Preparing the masterplan for any large industrial complex within a military base is a major assignment. When the exact site has yet to be confirmed, that task becomes even more demanding. 

We had to meet this challenge on a major US military base in Bavaria, Germany when we were asked to define the design criteria, programme of works, and cost estimates for a new industrial complex even though a decision on location had not yet been reached.  

The project was complex in other aspects, too. Some areas were to be used to store hazardous waste and maintain technical equipment while military personnel would be living and working in other parts of the facility. 

To deliver for the client in these exceptional circumstances, we marshalled a team of architects, planners and engineers from Germany, Spain and the US. Working as one team, they brought local regulatory knowledge and global planning best practices together to fully prepare the project for approval despite the variables.  

Rigorous planning and analysis 

Considering the differing requirements within the complex, we gathered as much information and data as we could, conducting stakeholder interviews and a requirements analysis that covered the project scope, square footage, environmental considerations as well as anti-terrorism/force protection requirements.  

As there were two locations under consideration, we also conducted site and risk assessments for both, alongside detailed environmental and economic analyses. On the latter, we used parametric costs to provide estimates which considered fluctuating elements such as shifts in the market, supply chain constraints as well as unscheduled construction works. 

All this information fed into a hybrid workshop – or planning charette – which we set up between all members of our international multi-disciplinary team. The goal of the workshop was to complete the analysis for both sites, refine the planning programme, develop the design vision and identify clear development goals. The output was a series of concept plans which also considered future construction stages.  

Identifying opportunities to reduce environmental impact 

AECOM is at the industry vanguard in terms of emissions reduction. Our ScopeX™ approach to decarbonisation encompasses all our capabilities, expertise and experience across infrastructure and buildings. This includes strategic planning, energy-efficient design, project development, generation and storage, stakeholder engagement and financing.  

Using these capabilities, we defined the facility’s energy targets and used innovative analysis methods to offset environmental impact against the option to add photovoltaic energy generation.  

We also performed an in-depth sustainable design analysis (which included preparing a preliminary LEED checklist) that exceeded the original scope requirements, contributing to net zero goals set by the US Government. 

Fast-tracked for delivery 

Thanks to the thorough approach to planning and design taken by the international team to get the project ready for approval despite the variables, the complex was placed in the top five list of priority projects, guaranteeing expedient project funding as a result.