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Functional Obsolescence
One of four primary types of obsolescence.

When an asset is no longer able to effectively support the facility's mission.  A form of obsolescence that occurs when the owners needs have changed since the asset was first placed in service.  The asset may be in good physical condition  but not able to satisfy the owners/users needs.

Listed below are some of the key attributes of functional obsolescence:
  • It is more prevalent in the later lifecycle stages of commercial buildings than in residential buildings.
  • It usually results in a significant incremental cost.
  • It is oftentimes one of the most systemic forms of obsolescence that can affect groups of assets and may necessitate the need for redevelopment or repurposing of a facility.

A fire station wants to purchase a new fire truck but realizes that the new trucks are heavier and larger than the old ones, thereby placing different live load on the floors in the apparatus bay and also won't fit through the doorway.

Assessment Methods
Functional obsolescence can be assessed as part of a Facility Performance Evaluation (FPE) and measured, in part, by the Facility Needs Index (FNI).

Management Principles
The effects of technological obsolescence can sometimes be managed and mitigated through the following:

Facility Life cycle model indicating get ahead costs
Fig. Lifecycle model to indicate the stages at which functional obsolescence ("yellow") is most prevalent.

The forces of retirement mapped onto the P-F curve
Fig. Functional obsolescence mapped onto the P-F curve alongside the other forces of retirement.

I. Care is in a panic as some of his assets are "fading" away while others are "degrading"
Fig. I. Care is in a panic as some of his assets are "fading" away while others are "degrading". Functional obsolescence is a form of fading.

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