Building Information Modeling

This method takes CAD one step further and produces drawings in 3D with the ability to review a real time scheduling process. This is a virtual reality step for the construction industry. The CM/GC will now have the ability to review the project from any prospective. As an example, if the CM/GC wants to review a structural detail at a complicated connection, this would be possible with BIM. BIM has many advantages to offer the CM/GC, including the following:

1. Take off of materials would be simplified.

2. Complicated details could be reviewed and analyzed.

3. Coordination of the various trade components can be reviewed for potential "hits."

4. Sequence of putting a project together is enhanced.

5. The fourth dimension (time) can be incorporated to show how fast a project can be put together.

6. Site work elevations between existing conditions and the final elevations can be determined.

7. The best routing for ductwork, pipes, wires, lights, sprinklers, and cables can be reviewed.

8. Logistics of the site with the location of cranes and hoists can be analyzed.

9. Lift schedules for the placement of steel, concrete, and large mechanical and electrical equipment can be determined.

10. The development of schedules and the associated logic will be enhanced.

11. Potential safety problems can be assessed.

12. Can evaluate alternatives in more realistic terms.

13. Can coordinate trades prior to performing the actual work.

Exhibit 22-3 shows a typical BIM building layout, indicating the location of steel, ductwork, lights, and the ceiling within a proposed project. As depicted in this exhibit, the contractor can actually see the elements of a portion of a project without actually constructing that section of the project.

BIM has not been fully integrated with the architectural profession or the contracting community. According to a December 10, 2007 Engineering News-Record Special Advertising Section, approximately 48% of architectural firms and 13% of contractors are using BIM. The reluctance to use BIM has to do with costs, lack of industry standards, lack of expertise, and lack of proper training. However, one of the biggest factors is the question of liability and potential exposure to lawsuits. The question is which discipline will take the responsibility for showing these details—the consultants or the CM/GC. However, the article stated more acceptance of BIM would occur within the next year.

The following are some of the software companies offering BIM programs:

1. Autodesk Revit

2. ArchiCAD from Graphicisoft

3. Bently Architecture

4. Digital Project from Gehry Technologies LLC

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Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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