Supporting strategic decision-making on the future campus with space utilisation studies: a case study

Bart Valks*, Elizabeth Blokland, Catelijne Elissen, Iris van Loon, Danko Roozemond, Paul Uiterdijk, Monique Arkesteijn, Alexander Koutamanis, Alexandra Den Heijer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
76 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose: Across the world, many universities are dealing with a pressure on resources, caused by both organisational developments and ageing campuses. Space utilization studies have a strategic role, providing information on how space is being used, thereby informing decisions about the type and scale of facilities that are needed. Design/methodology/approach: This study reports on the space use measurements conducted at TU Delft over the past five years, complemented by their use to make decisions about the university's real estate portfolio. Findings: The education spaces of the university are found to perform well in terms of frequency rates and can be improved in terms of occupancy rates. The information helped to support short- and long-term decision-making. The study places of the university have a satisfactory occupancy in some types of study places, while in others there is room for improvement. More research is needed here to understand the relationship between space norms and space use. Practical implications: The space utilization studies have supported discussions with the student council and decision makers on which interventions are required and which current facilities meet students' needs best. Originality/value: Not much space utilisation studies are reported in the academic literature, and those that do have several limitations. This study may serve as a best practice for benchmarking by other universities and as evidence in other research for the planned and actual use of university facilities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)441-465
Number of pages25
JournalProperty Management
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Campus management
  • Decision-making
  • Property management
  • Real estate
  • Space utilization
  • Supply and demand


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