CitA BIM Gathering: Proceedings, 2017

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Building Capabilities in Complex Environments

BIM Gathering 2017

CitA BIM Gathering 2017 Proceedings Supported by

CitA BIM Gathering 2017, Croke Park, November 23rd & 24th, 2017

Building Capabilities in Complex Environments

BIM Gathering 2017

CitA BIM Gathering Conference 2017 Hosted by The Construction IT Alliance (Est. 2002)

Edited Dr. Alan Hore Dr. Barry McAuley Prof. Roger West

Published in 2017 ISBN 397809573957-2-6

Published by The Construction IT Alliance

Š Copyright Declaration All rights of papers in this publication rest with the authors.

This publication is part of the proceedings of the CITA BIM Gathering Conference held in the Croke Park, Dublin, Ireland, on 23rd – 24th November 2017. Copies of these proceedings are available from: Dr. Alan V Hore School of Surveying and Construction Management, Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton Street, Dublin 1, Ireland eMail:

Papers are also available on the conference website Website and conference engine by Ex Ordo

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Organisation Committee Ralph Montague, Arcdox Michael Murphy, BAM (Ireland) Dr. Barry McAuley, Secretary, Construction IT Alliance Suzanne Purcell, Conference Manager, Construction IT Alliance Bairbre Fox-Mills, Administrator, Construction IT Alliance Ylenia Morselli, Construction IT Alliance Mai Morrissey, Construction IT Alliance Bernard Voortman, Cummins and Voortman Trevor Woods, Construct IT Dr. Alan Hore, Chair, Dublin Institute of Technology and Founding Director CitA Brian Lahiff, Garland Consultancy Dr. Shawn O’Keeffe, MMA Consulting Engineers John Kerrigan, Leica Geosystems JP Kelly, Murphy Surveys Michael Earley, Scott Tallon Walker Professor Roger West, Trinity College Dublin Dr. Ken Thomas, Waterford Institute of Technology

Scientific Committee Dr. Daniel O’Neill, Dr. Barry McAuley, Secretary, Construction IT Alliance Dr. Alan Hore, Dublin Institute of Technology Dr. Avril Behan, Dublin Institute of Technology Dr. Louis Gunnigan, Dublin Institute of Technology Dr. Dermot Kehily, Dublin Institute of Technologyy Malachy Matthews, Dublin Institute of Technology Dr. Roisin Murphy, Dublin Institute of Technology Professor Lloyd Scott, Dublin Institute of Technology Dr. Shawn O’Keeffe, Headcount Engineering Professor Roger West, Trinity College Dublin Dr. James O’Donnell, University College Dublin Dr. Ken Thomas, Waterford Institute of Technology

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CitA BIM Gathering Conference 2017


Building on the successes of the 2013 and 2015 events this conference will continue to act as a focal point for all stakeholders who are grappling with the challenge of working with BIM technologies and collaborative work processes in Ireland. Since our previous Gathering in 2015, the formation of the National BIM Council and the funding of the BIM Innovation Capability Programme (BICP), both championed by Enterprise Ireland, have been critically important initiatives in helping to formalise Ireland’s position in respect to the strategic use of BIM in the construction industry. Over the past two years CitA has acted as the secretariat to the National BIM Council and focused on collating applicable data to influence the work of the council through the BICP. We are confident that CitAs work in advising the council in the strategic direction of Ireland’s Digital Construction Roadmap 2018-2021 will be well received by all stakeholders. Similar to our earlier CitA BIM Gathering proceedings a selection of papers will be included in a special edition of the International Journal of 3-D Information Modeling (IJ3DIM) in 2018. Finally, I would like to thank all our authors and the work of our scientific committee in reviewing these papers.

Dr. Alan V Hore, Conference Chair

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CitA BIM Gathering Best Paper Awards Best Industry Paper Sponsored by Engineering Design Consultants Best Academic Paper Sponsored by John Sisk & Son (Holdings) Ltd. Best Collaboration Paper Sponsored by Designer Group Best Overall Award Paper Sponsored by ZUTEC

Our sponsors

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Table of Contents BIM for Government


Breaking into the black box - Demystifying BIM Data. Anand Mecheri and Prof. Roger P West. Stewardship of International BIM Programmes: Lessons for Ireland. Dr. Barry McAuley, Dr. Alan Hore, Prof. Roger West and Shiyao Kuang

Digital Technologies that Support BIM

109 Automatic Validation of As-Is and As-Generated IFC BIMs for Advanced Scan-to-BIM Methods. Dr. Shawn O’Keeffe, Neil Hyland, Dr. Conor Dore and Shane Brodie Verifying BIM Deliverables with Neil Reilly, Ralph Montague and Anthony Buckley-Thorp

Level 1 before Level 2. Robert Moore

Technology Integration for Complete BIM Implementation. JP Kelly

Ireland’s BIM Macro Adoption Study: Establishing Ireland’s BIM Maturity. Dr. Alan Hore, Dr. Barry McAuley, Prof. Roger West, Dr. Mohamad Kassem and Shiyap Kuang

IMPRESS BIM Methodology (iBIMm) - Façade Retrofit Methodology using Cloud Based Open Source BIM. Adalberto Guerra Cabrera, Shirley Gallagher, Nick Purshouse and Dimitrios Ntimos

BIM in Infrastructure - Challenges & Solutions Robert Ryan and Joost Schlebaum

The BIM & Scan® Platform: A Cloud-Based Cyber-Physical System for Automated Solutions Utilising Real & Virtual Worlds. Shane Bordie, Neil Hyland, Dr. Conor Dore and Dr. Shawn O’Keeffe

BIM + Blockchain: A Solution to the Trust Problem in Collaboration? Malachy Mathews, Dan Robles and Professor Brian Bowe

The Automation of BIM for Compliance Checking: A Visual Programming Approach Jonathan Reinhardt and Malachy Matthews

A Study on Supporting the Deployment and Evaluation of Government Policy Objectives Through the Adoption of Building Information Modeling. Shiyao Kuang, Dr. Alan Hore, Dr. Barry McAuley and Professor Roger West

BIM for Education

Automatic Open Standard Reporting for Dimensional Control Compliance. Neil Hyland, Dr. Shawn O Keefe, Dr. Conor Dore and Shane Brodie 63

Approches to solving the problem of BIM search: towards machine learning assisted design Hamed Khademi and Dr. Avril Behan

BIM Case Studies

Procuring with BIM

165 Special Education Needs (SEN) School as an example of conversion of CAD based design data and non-graphical information into Common Data Environment with the use of BIM designing programme. Piotr Nabzdyk

Integrating BIM into a Structural Engineering curriculum – From absent to infused. Ted McKenna, Amanda Gibney and Mark Richardson3

BIM and Intellectual Property Rights in Ireland. Simon Fraser and Ralph Montague 83

Establishing the key pillars of innovation required to execute a successful BIM strategy within a Construction Micro SME in Ireland Patrick Carroll and Dr. Barry McAuley

An investigation into the combined use of Graphical Programming and Building Information Modelling to automate the Passive House Verification Process through the use of practical case studies. Andy McNamara

What lessons can be learned from the delivery of the first building on the Grangegorman Campus using Building Information Management (BIM)? Pat O’Sullivan and Dr. Avril Behan An investigation into the benefits of using Building Information Modelling during the Construction Phase of a Schools Bundle 4 Public Private Partnership Project. Dr. Brian Graham and Brook Cameron

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Table of Contents continued BIM Education and Training

187 The potential to enhance and develop BIM capabilities of companies in the AEC sector through collaboration with third level institutions in knowledge transfer partnerships (KTPs). Gervase Cunningham, Sharon McClements, Mark McKane and David Comiskey “Tri-varsity, Inter-disciplinary BIM Workshop”, An Action Research International Example. Chisholm, G. Duxbury, L., Muller, E., Olner, G. and Robertson, F. Linking Geospatial Engineering into Collaborative Multidisciplinary BIM Projects - an Educational Perspective Dr. Avril Behan, Helen Murray, Jonathan Argue, Ronan Hogan, Dr. Audrey Martin, Pat O’Sullivan, Robert Moore and Malachy Mathews Incorporating Building Information Modeling learning on BSc(Hons) Quantity Surveying & Commercial Management programme at Ulster University Gervase Cunningham, Sharon McClements, Mark McKane and David Comiskey

BIM for FM


Barriers to Benefit from Integration of Building Information with Live Data from IOT Devices during Facility Management Phase. Zohreh Pourzolfaghar, Peter McDonnell and Markus Helfert Building Manager Requirement Specifications for Efficient Building Operation Sergio V. Pinheiro, Paul Kenny and Dr. James O Donnell Development of a Model View Definition (MVD) for Thermal Comfort Analyses in Commercial Buildings using BIM and EnergyPlus Fawaz Alshehri, Paul Kenny, Sergio Pinheiro, Usman Ali and Dr. James O’Donnell The Life Cycle Engineer Joe Maddy

Cultural Change and BIM


The Virtual Interactive Relationship between BIM Project Teams: Effective Communication to aid Collaboration in the Design Process Emma Hayes and Noha Saleeb

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CitA BIM Gathering Proceedings

BIM for Government Page 8

CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th

Breaking into the black box - Demystifying BIM data 1 1

Anand Mecheri and 2Prof. Roger P. West

Invicara Limited, 22 Northumberland Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4, Ireland


Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering, Trinity College, College Green, Dublin 2, Ireland E-mail:


Abstract ̶ As industry thinking about BIM tools and processes has evolved, the conversation about BIM has become very confusing for owners who often see BIM as a “black box” – with plenty of hyperbolae, substantial added cost, and unclear value. Without question, model geometry-based workflows help improve design co-ordination and achieve better constructability, but when owners ask for BIM, what they really need is data, “building information” aggregated through the collaborative process. The next major transformation of the industry will be driven by extending the boundaries of what BIM data can do to obtain better project outcomes, not only for owners but also designers, builders and manufacturers. By connecting desktop authoring tools to cloud-based data management services, projects will benefit from enabling new methods for extracting and extending associated data and documents with model elements and enable non-modelers who produce and consume data to easily work with BIM. Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) will enable collaborative digital workflows that leverage data, not just documents, and help optimise work processes for everyone in the supply chain and the owners. This paper will describe broadly the practical problems in successfully implementing information management for Irish and international BIM projects through examples of how BIM works or does not work in practice and will present workflows to address some of the challenges to obtain better project outcomes. A generic software solution will be proposed to establish a systematic approach to extract, aggregate, associate, verify and validate data creating a repository of record, a data model referred to as “Integrated BIM” in this paper. An example will be provided of how it can be leveraged to support digitisation of building operations and management. Keywords ̶ Asset Information Model, BIM, Common Data Environment, Data Management, Integrated BIM

I. INTRODUCTION The pace of growth of interest in Building Information Modelling (BIM), its processes, procedures and techniques has been expanding rapidly globally [1]. Indeed, the Irish construction industry and academia have also experienced accelerated adoption while being aware that some other countries are further advanced in their BIM journey [2]. The work of the BIM Innovation Capability Programme (BICP, [3]), under the auspices of CitA, has been instrumental in advising the Irish BIM Council on the roadmap towards mandatory BIM for public projects. But in establishing the state of readiness for the true integration of BIM into construction processes, it is clear that many practical problems remain. This paper will discuss in detail specific challenges faced by the construction industry to efficiently manage the large volume of data that is generated on construction projects and the challenges of making data easily accessible for multiple workflows. The

paper will discuss the problem of data silos and its consequences, taking the specific example of turnover of design and construction data into an Asset Information Model for Facility Management (FM) and operations. The paper will also propose a generic software system that would help to develop a system of record in the form of a flexible, extendable and expressive data model with examples of how it can be leveraged to support digitisation of design, construction and operation of buildings. The assertions in this paper are based on original research where the authors have interviewed a wide cross-section of industry stakeholders across various regions of the world with an intent to develop a firm understanding of some of the fundamental challenges in data management in construction projects. The interviewees include BIM managers and project managers of leading multi-national engineering and construction companies, architectural firms, specialist BIM

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th consultants and building owners. The proposal for a generic software solution made in this paper is an outcome of insights derived from an analysis of the data management challenges in the construction industry on one hand and, on the other, the development of a deep understanding of software technologies and principles and how they have been successfully applied in other industries to solve similar problems.

II. THE NATURE OF DATA This paper does not discuss management of documents such as models, drawings, data sheets, contracts, requests for information (RFIs), change orders, etc. Several cloud-based software systems are available for the industry to efficiently manage such documents on a construction project and make it available to those who need it, when they need it. The reference to data in this paper is in regard to that which is abstracted from or that which is used to create such documents. This is about both qualitative (attributes) and quantitative (measurable) data in respect of elements that make up building design and later the built environment. Such data can be organised in a database, searched, queried and analysed to generate meaningful information to assist decision making; Data that can remain associated with its related documents; Data that can be computed upon and used to derive other data.

III. DATA FLOW Well before building elements are modelled in a BIM authoring environment, they are defined and described somewhere. The starting point may be, for example, in a room data sheet that defines space requirements, finishes, specifications and quantities of assets. It could well be a table of data in a spreadsheet. This set of information ends up being a restrictive silo. While requirements drive the development of the design model, data relating to requirements tend to get disconnected from the model as they start developing in parallel paths. BIM authoring tools are not designed for data management and manage such associations. BIM is fragmented [4]. Designers tend to develop models to express design intent and not necessarily to ensure constructability. Contractors on the other hand need models that reflect the practical requirements of construction. The extent of detailing needed for prefabrication is far greater than the design model will ever have. While one would expect that design

models built upstream get enriched or re-purposed downstream, that is hardly the case. The standard of modeling across firms is not consistent and downstream players simply do not trust what they inherit. The other challenge relates to the authoring tool. Designers use tools that are not necessarily preferred by fabricators and, on the other hand, manufacturers (especially for custom and semicustom products) may need to use a different tool altogether. So, models are rebuilt many times and information is left behind in all of these translations. In the unique production process called construction, things change and changes are annotated and / or recorded in documents as text. The underlying data in models are not usually updated, partly because construction workflows are largely 2D / document based and because there is no way to efficiently maintain, manage, access and update data off a centralised model linked database. A lot of the data is now resident in another silo, as text. Finally, when it comes to commissioning, a new set of problems emerge. The design model is no longer reflective of the as-built condition, which is likely to be contained in a drawing or another model built using a different design tool. There is data associated with elements sitting in different models and, to complicate things further, commissioning data is likely to be in yet another database altogether. In most cases, because of the lack of an alternative, the owner’s mandate would be to update the design models to reflect the as-built data and massage all the data back into that model. There are many challenges when doing this resulting in a considerable amount of inefficient effort and the results tend to be sub optimal. The illustration in Figure 1 reflects the workflow utilised by a General Contractor to meet the requirements of a pharma client. An as-built model was developed by repurposing a design intent model and by merging into it, data from construction models and data from the commissioning process. In this case, the owner received a design model updated to as-built, with all the information massaged into it. However, after all this effort, information ended up getting locked into a design tool that is not suitable for use by the operators and managers of buildings. Most owners do not get such a rich model and when they do, they rarely open it. Information to manage the facilities very often gets rebuilt from scratch, typically in Excel sheets and files with little or no associativity to the original 3D model or 2D drawings delivered as a part of handover.

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IV. COMMON DATA ENVIRONMENT Against a background of a heterogeneous cocktail of authoring tools for BIM and CAD, the uneven and inconsistent modeling practices across firms, wide and varied taxonomies and lack of adherence to standardised classification of building elements, design and construction data are neither consistent nor normalised. Software system designs of the future must accept that these facts will not change in the near term and must leverage technology to overcome consequent challenges. For data to flow more seamlessly across this heterogeneous environment, it is essential that the data from differing sources can be associated. The data also needs to be trusted. Verification and validation of data must therefore remain at the core of any data management solution. At this time, the term Common Data Environment (CDE) has largely been restricted to the context of systems that support aggregation, management and dissemination of documents. The term CDE needs to be redefined to reflect a framework for managing data that can be searched, queried, associated, transformed and managed, addressing the manifold challenges articulated in this paper. While BIM Level 3 is as yet undefined and will demand a complex effort in respect to a central model that enables sharing of editable geometry across design tools, the goal of implementing a hub for data that serves as a trusted system of record to drive digitisation through datadriven workflows can be realised in the shorter term.

V. SYSTEM FOR DATA MANAGEMENT AND FOR “INTEGRATED BIM” For the industry to digitise its work processes and workflows, it may be concluded that there is a need for a new system for flexible data management. The notion that BIM is more than a model from an authoring tool and must in fact be a database has been around for a while [5], but the software industry has not yet delivered a system to realise the good potential arising therefrom. What if models from BIM design tools or data from Excel could simply seed “objects” into a BIM data set that starts developing, evolving and adapting as the project progresses? What if BIM objects from one source get associated with objects from other sources? What if these objects then get extended with layers of information that can be authored on the fly and / or created by applications that drive work processes? A system for data management for the built environment must have the ability to extract and transform data from a heterogeneous environment of BIM authoring tools, drawings, tables of data in spreadsheets, Comma Separated Value (CSV) files etc., and represent the data in an extendable, associative and expressive data model with the capability to verify and validate data. The term “expressive” refers to the system’s ability to allow tools and applications to access both discrete and derived information. The ability to update the data model, based on the results of the respective workflows, will create a system that can be truly

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referred to as a repository of record (see Figure 2). Such a repository of record can be referred to as “Integrated BIM”. The schematic in Figure 2 represents that the starting point for “Integrated BIM” could be a model from a design tool that provides geometric and spatial representation of the objects. Equally a starting point could also be rows from a spreadsheet representing building objects that in turn can be associated to an element represented in a model (or vice versa). The list of objects sourced from the sheet may be associated to a block on a DWG file or an annotation to a PDF file. The possibility that BIM need not be seen only in the context of a 3D model is an important consideration and the system must enable practitioners to realise that goal. A ‘design’ is not a model, but a collection of related information that can take on any number of forms from any number of sources. This ‘information set’ is the real deliverable, and models and drawings are just a sort of ‘reference layer’ for providing additional context. The notion that a model or drawing is any sort of ‘repository’ is something pitched by CAD vendors and BIM managers. An essential requirement for data management in the highly-fragmented process of developing and delivering information by multiple stakeholders across the various project stages, requires a very clear definition of who is responsible to deliver what data and when [6]. This needs to be reflected in contract language and more importantly form the basis for a

systematic method of verifying and validating the deliverables at every milestone. This will enable project teams to “trust” deliverables of other team members, improve productivity and reduce waste.

