According to Daily Mail last week, a couple in Aughton, Lancashire, UK has been told by the local town council that they have to tear down their nearly complete £1 million dream home because the house was several yards longer and wider than approved on the plans they submitted.
The source of the problem, the couple claims, is that they used AutoCad software to draw the house blueprints, and when they printed the plans out for submittal to building control for approval, the software automatically scaled down the blueprint for printing by some 4%.
The couple said they didn't realize that had happened, but said that when they had submitted the plans, they indicated:
"that all the dimensions should be checked or measured on site and not scaled from the drawing."
They assumed everything was okay because they received planning permission to proceed.
The town council, the Daily Mail reports, said that the problem wasn't just the size of the house but there were 15 additional discrepancies between what was built and the plans submitted.
Sounds like there was a bit more involved than just a printer driver problem.
The couple, who have already lost one appeal, is taking their case to the High Court to try to stop the demolition.
Robert N. Charette is a Contributing Editor to IEEE Spectrum and an acknowledged international authority on information technology and systems risk management. A self-described “risk ecologist,” he is interested in the intersections of business, political, technological, and societal risks. Charette is an award-winning author of multiple books and numerous articles on the subjects of risk management, project and program management, innovation, and entrepreneurship. A Life Senior Member of the IEEE, Charette was a recipient of the IEEE Computer Society’s Golden Core Award in 2008.