What if you could foresee every possible issue in a building project before construction started? What if your plans could be digitally mapped to the smallest detail before work began? What if having this knowledge could save tens of thousands, even hundreds of thousands, in unknown costs?
That’s what BIM offers. It’s virtual construction of a building before the building is ever built. And it’s revolutionizing the building industry.
But, the impact doesn’t stop there. BIM offers benefits to many different industries. Here’s a few that could benefit the most:
Overall, any industry in need of a vertical building will receive immense advantages by using BIM for their construction, such as the medical industry, educational sector, and any business requiring multi-level office complexes.
Vertical buildings represent the most spatial conflict in construction and therefore need the most spatial coordination. Each building requires loads of important systems and none are greater or lesser in importance than the other. The necessity to maneuver and coordinate these crucial systems in tight spaces makes BIM a huge benefit.
With virtual design construction, also known as VDC or BIM, we’re virtually constructing that building down to the smallest details. From the steel that holds the building to the piping that runs the water system. We’re putting every last piece together in a virtual world first to make sure all the trades are working together.
Instead of finding a problem once concrete foundations and walls have been constructed, we’re diagnosing any issues so a hole never needs to be cut into the wall, which can add thousands to your project cost.
Prisons, in particular, gain many advantages by using BIM drawings before construction. Each wall, holding cell, and room is constructed as cement blocks. For everything to flow, you must have wall penetration coordination.
A mistake or miscalculation during the construction of a detention facility can be costly. It means holes must be cut in already constructed concrete walls. To do this, OSHA requires a special concrete saw with an OSHA-certified HEPA-vacuum to suck concrete dust, along with a worker trained to operate and cut the hole. For a general contractor, the cost could easily reach $2,500 or more to create one hole.
Instead, if a concrete worker has a drawing, they’ll know exactly where to place a hole and the block masons will create that opening exactly where it must be located.
The time and cost savings are monumental.
The workers in the field need to have all the information possible to make a project successful and cost-effective. People like plumbing contractors, mechanical contractors, HVAC contractors, electrical contractors, specialty contractors, site utility contractors, all benefit by having prefabricated drawings. This takes the guesswork out of the project for their workers, while knowing exactly what supplies and how many supplies will be needed for completion.
When architects and engineers are putting together the plans for a construction project, there are variables in the actual layout that may be unknown. Virtual design construction fine-tunes those drawings.
For example, there may be a project where the architect wants 20-foot ceilings. Even though the architect works their specifications in 3D to model, the ductwork for the building may only be able to go18 feet due to the required structural beams. In our virtual drawings, we can show architects and engineers how their drawn specifications won’t allow for the needed operating systems to be installed. Adjustments can then be made before any construction begins.
One major bonus for using BIM drawings for general contractors is that it forces all subcontractors – plumbers, HVAC, electricians – to put some skin in the game. By involving the tradesmen from the beginning, it removes any excuses or complaints during the project that “this doesn’t fit,” or “we need more money,” or “we need a change order.” All details are taken care of on the front end.
Virtual construction drawings input real manufacturers content into the project, which makes certain the specific measurements even of a specific brand always fits and always works. For example, if there are 50 $25,000 air conditioners involved in the project, the drawings make sure those air-conditioners are viable.
These are only a few industries who are positively impacted by the use of BIM drawings when undertaking a building project. Knowing what you’re getting into before any cement is poured or pipes installed can save you thousands, which means virtual construction pays for itself.
It’s also a great way to avoid headaches.