VI. DELIVERING VALUE OF BIM FOR FACILITIES MANAGEMENT AND OPERATIONS The previous section discussed the value of a repository of record or “integrated BIM” for enhancing productivity and collaboration during the capital phase (Figure 3). A natural and significant outcome is the benefit to FM and operations. Such a system would enable both users and operational systems for management of maintenance, space, comfort, energy, security, safety and others to easily have access to “Integrated BIM” to support FM and operations [7]. All technical systems that need building data will have the ability to access a single source of truth that gives access and stays updated as changes occur. This provides owners and operators of buildings and infrastructure the flexibility to implement a wide array of systems to leverage and manage the “Internet of Things” in buildings.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th slow to adopt new technologies. Consequently, such platform efforts rarely start ab initio. While such systems are best developed by reimagining core concepts, without being constrained by legacy software architecture, the slow rate of new system adoption drives existing software vendors to bolt on features around their existing core, which unfortunately will not unshackle the true potential of digitisation. An example of software built from the ground up to deliver “Integrated BIM” is BIM Assure from Invicara (Figure 4).

The ability to update the “Integrated BIM” to reflect the as-maintained condition of the building and its assets is a value driver for owners and operators of the facility.

VII. STATE OF THE ART The proposed system for “Integrated BIM” is neither hypothetical nor aspirational. Software companies are beginning to invest in developing systems that begin to address these requirements, eventually enabling BIM Level 3. However, there are significant commercial constraints that inhibit innovation. For various reasons, the AEC industry has been relatively

As a first step, BIM Assure enables extraction and transformation of graphics and data from models, normalizing model content to a standardized taxonomy, consequently enabling data to be searched, queried, verified and validated against rules that reflect the defined Asset Information Requirements. It enables designers and contractors to find, fix and report on issues with model data. It helps owners and project managers get access to models and participate in the BIM process. It also allows model elements to be classified in the context of the required analysis or report. With further capabilities being added to layer information on top of the data set derived from models and drawings, associated data and files from multiple sources to elements in a model or references on a drawing, the system is evolving to be one of the first “Integrated BIM” platforms.

Figure 4: BIM Assure, an integrated BIM Platform

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VIII. CONCLUSIONS Data flow between design, manufacturing / prefabrication, construction and operations is disjointed, resulting in several data silos that pose significant challenges to a number of workflows. A manifestation of this problem is clearly seen in the provided example that reflects the challenge to deliver as-built models with information aggregated across the design, construction and commissioning process. BIM Level 2 has brought focus to the topic of data in models and the industry needs to upskill to deliver and consume data using standardised workflows. Achievement of BIM Level 2 successfully is predicated on (a) clear definition of Asset Information Requirements (b) assignment of responsibilities to clarify who delivers what data, when and how, (c) an automated system to verify and validate deliverables at each project milestone and (d) a system to enable the supply chain to easily aggregate and associate data to elements in models.

REFERENCES [1] Hore, A., McAuley, B. and West, R. (2017), BIM in Ireland 2017, CitA Ltd [2] Hore, A., McAuley, B. and West, R. (2017), BICP Global BIM Study, CitA Ltd [3] BIM Innovation Capability Programme (2017), Research Objectives, available from [4] Mahdjoubi, L., Brebbia, C.A. and Laing, R. (2015), Building Information Modelling (BIM) in Design, Construction and Operations, WIT Press, p 190. [5] Eastman, C. (2008), BIM Handbook: A guide to Building Information Modelling for Owners, Managers, Designers, Engineers and contractors, John Wiley & Sons, p 345. [6] Eynon, J. (2016), Construction Manager’s BIM Handbook, John Wiley & Sons, p 90. [7] Teicholz, P. (2013), BIM for Facility Managers, John Wiley & Sons, p 30.

To fully leverage the potential value of the “I” of BIM, it is essential to develop and deploy a system for data management that will help liberate data from the design environment and represent it in an extendable, associative and expressive database with verification and validation capabilities. Eliminating data silos and allowing unconstrained flow of data across the entire lifecycle of a project by integrating data from multiple sources will enable digitisation of work processes, improve productivity, reduce waste and enhance efficiencies. In effect, this will enable the achievement of BIM Level 3 in the context of data. The efficiencies this can bring to the supply chain including pre-fabrication, and manufacturing of custom / semi-custom products will potentially save enormous costs to the industry. Considering 80% of costs of in a buildings lifecycle comes from operations and facility management, a system to deliver “integrated BIM” is essential to make buildings more operationally performant, make them more efficient, comfortable and sustainable. The heterogeneous nature of design software in the AEC industry may not change in the foreseeable future and interoperability between them will continue to have limitations. Variations in modeling practices and non-standard taxonomies will reduce with greater investment in development of standards, training and maturing skills. However, absolute uniformity in these aspects will take time to achieve and software systems need to develop technologies to accept and deal with the consequent challenges.

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Stewardship of International BIM Programmes: Lessons for Ireland 1Dr.



Barry McAuley, 2 Dr. Alan Hore, 3Prof. Roger P. West and 4Shiyao Kuang

School of Surveying and Construction Management, Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton Street, Dublin 1, Ireland

Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering, Trinity College, College Green, Dublin 2, Ireland




Abstract ̶ The support by central government of national Building Information Modelling (BIM) programmes is common throughout the developed world today. To further understand how the different international governments have supported their BIM programmes the BIM Innovation Capability Programme (BICP) research team in Ireland recently completed a comprehensive Global BIM Study to help inform the National BIM Council (NBC) of Ireland in developing a Roadmap to Digital Transition for Ireland’s Construction Sector. This paper details the findings of a more concentrated investigation on a selection of jurisdictions on how particular international BIM programmes are orgainsed, managed and the level of governmental support that is evident in those jurisdictions. The BICP research team chose eight countries of particular interest given the relative advancement in their BIM journey. The authors secured responses from principal contacts in the countries chosen using an online survey. Whilst the results showed variation in approach amongst respondents, the consistent ingredient evident was decisive support from central government and representative groupings from industry. Evidence collated suggest that this is best achieved through the establishment of a central resource funded by central government to drive digital transition. Keywords ̶ Building Information Modelling, BICP, Public Works, Ireland, Mandate



BIM usage is accelerating rapidly across the globe, driven by the major private and government owners who want to embrace the benefits of faster, more certain project delivery and more reliable quantity and cost [1]. The support of central government for BIM implementation can be regarded as the key driving force leading to higher utilisation of BIM [2]. Successful national BIM implementation programmes create the momentum of leadership and coordination to maximise efficiencies and avoid the many problems created by piecemeal and disjointed approaches. It will be evident in this paper that government leadership needs the support of and collaboration with major industry players such as private sector clients, contractors and industry /professional associations.

II AIM AND METHODOLOGY The authors chose to build on the results of their recent Global BIM Report [3] and BIM in Ireland 2017 Study [4&5]. The Global BIM Study focused primarily on evidence of regulatory BIM, key champions and any noteworthy publications in particular jurisdictions. The study resulted in the authors making connections with persons involved in national BIM programmes in most of the 27 countries investigated. This networking led to the opportunity to deepen the conversation with particular international contacts and learn how their BIM programmes were organised, managed and the level of governmental support and initiatives that was evident. Table 1 provides a detailed list of the target organisations.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th Countries Australia Canada Finland France Germany United Kingdom Scotland South Korea

Contact Organisations QSx Tech and Change Agents AEC buildingSMART Canada VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and University of Liverpool Plan Transition Numérique dans le Bâtiment (PTNB) Planen-bauen 4.0 GmbH BIM Regions UK Scottish Futures Trust Myongji University and Tongji University

Table 1: List of contact organisations

III STEWARDSHIP OF INTERNATIONAL BIM PROGRAMMES This section will explore the different countries in greater detail with regards to how their international BIM programmes are orgainsed, managed and the level of governmental support that is evident in those jurisdictions. The authors sought to elicit the following information from the above contact organisations. 1.

Do you have a BIM regulatory requirement or a national BIM programme in your country?


Can you explain the timeline of your national BIM initiative?


Do you have any particular entity managing the BIM programme in your country?


Do you have any centres of BIM excellence in your country?


How is the national BIM programme managed (stewardship) in your country?


Are buildingSMART in any way active in your national BIM programme?


Are there any noteworthy publications or online resources detailing your national BIM programme?


What are the key ingredients of your national BIM programme?


What support mechanisms for industry (if any) are evident in your national BIM programme?

10. Are there any metrics / benchmarks in place to measure the performance of your national BIM initiative? 11. What is the likely future direction for your national BIM programme?

AUSTRALIA While no regulatory requirement for BIM is in place, each state has addressed the topic differently. The Queensland Government policy provides for the use of BIM on the full lifecycle of state infrastructure assets by 2023. The Victoria Government is focused on a digital economy with BIM playing a part and have provided for a pilot study in their 2015/16 Budget. The Transport for New South Wales (TfNSW) has developed a strategy for implementing BIM. An initial step in the process is the development of a Digital Engineering Task Group to investigate possible strategies for the implementation of BIM in TfNSW projects. The Transport & Infrastructure Council (which includes every State, Territory and Federal Minister for Transport, Infrastructure or Local Government) endorsed the National Digital Engineering Policy Principles on November 2016 “which provides a national framework to promote greater consistency”. Despite no mandate being in place the Australasian BIM Advisory Board (ABAB) has been established by two industry groups; the Australasian Procurement and Construction Council (APCC) and Australian Construction Industry Forum (ACIF). buildingSMART Australasia has been active for nearly two decades and has tried to convince the government to adopt a national BIM programme. The Transport Infrastructure Council has set up the National Digital Engineering Working Group to enhance the consistency in BIM consideration and application at a national level. NATSPEC has also provided R&D with regards to BIM for the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure, Tasmanian Department of Health and Human Services and the Queensland Department Transport and Main Roads. Other important initiatives include the standing Committee on Infrastructure, Transport and Cities Report which made BIM-specific recommendations which include: •

Recommendation 6 – The Australian Government to form a smart infrastructure task force led by Infrastructure Australia to act as a coordinator and conduit for the development and implementation of BIM policy nationally.

Recommendation 7 – The Australian Government require BIM to LOD500 on all infrastructure projects exceeding $50 million in cost receiving Australian Government funding, focusing on tendering mechanisms to facilitate this outcome with an eventual

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th goal of establishing BIM as a procurement standard. At this moment, the Australian Government’s position and future plans for BIM are uncertain with each individual government department responsible for their own roadmap. CANADA Canada has no federal requirement for BIM to-date. Some federal departments, provincial bodies, municipalities, educational institutions and private developers are setting a requirement for BIM use on design and construction projects on an ad-hoc or individual basis. Canada has a national-level roadmap for Lifecycle BIM in the AEC/FM industry, which has received a high level of praise within the country and abroad [6]. The roadmap, as illustrated in Figure 1, has a 6+ year timeframe with date attribution loosely based, and is used strictly to give an idea of length. It does not reflect strict start and end dates and instead identifies key activities to be achieved, in which order, and organised by streams of action types. The roadmap is managed by a committee of experts under buildingSMART Canada (bSC) and was developed by academic researchers and industry experts. The Roadmap outlines 6 key areas comprising of: 1. 2.

All community stakeholders, at all levels, must be actively engaged in the transformation. The technologies, processes and standards supporting the transformation must be rigorously, consistently and continually developed and maintained.


4. 5. 6.

All community stakeholders must be educated and trained to ensure the transformation be successful and maintained. The tools, technology and processes that are developed must be deployed and adopted within a conducive environment. The progression of this transformation must be continuously monitored and evaluated for effectiveness. The transformation must be sustained by all Canadian AECOO community stakeholders well beyond the initial transformation cycle.

Canada has three national-level entities that serve as centres of BIM excellence. The Institute for BIM in Canada (IBC), bSC and the Canada BIM Council (CanBIM). All three entities provide much needed expertise and leadership to the Canadian industry, and continue to develop a more integrated path forward. The IBC, in conjunction with bSC and various industry experts, has recently published a 3volume Canadian Practice Manual for BIM. At the provincial level, entities like the Alberta Centre of Excellence for BIM and the Table Multi-Sectorial BIM du Quebec are engaging industry. Finally, at a local level, BIM community or user groups are established in many of the major cities, and are tied in to the bSC Affiliate Program. A number of support mechanisms are in place such as published guidance documents, seminars, webinars, presentations, affiliate program for engaging local groups, workgroups and committees for focused activities (roadmap-related). While there is no regulatory requirement for BIM the industry continue to persevere with completing the activities identified in the roadmap.

Figure 1: Canadian BIM Roadmap (Source: buildingSMART Canada)

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th FINLAND The nationally funded large Tekes-research programmes, VERA and SARA (1997-2007) and the Pro IT development project (2003-2006), paved the way for industry-led adaptation. The Senate Properties BIM Guidelines were released in October 2007 to assist with the industry wide adoption of BIM and was updated in 2012 to a National BIM requirement. In October 2016, the Finnish Government started a new programme called KIRAdigi which is aiming for wider digitalisation of the construction industry, not only BIM. The programme duration runs until 2018 and has a total budget of €16 million [7]. With regard to the stewardship of the national roadmap the traditional model involved Tekes (Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation) which established a programme, nominated a Steering Group from the industry and hired a project leader based on either invitation or open bids. The project director and the Steering Group made the recommendations for the project funding, but as a result of this being publicly funded the final decision was made by Tekes. The current KIRAdigi operates like the old programmes, but its funding comes directly from the Government, not from Tekes. At present there is no single entity responsible for managing the BIM programme. Previously RYM Oy (Strategic Centre for Science, Technology and Innovation of the Built Environment in Finland) were responsible but it was discontinued in 2016. The current KIRAdigi programme continues the Finnish “traditional model” i.e. it is a lean project organisation which will run only a certain period of time. The RT (Building Information Institute) which currently hosts buildingSMART Finland and VTT (Technical Research Centre of Finland) are two of the main organisations with regards to all BIM related issues. The universities (Aalto University, Tamper University and Oulu University) could also be classified as BIM excellency centres. buildingSMART Finland hosts the development groups and was also instrumental in establishing the KIRAdigi programme. Some of the future plans of the Finish Government is to develop more guidelines for stakeholders in BIM based processes and for simulations / analyses. Other initiatives include tools for BIM model uses and model views for maintenance and operation. The InfraBIM standard Inframodel 4 will also be finalised and implemented. FRANCE The Minister of Housing, Equality of Territories and Rurality presented a plan to revive construction. The

Digital Transition Plan for Buildings (PTNB) is one of three action plans aimed at accelerating the deployment of digital tools across the entire building sector. As part of this initiative the PTNB published a Digital Construction Mission report which presented an opportunity for large-scale consultation with a full range of industry stakeholders. Within the report it suggested that BIM was profoundly altering all construction processes. The report concluded that implementation of the actions within the digital transition plan was to be entrusted to a dedicated team that will i) supervise the various measures to support the deployment of the plan; ii) provide highquality reporting about the deployment of the plan to all the ministries concerned. The steering committee gathering together the main professional parties involved and the public authorities, who were required to provide guidance on the strategy and how it fits with social issues, the coordination of technical deployment and the socioeconomic dimensions related to the transformation of the industry and to ensure that the actions are undertaken. Sector-specific groups are composed of representatives of professional organisations that will inform these different levels of their thoughts and specific needs. It was also recommended that a particular group of software vendors were to be set up to ensure the emergence of a French software offering based on the digital model and to support its international development. Finally, a group was required for the development of specific measures aimed at micro-businesses/SMEs. The PTNB created a French roadmap in 2015 which provides a three-year timeline [8]. This roadmap is structured around three guidelines, which are; i) experiment, capitalise and convince all stakeholders; ii) support the enhancement of the skills of professionals and stimulate the development of tools tailored to small projects and; iii) develop a trusted digital ecosystem through neutral, stable data formats that can be used in the description of the structures of digital models, tailored for software interoperability and for the development of open source applications. The French road map discusses plans for educational kits which will provide an understanding of the tools associated with BIM. There are also requests for an industry portal to highlight and make accessible all good practices, documents explaining concepts and strategies, etc. Support mechanisms in place include the French strategy for the sharing of pre- standardisation and standardisation of BIM applied to buildings and the XP P07-150 standard which enables BIM project professionals to use ecatalogues for products. Mediaconstruct represent the French chapter of buildingSMART and are the promoter of BIM-IFC in France. The PTNB also

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th created a Barometer to assist with benchmarking BIM projects.

provides a schematic illustration of the BIM reference process.

GERMANY There is a road map "Stufenplan Digitales Planen und Bauen" which makes the use of BIM mandatory for all new infrastructure projects (federal roads, water ways, rail) after 2020. The Mandate will see a requirement for an increasing number of pilot projects that will apply open and neutral data formats, as well as the use of partial domain models. Since January 2017 the use of BIM for all Federal building projects must be considered and decisions against must be justified. The BIM programme is managed by the: •

Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (road map until 2020) [9].

Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety.

Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (Funding schemes for economy).

