Risk assessment of Sydney Opera House
School of Mechanical Engineering
LECTURER: Min An
MSc Engineering Management
Module name: Construction Production and Risk Management
22 April 2013
This paper assesses risks of Sydney Opera House. The reason is that Sydney Opera House has unprecedented budget and time overrun. It is gathered all possible information about history and construction. According to this information risk assessment was built and main risks such as dictatorial interference of government, unusual construction, lack of communication, poor cost estimate and others was found. It is also provided recommendations for risk reduction such as testing design, using fixed price contract and hiring experienced project managers.
Many projects which were started - fail; and base reason is a change. They are not prepared to deal with it. Consequence of the change is overrun in budget, time and failure in quality. Many practitioners do not consider about or do not consider in detail alternative possibilities of the situation. At some stage the project can go out of the control because of external or internal forces. Unless these forces will not take into account, projects will overrun in time, budget and lose quality. The key to keep the project in the framework is applying the risk management that uses systematic approach. This action helps to reduce, transfer or even eliminate risks. Sydney Opera House (SOH) is considered one of the magnificent construction projects in the world. This Opera House is visiting card of Australia that attracts people all over the world. His landmark is major arts center. However, Sydney Opera House is not a good place to hear opera; it will be discussed later in this paper. SOH is spectacular building but the implementation of it one of the worst. Worth to mention, 233 concepts of SOH participated in the competition to be face of Australia. Interestingly, the open competition won Danish architect, Jorn Utzon that had not experience in the construction and design of so large constructions. However, his sketch won in the competition. At the beginning, approximate cost was difficult to determine because of three reasons. There was no plan, no design drawings and no materials. Additionally, nobody knew how to build such large construction with such design. Nevertheless, cost estimates were done and it was around $7 million. Engineers who sow the concept stated that the roof of SOH will be like a sail and it will cause damage in the strong wind. The government realized the problems that can arise if people will ask questions about potential problems. Notwithstanding, they pushed ahead this project and split it into three construct parts: the foundation and building, roof, and interior (Agrawal A., 2005). Many experts worried about the project and stated that it will fail and it failed in respect of budget and time. The Sydney Opera House lasts 15 years and cost $107 million that is more than 15 times. Initially this project counted as risky but most of the risks were ignored, and actions against uncontrolled situations were not implemented. In this paper, it is examined SOH applying risk management technique for deeper understanding of the cause of failure that will help us to make analysis, recommendations for risk reduction and future work.
2. RISK INFORMATION AND DATA COLLECTION
As was stated above, Sydney Opera House is a grand structure and proud of Australia. However, implementation of SOH project has many problems. Opera Theatre is a place where opera takes place, it should have perfect acoustics. Nevertheless, according to Limelight, an Australian Music Magazine, SOH’s Opera Theater has worst acoustics in 20 worst venues. Engineers have analyzed the structure of Opera Theater and underline two major problems: size of theater that does not allow producing an excellent acoustics, and sawtooth wall panels that...
References: A view on cities, Opera House [online]. Available from: http://www.aviewoncities.com/sydney/operahouse.htm [Accessed 25 March 2013]
About the Sydney Opera House, Construction [online]. Available from: http://www.gids.nl/sydney/opera.html [Accessed 02 April 2013]
Agrawal A. (2005), Risk Management Elements and process Case: The Sydney Opera House [online]. Available from: http://ru.scribd.com/doc/26144080/Risk-Management [Accessed 01 April 2013]
Kamenev M (2011), Sydney 's Opera House: Easy on the Eyes, Not the Ears [online]. Available from: http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2097247,00.html [Accessed 02 April 2013]
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