This branch conduct feasibility, reevaluation and other studies to determine the engineering, environmental, and economic viability of proposed water resources projects. Before Congress considers such projects for authorization, the Corps must analyze the costs and benefits, and the impacts on people and the environment.
Planning usually begins with a preliminary reconnaissance study that defines the problem, identifies possible solutions and cost estimates, and outlines the economic and environmental pros and cons of each option. If the reconnaissance study indicates it makes sense to study the proposal further, the next stage is to conduct a detailed feasibility study. Detailed engineering plans are made only after Congress authorizes the project.
This branch also manages project development to ensure quality and successful completion on schedule and within budget. It assigns a single project manager to oversee each project. Working with people from all divisions, project managers track the project from the earliest to the final stages. They involve the local cost-sharing sponsor in all aspects of planning and strive for the highest quality standards.
Project managers serve as the single point of contact for information. They oversee budget, programming and administrative aspects, which thereby allows study managers, design engineers and construction management personnel the time to focus on their responsibilities.