Planen-bauen 4.0 GmbH is an industry initiative intended to coordinate and support the introduction of BIM and to consult public authorities. Leading institutions and associations from design, construction and operations started the limited company in February 2015. This joint and unique initiative, supported by the German Government and industry, aims to unlock the potential of digital design and construction and make it accessible to all members of the supply chain. Planen-baue 4.0 GmbH published the Road Map for Digital Design and Construction for Germany in 2015. This road map aims to provide sufficient time for clients and supply chains to adapt to a different way of working, supported by pilot projects. The map states that the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure will evaluate whether the development of model contracts may be helpful. It further outlines that, where appropriate, checklists should be developed that indicate the contractual arrangements that need to be agreed for a smooth implementation of BIM, such as arrangements regarding the transfer of data to the client. At present buildingSMART is not active on the national BIM programme but is involved in discussions. These discussions include further standardisation of open standards via buildingSMART International. buildingSMART is one of 59 shareholders of Planen-bauen 4.0. The German Government moving forward aims to produce a more detailed development of case studies per project phase and the stronger take up by other ministries such as Defence, R&D Education. Figure 2

Figure 2: Schematic illustration of the BIM reference process (Planen-bauen 4.0 GmbH) UNITED KINGDOM The UK Government approach has been to set out requirements but leave industry with delivery methods [10]. This has resulted in the UK BIM Task Group initially leading a Level 2 implementation in April 2016. This is now the responsibility of the UK BIM Alliance with Digital Built Britain responsible for a Level 3 BIM programme. In order to achieve the key ingredients of the mandate the UK has developed in tandem with their Level 2 BIM initiative a suite of connected frameworks and guidelines. This includes a number of Public Assessable Specifications (PAS) and British Standards (BS) which offer best practice in information management for the capital/delivery and operational phase of construction projects using BIM. The Construction Industry Council (CIC) has also released best practice guides that deals with those aspects of BIM which relate to Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII) and legal frameworks, in order to facilitate and promote the use of BIM. In order to have the correct support mechanisms in place in partnership with the BIM Alliance, 11 Regional BIM hubs (whose primary focus was to raise awareness and facilitate the early adoption of BIM processes) have been set up to address implementation concerns in specialised areas. A number of specialist groups through the BIM4 Communities initiative were also established. BIM excellence centres in the form of the BIM academy in Northumbria, have been set up. buildingSMART has been active with members contributing to standards. The aim of the UK

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th Government is to achieve Level 2 across the industry by 2020, with Level 3 implementation commencing in the same year. SCOTLAND The BIM Delivery Group for Scotland was created in August 2015 and the implementation plan for Scotland published in September 2015 [11]. The key objective was the adoption of BIM by April 2017. To this effect Scotland issued a Scottish Procurement Policy Note on the adoption of BIM which has been supported by the BIM Programme. The Scottish BIM Delivery Group is led by Scottish Futures Trust (SFT) who led on behalf of the Scottish Government. The main ingredients of the plan are; proportionality, innovation and appropriateness for the Scottish procurer. The Scottish BIM implementation plan has been split into 5 horizons. These horizons are (1) plan and launch, (2) mobilisation, (3) pathfinder projects, (4) BIM guidance and (5) launch of BIM Level 2. To support the plan and advance consultation with industry the SFT have developed various working groups which include the: BIM Supplier Group, BIM Buyers Group and BIM Academia Group. In addition, they have support from the BIM Regions and Construction Scotland Innovation Centre (CSIC). The CSIC are supported by Scottish Enterprise and in partnership with the SFT, BIM Region Scotland and the Scottish BIM Suppliers Group will be helping Scottish SMEs get ready for BIM Level 2 with a programme of free awareness and implementation events and a free impartial advisory service. The SFT has developed a number of tools that can capture live data from projects to measure a variety of Key Performance Indicators to support and measure the implementation of BIM within Scotland. The BIM grading tool provides a method to assess when a public-sector project should adopt BIM and to what level. The grading tool is an easy to use online questionnaire that seeks key data for a new project which helps assess to what level BIM should be implemented for that project. The BIM Compass is a simple, unambiguous and confidential way to assess one’s current BIM capability and compare against industry benchmarks. The Return on Investment BIM tool estimates the benefits and the level of return that the adoption of BIM Level 2 will bring to a project. The tool provides both a quantitative and qualitative assessment and this is reported within an easy to understand dashboard. A BIM portal has also been created where one can go to view a number of resources to assist with their BIM journey. The BIM Delivery Group for Scotland will continue to support the public sector in implementing BIM Level 2 on projects.

SOUTH KOREA South Korea has a BIM regulatory requirement in place since 2011. The Public Procurement Service (PPS) made BIM compulsory for all projects over S$50 million and for all public-sector projects by 2016. The South Korean Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport have provided S$5.8 million over a period of three years to build open BIM-based building design standards and information technology. The Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs produced a National Architectural BIM Guide which offered general guidelines on "How to adopt BIM" for public organisations. This serves as a foundation for other BIM guides and was distributed to 26 government bodies and organisations. It was developed in partnership with buildingSMART Korea. buildingSMART runs a certification program for BIM experts, which is cross-certified by buildingSMART International, buildingSMART Singapore, Singapore BCA and Netherlands Stitching OpenBIM. Info. To further support BIM implementation, the PPS released a BIM roadmap and BIM Guide. Figure 3 presents an overview of the PPS BIM Adoption Roadmap. The Korea Institute of Construction Technology have also released a National BIM Guide for the Overall Built Environment and a BIM Guide for Modeling FM Information. Other guides include the Land and Housing BIM Design Guide and the Ministry of National Defences BIM Guidelines. The South Korean representative stated that there is no particular entity managing the BIM programme in their country and is primarily guided by institutions such as buildingSMART and national research agencies. It is expected that BIM will continuing to gather momentum with more organisations preparing their own customised BIM implementation roadmap and strategies. Figure 3 illustrates the PPS BIM adoption roadmap.

Figure 3: PPS BIM Adoption Roadmap (Source: Lee, 2014) [12]

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This section will cross reference the findings from the different countries under the headings established in Tables 2 and 3. Time-Line On reflection, one can see that the average time to execute a mandate is within the region of 5 years. However, in countries such as France, which had a previously high maturity of BIM within the sector, the mandate is three years. Other countries such as Finland, South Korea and Scotland had short time frames due to the readiness of the sector to respond to a short mandate request. The Canadian roadmap has a 6+ year timeframe with date attribution loosely based, and used strictly to give an idea of length. The time frame of 5 years reflects what is obtainable for those who are relatively undeveloped within the area. Stewardship and Management 5 out of the 6 countries with mandates in place have an appointed government representative managing their BIM requirements. The UK BIM Alliance, Planen-bauen 4.0 GmbH, KIRAdigi, PTNB and Scottish BIM Delivery Group represent professional bodies that have been appointed by respective governments and have been armed with significant funding. These entities are tasked by Federal governmental agencies to lead, manage, coordinate and deliver a BIM implementation plan to address their recommendations. Despite no government mandate being in place, this has not prevented the

Canadian AEC sector deploying a BIM roadmap which is managed by buildingSMART Canada. Despite a top level request for BIM to be mandated by respective governments the operational strategy is primarily guided and executed by an external body. BIM Centres While dedicated BIM Centres are not a common pillar throughout, the appointment of a facility that can actively research and respond to key BIM topics is paramount. The UK for this reason have their BIM Academy, Scotland have the CSIC, South Korea have the Korea Institute of Construction Technology and Finland have RT. The IBC, bSC and CanBIM all serve as centres of BIM excellence. All of the countries which have an active mandate in place also have a BIM Centre. buildingSMART Except for Scotland, buildingSMART has played an advisory role in all of the mandates. Their role varies from country to country depending on the requested level of involvement. Their guidance with regards to open standards has been instrumental in the majority of the countries which have mandated BIM. Support mechanisms Most of the countries which have a mandate in place have developed a number of guidance documents on standards and professional practice. To achieve this a number of specialised groups has been created

Table 2: BIM requirements for Australia, Canada, Finland and France.

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Table 3: BIM requirements in Germany, Scotland, South Korea and UK which are responsible for collating data with regards to that sector. The primary support comes from the specified Government appointed BIM Task Group. Benchmarks Benchmarks are still an underdeveloped area in a number of countries. Some of the countries who are now advanced within their mandate have not addressed this issue. Scotland is one of the most advanced in this area as seen through its return on investment tool. Key ingredient for a Public-Sector Mandate The key ingredients for each country is varied but some common themes can be established with regards to leadership. All of the mandates require high levels of engagement with government, industry and academia to create a movement to BIM. This is usually the responsibility of a government-appointed Task Group which will shepherd this consultation process. The development of guidelines, protocols and technical codes to standardise the use of BIM is paramount in which buildingSMART has been seen to play an increasing role. A number of specialised communities are usually established to help guide this process. The development of training and educational programmes through different training bodies has been an obvious area which has required significant attention. Each jurisdiction has or will investigate their contractual frameworks to ensure a collaborative project delivery environment is present. While not evident in all the reviewed countries, there have been attempts to measure and access the impact and

maturity of BIM. In a number of countries, such as the UK, Germany and Scotland, their programmes have required specific pilot projects to serve as a key learning tool.

VII CONCLUSION Any proposed international BIM roadmap, whether driven from the private or public sector, requires strong and decisive stewardship from the professional body responsible. As seen from the selection of jurisdictions reviewed, it is crucial that a deep consultation with Industry is undertaken before the release of any roadmap. This in most cases is performed by an external body which has been tasked by the Government to meet their recommendations. These respective BIM delivery Groups must set realistic benchmarks which are dependent on the maturity of the industry and can vary between 3-5 years. These dates are based on proposed support mechanisms that will be in place to ensure targets are achieved. Most support mechanisms include guidelines, working groups, BIM portals, pilot projects, standards, etc. which are essential to any successful roadmap. Entities such as buildSMART have proven invaluable in providing guidance for these roadmaps. While not essential, many jurisdictions have either full or partial dedicated BIM centres, as well as established benchmarking tools. This has helped advance their roadmaps and are a strong indicator of a mature

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th sector. The overarching lesson to be learnt from this research is that a dedicated body must be established in Ireland by either the public or private sector institutions (or by a partnership between the two), to assist in meeting their stated BIM targets. If adequate resources and remits are provided to this body, as seen in the countries explored above, then the most desired outcome for all can be achieved. REFERENCES [1] McGraw Hill Construction (2014), The Business Value of BIM for Construction in Global Markets, McGraw Hill Construction, Bedford [2] Wong, A.K.D, Wong, F.K.W. and Nadeem, A., (2009), Comparative Roles of Major Stakeholders for the Implementation of BIM in Various Countires, Integration And Collaboration 3, Changing Roles

meetings-2014-toronto/p07-guidelines/bim-guidesin-korea ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The authors would like to acknowledge the following contributors to this paper. Dr. Arto Kiviniemi (University of Liverpool), Dr. Bilal Succar (Change Agents AEC), Mr David Mitchell (QSx Tech), Mr. Eddie Alix (Plan Transition Numérique dans le Bâtiment), Dr. Gang lee (Yonsei University), Dr. Ilka May (Planen-bauen 4.0 GmbH), Dr. Jan Tulke (Planen-bauen 4.0 GmbH), Mr. John Eynon (BIM Regions UK), Mr. Paul Dodd (Scottish Futures Trust), Mr. Tarja Mäkeläinen (VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland), Susan Keenliside (buildingSMART Canada) and Dr. Youngsoo Jung (Myongji University).

[3] Hore, A., McAuley, B. and West, R. (2016), BICP Global BIM Study, CitA Ltd. [4] Hore, A., McAuley, B. and West, R. (2016), BIM in Ireland 2017, CitA Ltd. [5] Hore, A., McAuley, B. & West, R. (2017). BIM Innovation Capability Programme of Ireland. In: LC3 2017: Volume I – Proceedings of the Joint Conference on Computing in Construction (JC3), July 4-7, 2017, Heraklion, Greece, pp. 761-768 [6] buildingSMART (2014), A Roadmap to Lifecycle Building Information Modelling in the Canadian AECOO Community, Version 1.0-7 [7] KIRA-digiGDA (2011) Objectives of KIRAdigiGDA, available at</> accessed (14/08/2017) [8] Le Plan Transition Numérique dans le Bâtiment, (2015), Plan for mthe digital transition in the building industry, June 2015 [9] Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Information, (2015), Road Map for Digital Design and Construction: Introduction of modern, IT-based processes and technologies for the design, construction and operation of assets in the built environment [10] Cabinet Office (UK), (2011), Government Construction Strategy, UK Government Cabinet Office, London [11] Scottish Futures Trust, (2015), Building Information Modelling (BIM) Implementation Plan, September 2015 [12] Lee, G. (2014) Towards BIM Guide 2.0: The current status of BIM Guides Development in South Korea, available at

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23th -24th 2017 Level 1 before Level 2

Robert Moore Grangegorman Development Agency, Dublin, Ireland. E-mail:, Abstract ̶ Government Contracts Committee for Construction (GCCC) has prepared a position paper titled ‘A Public Sector BIM Adoption Strategy’, which outlines the context and rationale for the adoption of BIM and puts forward a proposed timeline for adoption, the purpose of this position paper is to invite a response from industry [1]. This paper analyses the position paper on the subject of the implementation of the proposed mandate. The author defines what is implied by UK BIM Levels 0, 1, 2 and 3, and collates the responses from industry to the position paper regarding the implementation plan. This position paper is universally welcomed by organisations and there is a want for this initiative to be done right. It is clear from the position paper and responses that there is confusion in the definition of the BIM maturity levels, this confusion is also validated by the literature review. The respondents also want the new mandate to take direction from the upcoming EU BIM standards. The author proposes that the mandate should be for BIM level 1 first, to encourage the public sector to introduce information management processes into their organisation, before the proposed phased mandate for BIM level 2. Keywords - Building Information Modelling, Irish BIM Mandate, BIM maturity levels

I INTRODUCTION What is the best way forward for BIM implementation in the public sector? Now that the UK Level 2 mandate has come into effect, there is a movement to mandate BIM in Ireland. This mandate is necessary to move government bodies towards BIM, as they are traditionally slow to adopt new ways of working, the correct implementation is crucial to its success. The question remains what should Ireland do, should Ireland use the UK Level 2 mandate documentation as is, and fix a date for the mandate to take effect, as the UK did, but the UK gave 5 years notice to the industry before the mandate came into practice. Does Ireland have the luxury of this time? The position paper looks at a more staged approach in time, is this the right approach for Ireland so that results can be achieved quickly. This paper investigates what should the first step that the Irish industry or more importantly the government bodies need to take to prepare for the future state of a BIM level 2 mandate.

II LITERATURE REVIEW The literature review focuses first on the Government Contracts Committee for Construction’s (GCCC) ‘BIM Adoption Strategy Statement of Intent’ position

paper and then reviews what is meant by the BIM maturity levels. a) BIM Adoption Strategy position paper The GCCC published a position paper on the 15th March 2017, following consultation with public bodies engaged in public works projects, with the purpose of inviting responses from industry. The position paper titled ‘A Public Sector BIM Adoption Strategy’ outlines the context and rationale for the adoption of BIM and puts forward a proposed timeline for adoption. Statement of Intent: “Properly implemented, a public sector Building Information Modelling (BIM) adoption strategy will support the implementation of Government policy objectives in the procurement of public works projects, in their construction and in their maintenance upon completion.” Government policy objectives are defined as cost certainty at tender award stage, better Value For Money (VFM), and more efficient delivery of public works projects. The author will focus on the proposed implementation plan of the strategy. The strategy is primarily concerned with managing its adoption rather than case making. It recommends the adoption of BIM on public sector construction projects be mandated by Government to ensure a consistent and coherent approach to procuring BIM on public sector

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23th -24th 2017 building projects. Through consultation, the views of the main capital spending bodies have been taken on board in the preparation of the position paper. The position paper defines BIM maturity levels as; BIM Level 1: envisages each design team member operating in 2D or 3D but imposes standards for information management such as BS 1192: 2007. BIM Level 2: each design team member creates and develops its own digital model; together these comprise a federated model of the overall project. BIM Level 3: full collaboration by the project team members and anticipates the use of a single BIM model held by all project team members to access, use and modify at any time within a centrally held Common Data Environment. The position paper outlines risks and challenges before defining the strategy. There is a potential risk in its adoption with the production of a model that is of little long-term use at a significant cost and significant disruption in organisations during its early adoption. A risk of failing to manage BIM adoption is also identified, as a piecemeal approach to adoption across the public sector will result in different approaches, which could lead to greater investment required to undo non-standard practices that may be adopted. The key challenges in order to assist in its adoption, standards must be mandated to ensure that the public sector sets clear and consistent requirements. A draft International Standard ISO 19650 is currently out for comment by CENTC442, this will lead to a new set of BIM standards that will affect the defining requirements. New roles, procedures, and technology will be required in client organisations/Government bodies which will require cultural change. The position paper states that early contractor involvement is necessary for Level 3, and probes if a different approach to risk and insurance provisions is needed and if culture change implementation beyond Level 2 is possible. The government will be asked to decide to mandate the adoption of BIM across the public service on the basis of a high-level strategy. The goal of the strategy is to ensure that public bodies invest the necessary resources and to impose standards for delivery across the public sector. The strategy will include high-level recommendations around standards to be adopted and a timeline for implementation. The strategy will apply to all projects procured under the public capital programme, and Capital Works Management Framework (CWMF) will be augmented to incorporate the necessary documentation. In the timeline for adoption, target dates are set for projects to adopt BIM, early adopters will be those projects where the long-term benefits are deemed to be the greatest, which are complex

construction projects with intensive operation and maintenance regime. The position paper concludes with notes stating that, BIM Level 1 and 2 will be defined in the Strategy. The Contracting authorities should adopt Level 1 before the adoption strategy requires Level 2 to be applied to their projects, as Level 1 imposes many of the information production standards and prioritises the internal organisational changes without having to make the transition to a digital environment and so ‘prepares the ground’ for the move to the digital requirements of Level 2. The timeline should not be accelerated except for pilot projects to allow service providers and contractors time to adopt the technology and processes [1]. b) BIM maturity levels i) BIM Level 0 The most common definition for BIM level 0 is only utilising unmanaged 2D CAD drafting. Outputs and distribution are via paper or electronic prints, or a mixture of both [2] [3] [4] [5] [6]. This is the traditional way of working enhanced only by technology to speed up the production and exchange of drawings, [5] essentially it is a digital drawing board [6]. All changes, checks, and interfaces across disciplines are manual [5], without common standards and processes [6], this effectively means no collaboration [2]. ii) BIM Level 1 Level 1 is definition as managed CAD is a mixture of 2D or 3D format using BS 1192:2007, and electronic sharing of data is carried out with a collaboration tool providing a Common Data Environment(CDE), some standardised data structures and formats [2] [3] [4] [5] [7]. Scottish futures trust state that to achieve the BIM Level 1 standard, the following elements should be in place; Roles and responsibilities should be agreed upon. Naming conventions should be adopted. Arrangements should be put in place to create and maintain the project-specific codes and project spatial coordination. A Common Data Environment (CDE) should be adopted, to allow information to be shared between all members of the project team, A suitable information hierarchy should be agreed which supports the concepts of the CDE and the document repository. The establishment and effective management of the CDE is key to this standard [7]. Commercial data will be managed by standalone finance and cost management packages with no integration [3] [4]. This may include 2D information

