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An Executive Overview of BIM





BIM helps architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) service providers apply the same approach to building and infrastructure projects. Unlike CAD, which uses software tools to generate digital 2D and/or 3D drawings, BIM facilitates a new way of working: creating designs with intelligent objects. Regardless of how many times the design changes—or who changes it—the data remains consistent, coordinated, and more accurate across all stakeholders.


Cross-functional project teams in the building and infrastructure industries use these model-based designs as the basis for new, more efficient collaborative workflows that give all stakeholders a clearer vision of the project and increase their ability to make more informed decisions faster. Models created using software for BIM are ―intelligent because of the relationships and information that are automatically built into the model. Components within the model know how to act and interact with one another. A room, for example, is more than an abstract concept. It is a unique space contained by other building components (such as walls, floors, and ceilings) that define the room’s boundary.


With BIM, the model is actually a complex database and the room is a database element that contains both geometric information and nongraphic data. Drawings, views, schedules, and so on are ―live views of the underlying building database. If designers change a model element, the BIM software automatically coordinates the change in all views that display that element—including 2D views, such as drawings, and informational views, such as schedules—because they are all views of the same underlying information.


Early access to the rich information in the models helps everyone on the project team gain more insight into their projects. As a result, the team can make more-informed decisions much earlier in the planning, design, construction, or renovation process—when decisions can have the greatest impact on project cost, schedule, and sustainability.



BIM for Design and Construction

Building Information Modeling (BIM) is transforming the way in which we design and construct. BIM can be thought of as a virtual prototype which allows any aspect of a design to be simulated and assessed before it is built, helping us to understand the designs performance more completely and accurately, and allowing us to make better and more informed design decisions much earlier in the process. The BIM model becomes a reference for better construction.



BIM for Facilities Management

Post construction the BIM model continues to evolve and is passed to the asset owners and operators connecting BIM data from the design and construction phases to the building operations phase. With an accurate and detailed inventory of assets and space, owners can reduce operating costs and better manage a buildings occupancy and property information.



A succesful BIM project can:


*Stanford University Center for Intergrated Facilities Engineering (CIFE) figures based on 32 major projects using BIM

BIM achieves all the above because it is not simply a 3D animation, it is an intelligent project model in which information is embedded so it can be shared between stakeholders throughout the entire building lifecycle.