Every industry has its jargon, and after a while, it’s easy to forget that not everyone understands the terminology that we often hear on an everyday basis. This is especially true if you’ve just started in your career and haven't learned it all yet. Even those who have worked in an industry for a long time may not want to admit they don’t know the meaning of a common acronym, even if they understand its usage.
When working on a design/build project, a firm grasp of its intended purpose is critical to get the project’s design and estimate on the right track early. Recently, I participated in a discussion with a gas facility’s project team to establish design parameters for a control room project. As I took notes, I noticed that the terms “shelter-in-place” and “safe haven” were being used interchangeably to describe the building’s attributes by members of the team, as if they were the same. I immediately recognized the need to research the designations to educate the team on the unique characteristics of each. After some research, here’s what I found.