Customer Story: Toll Brothers Portland Makes Cost Saving Decisions with TraceAir

TraceAir empowers Land Development Managers with the right information to solve problems quickly.
Getting the right information in the right hands saves projects time and money.
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Site Development Intelligence for Toll Brothers

Site development projects leave little room for budget errors, and small problems can create major time-wasting challenges for project management. Land Development and Project Managers are forced to rely on engineers, surveyors, and contractors to get the answers they need because they lack the necessary tools to obtain accurate data so they can make decisions.

TraceAir is a site development intelligence platform that empowers the entire project team to view 3D topographic maps of their project with data captured by drones. TraceAir's collaborative software allows teams to track progress and measure as-built compared to as-designed for their projects, providing the tools required to quickly resolve issues.

Toll Brothers' Portland division recently began using TraceAir on two projects that were already under construction. Here's how the site development intelligence TraceAir provides is improving their project management and empowering Land Development Manager, PJ Stambaugh, to make timely decisions.

Saving Money on Site Balance

One project required 36,000 cubic yards of dirt import that PJ needed to source in a short amount of time from several job sites. As the dirt was hauled in, PJ and his contractor were able to use TraceAir's 3D topos and software to allow for accurate cut/fill balance measurements and gauge their progress. TraceAir's nearly real-time feedback helped manage the logistics of the dirt haul, and get the dirt moved and placed before Portland's rainy season.

TraceAir also helped PJ's project team to find locations for extra stripping piles that are extremely expensive to off-haul. TraceAir empowers project teams to examine their project using 3D topos and precise site balance data to find proper places for this material on-site while preventing improper dumping. It also allows them to make these decisions quickly, without having to rely on engineers for information.

The Right Data to Make the Right Decisions

Each time a Land Development Manager asks contractors or engineers to survey their site to measure stockpiles or other areas, costs run upwards of $1,000 (including flight costs and billable hours). Occasional surveys here and there can add up to thousands of dollars over the life of a project.

On the twelve-acre residential development mentioned above, the Land Development Manager and his project team began using TraceAir to conduct weekly drone surveys. The data provided by drone surveys, coupled with TraceAir's site intelligence software, eliminated the need for additional surveys provided by engineers and contractors. The project team is now empowered to measure stockpiles and other areas on their sites in a few minutes and at a fraction of the cost of traditional site surveying.

Keeping Stakeholders Happy

On another project, TraceAir's management tools helped PJ to address and satisfy concerns of a neighborhood group that required protective fencing around environmental areas before the start of construction as part of the project approval. AS soon as PJ's contractor installed the fencing, PJ was able to share with the neighborhood group TraceAir's aerial photo with an overlay of the fencing to confirm that fencing was installed correctly and sensitive areas were protected. Construction on PJ's project was quickly allowed to proceed.

It empowers me as a project manager to take control and hold my contractors and engineers accountable. All the people I work with on my jobs, whether they're moving dirt or creating spreadsheets, absolutely love it. TraceAir's site management and analytics platform elevates the communication and collaboration with everyone involved in the project, from investors and owners to contractors and engineers. The more communication you have on a project, the smoother the project will go.”

— PJ Stambaugh
, Land Development Manager, Toll Brothers

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