Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Civil Engineering


Bell, Lansford C


The research project 'Best Practices for Developing the Engineering Estimate' was executed by Clemson University on behalf of the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT). The primary objective of this research project was to investigate the strengths and weaknesses of two types of estimating methods being utilized today by state department of transportations (DOT) nationwide. These two types of estimating methods are the unit cost line item approach, which the SCDOT utilizes, and the cost-based estimating approach. This research report identifies accuracy obtained, resources expended, and methodologies utilized when implementing either type of estimating approach. This was done so the research team could gather enough evidence to suggest if a change was needed in the SCDOT estimating methodology. There is no compelling evidence to suggest that SCDOT adopt a cost-based/combination estimating approach when preparing the engineer's estimate.