The technology hot topic throughout the AEC industry these days is Building Information Modeling (BIM). Why? Because it's transforming construction projects from piecemail contributions of architects, engineers, and construction crews to an integrated process that takes place on one platform, from planning to completion. As a software company, we don't use BIM, but as big fans of technology, we highly recommend it. So we'll focus on the software part and provide you with a list of BIM options we've compiled through our network. If you're not already using BIM it will help you get your feet wet and at least allow you to see what you could be missing. You can also refer to the previous blog post from Barton Malow if you want a testimony of its capabilities. In no particular order:
Software: Beck Technology DProfiler
In their own words: "Beck Technology develops building information modeling (BIM) software to improve early decisions in preconstruction. The company’s flagship program, called DProfiler™, integrates conceptual 3D modeling with cost estimating intelligence enabling project teams to evaluate more alternatives in less time with better clarity before moving into design development."
Noteworthy projects: Armed Forces Reserve Center (TX), General Services Administration (DC), Tarleton State University (TX)
In their own words: "Autodesk BIM software facilitates an improved way of working collaboratively, using a model created from coordinated, consistent design information. This process enables earlier decision-making, better documentation, and the evaluation of alternatives for sustainable design or improvements using analysis before construction begins."
Noteworthy projects: Nasa Sustainability Base(CA), Freedom Tower (NYC), Lackland Air Force Base (TX)
Software: Tekla Structures
In their own words: "Tekla Structures is the first Building Information Modeling (BIM) software covering the entire structural design process from conceptual design to detailing, fabrication and construction. Tekla's model-based software products are used in nearly 100 countries."
Noteworthy projects: Central Park Tower (NYC), Solaris Redevelopment (CO), Aldar Headquarters (UAE)
Software: Vectorworks Architect
In their own words: "Vectorworks Architect is elegant architectural CAD software that offers BIM capabilities in a flexible, hybrid-design environment. With its superior 2D and 3D functionality, you’ll enjoy an ease-of-use not found in competing products. Vectorworks Architect’s approach to BIM lets you improve your existing design process instead of replacing it—making it easier for many firms to adopt a BIM workflow."
Noteworthy projects: Venice International Film Festival Headquarters(Italy), Amherst College (MA), KLC School of Design (UK)
Software: Bentley BIM Solutions
In their own words: "Bentley's integrated multi-disciplinary Building Information Models (BIM), Generative Design, and Building Performance products empower architects, engineers, energy assesors, and other professionals to design, analyze, construct and manage buildings of all types."
Noteworthy projects: Melbourne Rectangular Stadium (Australia), Wayne L. Morse US Courthouse (Oregon), US Army Corps Facilities
Software: Vico 5D Virtual Construction Software
In their own words: "The Vico Office suite is a highly integrated solution designed specifically to bring the benefits of BIM to construction companies. The software synchronizes the 3D virtual construction model, estimating and scheduling data, and helps construction firms determine how best to construct buildings. The Vico Office suite covers project constructability, estimating, cost management, schedule planning, procurement, and the change management processes."
Noteworthy projects: Doha International Airport (Qatar), Ritz Carlton Highlands Lodge (CA), Kamppi Center (Finland)
Some good BIM reads:
Using BIM to Improve Processes
What is BIM Model or Building Information Modeling?
The "D"s of BIM Defined
How might contractors benefit from using BIM?
The BIM Checklist
The Simple BIM Concept
Building Information Modeling: Risks and Rewards
Team approach, risk sharing necessary to make most of BIM
Phoenix's CityScape uses new building program
BIM Resources from Reed Construction Data