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23th -24th 2017 and 3D information such as visualisations or concept development models [5] [6]. Collaboration is limited between disciplines with each controlling and issuing its own information either as 3D models or 2D drawings derived from those models. [5].But BIMtalk and Designing Buildings disagree with this, stating that models are not shared between project team members [2] [6]. Level 1 can be described as 'Lonely BIM' [2]. iii) BIM Level 2 This is defined as a managed collaborative environment working across disciplines with all parties using a series of domain models, that contribute to a collaborative federated 3D BIM model with attached data, the models should not lose their identity or integrity [2] [3] [4] [5] [6]. The models, consisting of both 3D geometrical and non-graphical data, are prepared by different parties during the project life-cycle within the context of a common data environment [5]. The collaboration comes in the form of how the information is exchanged between different parties and is the crucial aspect of this level. Capable of exporting to one of the common file formats such as IFC (Industry Foundation Class) or COBie (Construction Operations Building Information Exchange), which enables any organisation to be able to combine that data with their own in order to make a federated BIM model, and to carry out interrogative checks on it [2] [5]. This level of BIM may include 4D Programme data and 5D cost elements [4] [3] [6] [7] and integrated by proprietary information exchanges between various systems or bespoke middleware [3] [5]. Project participants will have the means necessary to provide defined and validated outputs via digital transactions in a structured and reusable form. Clients will have to be able to define and use data, and the industry will need to adopt common ways of working based on standard data file formats. [5] BIM Level 2 maturity is illustrated in the BewRichards “BIM Wedge” noted that Level 2 builds upon Level 1 standards especially BS1192-2007 and its requirement for a Common Data Environment. [7]. Although there is somewhat of a consensus on what BIM level 2 means, it is more difficult to find a agreement on what is required to achieve BIM level 2. The BSI website ‘’ which is supported by the UK government list below as the BIM Level 2 suite of documents, which have been developed to help the construction industry adopt BIM Level 2 [5]. • BS 1192:2007 + A2:2016 • PAS 1192-2:2013

• PAS 1192-3:2014 • BS 1192-4:2014 • PAS 1192-5:2015 • BS 8536-1:2015 • BS 8536-2:2016 The BSI website ‘’ also states that Uniclass 2015 and the digital Plan of Work (dPoW) are essential parts of BIM Level 2 and were developed to sit alongside the BIM Level 2 documentation. Uniclass 2015 is a unified classification that contains consistent tables that classify items. The digital plan of work enables an employer to define the deliverables required at each stage of a construction project [5]. BIMtalk [3] state that The UK Government in 2014 refined its definition of level 2 BIM as the following seven components: • PAS 1192-2:2013 • PAS 1192-3:2014 • BS 1192-4 • BIM Protocol • GSL (Government Soft Landings) • Digital Plan of Work • Classification BIMtalk has included the 2 tools but also includes the BIM Protocol, as the requirement for this protocol is in PAS 1192-2 and GSL (Government Soft Landings) is now BS 8536-1:2015, this definition does not substantially differ from ‘’. iv) BIM Level 3 The latest UK vision for BIM Level 3 has been published as part of the Digital Built Britain (DBB) Strategy, the Strategy is part of a wider digital strategy which includes The Industrial Strategy – Construction 2025, the Business and Professional Services Strategy, the Smart Cities Strategy and the Information Economy Strategy, with the goal of creating a high-performing, transparent economy that efficiently delivers services to all of its citizens. DBB is to provide a seamless transition from the achievements of Level 2 BIM and the Construction Strategy into an environment where technology and working with technology is second nature in construction, but this strategy has not been fully defined yet [8]. Some sources defined Level 3 as fully open process and data integration enabled by IFC/IFD, managed by a collaborative model server. 'iBIM' (integrated BIM) potentially employing concurrent engineering processes and is intended to deliver better business outcomes [4] [6]. Other sources have a much more narrow view based mainly on the construction stages of projects, defining Level 3 BIM as, full collaboration between all disciplines and contributors to a project will be able to access, modify and transact using a single,

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23th -24th 2017 shared project model, held in a centralised online repository [2] [5] [6]. This level of BIM will utilise 4D construction sequencing, 5D cost information [3] [6] and supports a 6D project lifecycle information management approach [3] [5] [6]. All parties can access and modify that same model, and the benefit is that it removes the final layer of risk for conflicting information [2] [5]. Current nervousness in the industry around issues such as copyright and liability are intended to be resolved, the former by means of robust appointment documents and software originator/read/write permissions, and the latter by shared-risk procurement routes such as partnering [2]. Finally, some sources define this as ‘Open BIM’ [2] [4] [6].

III METHODOLOGY The approach of the paper is to appraise the position paper’s implementation plan for BIM within the public sector. The authors’ primary data collection methodology involved Secondary research on the industry responses to the position paper. A Qualitative approach through a social reality paradigm was used to analyse the responses for their reaction to the implementation approach, the responses are collated into three groups; Business, Organisation and Personal. “SECTION C – Response to Position Paper” was the main source of information used. It was discovered that there are little peerreviewed papers that defined UK BIM maturity, so the author used government supported websites and reputable websites that have been endorsed by industry bodies to get information regarding BIM levels. The author reviewed the responses and deemed that Construction IT Alliance (CitA) had misidentified their category, CitA was re-categorised as an Organisation, as it represented the views of its membership through a survey and it describes it’s self as an Irish Not-for-Profit Organisation. The Grangegorman Development Agency (GDA) response was not included to remove bias, as this was submitted by the author.

IV SECONDARY RESEARCH The response to the GCCC position paper;

On BIM maturity levels in the ACEI reading of the text on the position paper, it questions if a centrally held Common Data Environment (CDE) is for Level 3 only. ACEI would suggest the position paper needs to reflect that a CDE is a requirement of Level 0 BIM and required to undertake work to BS 1192. ACEI would suggest the paper reflects the different possible maturity levels and the achievement of more/less benefit the higher the level. The suggestion that Level 2 is not full BIM may develop a negativity in readers about this maturity and drive them to seek a Level 3 BIM Maturity, which the construction industry (including software and BIM tool providers) is not ready to deliver. They would suggest that early contractor involvement is maturity level neutral. ACEI welcome the statement “Contracting authorities should adopt BIM Level 1 requirements before the adoption strategy requires Level 2 to be applied to their projects.” [9] ii) Construction Federation Ireland (CFI) CFI believe there is a need for clarity as to what BIM Level 2 means in an Irish context, without this definition, there are likely to be contractual problems in any project that states that BIM should be developed to level 2 or level 3 as there is no definition as to what this means. They conducted a survey of its membership to obtain views from all regions and disciplines to the position paper, some of the feedback included, “it is critical that process, understanding, responsibilities, and participants are aligned under a clear common framework to permit this. There needs to be a clear definition of what the BIM levels are, particularly on what is meant by BIM Level 2. The GCCC should also set a definitive statement and targets for what should be achieved by introducing BIM to public procurement”. The strategy should establish clear objectives, principles and deliver an understanding for participants and there is a need for national standards and protocols. There needs to be a co-ordinated approach between Ireland’s standards development and the EU BIM Task Group [11].

a) Organisation responses:

iii) Construction IT Alliance (CitA)

i) Association of Consulting Engineers of Ireland

The CitA board are delighted to see this strategy and welcome its aspirations. While there is a specific reference to the need for a public mandate for BIM adoption in Ireland, consideration should be given to accelerating this timeline. CitA also conducted a survey of its membership to obtain views, the following comments are some of the response to the position paper SECTION C, “Get

The ACEI welcome a consistent approach from the public sector and particularly appreciated the wording “Properly implemented”. The association also welcomes the envisaged outcome of a consistent and coherent approach to procuring BIM on public sector building projects.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23th -24th 2017 a move on - 48 months is far too long a horizon for Level 2 adoption. The rest of Europe will already be at Level 3 by then! Don't try to apply BIM across everything at once - it will not be practical for every Contracting Authority to have the necessary BIM capability to engage with BIM projects. Start with major authorities and develop the capability before rolling out to the wider authority community” [12]. iv) Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) DIT comments included that items shown in Table 1 that require only Level 1, the table must also show when these Bands will mandate level 2 BIM. The definition of Levels 1 and 2 in the Strategy need to include comprehensive details on or adoption of international / professional body standards on levels of development, detail, and information. They believe adoption of ISO standards around BIM within the strategy is essential for successful implementation [14].

Toolkit, similar to the UK toolkit, to help clients and project teams define and manage requirements. The RIAI advise that it may be a bit premature to be referring to Level 3 BIM, the implementation of BIM Level 2 should be the immediate focus. BIM Level 2 is not the long-term "ideal", but BIM Level 2 represents a vast improvement in how information is produced, managed and shared at the moment - BIM Level 0. The RIAI would suggest that the government commit resources to the ongoing research and advancement of BIM Level 3, in their strategy, or support participation in European and International groups looking at BIM Level 3. DIT comments included The RIAI would agree with the principle of a strategic, well-managed, structured approach and assumes that the project bands and timelines do not preclude any procuring authority from requesting BIM earlier than the suggested timelines [21]. vii) Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI)

v) Engineers Ireland Engineers Ireland provided no response to Section C [16]. vi) Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland (RIAI) The RIAI would recommend that the National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) do not start from 'scratch', in developing the National Annexes to ISO19650, but start from good practices already established in the UK and other early adopting nations. The RIAI suggest that the implementation of BIM Level 1 as a short-term requirement, could be relatively easy to implement and would provide a good "stepping stone" to achieving BIM Level 2 and beyond. They define BIM Level 1 envisages each design team member operating in 2D or 3D but imposes standards for information management such as BS 1192: 2007. There would be some compelling benefits to all parties, even at this level, in having information produced, managed and shared in a consistent way on all projects (whether 2D or 3D). The RIAI suggest that it’s a small step to ensure a consistent naming convention, as provided by BS1192, and to share electronic information in an organized way within a Common Data Environment (CDE) as described in BS1192. The RIAI warn that leaving the implementation of the BIM Strategy entirely up to the individual procuring authorities could potentially result in inconsistencies in approach which could make it more difficult for small enterprises to respond to on every project. They would recommend clear policies on the use of common Standards or provide a National BIM

SCSI state that In addition to the implementation of a consistent approach across the public services, there needs to be greater coordination between the public and private sectors in the development of the guidelines and procedures. For the items shown in Table 1 as requiring only Level 1, the table must also show when these Bands will mandate level 2 BIM. The definition of Levels 1 and 2 in the Strategy need to include comprehensive details on or adoption of international / professional body standards on levels of development, detail, and information. The adoption of ISO standards around BIM within the strategy is essential for successful implementation. The mention of IFC at the end of the project is neither specific enough nor appropriate. IFC is a scheme that supports collaboration and interoperability during the project and not so much at handover. SCSI note that there is no reference to (COBie) throughout the document [22]. b) Business responses: i) Jones Engineering Jones comment that any policy and standards being developed should reflect the work being undertaken in the EU in relation to BIM (2014 Procurement Directive). The existing UK documents should be utilised as a very valuable template to develop the Irish policy and standards, ‘re-inventing the wheel and having differing standards would be a retrograde step’. The durations outlined in Table 1 ‘seem realistic, however previous experience in implementation of

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23th -24th 2017 new process in the Irish context has seen dates as a moving feast’, ’mobilisation to ensure these dates are met must be a cornerstone of the process’ [19]. ii) DCS Engineering Consultancy DCS state that the paper is ‘a positive read and a lot of good work has gone into the development of this report’. It is important that an asset management strategy (storage and information system) is developed that BIM information can be linked to [13].

Rather than focus on the UK BIM implementation, ‘focus on the EU BIM "ecosystem", and the ones that exist already in silos in Scandinavia etc. Also, emphasise specifically on the benefits reaped by Singapore and others in relation to model checking automation utilising open BIM practices where ISO 16739 is implemented properly’ [15]. iii) Iain Miskimmin Refers to vender support [18].

iii) Simon Fraser

iv) Paul Lawrence

Simon Fraser state that the publication is a very welcome development and indicates a clear intention on the part of Government to incorporate BIM processes into the public procurement of construction projects. The CWMF does not cater for BIM processes and, as acknowledged in the position paper, work will be necessary to include such BIM methodologies and processes as are required [17].

As per Jones Engineering [20].

iv) Turner & Townsend Turner & Townsend comment that BIM Level 3 which is mentioned in the document is a ‘long way off’. If the decision is made to use the UK developed documentation i.e. PAS 1192s etc. a review of the Workstage’s defined in the Public Works Contracts (PWC) will be needed, as the UK documents are aligned to the RIBA Stages [23]. c) Personal responses: i) Bernard Pierce Bernard Pierce is fully supportive of the strategy outlined for a coherent approach to procuring BIM on public sector building projects [10]. ii) Dr Shawn O'Keeffe Dr Shawn O'Keeffe believes that the wedge idea from the UK documents should be removed due to its misleading Implications and misinforming of true practice and Level 2 vs 3, or vs 0, or 1, also needs to be omitted. He believes that the GCCC do not truly understand how to implement ISO 16739 in practice. ‘The document must be more explicit and practical in these regards, e.g. explaining to the reader of contracted information exchange utilising ISO 10303-21 serialised MVDs and how IDMs lead to the proper development and use of these by whom and when in the life cycle. The high emphasis on UK practice shall be removed if this initiative is going to "stick" for the long term in the EU.’

V DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS The position paper concluded with high-level recommendations around standards to be adopted and a timeline for implementation [1].The author discusses these topics; c) Timeline For Jones, the durations outlined in Table 1 seem realistic, but warn of the potential for this timeline slipping, maintaining these dates must be prioritised [19]. For most others the dates are not aggressive enough, CitA believes consideration should be given to accelerating this timeline, with a CitA member suggesting that with 48 months for some categories Europe will be advancing to level 3 by then [12]. The RIAI would encourage procuring authorities requesting BIM earlier than the timelines [21]. Another CitA member agrees with not applying BIM across the industry at once and concurs with the approach of starting with major authorities and developing the capability. DIT comment that categories which currently require only Level 1, should also require Level 2 [14]. The GCCC also acknowledge that pilot projects will be required to allow service providers and contractors time to adopt the technology and processes [1]. b) BIM maturity level The respondents differ on their interpretation of what is meant by BIM Levels 1, 2 and 3. Dr Shawn O'Keeffe believes that the wedge idea from the UK documents and Level 2 vs 3, or vs 0, or 1, are misleading [15]. Other respondents look for a clear comprehensive detailed definition of what the BIM levels mean in an Irish context [11] [14] [22]. ACEI question the wording “full” BIM, the implication that Common Data Environment (CDE) is required for Level 3 only and early contractor involvement is necessary for Level 3 [9], but Turner

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23th -24th 2017 & Townsend believe that BIM Level 3 is not going to be a concern in the near future [23]. The position paper concluded the note state that Level 1 and 2 will be defined in the Strategy [1]. It is clear from the research that there is no definitive definition of what is required to achieve the UK defined BIM levels. There is a common understanding that the goals of these levels are; Level 0: Unmanaged information, Level 1: Managed information within an organisation using industry standards, Level 2: Managed construction project information across a number of organisations, using process standards for collaborative decision-making. But this is not the case for level 3, the UK government define this as Digital Built Britain, a combination of the Construction Industry, Smart City and Information Economy Strategies that have yet to be fully defined. The industry bodies are fixed on a definition that requires a single construction model that is modified by all, and that can be used in operation. c) Level 1 first The position paper proposed that the Contracting authorities adopt BIM Level 1 before the adoption strategy requires Level 2, as level 1 will ‘prepare the ground’ [1]. RIAI suggest that BIM Level 1 is a good ‘stepping stone’ to achieving BIM Level 2 and beyond [21]and ACEI also welcomes the approach of adopting BIM Level 1 first [9]. The RIAI suggest that the implementation of BIM Level 1 will impose standards for information management, ensure a consistent naming convention, and enable sharing of electronic information in an organized way within a CDE as described in BS1192:2007, as they believe that information is currently managed and shared at BIM Level 0 [21]. The GCCC hope that level 1 will prioritise the internal organisational changes required for level 2 [1]. c) EU standards The GCCC recognise that the draft International Standard ISO 19650 will lead to a new set of BIM standards that will affect the defining requirements [1]. This is also echoed by the respondents, who note that the adoption of ISO standards within the strategy is essential for successful implementation [14] [22] and that there needs to be a co-ordinated approach between Ireland’s standards development and the EU BIM Task Group and the 2014 Procurement Directive [11] [19]. The RIAI would recommend that the NSAI develop a National Annex to ISO19650 by building on the UK and other early adopting nations’ good practices [21] but Dr Shawn O'Keeffe believes that

the high emphasis on UK practice should be removed as this could hinder Ireland in the EU [15].

