Building: The entire lifecycle of the building is considered (design/build/operations)
Information: All information about the building and its lifecycle is included
Modeling: Defining and simulating the building, its delivery, and operation using integrated tools
BIM integrates work, processes, and information for Multiple disciplines, companies and project phases.
During design, there is increased opportunity for design iterations, as information is exchanged between disciplines quickly. Project documentation requires less time wasted on grunt work. Professionals can spend less time documenting decisions and more time making them. Everyone can avoid redundant effort. And construction can better support fast-tracking, tightly managed schedules, and the shared risks and rewards of design/build.
Improve the quality of work.
Improved coordination between documents, between disciplines, and across the entire team reduces errors and omissions. With coordinated documents and well-captured design intent, the enhanced design process makes for a far more informed design environment.
Quality can also be found in the pursuit and realization of higher design objectives - sophisticated building forms, innovative use of materials or assemblies, sustainable 'green' design, better performing buildings, and more.
Enhance profitability and competitiveness.
Lower the bottom line: Effectively applied man-hours, efficient deliverables, lower error and omission remediation costs can all dramatically impact profitability. Moreover, the increased predictability of managed costs can be realized in lower contingencies. Many BIM practitioners can even point to lower insurance premiums as result of reduced project claims.
Raise the top line: With a faster delivery of service, more competitive quality of work, and tighter bidding for design and construction services, BIM enables more profitable practice.
From the AIA Convention 2006 Plenary session - "Prepare yourselves for a new profession in coming decades" warned Thom Mayne, FAIA, 2006 Pritzker Prize winner and Morphosis principal. There now exists a medium that can allow the architect to start with land forms, develop and test design concepts, and move through millions of bits of information to final form, capturing all of those decisions in a database useable by fabricators, constructors, and owners.
It is the embedded process, not the end product that fascinates Mayne. The new tools, he said, allow him to concentrate on design rather than the much-more-mundane physical aspects of building and analyzing models. This allows him to produce spaces it would have been impossible to conceive 10 years ago, much less build. And this increase in performance allows U.S. architects to compete in the ever-tighter global markets. Architects should be demanding these capabilities, Mayne exhorted.
Using the San Francisco Federal Courthouse he is currently developing with the General Services Administration as an example, Mayne showed how BIM blurs the line from design to prototyping and fabrication/construction. It also allows micro and macro iterations during design development through computerized modeling. It is possible to develop a model, have it thoroughly analyzed, and reevaluate its design within a day without a hand ever touching a physical model. Thus, design development moves much more in keeping with the speed of the creative, critical, iterative mind, with very high specificity, Mayne said. "Anything you can imagine is possible."
Bentley's unifying technology platform and discipline-specific applications for the AEC industry, include: