The method used to identify number of design and specification changes per project is through counting number of variations issued, due to changes of design and specification, for each project. Hence the number of changes in design and specification per projects is considered only for those changesthat resulted withissuing formal variation orders; however changes of design and specification that are made without issuing variation are not considered in this assessment.
Similarly the monetary value of the variations is used as a tool for indicating effect of the changes in design and specification interms of incurring additional cost for each project. Similarly the additional time that extend the contract period of each project is included to show effect of variations issued Based on the above premises the maximum number of variation orders issued and monetary value of the associated variations on projects of the three sectors is described below to demonstrate extreme cases.
Accordingly the maximum number of changes per project observed on road sector projects is 17 of which 16 are issued due to design changes while 1 variation order due to client’ request, which is encountered on Aleta –Wondo- Daye project, this has increased the contract time by 127% which is the maximum time overrun observed from the sampled projects and the cost by about 41%. The maximum cost overrun due to design changes is encountered on Yallo – Nehille project, which is about 72% of the project cost; 3 variation orders are issued due to changes of soil classification, Engineer’s Camp and additional crossings of drainage.
The maximum number of variation orders due to design changes per project observed in the building sector is 31,which is on Bahirdar University, Agri Lot 7project; this has increased the contract time by 33% and the cost by about 17%.
The maximum cost overrun due to design changes is encountered on Staff Residence and Facility Lot 1, Derbaproject, which is about 76% of the project cost.
Similarly the maximum number of changes per project observed in water sector projects is 52, which is encountered on TENDAHO DAM AND IRRIGATION project. The data from Ministry of water indicates the following
• Commencement Date: 1/3/2005
• Original Completion Date:1/3/2007
• Revised Completion Date: 30/12/2015
• Original Contract time: 24 months
• Original Contract Price: ETB 840,254,274.70
• Revised Contract Price: ETB 2,272,435,130.41.
• Amount of Variation: ETB 1,432,180,856
The 52 variation orders has increased the project cost by more than 1.4 billion birr, which is an overrun of cost by more than 177% and delayed contract completion time by more than 8 years, 105 months, which is more than 477% time overrun.
As per the assurance report of Tendaho Dam and Irrigation disclosed by CoST ETHIOPIA a total of 48 variations order have been issued and approved by all the parties involved, as of July 2010. The variations order prevailed is classified as changes in item of quantities included in the BOQ and addition of new works. The total variations order approved is ETB 1,755,181,250.03, which is more than the above data supplied by the Ministry, and this sum accounts 208% of the original contract price. The list of the 48 variation orders indicated in the assurance report is tabulated as shown in the next pages.
One important issue to mention is that the changes in quantity is issued as a formal variation order in this project, unlike other project samples taken from the road and building sectors. Hence the variation orders issued for projects of building and road sector do not include changes in quantity from the original bill of quantity.

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