"Making Room for Planners in FM"
Author: Drummond, Victoria C.,
Published In: Facilities Manager
Date: 31/32 July-August
Not long ago universities, colleges, and schools identified the management of facilities as the Physical Plant Office. Albeit, the services provided by the physical plant office included complex and highly technical functions, they were mainly focused on keeping building systems operating and the campus looking good. As important as these activities are to an institution's continuance, the physical plant name was prejudged. Even so, the title was practical and it mirrored the industry's leading professional development organization, known at one time as the Association of Physical Plant Administrators of Universities and Colleges (APPA). This article presents the results of a two-question survey which was delivered to APPA member institutions via the APPAinfo discussion list to find out whether space management was being performed in facilities operations of institutions of higher education. The survey results revealed that institutions that have organized their service units as facilities services/facilities management also appear to be responsible for more planning functions and often included a professional planner position. It may be that universities and colleges are including land-use planners in facilities service operations in search of new dimensions to effective comprehensive space management--but it begins with making space for a planner. (Contains 5 endnotes.)
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