting the funding for the project, numerous contractors, and several regulatory agencies. Further, the construction and engineering of the tunnel required the use of new technology and required significant modifications during the project due to unexpected conditions and changes required by various interested parties.

The management of a project of this magnitude is a significant effort even if everything related to the project ran extremely smoothly. As this case study will demonstrate, numerous factors came into play during the course of the project that had significant effects on the overall course of the project. In the end, the Chunnel project was completed, but it was late and over budget. The causes for missing the key cost and schedule deadlines, along with other factors related to Project Management Knowledge Areas and processes, are discussed and analyzed throughout the case study.

The case study covers various Project Management Knowledge Areas (Project Management Institute, 2004) within four project phases: inception, development, implementation, and closeout. Within each project phase, the activities, accomplishments, and shortcomings of performance in the processes of Initiating, Planning, Executing, Monitoring and Controlling, and Closing are discussed. The case study is structured to allow an evaluation of the appropriate processes of...

References: Fairweather, V. (1998). The Channel Tunnel: Larger than life, and late. In D. I. Cleland, K. M.
Genus, A. (1997). Managing large scale technology and inter-organizational relations: The case of the Channel Tunnel. Research Policy, 26, 169–189.
Kerzner, H. (2003). Project management: A systems approach to planning, scheduling and controlling (8th ed.). New York: John Wiley & Sons.
Morris, P. W. G. (1994). The management of projects. London: Thomas Telford.
Project Management Institute. (2004). A guide to the project management body of knowledge
(3rd ed.)
Serich, S., Bale, G., Kwasny, M. K., Patneaude, S., & Stack, J. (2001). The Chunnel: The channel tunnel project. Unpublished manuscript, Washington, DC: The George Washington University.
Veditz, L. A. (1993). The Channel Tunnel: A case study. Executive Research Report (pp. 1–22).
Williams, C. L. (1993). DoD contracting in a global environment. Washington, DC: The
Industrial College of the Armed Forces.
The following works, although not cited, were also consulted while preparing this document: Roberts, M. J. (2001). Developing a teaching case (Abridged). Boston: Harvard Business School
Publishing.
Swiercz, P. M. (2003). SWIF learning: A guide to student written- instructor facilitated case
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