Measurement and Payment

The current method for the measurement of civil engineering quantities in South Africa is contained in clause 8 of each part of SABS 1200 standardised specifications for civil engineering construction, read together with SAICE’s Civil engineering quantities 1990. SABS 1200 is in the process of being withdrawn and replaced by SANS 2001 Construction Works.
The SANS 2001 family of standards provides technical descriptions of the standard of materials and workmanship that will be used in the works that are executed or in the performance of the works when completed. These standards do not make reference to the actions of those responsible for executing the works, the parties to a contract or the measurement and payment for work completed.
The logical approach to dealing with the civil engineering quantities when using SANS 1921 and SANS 2001 is to base measurement and payment on a single stand alone document that deals with the standard system of measurement for civil engineering works in its entirety. Such a document should be sufficiently flexible to be used with any of the standard forms of contract that are included in the CIDB’s Standard for Uniformity in Construction Procurement and the range of standard specifications that are currently in use in South Africa. Ideally such a document should be compatible with international practice.  
ICE-SA believes that the logical choice is to adopt the standard system of measurement used in the UK and many parts of the world, namely Civil Engineering Standard Method of Measurement (CESMM3). This document has been adapted to Southern African conditions and practices, and has been published in South Africa as the CESMM3-SA.

In addition, ICE-SA is currently developing a guide to the application of the third edition of the Civil Engineering Standard Method of Measurement (CESMM3) in southern Africa. This guide will:

  •  introduce the reader to the philosophy and thinking behind CESMM3;?
  •  highlight the differences between the current system as embodied in Civil Engineering Quantities 1990 and the SABS 1200 standardised specifications;  and
  •  make recommended regarding the adaptations that should be made to successfully apply it in the South African contracting environment.  

This publication will not replace CESMM3 in any way; nor will it purport to be a handbook on the subject. It will merely serve as a guide to the application of CESMM3 in the South African context to facilitate the adoption of CESMM3.
Further particulars may be found in the article published in SAICE’s magazine in February 2008.