VI CONCLUSION The approach by the GCCC is broadly welcomed by the industry, but with some concerns on the timeline, as it is felt that it could be shortened. There is confusion on what the different BIM levels mean but this is addressed in the position paper which state that the levels will be defined in the strategy document, there is a consensus that Level 1 is 2D or 3D information managed within an organisation by industry standards, level 2 is 3D information managed over a project using process standards. It is widely believed that the first step should be to implement level 1, as this will prepare industry and more importantly the public sector for the level 2 mandate, and this mandate needs to look toward the new EU BIM standards to ensure longevity. The author recommends to address the concerns over the timeline and the confusion over what is meant by BIM level 2, that a simpler mandate of BIM level 1 could be implemented first across all categories concurrently. Imposing BIM level 1 standards for delivery across the public sector would start to achieve the goal of the strategy in a shorter timeframe, and ensure that public bodies start investing the necessary resources in BIM.

REFERENCES [1] “BIM Adoption Strategy Statement of Intent,” Construction Procurement Reform, 15-Mar2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug2017]. [2] NBS, “BIM Levels explained,” (2014) [Accessed: 02-Sep-2017]. [3] “Level of Maturity ,” bim_glossary:level_of_maturity - BIMTalk. [Online]. Available: urity. [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [4]

“B/555.” [Online]. Available: _downloads/B555_Roadmap_JUNE_2013.pdf. [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017].

[5] “Welcome to the new BIM Level 2 website,” BIM Level 2. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [6] “Designing Buildings Wiki The construction industry knowledge base,” BIM maturity levels - Designing Buildings Wiki. [Online]. Available:

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23th -24th 2017 M_maturity_levels. [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [7] “Building Information Modelling Scottish Futures Trust,” Level 1 Standards - BIM Level 2 Guidance. [Online]. Available: e/standards-level-1. [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [8] “A UK Government Initiative,” BIM Task Group. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03Aug-2017]. [9] “Association of Consulting Engineers of Ireland (ACEI) Organisation BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [10] B. Pierce, “Bernard Pierce Personal BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun-2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 27-Aug-2017]. [11] “Construction Federation Ireland (CIF) Organisation BIM Submission.” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun-2017. [Online]. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 27-Aug-2017]. [12] “Construction IT Alliance (CitA) Response to OGP,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23Jun-2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [13] “DCS Engineering Business BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [14] “Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun-2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [15] S. O'Keeffe, “Dr Shawn O Keeffe Personal BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun-2017. [Online]. Available:

BIM-Submission.pdf. 2017].



[16] “Engineers Ireland BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [17] “Hussey Fraser Solicitors Business BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun-2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03Aug-2017]. [18] I. Miskimmin, “Iain Miskimmin Other BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun-2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [19] “Jones Engineering Business BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug2017]. [20] P. Lawrence, “Paul Lawrence Personal BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun-2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [21] “Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland (RIAI) Organisation BIM Submission,” Construction Procurement Reform, 23-Jun-2017. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [23] “Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI) Organisation BIM Submission,” [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03-Aug-2017]. [23] J. Wallwork, “Turner & Townsend Business BIM Submission,” [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 03Aug-2017].

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th

Ireland’s BIM Macro Adoption Study: Establishing Ireland’s BIM Maturity 1 Dr. Alan

Hore, 2Dr. Barry McAuley, 3Prof. Roger P. West, 4Dr. Mohmad Kassem and 5Shiyao Kuang



School of Surveying and Construction Management, Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton Street, Dublin 1, Ireland

Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering, Trinity College, College Green, Dublin 2, Ireland 4

Energy and Environment, Northumbria University; United Kingdom

E-mail: 5



Abstract ̶ Since 2016 the BIM Innovation Capability Programme (BICP) has captured the capability of the Irish Construction Industry’s and the Higher Education Institutes’ (HEIs) response to the increased requirement for BIM on Irish construction and engineering projects. One of the primary responsibilities of the BICP research team is to collate data to assist the National BIM Council of Ireland in the formulation of a National BIM Roadmap. To assist the Council with this task the BICP research team applied five macro BIM maturity conceptual models to assess Ireland’s BIM maturity. The results from the models were further utilised to develop a national BIM adoption policy. The application of the five models helped identify the key policies’ deliverables and the macro maturity components that must be addressed within the initiation and consultation phase of proposing the Irish roadmap. The results also demonstrated the benefits of continuing the BICP initiative into the execution phase of the roadmap, so as to ensure successful integration of its findings within the sector. Keywords ̶ Building Information Modelling, BICP, Public Works, Ireland, BIM Macro Adoption



The BIM Innovation Capability Programme (BICP) is a direct response from Enterprise Ireland to recent initiatives in the European Parliament who voted to amend European public procurement rules by recommending the use of electronic tools, such as BIM, for public works contracts and design contests [1]. Further to this, the global adoption of BIM, with particular focus on the mandating of Level 2 BIM by the UK, who are Ireland’s largest trading partners, has resulted in the requirement for a fast response to prevent loss of international contracts, exports and Irish-based employment. To this effect, since 2016 the BICP research team has worked to capture the capability of the Irish Construction Industry’s and the Higher Education Institutes’ (HEIs) response to the increased requirement for BIM on Irish construction

and engineering projects. This has been primarily achieved through a combination of desk-top based research and industry consultation with both public and private sector bodies. The importance of this research has been reinforced through recent Irish publications, which have prompted BIM as fundamental in enhancing the industry’s competitiveness [2, 3&4]. The recent BIM in Ireland 2017 report documents an array of BIM initiatives, activities by BIM champions, promotion of BIM within HEIs, BIM adoption by industry and government leaders [5]. All these initiatives have played an important role in the movement of the Irish AEC sector towards digitisation and innovative practices [6]. The BIM in Ireland 2017 report also presented the results of the Macro Maturity Component models

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th that were utilised to measure macro BIM adoption across the world. The Macro BIM Adoption in Ireland 2017 Study is part of the BIMe Initiative Macro Adoption Project and is based on the published research by Dr Bilal Succar and Dr Mohamad Kassem. This was a landmark study for BIM in Ireland and represented a collaborative knowledge-sharing agreement signed between the BIMe Initiative, CitA and Dublin Institute of Technology. This paper will provide a more focused review of this study and will provide a further analysis of the data collected.

II BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY As part of the BICP study it was agreed that the research team would establish the maturity of the Irish AEC sector. To achieve this, a number of maturity models were explored which included Barlish and Sullivan who conducted a review of over 600 sources of information to analyse the current information available with regards to benefits derived from BIM utilisation [7]. The National BIM Standard (NBIMS) Capability Maturity Model is a tool to plot one’s current location and plan ahead for one’s goals for future aspirations. It addresses software issues and maturity levels [8]. Another maturity model discussed was the Indiana University’s BIM Proficiency Matrix. This is an evaluation tool used to assess the proficiency of a respondent’s skill at working in a BIM environment [9]. The Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) Scorecard developed by Stanford University’s Center for Integrated Facility Engineering (CIFE) was discussed as a possible tool to use. This Scorecard assesses the maturity of the VDC implementation of a project across 4 areas, 10 divisions, and 56 measures, and deploys a Confidence Level measured by 7 factors to indicate the accuracy of scores [10]. Despite the benefits of these models within their respective environments, they do not provide an understanding of BIM diffusion or macro BIM adoption. As this research was to be used to assist the National BIM Council (NBC) of Ireland in the development of a BIM Roadmap it was important that the collated data could help in assessing current or developing new market-specific BIM diffusion policies. The Macro BIM Adoption in Ireland 2017 Study is part of the BIMe Initiative Macro Adoption Project includes 3 Project Phases: Phase 1 [Data Collection] will be conducted using a survey tool developed by members of the BIMe Initiative and hosted on

To this effect the BIM macro maturity models developed by Succar and Kassem was adopted by the BICP team [11]. This framework consists of five conceptual models that have been utilised to measure macro BIM adoption across the world (figure 1). These models can be used for: •

Assessing a country’s current BIM adoption policy

Comparing the BIM maturity of different countries

Application of the models in developing a national BIM adoption policy [11].

The macro maturity models is one of most cited maturity models in use today and had already been applied in Ireland [12&13]. This previous application of the model ensured that the selected framework was suitable for the BICP research team’s objectives.

Figure 1: Macro BIM adoption models (Source Succar and Kassem, 2015)



A total of 19 persons (see Table 1) were targeted in Ireland to complete the Macro BIM Adoption Study. The maturity study in this research focused on “Markets” and not projects, teams, organisations or individuals. Specifically, the study undertook to investigate the levels of “adoption and diffusion” of BIM in Ireland. For the sake of clarity “implementation” represents the successful adoption of a system/process by a single organization, while diffusion represents the spread of the system/process within a population of

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th adopters [11]. Data Collection [12] was conducted using a survey tool developed by members of the BIMe Initiative and hosted on Name


technologies across a selection of PPP programme projects. If Ireland is to advance in these areas, strong leadership must be shown from the Government. Such leadership will have an impact on improving the low process figures.

Ralph Montague Michael Murphy Paul Brennan Adrian Small, Barry McAuley Calogero Marino Joe Mady, Alan Hore Antoinette Rourke John Hunt Claire Crowley, Rob Moore Ger Casey William Power, Aonghus O’Keeffe Barry Kirwan Paul Sexton Michael Earley Roger West,

Arcdox BAM Ireland BAM Ireland BRFS Ltd CitA / DIT C + W O’Brien Architects Designer Group DIT DKIT Enterprise Ireland Facebook GGDA GGDA Reddy Architecture Roughan & O’Donovan Ryan & Lamb Architects SCEG Ltd Scott Tallon Walker Trinity College Dublin

Figure 2: BIM diffusion areas model for Ireland

Table 1: Participants Model A: BIM diffusion areas The macro-adoption model clarifies how BIM field types (technology, process and policy) interact with BIM capability stages (modelling, collaboration and integration) to generate nine areas for targeted BIM diffusion analysis and BIM diffusion planning. The results reveal an uneven distribution of the distribution rates, as illustrated in the figure 2. Ireland is quite mature with regards to applying technology for modelling and collaboration purposes, as well as the integration of network-based disparate systems. Ireland has become one of the global technology hubs of choice when it comes to attracting the strategic business activities of ICT companies, with 4 out of the top 5 IT services companies and 9 of the top 10 global software companies in the world all based in Ireland [14]. Despite this the construction industry is struggling to adopt the required ICT skills needed to fully drive the digital agenda [3]. While results show, Ireland is mature for modelling processes i.e. intra-organisational BIM roles and model workflows, it is less mature with regards to collaboration processes and policies. Despite recent governmental publications, there is still no agreed policy or mandate for BIM. However, some Governmental departments, such as the National Development Finance agency (NDFA), have successfully mandated the application of BIM

Model B: Macro Maturity Components model The Macro Maturity Components model identifies eight complementary components for establishing and measuring the BIM maturity of countries and other macro organisational scales. The components are: Objectives, stages and milestones; Champions and drivers; Regulatory framework; Noteworthy publications; Learning and education; Measurements and benchmarks; Standardised parts and deliverables; and Technology infrastructure. Figure 3 illustrates Ireland’s current maturity within each area. Ireland ranked highly when it came to Technology Infrastructure and Learning and Education. The results for Technology Infrastructure further demonstrate that Ireland has one of the most advanced and competitive telecommunications infrastructures in Europe, as a result of large investments in recent years [15]. One of the reasons for the continued growth of BIM is through the commitment shown from HEIs to the delivery of BIM programmes which represents a direct response to an industry which is struggling to meet its ICT needs [5]. However, Ireland ranked poorly when it came to regulatory frameworks; measurement and benchmark. These three maturity components are linked and will not advance unless a regulatory requirement for BIM is promoted from within the Government. The GCCC paper published in 2016

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th has put tentative actions in place that could potentially increase the maturity in these areas [4]. Table 2 illustrates Ireland’s maturity ranking, based on a study performed in 2015 with twenty-one countries, where the same model was applied [13]. One can see from this table that the UK, which has a roadmap in place since 2011, is considerably more advanced than Ireland in regulatory frameworks, measurement and benchmark. Ireland (%) 20

Objectives, Stages and Milestones Champions and Drivers Regulatory Framework Noteworthy Publications Learning and Education Measurements and Benchmarks Standardised Parts and Deliverables Technology and Infrastructure

Top Rank (%) 65 UK




58 UK


58 UK


45 UK


43 China


58 China


75 Switzerland

meaning that larger organisations or industry associations are pushing the BIM agenda within the industry and not government. The results are aligned with recent findings from the BICP Industry Consultation Workshops. One of the workshops was held in Dublin and the other in a regional location, so as to collect opinions from a diverse range of professionals who are operating throughout the country. One of the key findings from the cross-referencing of answers from both workshops was that the larger contractors both centrally and regionally have shown strong BIM maturity but prevalent concerns are still in place for Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs). While SMEs generally have shown a reluctance towards engaging with BIM it would seem that this is more evident regionally [1]. With no policy in place and a reluctance from SMEs to embrace BIM, the diffusion dynamic of middle out will continue.

Table 2: Ireland’s maturity comparison Objective, stage and milestones 2.5

Technology Infrastructure


Champions and Drivers

1.5 1.0 0.5

Standardised parts & Deliverables


Regulatory Framework

Figure 4: Macro Diffusion Dynamics Model (Source Succar and Kassem, 2015) Model D - Policy Actions Model

Measurements & Benchmarks

Noteworthy Publications

Leaning & Education

Figure 3: Macro Maturity Components model Model C - Macro Diffusion Dynamics Model This model assesses and compares the directional pressures and mechanisms affecting how diffusion unfolds within a population. The model includes three diffusion dynamics: Top-Down; Middle-Out and Bottom-Up (Figure 4). The model in addition is augmented by three pressure mechanisms: downwards, upwards and horizontal. Results suggest that Ireland’s diffusion dynamic is middle out

This model identifies, assesses and compares the actions policy makers take (or can take) to facilitate market-wide adoption. The model includes three policy approaches, namely: Passive; Active and Assertive. These approaches are in turn mapped against three policy activities: Make Aware; Encourage and Observe. It can be seen that policy makers in Ireland are largely passive, with some evidence of active approaches and with little or no assertive activities (Figure 5). The results from this model are aligned with the other maturity models and further reflect the current governmental passive approach.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th The results show that at present the Technology Drivers are the most influential technology players. For the policy makers, the educational institutes had a much higher BIM diffusion compared to them. The HEIs, as discussed, have responded rapidly to a demand by industry for BIM related education and training programmes despite the absence of a national BIM mandate. Both construction organisations and communities of practice were identified as the key process players. Figure 7 illustrates the results of the model.

Technology Advocates

Communities of practice

Industry Associations

Figure 5: Macro Diffusion Dynamics Model

Technology Service Providers Technology developers

Model E: Macro-diffusion responsibilities This macro adoption model analyses BIM diffusion through the roles played by industry stakeholders as a network of actors. It first identifies nine BIM player groups (stakeholders) distributed across three BIM fields (technology, process and policy) as defined within the BIM framework. The nine player groups are: policy makers, educational institutions, construction organisations, individual practitioners, technology developers, technology service providers, industry associations, communities of practice, and technology advocates (Figure 6).

