Explanation of the Problem. Standard facilities management practices include periodic building capacity assessments. In our-12(Kindergarten 12 th Grade) school facility management practice, capacity assessments consists largely of inflexible and purposeless calculations: the number of pupils each school facility can hold based on an arbitrary number of pupils per floor area. Buildings occupied by more pupils than the official capacity are rated as“over capacity”, and those by fewer pupils as“under capacity”. Such a perfunctory examination lacks crucial information: how well are the spaces suited to the present and future activities and functions for which they are used?
Approach. In response, our companys specialists have developed a straightforward and transparent tool to look more deeply into the suitability of existing school buildings for specific academic programs and future uses. SUIT, the Space Utilization Inquiry Tool, uses a survey of building users and decision-makers to assess their responses to positively-worded issue statements. Each statement is evaluated by school district stakeholders on two five-point Likert scales:(l) actuality of the statement from the respondents viewpoint; and(2) significance of the statement also from the respondents perspective.
Results. We will present the structure and function of SUIT, including sample survey results and how they can be used. SUIT can be adapted to a variety of building types besides schools.