Front-End Services

The front-end planning tasks included in the initial or inception stage of any development – prior to the commencement of traditional preconstruction efforts – can significantly affect the costs, schedule and success of the project itself. Appropriate front-end services help remove pressure to rush design and preconstruction efforts and can result in a far more efficient, reliable budget and schedule.

This essential work also provides a onetime-only opportunity for the client to realize significant benefits associated with incentives offered at both the state and local levels, and allows negotiations on site selection to be conducted with appropriate leverage. Factors like the availability, cost, capacity and expansion potential of utilities, rail, existing transportation infrastructure as well as limitations on current use and future expansions can significantly affect any project. Likewise, limitations of the land itself, the availability and cost of local labor to build and operate complex facilities, zoning, land use rules and regulations can all have a material bearing on the successful outcome of physical projects.

Primus offers a comprehensive menu of front-end planning, site selection and consulting services that can be selected a la carte or as a complete program that will seamlessly integrate front-end processes into streamlined project delivery. These services facilitate high-quality early decisions and the fastest possible project delivery at the lowest possible cost.

SERVICE OFFERINGS

Project Feasibility Studies

Many business initiatives translate into physical and operational needs. There may be multiple scenarios which can satisfy a business objective, but there may be one best answer. Primus offers initial project feasibility analyses to evaluate and compare different alternatives so that the client can select the one best solution. This feasibility evaluation may involve different facilities on different sites that may be located in different states. Using our in-house design, real estate and construction experience, national reach and a historical database of costs with data analytics, Primus can help clients evaluate multiple options and make the right early decisions, saving substantial time coming out of the gate.

Site Test Fits

As properties are identified for consideration, Primus can quickly apply test-fit site layouts to identify and illustrate challenges and opportunities on each potential site. Using available databases, topographic and utility information is applied at this stage in order to begin framing a meaningful comparison. Primus’ experience in site development and construction provides additional dimensions of depth and insight to the test fits.

Site Evaluation & Comparison

For each site under consideration, Primus performs a field observation of the site and identifies conditions which could affect the costs or schedule for a project. Analysis of test-fit layouts generate a list of issues and concerns that could affect the constructability, permit time frames, and comparative costs associated with each site. This “desktop due diligence” process helps identify deal-killers, schedule or cost challenges before significant real estate decisions are made or significant costs incurred. Once the initial list of properties has been reduced, Primus can conduct a deeper-dive analysis which includes preliminary grading plans, site utility & infrastructure layouts, high-level cost estimates and schedules for the short-listed sites. With this approach, Clients are able to make informed early decisions with limited cost exposure at this critical stage of project life. In many cases, site selection decisions have the greatest impact on a project’s success.

Real Estate Due Diligence

Primus offers full real estate due diligence services, including property acquisition and lease considerations. Greenfield, brownfield, sale-leaseback, conventional lease, and ground-lease properties each have unique due diligence considerations, and Primus offers services directly focused on each of those deal-structure options. These services include performing or acquiring and evaluating multiple site due diligence items, including but not limited to:

  • ALTA Surveys
  • Topographical Surveys
  • Phase 1 Environmental Assessments
  • Phase 2 Environmental Assessments as necessary
  • Geotechnical and seismic investigation
  • Preliminary wetlands identification
  • Detailed wetlands delineation
  • Wetlands mitigation plans & permitting
  • Analysis of transportation infrastructure
  • Analysis of utility infrastructure including location and capacity
  • Entitlement / zoning research
  • Permit & code research
  • Physical / constructability evaluation of the property
  • Floor & pavement cores (existing properties and lease deals)
  • Civil / sitework evaluation of property
  • Stormwater evaluation
  • Archeological evaluation
  • Review & evaluation of title restrictions

Evaluation of Automation Solutions

Primus is unique among Design-Builders in that we offer in-house expertise and services related to Automation solutions. Our Solutions Group, located in Charlotte, NC, provides clients with the ability to consider and evaluate multiple automation solutions for projects under consideration. Because we operate independently of any automation supplier, we are able to propose the best solution for each case. Primus believes these front-end automation evaluation services can cut considerable time off a project, as clients spend months – sometimes years – looking at options from automation vendors. Primus can draft the scope of work, issue RFPs to automation vendors, and provide a selection matrix that considers operations, maintenance, costs, capacity, throughput, delivery schedule, single-points-of-failure, and more. Further, Primus can provide continuity by serving as integrator, and offers start-up assistance.

Entitlement / Rezoning / Variances / Special Use

Using our in-house real estate, architectural and engineering expertise, Primus offers clients a full suite of services related to rezoning, variances, special use permits and related property entitlement in order to position projects for success in the early stages of site selection. As readily-developable real estate in the US continues to become scarce, these frontend services have become more critical and can cut months off a project’s duration. Incentives Identification & Negotiation: Under an arrangement with strategic vendor-partners, Primus offers early identification of incentives, both statutory and discretionary, at state and local levels. Incentives can contribute significant impact to a project’s IRR and can be used to leverage assistance in permitting. Because our approach is fee-based, not based on value of incentives received, the client benefits fully from all incentives awarded. Incentives are evaluated for all projects, not just Greenfield sites. Many clients don’t realize that investment in an existing plant may qualify them for incentives even if new jobs aren’t created by the project.

Labor Analysis

Under an arrangement with strategic vendor-partners, Primus offers an analysis of the labor market for any project under consideration. This includes both the staffing as well as the subcontractor market, which can significantly impact a project’s cost and schedule. The analysis will look at labor availability, costs, competition for labor in any market, transportation considerations and the potential for mass-transit or alternative transportation to accommodate the workforce.

Utility Rate Structure

Primus offers an evaluation of the utility rate structure for properties and projects. Considerations include primary vs secondary electric service, preferred rates for projects and users of a certain size, power factor penalties, and schedule, costs and rates for backup circuits, switching mechanisms, and associated infrastructure for electric supply; rates for water including special considerations for how condenser water is treated relative to water & sewer rates and metering; and a review of rates, capacity, costs and integrity of gas service. Onsite power generation and backup power considerations are addressed, including 3rd-party arrangements which allow the client to avoid up-front capital costs.

SPECIAL CONSULTING CATEGORIES

Portfolio-Wide Services

For clients with multiple properties, Primus offers portfolio-wide services in order to achieve volume-based savings in operational and maintenance costs. The entire client portfolio is evaluated for:

  • Energy efficiency
  • Energy visibility – sub-metering and use
  • Power factor
  • Control systems and VSDs
  • Environmental compliance
  • Operational best practices
  • Maintenance best practices
  • Sanitation best practices
  • Data analytics as a generator for proactive maintenance

Lease Facilities

Primus offers comprehensive evaluation of lease facilities including full due diligence, building evaluation for potential use and build-out, and annual review of operations and maintenance items against lease terms.

Program Management

For multiple-project business initiatives Primus offers Program Management services for clients to leverage expertise, functioning as an extension of their existing staff. Primus can serve as overall coordinator and manager, with reporting dashboards which provide real-time views into status, cost, schedule and issues for any large-scale, multiple-project initiative.

Owner’s Rep Services

For developer-driven deals, Primus can provide Owner’s Rep services, effectively serving as the client’s advocate in the delivery of a project by a developer team. Services include realtime dashboard reporting, investor reporting and accountability, and identification of risks to schedule, budget, and quality.

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