Construction delays are a fact of life at every stage of a project, including during construction access. The earlier a delay occurs, the more it can impact the overall timeline and budget, which is one reason why it’s so important to avoid construction access delays as much as possible.

You can’t control the weather, crew members calling in sick, or a subcontractor’s schedule. However, understanding what you can control and preparing for unexpected scenarios will allow you to minimize delays and improve your chances of staying on schedule.

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Common Reasons for Construction Delays on Access Projects

Construction project management is complex, and many things might not go as planned. The list of potential reasons for a construction delay is long: 

  • Change orders
  • Labor availability
  • Budget issues
  • Permitting and permit approvals
  • Equipment failure
  • Adverse weather
  • Natural disasters
  • Supplier delays
  • Poor planning
  • Delayed approvals
  • Errors and omissions in documentation
  • Lack of experience 
  • Unexpected ground conditions
  • Underground obstacles

It’s also not uncommon for multiple delays to occur for varying reasons. You might encounter foul weather, delayed materials, and a late subcontractor all on the same day. The impact of the delay can also vary from being a minor inconvenience to affecting the project's delivery date.

How to Avoid Construction Delays on Access Projects

You can’t predict the future of your construction project, with the exception that you should expect unforeseen issues. Follow these tips to prepare for some of the most common reasons for delays.

Early Planning

The sooner your construction access provider is involved in the project, the better. When you involve an experienced vendor in the early stages of site access planning, you get the benefits of:

  • More accurate estimates
  • Multiple perspectives about possible issues
  • More accurate timelines
  • More prepared crews

Multiple Routes 

If it’s possible to access a site from multiple routes, have plans for all of them so you can quickly pivot if necessary. You might also need multiple routes for different reasons. For example, one for occasionally moving large equipment and another for daily traffic to access the site.

Trained Crews

Hire providers with specific expertise in construction access who can deliver on time and on budget. This will ensure that they operate using construction access best practices. Training should also include site-specific safety details so teams can avoid potential hazards.

Access to Materials and Equipment

Look for a provider with a deep inventory or quick access to the materials and equipment needed for construction access. This varies by project and depends on the specific site conditions, but could include graders, excavators, cranes, timber mats, and more.

Cost Analysis

You need to understand the costs of building different types of temporary roads so you can make quick decisions as needed. For example, gravel and matting have different prices. Don’t forget to include the cost of removing any temporary access routes and restoring the site. 

Contingency Pricing 

Have a plan B (and C and D) ready with contingency pricing built into the budget so you can execute quickly and not wait for decisions to be made. A little extra time and effort upfront can save you thousands (or more) in the long run.

Bring YAK ACCESS in Early

If you’re planning a construction project, it’s never too early to bring the YAK ACCESS team in for guidance and expertise. We’ll not only provide you with accurate estimates based on your specific site and the work you plan to do, but we’ll also flag potential issues you might not be aware of. This proactive approach can help you avoid construction delays in the future, helping you keep your project on track.

You can learn more about the different types of mats we offer for various types of access solutions in our comprehensive Access Mat Guide.