Construction organisations Educational Institutions

Policy Makers









Figure 7: Irish Macro Diffusion Dynamics Model

IV USING THE MODELS TO DEVELOP BIM POLICY PLANS AND TEMPLATES The models have enabled a deeper understanding of Ireland’s current BIM maturity and have assisted in highlighting areas of prevalent concern. Succar and Kassem have expanded their research to demonstrate how the models can provide the foundations for a Policy Development Plan / BIM roadmap. The proposed Policy Development Plan has three key phases which are the Initiation Phase, Consultation Phase and the Execution Phase. The next section will suggest how the findings from the model in partnership with the BICP can assist in informing an Irish BIM roadmap [11]. Initiation Phase

Figure 6: Macro Diffusion Dynamics Model (Source Succar and Kassem, 2015)

The initiation phase seeks to establish both the Task Group and the seed BIM Framework that will guide the national Framework. The application of models B, C and D are respectively used to assess worldwide efforts, identify the market specific diffusion dynamic, and establish a policy approach.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th

Figure 8: The Initiation Phase of the Policy Development Plan (Source Succar and Kassem, 2017). The first part of this phase is to establish a task group. This involves developing a task group mandate and corresponding set of objectives. The NBC in partnership with the BICP research team have operated within a similar remit in Ireland. The BICP research team have worked to establish the maturity of BIM within the Irish public, private and HEI sector over the last 18 months. This has been achieved through direct consultations with the industry and professional bodies. The team have worked within the best interest of the AEC sector and has retained a neutral and focused stance with regards to establishing BIM diffusion. The goal of the task group is to develop a seed BIM policy framework (figure 8). The first stage of developing this framework involves a) investigating similar worldwide efforts and b) identifying a model approach to emulate. The macro maturity components model, which was applied to 21 different countries, suggests that the UK is one of the strongest frameworks. The BICP team, through the Engaging with the BIM Community Survey, engaged with persons who have a responsibility for BIM in Irish architecture, engineering, construction, facility management businesses. The community of BIM practitioners reported they were comfortable working with the requirements of BS 1192 and the PAS 1192 suite of standards. The AEC UK BIM protocol was also used as a source of guidance by many of the respondent companies. The majority of the respondents were in agreement that the UK model, given its proximity,

should be adopted. The findings from the BICP Global BIM Study also strongly endorses the Canadian roadmap as another potential exemplar of best practice [16]. Whatever BIM framework is chosen it must ensure legitimacy to the country's context and ecosystem. The third stage involves the application of the diffusion dynamics model to identify a market specific diffusion dynamic. This, as seen from the results, is predominately middle out. This in turn will influence stage four which is the policy approach. The policy approach, as seen from model D, is largely passive which will put further pressure on the proposed BIM framework to be led by the larger contractors. While no government mandate / roadmap is in place there still has been significant momentum from governmental bodies as demonstrated by the research of the BICP. The Office of Public Works (OPW) has representatives who are actively involved in the EU BIM Task Group. The awareness in the Department of Education and Skills is strong and movement has been made to understand the BIM process. Transport Infrastructure Ireland is exploring the possibility of using BIM for the Metro North. Irish Water has also signalled its intention to use the BIM processes on the Ringsend project. The Dublin Airport Authority is using BIM processes to carry out works on an upgrade of the baggage handling system. Awareness is growing within the County Councils with interest registered from Dublin City Architects, Fingal County Council, South Dublin County Council, and Dun Laoghaire

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Figure 9: The Initiation Phase of the Policy Development Plan (Source Succar and Kassem, 2017). and Rathdown County Council. The National Development Finance agency (NDFA) have successfully mandated the application of BIM on a number of projects [5]. All of these public sector bodies represent individual approaches to adopting BIM and require deep consultations with the proposed designers / contractors to ensure they are adequately executed. This is currently why the middle-out diffusion dynamic is prevalent within the industry. The final stage in the initiation phase is to have a public resource for task group activities. At present a number of portals exist which provide valuable information for the Irish AEC Sector. The BICP website could serve as the primary portal for the task group with an additional partnering website such as,, and BIMregions and all offering valuable resources. Consultation Phase Succar and Kassem explain that at this stage the seed BIM framework is refined and converted into a

roadmap and the responsibilities for each of the roadmap items are assigned to selected stakeholders (Figure 9). Model E is applied at this stage with adequate milestones and timeframes provided. The first stage involves identifying and engaging with a wide-spectrum of stakeholders and conducting presentations, round-table discussions and workshops. This will result in the capturing of stakeholders’ concerns and recommendations and identifying champions for the BIM implementation phase. The diffusion responsibility model has enabled one to identify the areas where Ireland is weak and may require extended consultations to ensure adequate resources are provided for the identified nine BIM players. In effect, the NBC and BICP have worked in tandem to achieve this through an 18-month period of engagement with industry. Once the engagement with stakeholders period is complete, a roadmap to implement the framework can be designed with key dates and milestones designated and linked to policy deliverables through a Macro Roadmap Template. This template consists of the nine BIM policy areas from Model E aligned

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Table 3. A template for assessment and planning of diffusion roles (Source Succar and Kassem, 2017). to deliverables and timeframes within each area. By working within this template, adequate timeframes and realistic targets can be provided for the areas that demonstrated the weaker results. The next stage of the roadmap involves the development of a strategy for deliverables. This is linked through assigning a specific stakeholder to each policy deliverable as a result of the diffusion roles matrix (Table 3). This involves matching the macro maturity components to the nine BIM players through assigning them to: A. A leading role played by those responsible for initiating, developing and maintaining a structured diffusion effort B. A supporting role played by those assisting the leading role to communicate and engage with other players, and in delivering diffusion components; and C. A participating role played by early adopters of innovative systems/processes. Execution Phase The execution phase involves the initiation of a Pilot Programme which will require the development of Employer Information Requirements, a training programme for public procurers and support system for industry groups around the BIM policy framework. This will assist in the development of supporting documents such as BIM guides, protocols, a model-use inventory and development of a BIM competency framework and inventory. This can eventually lead to a BIM certification and accreditation programme.

While potential roadmaps are being discussed for both the private and public sectors, there is still a gap in the execution and monitoring of these roadmaps. The BICP research team, which has been fundamental in providing research for the Irish AEC sector, could potentially assist with facilitating the key deliverables of the execution phase. If the correct resources are not provided at this stage then the roadmap could falter and be met with strong objections from the industry. The BICP research team could work in tandem with the NBC and the GCCC to provide the important research resources required for the roadmaps.

V CONCLUSIONS The results from the macro adoption study has provided crucial information in highlighting areas that will need to be addressed if Ireland is to continue momentum in promoting BIM within the industry. This paper has demonstrated how this information can be used to assist in the development of a roadmap. The BICP has provided an effective resource in addressing the key stages in both the initiation and consultation phase of the roadmap. A proposed roadmap from the NBC will reflect these findings through a series of recommendations based on BICP findings. However, the execution phase remains uncertain and will require significant resources to ensure its success. With the BICP’s contribution to date, it could be a seamless integration for the programme to become the monitoring body for the execution phase. This could provide a valuable link between the lifecycle of the roadmap and further improve its potential for successful integration within the sector.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th REFERENCES [1] BIM Innovation Capability Programme (2017) Research Objectives, available from

[16] Hore, A., McAuley, B. and West, R. (2017) BICP Global BIM Study, CitA Ltd.

[2] Irish Government (2014) Construction 2020: A Strategy for a Renewed Construction Sector, The Stationery Office [3] Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (2017) Action Plan for Jobs 2017, Irish Government [4] Office Government Procurement (2017) A Public Sector BIM Adoption Strategy: A GCCC positional paper, Government Construction Contracts Committee [5] Hore, A., McAuley, B. and West, R. (2017) BIM in Ireland 2017, CitA Ltd. [6] Hore, A., McAuley, B. & West, R. (2017). “BIM Innovation Capability Programme of Ireland". In: LC3 2017: Volume I – Proceedings of the Joint Conference on Computing in Construction (JC3), July 4-7, 2017, Heraklion, Greece, pp. 761-768 [7] Barlish, B. and Sullivan, K. (2011) How to measure the benefits of BIM — A case study approach, Automation in Construction, Vol, 24, pp 149–159 [8] National Institute of Building Sciences (2007) National BIM Standard: Verson 1 Part 1: Overview, principles and methodologies, BuildingSMART Alliance [9] Indiana University Architects Office (2009) BIM Guidelines & Standards for Architects, Engineers, and Contractors, Indiana University [10] CIFE (2017) VDC and BIM Scorecard, Stanford University, available at<> [11] B. Succar and M. Kassem (2015) macro-BIM adoption: conceptual structures, Automation in Construction, 57 (2015), pp 64–79 [12] Yilmaz, G., Akcamete-Gungor, A. and Demirors, O. (2017). “A review on capability and maturity models of building information modelling.” In: LC3 2017: Volume I – Proceedings of the Joint Conference on Computing in Construction (JC3), July 4-7, 2017, Heraklion, Greece, pp. 629-638 [13] Succar, B and Kassem, M (2017) Macro BIM adoption: Comparative market analysis, Automation in Construction, 81, pp 286-299 [14] IDA Ireland (2017) Business in Ireland, available < ireland/industry-sectors/ict/> [15] IDA Ireland (2017) Invest in Ireland, available at <>

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 BIM In Infrastructure – Challenges and Opportunities

Robert Ryan1 and Joost Schlebaum2 Arup E-mail:


Engineering firms have recognised that the way we carry out our business is constantly evolving, particularly with the now widespread adoption of Building Information Modelling (BIM). The emergence of advanced modelling technologies offer us the ability to deliver high quality, information rich deliverables to our clients as well as enhancing the way we interface with all other project stakeholders. In recent years BIM has become a fundamental strategy and the status quo in the vertical world of buildings. However, the adoption of this new approach in infrastructure has been significantly slower due to technological limitations in handling complex linear alignments. The challenge has been laid down; to use the existing tools at our disposal and building on the processes already inherent in building engineering, create a BIM workflow that facilitates seamless collaboration across the full suite of disciplines within large multidisciplinary infrastructure projects. This paper explores the use of BIM in infrastructure and the challenges and opportunities that exist. It outlines the key solutions and workflows Arup have been developing across our projects to meet these challenges and present project examples of how we have been taking BIM in infrastructure to a new level. Keywords  BIM In Infrastructure, Geometrical Challenges, Workflows, Interoperability, Software

I THE CHALLENGES We have been 3D modelling in the construction industry since the late 1980’s. However it is important to acknowledge that BIM is not merely a 3D model or confined to a particular software. BIM is the process of efficient integration of 3D models, design tools and other data rich components to increase collaboration and efficiency in the design and delivery process at all stages of our projects. A significant challenge for BIM adoption in infrastructure projects is the collaboration and integration of information from the range of specialist disciplines working on complex geometrical linear alignments. A diverse range of specialist software is required in infrastructure due to the number of specialist disciplines involved in the delivery of infrastructure projects. Disciplines such as highways, bridges, rail, geotechnical and maritime each use their own specialist software. The success and efficiency of BIM therefore relies on the interoperability of the software. Most BIM software is mainly focused on building structures and a lot of the principles and functions in the software cannot be directly applied to infrastructural objects. The software packages

need to be compatible in order to facilitate collaboration, the preparation of confederated models, spatial coordination and design efficiencies. Our experience indicates that full interoperability between the various packages can be a significant challenge. There are ongoing improvements in the interoperability of the software and given the speed of adoption of BIM, one must assume that this improvement will and must continue. However, there can be a reluctance from specialist disciplines to embrace new software to meet the ever changing requirements of BIM. This is a mind-set that must be changed to facilitate true progress.

II COMPLEX GEOMETRY A significant challenge for infrastructure projects is the modelling of complex geometry in linear alignments. In building engineering, the complexity can often result from having multiple objects input by multiple disciplines. However for linear infrastructure such as rail, highways, tunnelling and bridges, the complexity can come from having a smaller number of individual but complex elements with topology changing rapidly over the alignment. Rail and often highway alignments have varying radius curved alignments

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 while bridges can have 2D decoupled elevation and plan axis geometry with cross sections changing over the alignment to address rollover and super elevation requirements.

analysis, fabrication/supplier data sheets and as built information in an unbroken circle.

Most software vendors are adapting quickly to address these challenges, however tools maturity for infrastructure projects still remains lower than that of buildings. As specialist disciplines find the best software to meet their individual needs the challenge still lies in the collective search for efficient interoperability between software used by each specialist discipline within often large multidisciplinary infrastructure projects.

III CLIENT ENGAGEMENT As design teams and contractors are upskilling to take advantage of the benefits of BIM the challenge is to bring our clients on board. The perception around technology use in engineering is that things can be done faster. While technology tools allow efficient manipulation and adaptation of models once set up there is a lack of appreciation of the upfront time to develop the content and templates within these data rich models. This needs to be effectively communicated to our clients and a clear understanding of the scope of the project developed from the outset. We must keep in mind that the benefits of BIM in the later stages of projects has to be somewhat balanced by the longer time input required at the earlier stages of a project. In addition the challenge is on the industry to develop efficient workflows to allow the specialist disciplines work in the software of choice but allow seamless and robust information transfer without information being lost or the necessity to recreate information


Fig. 1: BIM Virtual Circle

On infrastructure projects, defining the existing terrain and alignments in the early phases of the project often needs to be done outside of the virtual circle. Alignment development is usually done by rail and highway engineers using specialist software such as Civil 3D, Inroads/Openroads, Mx Roads and Rail Track. Similarly existing terrain mapping is often carried out using software such as QGIS. The challenge has been to create a dynamic link between the early stage inputs and the 3D modelling and design software. To achieve this parametric programming tools such as Dynamo and Grasshopper can be used to create a dynamic and parametric link between the early stage inputs and the detailed design stages. Fig 2 illustrates how scripting tools such as Dynamo and Grasshopper can be used to ensure the first steps of the virtual circle remains unbroken.

As with all challenges there are solutions. At Arup we are building on our multidisciplinary approach to all projects by developing workflows to enhance connectivity between the various activities within infrastructure design and construction to allow complex, multi-disciplinary projects flourish within the BIM environment. The essence of successful BIM implementation is to complete the virtual circle through the design phases from concept to the operations and maintenance stages with minimal amount of information lost, duplicated or having to be recreated. This applies to all aspects of the design process, from setting out the spatial geometry, details, analysis models, costing and design and construction schedules. Fig 1 shows a robust virtual cycle containing the common date environment (CDE) at its core with the flow of information from geometry definition, 3D model development, design

Fig. 2: Dynamic Link between design phases

With the introduction of open-source parametric modelling/visual programming tools a robust workflow can be set up to ensure interoperability between different software’s through the phases of design development. Fig 3 and the following sections outline a robust workflow developed and implemented on infrastructure projects within Arup.

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solids are a “frozen import” model and will not directly change with updates to the alignment design. A more dynamic way of importing the alignment design is by using Dynamo to read the road design’s export to Excel. This is a dynamic link that allows easy update of the 3D model by running the Dynamo script. This also allows more choice to decide what to do with the imported data. For example, the parametric capabilities of Dynamo allows the user to attach the bridge to the alignment directly. As a result the bridge/tunnel model will update parametrically when the alignment design is updated. An added hurdle to overcome is modelling of complex geometrical alignments that are common to infrastructure projects. Straight bridges/tunnels or bridges/tunnels with 1D curves can be modelled completely inside 3D modelling software such as Revit for the complete lifecycle of the project.

Fig. 3: Proposed Worflow for BIM Implementation on Infrastructure Projects

a) Existing


While often being overlooked, modelling the existing terrain is a very important/maybe the most important aspect of succeeding in a project. Being able to design your civil object in its existing surroundings helps you spot and solve clashes and potential risks early in the design process. Hence this should always be the first step and ensuring a robust workflow is fundamental to ensuring success in future stages. To create the existing terrain there are multiple options and data sources available. For the terrain itself you can bring GPS measurements into Revit directly and create your toposurface from this import. Another good option is to bring in a 3D laserscan/pointcloud as a reference model. GIS data like parcels, cables and other objects/data can also be brought into Revit with the use of Civil 3D’s GIS functionality.

Bridges/tunnels with multiple curves (double curved, clothoids) need very specific alignments/profiles. These kind of objects need to be created in Autodesk Civil 3D to capture the geometrical complexity. Often this has to be done by the structural/bridge designer and using the supplied Subassembly Composer one can create specific type of bridge parts in Civil 3D. This allows the user to create specific subassemblies within Civil 3D to be carried through as a swept path along the alignment. When done the model can be transferred to Revit as solids or dynamically by using Dynamo. Fig 4 shows a Revit model of Suurhoffbridge, Netherlands with double curved alignment form Civil 3D/Open Roads alignment and Arch Bridge from Rhino/Grasshopper.

b) Modelling Following setting up of the existing terrain the next step is to start modelling the civil objects. This involves bringing in the alignment design from the road/rail designer. This can be done in a number of different ways. The easiest way is to bring in solids of the road/rail from the specialist software design tool at the exact coordinates. This allows you to use these solids to model the bridge/tunnel around the imported alignment. A draw back to this approach is that the alignment

Fig. 4: Suurhoffbridge Revit Model

c) Coordination

& Clash Detection

One of the major benefits that fully implemented BIM brings both to the design teams and to the client is the spatial coordination and clash detection opportunities. By combining the models from the various disciplines in a federated model,

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 full spatial coordination can be carried out throughout the design stages.

also requires some scripting work in Teddy, which is the scripting engine in Sofistik.

The true benefit of BIM coordination and clash detection between disciplines however, can only be realised if the data added to the BIM environment is of sufficient quality. There are two main tools, namely Navisworks and Solibri model checker.


Navisworks can import file formats like IFC and Revit files amongst others. It has a dedicated clash detection tool and a timeliner which can link a masterplanning tool (MS-Project, Primavera or CSV) to the 3D BIM model. Solibri is a BIM coordination tool which imports IFC files. It has a clash detection tool and very strong ruleset functionality where you can do various sorts of checks based on custom rules. At Arup we have used Navisworks to combine Architectural, Structural and MEP models on significant infrastructure projects such as underground metro stations. On these projects the design team were able to produce and review clash reports on a weekly basis. This allowed specialist disciplines to coordinate layouts in real time and set up action plans for working towards a clash resolvable final design for handover to our client.

a) N6 Galway City Transport Scheme, Ireland A good example of the adoption of BIM in the concept stage of infrastructure design is the N6 Galway City Transport project. This project involved 16.5km of road design with grade separated junctions, tunnels and a new river bridge to resolve the transportation issues within Galway City and environs. ArcGIS was used to manage borehole information, mining plans and existing topographical surveys along the route. To enhance our interpretation of the geology, geotechnical and alignment design, ArcGIS and Civil 3D objects were imported to Infraworks. Infraworks is a tool especially useful for the conceptual design of roads, bridges and terrain and for coordination in large scale BIM projects. It has strong functionalities to bring in GIS data to quickly create existing terrain.

