Office of Estimating
| Category : User's Guide (1)
| Category : Templates (Framework Which Mimics General Summary) (3)
| Category : 2013 Catalogs (Historical Bid Data) (5)
AASHTOWare Estimator Questions
Please review the frequently asked questions on this page and in this document before calling us: FAQs
Item Master & AASHTOWare Estimator Catalog Updates
The Item Master is updated regularly to accommodate the addition of new items. However, Estimator catalogs are only updated biannually in February and August. Therefore, new items will be added to Estimator catalogs at their next closest biannual publication. If your project includes newly added items, please use a similar item code for your estimate and add a note explaining that the item is being used in lieu of the new item.
Updating AASHTOWare Estimator Files
To update Estimator templates and catalogs automatically, follow this procedure:
- Open Estimator software, but do not open an estimate. You should see a greenish-gray screen.
- Select the “Other Tools” menu
- Select “Global Options”. A box with the global options will appear on the screen.
- Select the “Internet” tab. The first line “URL:” is where Estimator looks for new catalogs on this page. Copy and paste the following text into this field.
Estimator will now automatically check for new catalogs and download them for you.
To update Estimator templates and catalogs manually, please click on each file in the list, download the files, and save them to the appropriate directory.
To find where Estimator reads the catalogs and templates from, follow this procedure:
Open Estimator software, but do not open an estimate. You should see a greenish-gray screen.
Select the “Other Tools” menu
Select “Global Options”. A box with the global options will appear on the screen.
- Select the “URLs” tab. The first line “Catalog Path (HTTP or file):” is where Estimator points to the catalogs. The third line "Estimate Template Folder" is where Estimator points to the templates.
AASHTOWare Estimator Templates
An Estimator template is a file that is structured in the same format as an ODOT General Summary plan sheet (i.e., item categories outlined in the ODOT L&D VIII Manual). When selecting a template, we recommend that you choose one that best suits your needs and most closely matches the category breakdown of your General Summary plan sheet. If the template has categories that your project does not use, you can delete them.
The Office of Estimating maintains three templates (No_Categories, Simple_Categories, and Complex_Categories)
AASHTOWare Estimator Catalogs
An Estimator catalog is a file that contains historical item prices. Estimator catalogs are updated on a semiannual basis. Please note that the 2013 Estimator catalogs do not contain prices from 2013 alone; the "2013" refers to the specification year, not the year of the historical prices.
The Office of Estimating maintains four catalogs:
Do The Item Codes in the Plans & Estimate Have to Match?
Construction plans are a contractual document that will be advertised to contractors. Therefore, the item codes, extensions, and descriptions need to exactly match the Item Master.
Design (C2) Estimates are budgetary tools to ensure projects are designed within budget. Budgetary estimates are never advertised with the plans to contractors. Therefore, it is acceptable that the plans do not exactly match the estimate as long as you have accounted for all items in the estimate. You can use a similar item in your estimate and insert notes to explain which items are “placeholders” for the newer items that are not in the Estimator catalogs.
Using AASHTOWare Estimator Average Historical Prices
If you use AASHTOWare Estimator bid histories to price items, you should always use sound engineering and estimating judgment and cross reference the software with historical data. Never solely rely on software to obtain historical prices. Historical bid data for cross referencing can be found here: Historical Cost Data
If you have additional questions regarding AASHTOWare Estimator, please contact:
ODOT Office of Estimating
Need to Purchase AASHTOWare Estimator?
Consultants & Municipalities, please contact:
5700 SW 34th St., Suite 1235
Gainsville, FL 32608
*ODOT has an Estimator site license. Therefore, district personnel should contact DoIT for a copy.