If you read BuildingTech INSIDER consistently, you know builders are applying virtual design and construction (VDC) practices for building information modeling (BIM). Major disciplines leveraging the many benefits of BIM are mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP), as well as fire protection. MEP is a critical discipline for systems decision-making – these decisions are sometimes made by a facility’s management and operations team. Using BIM practices to gain additional perspective on MEP is tremendously powerful. This post discusses how to rock your next MEP effort with BIM.
You could say Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) is a practice that ensures the best BIM plans do not go to waste. It is an integrated process focused on the data management of multi-disciplinary design and construction models. BIMs capture and organize the design and construction work processes required to meet project scope and business objectives. VDC analyzes project data to both identify and then mitigate risks that may jeopardize project cost and schedule goals. Evaluation includes the visualization and analysis of 2D details in a 3D environment enabling a design to build approach. You could say VDC ensuring more reliable information and better decision-making. This post offers a few tips on how to run a productive VDC meeting.
Building Information Modeling (BIM) is forever changing the way we design and build. The process encourages and actually improves project engagement allowing for more effective collaboration throughout a project’s lifetime. As the demand for BIM tools continue to rise, the need to design within an enhanced virtual environment will continue. In this post, we concentrate on two areas, virtual mock-ups and fabrication simulation.
It almost goes without saying; a majority of important project decisions are made at the design phase. Traditionally, all project stakeholders do not participate at this phase. For argument sake, let’s imagine a scenario where all project stakeholders are involved during the design phase. You’d expect get a clearer picture on project scope and geometric detail. Decisions on physical construction would lead to greater outcomes in terms of timing, delivery, and cost. Add virtual building into the mix and you’ve got an environment that sparks proactive engagement and, ultimately, greater results. This post makes the case for building in a virtual environment.
“What if?” This tends to be the reoccurring question each project team faces when working with a 4D BIM construction-sequencing model. Model-based sequencing links model elements to schedule activities to develop a construction-sequencing plan. 5D model-based estimating adds in the element of cost to the 3D BIM model. The construction sequencing method is an invaluable resource for developing the project plan for the activity sequence and logistical requirements on an active construction site, or phased occupancy of a renovation, retrofit, addition.
It seems like every month there is a new state regulation or internal business decision that requires a higher level of performance for buildings and their related infrastructure. From Life Cycle Cost Analysis (LCCA), to beating the CA Energy Code we are all faced with the reality that faster, better, cheaper, and more efficient is becoming an extremely difficult equation. Most medium to large organizations are also plagued with differed maintenance protocols, legacy software, and a dwindling or rigid workforce environment. The industry will need to adapt, reinvent, and do more with less to survive this new regulatory environment. The solution to this need is widely accepted as a software solution, but there is still a lot of work to be done. Organizations will not only need to change their informational workflows, they will also need intuitive software solutions that bridge the gaps between capital planning, construction/record drawings, facilities work order management, and asset management systems. The question is no longer “Why BIM?”, but what Level of Development (LOD), layers, and informational resources are we looking for from the design team and contractors. Even for folks not actively using these added features today, dollars to dimes they are using a system that will accept some form of layered export from BIM.
Let’s face it BIM is here to stay. The process is truly transforming project planning and management. But is it really a useful process? At first blush, you say, “yes.” The data generated from a model can be leveraged into a beneficial visual and informational aid for design and field personnel. Field activities require practical and accurate information from the model to apply to physical construction. So why is it so hard to implement BIM in the field? Could it be that time and accuracy is lost from manual activities? Are teams still making calculations from 2D plans? Are they using old measurement methods? To get to the heart of the matter, this post explores the facts and fiction of BIM.
Reaching project target costs is a whole lot easier with 5D model-based cost estimating. 5D model-based cost estimating links and maps model elements and associated construction quantities to develop a project cost plan. 4D construction sequencing brings the element of time or schedule to the 3D BIM model; 5D brings the element of cost. This cost estimating method is an effective way to work together with the owner and project stakeholders, leveraging a wealth of information and experience from the model to the project in a visually communicative way. Use of 5D model-based cost estimating may still be a fairly new practice for some people. However, I am pleased to report that we’ve had great success using model-based estimating over the past 10 years. This article aims to illustrate how 5D model-based cost estimating can be successfully applied on your next project.
When you think of a project’s lifecycle, chances are virtual and augmented reality technologies may not immediately come to mind. In recent years, mobile technologies have changed the face of design and construction by becoming tools that support traditional methods, allowing people to conduct business on the go. You will find mobile combined with virtual and augmented reality technologies empowers clients, designers and builders alike.
As virtual reality technologies become more commonplace, there is a growing demand for a spatial understanding of the future building and its' workspaces. From a builder’s perspective, there is increasing pressure to perform more efficiently without sacrificing quality and safety. The only way to enable these efficiencies is by rethinking the project delivery method.
It is pretty well understood that every project requires a different set of skills from from each stakeholder. When rethinking a project’s delivery, a majority of the important decisions occur early on in the design phase. Let’s suppose all the stakeholders are included at this phase allowing for more accurate scope and geometric detail. Together, project stakeholders could make decisions that would lead to dramatic effects on the physical construction of the project in the areas of timing, delivery and cost.