VII STRUCTURAL ANALYSIS Linking 3D models to analysis software is another developing area of BIM and something that is getting a lot of traction in building structures. As with 3D modelling the geometrical complexities of many infrastructure projects means that some manipulation of the typology of elements has to be carried out outside of the analysis and modelling software to accurately model the elements in the analysis software. This is particularly true for steelconcrete composite bridges. Many analysis software have import and export functionality, but a good workflow is still hard to accomplish. Especially for infrastructural objects that are alignment based and more often than not have one or more curves, as these cannot be translated easily to the type of geometry being used in most analysis software. Analysis software packages such as Robot, Sofistik and GSA can be linked to Revit. Robot can be parametrically linked to Revit using Dynamo and can handle simple geometry quite well. Double curved objects however, are impossible to import into Robot. Sofistik on the other hand can analyse double curved objects however to be able to do this requires considerable preparation. Dynamo scripts have to be used to convert the complex geometry to geometry that sofistik can handle. This

Fig. 5: N6 Galway City Transport project Infraworks model

Inside the Infraworks software platform we were able to create 3D model flythrough scenarios and to prepare project visualisations as video outputs. The strength of these tools to enhance client and stakeholder engagement in the concept phase of the project proved invaluable.

b) Auckland Light Rail, New Zealand Auckland Light Rail (ALR) project comprises 29km of light rail alignment, 24 stations including cut and cover stations, overhead wire pole installations and depot and related infrastructure. This is a major construction project located in a heavily congested corridor containing multiple major utilities providing essential services. The first and major phase of the project was the alignment development and coordination with existing utilities. To achieve this all existing utilities had to be consolidated into a common data environment. ArcGIS Software FME (Feature Manipulation Engineer), visual workflow editor used for

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 developing data transformation tools, was used to manage and process large and varied data sets such as point cloud surveys, GIS information, 2D & 3D CAD files and utility databases. This resulted in a survey accurate utilities model of the project corridor. This allowed automated clash assessment and identification of the level of risk and treatment of each clash. The benefit of this workflow enabled services to be diverted together leading to consolidated road closures reducing disruption significantly.

the easy transfer of information between the specialist models. The alignment, containing clothoid spiral curvature to satisfy rail engineering requirements, was developed using Autodesk Civil 3D with Autodesk Revit chosen as the modelling tool for the elevated bridge, station structure, architecture and MEP. To allow generation of the elevated bridge 3D model Subassembly Composer was used in Civil 3D to generate the bring element. This solid object was then swept through the alignment path before being transferred to Revit as a solid object. A drawback with this approach was that the bridge deck structure contained within Revit was a solid object and could not be altered parametrically. Unlike pier and foundation elements which were modelled using families within Revit any amendments to the deck geometry had to be done manually. In addition to this Revit’s inability to produced developed elevations along curved alignments meant that elevation drawings had to be drawn in 2D.

Fig. 6: FME Workbench Data Manipulation to Create Utility Clash Detection

Specialist bridge analysis software MIDAS Civil and Arup In-house Oasys GSA were chosen to analyse the bridge and station structures respectively. The key challenge was to ensure that each model could be set up parametrically to allow efficient adaptation to changes in the alignment. We adopted Excel VBA coding to enable the transfer of data between specialist 3D models and analysis models. By creating clever VBA families of modules operating in a hierarchy to pre-process the information we set up a robust and parametric analysis model that could be updated using control points from the Civil 3D alignment file.

c) Edmonton Light Rail, Canada Recent projects such as the Edmonton Light Rail project have required 3D modelling, of complex rail alignments, elevated bridge components, station architecture, structures and MEP to detailed design and construction level of detail. With the alignment extending over 13km through a busy urban environment with heavily congested services the selection of alignment needed to evolve as information and specialist input became available. The choice of modelling tools was based on the need to ensure easy transfer of information, interoperability between the disciplines, flexibility to easily accommodate change and the ability to feed into the analysis that was being run in tandem. To avoid being restrictive on what software we would use to develop alignments, structural models and analysis models we looked to develop tools to allow

Fig. 7: Workflow between Civil 3D Alignment file, Excel Scripting and Midas Civil Analysis Software

Fig. 8: Families of Scripting Modules to Pre-process the information for analysis model generation

3D clash detection was also utilised on Edmonton Light Rail. Carrying out clash detection

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 in Navisworks by federating Guideway models in Revit with 3D utilities drawings in Civil 3D the design team were able to evaluate the impact of the alignment on the existing utilities and coordinate utility relocation early in the design process.

not be constructed straight superelevation in one of the 3 spans.



In addition 3D models of complex reinforcement interfaces were developed to enable early construction planning. Figure 9 illustrates the utility clash detection carried out in Navisworks while Figures 10 and 11 illustrate 3D reinforcement models of the PT tendon blisters and piers. Fig. 12: Infraworks model

Fig. 9: Utilities Clash Detectionin Navisworks

The choice of the modelling tools was based on both the need for a superelevated span and quick optimization of the main span, which is a steel arch bridge. The road designer of the project used Bentley Open Roads software for the design of the alignment. Civil 3D was used as an intermediate to get the road model into Revit using a Dynamo script in combination with adaptive components. The steel arch bridge was modelled and optimized using Grasshopper and Karamba and brought into Revit using IFC.

Fig. 10: PT Blister Reinforcement Model in Revit

Fig. 13: Existing pipes, borehole locations and clearances

Fig. 11: Pier Reinforcement 3D Model in Revit

d) a)

Suurhoffbridge, Netherlands

The Suurhoffbridge project is a complex project in the sense that it has to fit in a very tight area due to it being constructed between an existing bridge and a gas supply station. As a result, the bridge could

Since the new bridge had to be designed in a very tight spot, accurate modelling of the existing terrain was very important. The existing terrain is modelled by a combination of using 3D GPS measurements, Dynamo scripted borehole positions, Dynamo scripted existing underground pipes and cables and drawings of the existing terrain/bridge. The bridge crosses 2 existing roads and a canal. The clearance envelopes of those crossings where modelled as 3D solids so we could perform clash checks during the complete design phase.

e) Metro Projects, Middle East Arup Ireland have recently worked on a number of metro projects in the Middle East comprising multiple underground cut and cover stations. Modelled in Revit, Structures, MEP and Architectural teams operating in multiple countries

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 could collaborate in real time from a centralised model. Using Navisworks for clash detection / clash resolution of service runs with Architectural and structural elements could be carried out early in the design phase. Cost estimation software within Revit could also be used to get real time quantities estimates to facilitate clearer project costs at early stages of the design process.

Fig. 14: Utility Clash Detection in Navisworks

X CONCLUSIONS While BIM implementation in infrastructure has its challenges, adoption by software vendors, engineering consultancies and contractors alike is facilitating growth of its use. As software capability struggles to handle the need of complex linear alignments in infrastructure alternative workflows are being developed which involve parametric modelling and visual programming tools such as Dynamo and Grasshopper to handle these complexities. At Arup BIM for infrastructure workflows are in ongoing development with improvements to workflows and software being made every day. There are many software’s available with varying levels of competency and suitability to perform the required task. As a result we have found that the development of staff is key to the effective implementation of this digital work delivery process. As can be seen from the suite of software available and the requirements to share information between disciplines, staff need to be adaptable to using multiple software packages. The demarcation between the draftsperson and engineer is as a result becoming more blurred. As the infrastructure world follows the Building Sector our clients are starting to see the real benefit of BIM implementation on their projects. To satisfy our client’s needs we have to constantly evolve and question our workflows to ensure that we deliver robust and collaborative BIM process for the delivery of infrastructure projects.

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CITA​ ​BIM​ ​Gathering​ ​201​7,​ ​ ​November​ ​23​rd​-24​th​​ ​November​ ​2017

BIM+Blockchain:​ ​A​ ​Solution​ ​to​ ​the​ ​Trust​ ​Problem​ ​in Collaboration? ​ Malachy​ ​Mathews​ ​DIT.,​ ​2​Dan​ ​Robles​ ​​ ​ IEBC.,​ ​3​​ ​Professor​ ​Brian​ ​Bowe,​ ​DIT.


School​ ​of​ ​Architecture,

Dublin​ ​Institute​ ​of​ ​Technology,​ ​Dublin,​ ​Ireland.

​ ​ E-mail:​ ​1​​ ​ ​ ​2​​ ​ 3​​ ​ ​

Abstract​ ​ ​̶ This paper provides an overview of historic and current organizational limitations emerging in the Architecture, Engineering, Construction, Building Owner / Operations (AECOO) Industry. It then provides an overview of new technologies that attempt to mitigate these limitations. However, these technologies, taken together, appear to be converging and creating entirely new organizational structures in the AEC industries. This may be characterized by the emergence of what is called the Network Effect and it’s related calculus. This paper culminates with an introduction to Blockchain Technology (BT) and it’s integration with the emergence of groundbreaking technologies such as Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML) and Financial / Insurance products. To illustrate this process, we use choose Building Information Modelling (BIM) technology as our model network database for the AECOO industry. Interaction with the BIM database is an activity that generates economic value which may be measured into existence by an electronic token that rewards disassociated parties for maintaining and improving the database for the benefit of all, thereby replacing the 3rd party intermediary characteristic of legacy hierarchies with a simple and efficient “digital handshake”. Not unlike feudalism before it, hierarchical structures are being disrupted by emerging network platforms. In the age of the Internet, social network structure are now more efficient and massively scalable. As with all social revolutions, people naturally reorganize to the system that provides better security, greater fault tolerance, ease of regulation, and greater market efficiencies. There is evidence all around that we are witnessing a digital transformation in the AECOO industry. The technologies of this transformation are disruptive to the existing professions, project procurement and building operation processes. The underlying calculus that threatens the AECOO industry is related to the process of legacy organizational structure. Hierarchical structures are being replaced by network structures in many industries simply because networks are more efficient, enjoy higher market valuation, they are fault tolerant, and self regulating whereas hierarchy requires substantial managerial and administration overhead to secure individual nodes. This can be a good thing because the incentive to disrupt older processes will often spring forth new systems and methods that have the potential to be leaner, more efficient, less error prone, and more cost effective across the enterprise. However, there is one essential element that is still problematic. Everyone trusts the old system with its inherent faults and may even be deeply vested in mitigating those faults. The same or greater level of trust must be demonstrated and maintained in any new​ ​system​ ​in​ ​order​ ​to​ ​be​ ​adopted​ ​and​ ​lead​ ​to​ ​commercial​ ​success. Keywords​ ​ ​̶ ​ ​BIM,​ ​Blockchain,​ ​Collaboration,​ ​Trust

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CITA​ ​BIM​ ​Gathering​ ​201​7,​ ​ ​November​ ​23​rd​-24​th​​ ​November​ ​2017


Hierarchy is inherently competitive and networks are inherently collaborative. Competition is efficient only where both sides have equal information. Disparities of information have led to the practice of creating government regulations that attempt to keep the game fair. This layer of governance may now be effectively reduced because networks have an inherent tendency to isolate faults by creating alternate paths around them. It is easy to see the challenge that lies ahead. While this conversion began with the Internet itself, more recently, Blockchain technology arriving in 2008, may serve as the integration technology with an ability to account for this new organizational value, independent of hierarchical structures. A blockchain is simply a database that allows everyone to read and write to it at the same time without the need for trusted a 3rd party. Security is managed by cryptography rather than human administrators. The best-known application using blockchain is Bitcoin. Bitcoin are a digital token that is produced by the blockchain to pay for it’s own maintenance by a disinterested community of workers called miners. Their activity trying to earn these tokens is what maintains the Blockchain without the need for managerial overhead. As humans are prone to do, Bitcoin are traded in secondary markets and have, quite irrationally, achieved a somewhat volatile market value as high as $3000.00 dollars per unit on Coinbase in 2017. The dominant feature of Blockchain is the ability to execute contracts, without the requirement of a “trusted” intermediary, replacing this with a digital handshake. Blockchain is here, it cannot be un-invented and while many have predicted its demise, the idea of Blockchain software has only increased in applicability. Many people agree that it will play a major role in the disruption of current centralised systems. The AECOO industry is undergoing a digital transformation. It needs to, (design and) construction has suffered for decades from remarkably poor productivity relative to other sectors, ​[1] Today in an adversarial economy adjudicated by lawyers, the incentive is to minimize information transfer between parties. In the future world of networks, the incentive will be to maximize the transfer of information between parties. It is now realized that procurement is such a strategic issue that the use of internet based technologies can help achieve significant savings through reduced transaction costs, reduced time and reduced transposition error. ​[2]​. The advancing

technologies of this transformation are increasingly disruptive to the existing procurement process. This creates increasing pressure on process innovation strategies and programs. The AECOO industry in the EU is working towards what is termed BIM Level 3 ​[3] a multidisciplinary collaborative procurement process that has the potential to be a leaner, efficient and more cost effective process. ​[4] Up on till now, there have been well-researched reports such as the Latham Report ​[5] the Egan Report ​[6] calling for a more collaborative process in building procurement. While these have been accepted by industry as correct and viable an emergent counter current such as the 2011 UK Construction Strategy ​[7] report made a damning assessment of the industry. The latest report on the state of the UK Construction industry, The Farmer Report: Modernise or Die ​[8]​, adds to the criticism. Recommendations from these reports have been difficult to implement. The nature of hierarchal structure greatly inhibits the required cultural change because relatively few people are empowered to make changes, whereas networked organizations have demonstrated a far greater ability to adapt to changes and threats. Asking people who are at the center of the industry to change must be accompanied by new processes that are measurable, workable and exciting to adapt. Fortunately, relevant technologies and process such as Building Information Modeling/Management have already started a groundswell of change in the industry as a response to poor, inefficient practice. BIM/M is a promoter and facilitator of collaborative practice and for true collaboration to be successful there needs to be “trust” in the networked system as there is in the hierarchical system. The intersection of BIM and emergent technologies such as Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence Technology (AIT), Internet of Things ( IoT), Machine Learning (ML), may be the opportunity for systemic change that the AECOO industry needs. The establishment of trust is a critical factor in partnering success ​[9] ​[10]​. Third party facilitators, layers of management consultants currently enjoy prosperity and security in the AECOO Industry precisely because hierarchies are prone to single point failures. Efforts are expended on government legislated certification programs, professional licensure, punitive regulations and obtrusive vetting mechanisms as a means of securing nodes. This comes at great expense, and yet, the single point of failure remains. Networks, on the other hand are fault

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CITA​ ​BIM​ ​Gathering​ ​201​7,​ ​ ​November​ ​23​rd​-24​th​​ ​November​ ​2017 tolerant and self-correcting since many people are able to publically review the work of many others on a decentralized ledger. If, and only if, the network system can be trusted, then 3rd party facilitators are likely to become obsolete. It is legitimate to pose a question as to how much these “Trust” industry's actually compound the problem and how much of this “Trust” may be replaced with a technological solution. The difference may amount to a significant percentage savings of project​ ​delivery​ ​costs​ ​and​ ​risk. This paper looks to a most recent innovation that has been invented to solve the “Trust” problem in the absence of administrative overhead, particularly in the financial world. These same technologies may be used in any situation where many people would simultaneously interact with a single database at the same time. These situations include financial ledgers, Insurance pools, and even architectural and engineering modeling sets. In the short time since the introduction of Blockchain technology, it is increasingly apparent that it will have widespread effects on the ways in which society can organize itself as well as the economic​ ​consequences​ ​of​ ​doing​ ​so. Every major innovation from the printing press, interchangeable parts, the Integrated circuit and so on, has been followed by a major reorganization of society and restructuring of enterprise. Blockchain technology further enhanced by Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Internet of Things, will have a similar impact on society and enterprise. The difference is that we are now conscious of these changes and can influence structural change in the way we reorganize. The “culture change” that we hear called for as a mantra of BIM ​[11] can be considered a call for more trust among the stakeholders in the design, construction and building operations industry. This includes clients, designers, contractors, owners and building operators.​[12] In traditional building procurement the industry has developed systems which are heavily reliant on contracts which often pit the client against the contractor in a lowest tender process that is administered by a third party and adjudicated by an adversarial legal system. Often the third party walks a fine line in between acting on behalf of the client and the interest of the contractual requirements of the contractor. When failures occur, blanket legislation overreaches with regulations that introduce friction to the whole system. Nothing new here. However what is new and now disruptive is that the nature of the building information is changing, the industry is

moving from representation to simulation. ​[13] This shift opens up the AECOO industry to a digital​ ​transformation.

Digital Transformation in the AECOO Industry The term “industrial revolution” has been used to mark significant periods of disruption and innovation in industry that have brought sweeping changes to the economy and society. Humans have lived through 3 recorded industrial revolutions. Today's society is still feeling its way through the changes being wrought the 3rd “digital” revolution and now find themselves facing into a new 4th industrial revolution. ​[14] Schwab makes a case that humans are now already in this 4th Industrial Revolution. The pattern of disruption and innovation established over the previous three is being repeated but this time it is has differences. It is very clear that the time it takes for the disruption to penetrate the social and economic fabric has been getting shorter and shorter and the innovations​ ​more​ ​plentiful. “We stand on the brink of a technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way we live, work, and relate to one another. In its scale, scope, and complexity, the transformation will be unlike anything humankind has experienced before. 4th Industrial Revolution is building on the 3rd, the digital revolution that has been occurring since the middle of the last century. It is characterized by a fusion of technologies that is blurring the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres”. [14]​. The patterns that have emerged from the 3 industrial revolutions can give strong indications as to the potential impact of the now 4th industrial revolution. There are three factors which are common to digital disruptions, 1/ digital disruption knows no boundaries 2/ digital disruption dismantles hierarchies in favor of networks and 3/ digital disruption regularly slays sacred cows. One only has to witness the music industry, the publishing industry, the travel industry, the financial services industry and so on and on. The design, construction and building operation industry is perhaps the last surviving major industry that has not yet felt the full force of a digital transformation. ​[1] But that is no longer the case ​[15] and at the heart of this digital

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CITA​ ​BIM​ ​Gathering​ ​201​7,​ ​ ​November​ ​23​rd​-24​th​​ ​November​ ​2017 transformation of the AECOO industry is BIM and now a new digital disrupter referred to as Blockchain. While BIM is the current best solution for the collaborative creation and management of building data. Blockchain is a possible solution to the problem of trust for a collaborative design, construction and building operation process. In order to establish trust the stakeholders need to provide evidence of trust. Collaboration based around a shared BIM model is one method to provide visible evidence of trust. A distributed ledger of transactions based on Blockchain technologies is another. “Clash detection” that phrase that AEC professionals use, is actually a visible simulation of a trust relationship sorting itself out. A combination of BIM+Blockchain has potential as a platform for true collaboration where visual evidence of “value transactions” are written into a ledger, timestamped, gathered and thru consensus locked into a block, visible for the stakeholders to see. A platform like this will disrupt​ ​the​ ​design​ ​and​ ​construction​ ​industry.

