Construction schedule simulation for improved project planning: Activity criticality index assessment

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering; Department of Computer Science


The objective of this paper is to illustrate the application of construction schedule simulation during the planning phase of a construction project. Schedule simulations can be used to develop risk informed schedules that support improved contingency planning. This paper discusses the challenges underlying construction schedule simulation, and how they can be addressed by an interactive simulation platform such as the Interactive Construction Decision-Making Aid (ICDMA). Further, the paper uses ICDMA during the planning process, for a case study, to identify the activities in a project that are most likely to change criticality during the construction process. Current scheduling techniques such as the Critical Path Method (CPM) are capable of identifying critical activities, but they cannot be used to assess the likelihood of alternative critical paths emerging during construction due to unexpected disruptions in the as-planned schedule. The research illustrates the usefulness of construction simulation in supporting the scheduling process. © 2013 IEEE.

Publication Title

Proceedings of the 2013 Winter Simulation Conference - Simulation: Making Decisions in a Complex World, WSC 2013