NOVEC Data Analysis and Forecasting Cost Modeling

SYST/OR 699 Capstone Project

Problem Statement

NOVEC has a rich historical record of the electrical utility construction projects that they have performed over the years. This collection of data has never been used to provide a prediction for future short term, residential, construction costs.

At this time NOVEC does not have an analytic approach to forecast the costs they will incur for residential customers in the short term. The client asked our team to analyze their historical construction data and calibrate a model that will accept the forecasted number of homes (single family homes, townhomes, etc.) and forecast the expected cost that will be incurred in a three year time frame.

This estimate will include the costs to connect the new residential customers to the grid. It should also include the costs for ancillary construction that is related to these residential customers. This model will be used to estimate the costs in a very near short term window that is assumed to be approximately three years.

The residential costs are assumed to be those associated with the model inputs. This is the number of new residential customers requiring connection to the grid for single family homes, condos, and townhomes. The ancillary costs are those that are associated with Mainline, Infrastructure, Other, Barn, and Garage jobs or projects.

Mainline jobs are those that construct the large distribution lines in which other branches of the grid are fed. The number of these jobs are low but they represent a very substantial cost in the data.

Infrastructure jobs is a category that the team developed. This category is a consolidation of jobs related to Cable TV infrastructure, public lighting, traffic lights, and various other small projects. These jobs represent a very small amount of cost in the data set and small magnitude of jobs.

Other projects is a category description that is challenging to deal with. It represents a large amount of cost in the data set yet a relatively small magnitude in overall projects. This is a NOVEC named classification that does not provide a lot of insight into what these jobs actually represent.

Barn and garage projects represent jobs that connect new barns and garages to the electrical grid with their own meters. These can include free standing garages and barns that are remote relative to the regular electrical grid. These jobs represent a relatively small cost and small magnitude of projects.