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Cornell University

Facilities Project Approval Request (FPAR)

A project approval request for a facilities-related project (FPAR), has three primary purposes:

  • Substantiates the expectations and limitations for a financial authorization, at the thresholds and by authorities as determined by Policy 4.2, Transaction Authority and Payment Approval.
  • Communicates to transactional authorities the scope, schedule, financial commitment, impacts, and risk considerations for a facilities–related capital project executed by Cornell staff and/or external parties.
  • Serves as the data of record for capital accounting activities, consistent with Policy 3.9, Capital Assets.

The FPAR exists in the eBuilder system and is created as a PDF when projects require authorization by the Capital Funding and Priorities Committee (CF&PC).  The FPAR can also be printed “on demand” for non-CF&PC projects to facilitate communications or other business needs. CF&PC has authority for determining the data fields included in the FPAR. The fully approved FPAR is maintained in eBuilder as the record document of authorization and project parameters.

Project Teams should navigate to their project in e-Builder to start the Facilities Project Approval Request process.

When is a FPAR required...

A FPAR should be initiated at the first phase at which it is understood that total project costs will exceed the FPAR dollar threshold.

Please plan ahead and allow sufficient time for the eB FPAR process to reach the Project Director Review step as noted on the Project Approvals Calendar. Should the rare need for an extension arise, the Project Manager should discuss the need with their Director and the Director should submit an email extension request to Andrew Magre briefly describing the situation and the justification for the exception. Exceptions to this rule will only be granted if approved in writing.  Requests for exemption must be submitted prior to the FPARs Due in Director Step on the Project Approvals Calendar.

Study Authorization Process 

Studies are required to be reviewed and authorized through eBuilder, regardless of cost or method of performance; the associated procedures and workflow are intended to improve:

  • Capture of studies for the capitalization process,
  • Alignment of staff effort and funding with mission critical priorities, and
  • Tracking and overall coordination of study efforts across many roles and several units.

The amount of the study determines the appropriate eBuilder process for review and authorization.  The primary driver of the study, physical asset management or programmatic need, is a key determinant in the review workflow.

Review of all academic or administrative program studies will typically include discussion around the following topics:

  • What is the study intended to inform?
  • What is the urgency and priority?
  • Does the study suggest coordination with other capital planning efforts or priorities?
  • Will the study likely result in a capital project?  If so, is it an understood need, or emergent?

Capital Project Funding Guidelines

In order to maintain the university’s fiscal integrity, the university has developed capital project funding guidelines.

Current FY Approved Capital Plan

The threshold for inclusion in the annual capital budget and five-year capital plan is a total project cost greater than $250,000.

Capital Project Approval Authorities Flowchart

A flowchart has been developed to help PAR preparers navigate the various “approvals” that a project must obtain.

Project Approvals Calendar

All PARs must be submitted by the stated deadline each month in order for the project to be considered for CFPC and/or B&P approval. “Submitted” shall be defined as in the “PAR Administrator Review” step by 3PM on the stated date.

Having a firm deadline for these submissions will better facilitate the creation of agendas, preparation of materials, and allow the due consideration of projects for these meetings.