Simulation approach to evaluating cost efficiency of selective demolition practices: Case of Hong Kong's Kai Tak Airport demolition

Ming Lu, Sze Chun Lau, Chi Sun Poon

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


This research resorted to the use of construction operations simulation modeling to investigate the cost efficiency of waste-handling practices on the Kai Tak Airport demolition project in Hong Kong. By modeling the site operation of sieving and stockpiling broken concrete, the well-established construction simulation methodology of CYCLONE was contrasted with the newly developed simplified discrete event simulation approach (SDESA). Further, the SDESA model was readily extended to include (1) raw demolition waste collecting and sorting; (2) broken concrete sieving and stockpiling; (3) steel bar recycling; and (4) debris disposal at the landfill. The production rate derived from simulation was indicative of a close match between the simulation model and the actual site system. The resulting simulation model provided a basis for evaluating the cost efficiency of actual site operations and alternative resource provision scenarios being postulated. Through computer simulation, the actual site operation was found smooth and efficient with utilization rates for resources of different types ranging from 79 to 99%. In addition, the cost-time reduction ratios were calculated for four alternatives of resource provisions in comparison with the original base case. The research findings suggested that provided the project budget had satisfied the higher cash flow requirement, doubling the resource provision on site would potentially cut the project duration by half and not increase the total direct cost.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)448-457
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Construction Engineering and Management
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2009


  • Airports and airfields
  • Case reports
  • Computer aided simulation
  • Demolition
  • Hong Kong
  • Simulation models
  • Waste management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Strategy and Management
  • Industrial relations
  • Building and Construction


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