Traditional​ ​Procurement The construction industry is highly fragmented and has been deplored for being very adversarial. Construction owners are risk evasive, while contracting parties interpret contract clauses differently and for their own benefit. Productivity levels are low compared to other industries and have even dropped over​ ​time​ ​in​ ​some​ ​countries.​ ​[16] A problem that needs to be overcome with the traditional procurement process is around the created data. Data is a commodity, it has value. In a traditional procurement process the architect retains copyright over the design. ​[17] The representation drawings expressing the building design are licensed to other design stakeholders to do their work. This has the effect of being able to identify who did what, “separation of responsibility”. This process services a current need for control of intellectual property (IP) where this distinction of data ownership sits well in risk insurance industry. A second problem in traditional procurement stems from the control of created data. It remains evident from literature and, in practice, that BIM is still greatly challenged by issues of stakeholder integration, particularly in the way information is managed and controlled. ​[18] New technologies on an old process is not the way to go. The traditional way information is created

builds a top down hierarchy that tends to put the originators in control of the flow of data (and consequently take the majority share of the fee income). BIM disrupts this process. The control of the data/information now becomes available to all in a (de) centralised collaborative setting. ​[19] In a fully collaborative project often defined as Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) is a project delivery method where collaboration of project participants during design development is an integral part of the delivery system. ​[20] The creation of the data set comes about through the interaction of a group(s) of design professionals, making it difficult to separate the groupwork in terms of intellectual property and ultimately causation. This is a disruption to traditional legal frameworks. A legal framework document used in the USA called ConsensusDocs 300 Standard Multi-Party Integrated Project Delivery Agreement (CD300) referred to in ​[20] contains very specific clauses which delineate the liabilities of the project participants for their respective participation in the design development process. Does this help or hinder collaboration? If you are a member of a domain profession that has been the controller of the information, the culture change to a (de) centralised collaborative process is intimidating, unsettling and difficult. Letting go of control and trusting your professional colleagues is one element and sharing risk and reward is another. Trust is essential for a multidisciplinary collaborative to work and evidence of this trust is a scaffold for the collaboration. Methods to overcome problems associated with data creation and data control must be proposed if true collaboration​ ​is​ ​to​ ​be​ ​achieved.

Blockchain What is a Blockchain? It's a fundamentally different technology for databases with multiple non-trusting writers who can modify the database directly” What problems does Blockchain solve? Simply put it’s the trust aspect of an ancient human ritual “the handshake” an agreement for a value​ ​transaction.​ ​[21] Blockchain is not without its difficulties in fact if you take Blockchain out of its natural home of cryptocurrencies it is somewhat of a “solution looking for a problem.” The technology can be broken down into its two current iterations Public and Private Blockchain. Public Blockchains are constructed using the theory proposed in a whitepaper by a person or persons using the pseudonym of Satoshi Nakamoto “Bitcoin: A

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CITA​ ​BIM​ ​Gathering​ ​201​7,​ ​ ​November​ ​23​rd​-24​th​​ ​November​ ​2017 Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System“ ​[22] in which a purely peer-to-peer version of electronic cash would allow online payments to be sent directly from one party to another without going through a financial institution. Applications were built on to transact virtual value. The most successful is Bitcoin which uses blockchain to anchor its cryptocurrency value. Others in the open market are Ethereum ​[23] and the Hyperledger Project ​[24] . All transaction on a public blockchain are open by default, although it is common to hide the actual identity of all associated participants using cryptographically generated keys. A public key to mark and timestamp the transaction and a private key to unlock and access its data. Public Blockchain strength is its cryptography underpinning, its distributed nature, Its immutability and its consensus validation. Private Blockchains also know as Permissioned Blockchain allow the network to appoint a group of participants (nodes) or a single person (node) in the network who are given the express authority to provide the validation to blocks of transactions or to participate in the consensus mechanism. ​[25]​. A consensus mechanism is a method of authenticating a value transaction on a blockchain or a distributed ledger without the need to trust or rely on a central authority. Consensus mechanisms are central to the functioning of a blockchain or distributed ledger. ​[26] There is very little academic work published on Blockchain use in the AECOO industry, a recent published paper which reviewed current research on Blockchain technologies, building design and construction is not mentioned in 41 academic papers reviewed. [27] The authors believe that future research will not only focus on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, but on other possible applications​ ​using​ ​Blockchain​ ​as​ ​a​ ​solution.

BIM​ ​(Building​ ​Information Management) BIM is proving to be a challenge in the AECOO industry. The NBS BIM report is recognised in the United Kingdom as the most comprehensive report into the industry's use of BIM and they have been polling since 2011. ​[28] The information from the NBS BIM Survey 2017 shows a plateauing of BIM adoption between 2014 and 2017 and this during the lead up to the 2016 mandatory requirement for BIM level 2 on publicly procured projects. The move from representation to simulation in the design, construction and building operation

industry has proved difficult for a lot of people and professions. Looking to the UK, early adoption saw somewhat of a two tier procurement process developing. Reasons for this are many this author suggests problems associated with data creation and data control are a major problem. Gary Sullivan OBE is chairman of logistics contractor Wilson James and in an article for the Construction Manager​ ​e​ ​zine​ ​ ​states:​ ​ ​[29] “The elevation or obscurity of BIM will not be about its power as a tool, or even about the skill of its users, it will be about the culture change that is taking longer than​ ​your​ ​average​ ​ice​ ​age.” While uptake on BIM technology is slowly growing, understanding and utilisation of the process is low. ​[30] Using BIM technology and not using BIM process is dangerous and is often at the center of failed “BIM” projects. ​[31] Using BIM based collaborative technology on a traditional cooperative process enforced by “self-serving” contracts is doomed to failure. UK PAS 1192 suite of documents has at its center “collaboration.” Collaborative method in this sense is where stakeholders will work together to achieve a shared goal sharing the risk and reward this means co creating and sharing data (network based). Traditional building projects are silos of data (hierarchy based). This is a co-operative method where a stakeholder will work with another to achieve their goal and that stakeholder will in turn work with another to achieve their goal. BIM is disrupting this process. It is on one side a set of collaborative authoring technologies and on the other side a proven process that provides a methodology for collaboration and the sharing of data. A disruptive move from hierarchical structure to​ ​a​ ​networked​ ​structure. Another facet of BIM is the added value or as Tobin refers in his AECbytes article see ​[32]​“a disruptive technology and one that creates entirely new​ ​“value​ ​networks”.​ ​He​ ​goes​ ​on​ ​to​ ​state: The notion was that 3D models would be an efficient way to produce 2D documents, the next evolution of CAD enhancement. But it quickly morphed to a point where the model created brand new value networks: clash detection, quantity takeoffs, field BIM, direct fabrication, energy analysis––and, ultimately, BIM models as a store of myriad facility information. This is the intrinsic value that comes along with digital building model. It is a value transaction and but is difficult to measure because often its

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CITA​ ​BIM​ ​Gathering​ ​201​7,​ ​ ​November​ ​23​rd​-24​th​​ ​November​ ​2017 substantive value is only realised during the lifecycle of the artifact and consequently is not rewarded by a tradition fee structure. A BIM is a visualized database. Once creators and consumers of a BIM realize this, a whole new world of possibility opens up. Digital information in a BIM is code, its data, and data is data and in the eyes of a computer programmer it is equal and only distinguished by format. The point of this is that, data produced by a BIM creator is open to the same type of manipulation as data produced by any other authoring computer application and in this way, It lends itself to a Blockchain solution and perhaps an ideal application of Blockchain technology. The BIM, a collaboratively built, visually expressed database can be used to construct stakeholder consensus for any number of “value transactions” on the supply chain ecosystem.

Proposition for a Consensus driven Collaborative​ ​Project​ ​Blockchain It is time for a new proposal, a new process proposition for clients and professionals who want to work collaboratively. A “Permissioned by Qualifications Blockchain”, facilitated by an Oracle with a min 4 node (numbers can vary) network for a consensus mechanism to include a collaborative grouping of invested stakeholders: Client, Architect, Engineer, Contractor with consensus categories of Material supply chain (inc Prefabrication), Labour interaction (inc Robotics) and Quality control.​ ​ ​Mathews​ ​(2017) What distinguishes the AEC industry from others exploring the potential of Blockchain is that this industry delivers a real world physical artifact. The industry powers its economy by converting created virtual value to a physical real world value. But correspondingly, the industry loses out because there is no method of measuring and converting the intrinsic value of the real world artifact back into a digital value for the AEC collaborative. BIM creates this added value and now Blockchain can provide a mechanism to reward this added virtual value even after the physical artifact has been created. Construction value transactions (virtual to real) are made up from three subcategories, materials,

labour and quality, all can be managed by a consensus driven permissioned Blockchain. The first two of these are quantitative/tangible and the third is qualitative/intangible. However there is another value transaction happening, one which is harder to measure, it’s the intrinsic intangible value of the completed artifact. The fundamental problem is that the value of design/engineering is invisible –there is little or no accounting of ‘true’ design/engineering value in society because there are few tools that accurately measure it. ​[33]​. To put a perspective on this, one can look at the value of a “Bitcoin”. The value of Bitcoin is in all the things that you can do with Bitcoin that you cannot do without Bitcoin. While important, this value is certainly not intrinsic, rather, bitcoins resemble a classic derivative – something whose value is derived from the value of something else. The value of Bitcoin is a derivative of physical manifestations of it’s utility. Likewise, the value of a newly created #AECOin cryptocurrency coin would represent all the things you can do with design and engineering that you cannot do without design and engineering. Ultimately, all things upon which society utterly depends could be characterized as such, thus, an #AECoin coin would be intrinsic and may even achieve generalized reciprocity essential as a global medium of exchange. An #AECoin public Blockchain can be used as a technology to measure the intrinsic and up to now intangible value of the artifact and its creator(s) by rewarding the individual/collaboration contribution over the lifecycle of the artifact. This is in essence “the new value proposition”. You can design / engineer and walk away as in a traditional procurement or you can design / engineer and be rewarded over the lifecycle of the artifact using a BIM+Blockchain technology to structure true collaboration and incentivise​ ​for​ ​a​ ​superior​ ​outcome. What the Internet did for society and industry 20 years ago is what Blockchain can do for the next 20 years, that is to provide a platform for application development to drive efficiencies and effect a digital transformation in the targeted industry.​ ​ ​Here​ ​we​ ​have​ ​the​ ​ingredients: ● BIM, an authoring tool that is a visualised database of code simulating a proposed building bringing with​ ​it​ ​a​ ​host​ ​of​ ​new​ ​value​ ​networks, ● Documented digital methodologies supporting a collaborative platform for building/infrastructure procurement,

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CITA​ ​BIM​ ​Gathering​ ​201​7,​ ​ ​November​ ​23​rd​-24​th​​ ​November​ ​2017 ● Cloud based technology allowing for real time creating and coordinating of the visualised database, a platform for multidisciplinary collaboration, ● Reality capture technologies that allow for verification on the conversion of digital assets to real assets, ● Existing professional set to provide Oracle (certification) services​ ​to​ ​a​ ​consensus​ ​mechanism, ● Functionally permissioned public Blockchain that provides a platform for true consensus driven​ ​collaboration, ● Internet of Things is becoming simpler and accessible for building operations combined with Blockchain allowing a micro economy develop​ ​around​ ​an​ ​artifact, ● “Smart” contracts, which are a set of coded instructions on a blockchain that allow, when conditions are​ ​met​ ​,​ ​a​ ​value​ ​transaction​ ​to​ ​happen, ● A real desire to effect a new paradigm in a difficult industry that is ready to make a contribution to the environmental, social and economic fabric offering a way forward for culture change. ● A Design/Engineering open Blockchain that will reward intrinsic intangible value leading to a “new value proposition” for clients and AEC professionals. Permissioned Blockchains are a developing trend, particularly now that one can make use of “off the peg” blockchains. Permission can be assigned by a central authority or specialized identity system. Less obvious is that a public blockchain can be “functionally permissioned” where certain users have the specific knowledge to utilize the data. Data driven companies like IBM, Microsoft, Amazon are offering “Blockchain as a Service” (BaaS) where they provide the infrastructure to host developer applications. This is making the blockchain accessible to entrepreneurs to provide assured transaction services to many different industries. The Ethereum Blockchain is an open source platform using blockchain technology to provide programmability that enables developers to build and deploy decentralised applications. [34]​. Consensus mechanism applications are being developed for permissioned blockchain and some

are already functioning. (We) believe that consensus mechanisms will evolve to target specific needs, whether those of a particular case, of technical implementation possibilities or of the regulatory kind. ​[26] The consensus nodes are guaranteed to have an identical copy of the data and the code to run a smart contract once consensus is achieved. If smart contracts are computer coded scripts, then a legitimate question arises as to who writes or approves the use of a smart contract script, or who can over-ride a script “on block” if an unexpected physical condition exists. This entity is referred to as an “Oracle”, a person that generally possesses specialized knowledge and context related to the script being executed. Someone who is a trusted authority who creates the transaction by writing the code and embedding it into the blockchain so all nodes have the same data and can come to a consensus agreement, picture a shared Google document. If smart contracts need external data to trigger the transaction there is a possibility the external data might not arrive in the same format and structure to all nodes so if one node receives something different from the external source then the nodes cannot come to a consensus. ​[35] Greenspan describes this action as “pushing data onto the blockchain rather than a smart contract pulling it in”. An Oracle contract is an adjudicated contract with the added requirement the adjudicator “Permissioned by Qualifications” is deemed the most appropriate person to be performing the adjudication. These additional requirements mean that a method is required to establish the most appropriate adjudicator, and the method must likewise be decentralized. The Oracle must make decisions in physical space—not simply assess digital data. The Oracle must be able to be present in time and space, determine causation of an event and deal with significant ambiguity in relation to the facts being observed. The validity of the Oracle is what establishes tangibility and invokes law— therefore, money and property. Securing the pool of decentralized Oracles would be essential to insurability of such contracts on a blockchain ​[36]​. Solutions​ ​for​ ​this​ ​are​ ​developing.

Observations Solving the problem of trust and providing a robust platform for a true collaborative procurement process is a goal worthy of endeavor. True collaboration brings together professionals in the 3 modern pillars of procurement, simulated design,

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CITA​ ​BIM​ ​Gathering​ ​201​7,​ ​ ​November​ ​23​rd​-24​th​​ ​November​ ​2017 lean process and energy efficiency design. Blockchain is the glue that brings all these ingredients together. A BIM+Blockchain can provide the “Evidence of Trust” that will scaffold the collaboration between professionals and client, it can be a framework to achieve and record consensus. Collaboration in its truest form is a holy grail for the design and construction industry. Its current iteration is IPD but as long as you have contracts that seek to provide a path to domain or individual causation you won't achieve true collaboration. IPD is all for one and one for all. However, a true collaboration holds more promise than is first evident. Another “new value network”. What is not currently measured is the intrinsic intangible value of design and engineering. AEC professionals have always struggled to recover the intrinsic value of their labour. Blockchain with its properties of transparency, immutability and consensus validation now offers AEC professionals an opportunity to develop a new value proposition to extract reward not just for their collaborative services they have provided but also the intrinsic intangible value of their collaborative professional service over the lifecycle of a building. ​Created (mined) “blocks” of data transactions on this private blockchain are rewarded with a token say the #AECoin. This is administered by the Oracle via a Smart Contract to the consensus/stakeholder group. The tokens value is in its proof of work, a completed parcel collaborative endeavour and the positive repercussions this has on the industry. ​The technologies to process this are tied up in the hand in glove fit of BIM+Blockchain and the introduction of an #AECoin cryptocurrency enabling micro economies to be developed around the completed artifact to reward the collaborative driven by digital technologies and administered by smart​ ​contracts​ ​on​ ​a​ ​Blockchain. Reputation now is a currency in this digital age and this too can be valued through a coin on a cryptocurrency within a secure foundation of an open #AECoin blockchain. Something like this does not take away from an agreed % fee or lump sum payment for services but it adds a new layer to assign value to intrinsic intangible elements of collaborative professional services. This can also provide a solution to the problem of individual contribution to a collaborative endeavor within professional design services which is the essence of the BIM process. The individual validation from the consensus group, collaborative team and or client to the individual contribution is rewarded by a coin of the #AECoin cryptocurrency and in turn

the individual from the consensus group, collaborative team and or client validating the contribution also earns a coin of the cryptocurrency. A system like this disrupts the existing domain based professional silos in favor of project based Multidisciplinary Collaborative PODS (Professionals Offering Design Service) professionals “contracted” by a Blockchain whose intrinsic intangible value is rewarded through coin on a #AECoin cryptocurrency. This can have the effect of creating a networked “Building Profession” as an alternative to the siloed self centered professional body structure we have today.

Conclusion This paper sought to examine if Blockchain could provide a solution to the trust problem in a collaborative procurement system. Design and construction will always be first a social partnership with participant communication at its core. Our current hierarchical structures are a legacy that have grow in response to “fire fighting” problems. These structures have separated professionals and caused mistrust, a root cause for a dysfunctional industry. The paper proposes a “new value proposition” for clients and AEC professionals who see the benefit of working together now have at their disposal an array of collaborative tools to allow this happen in real time. Blockchain is a robust technology that will record value transactions of the collaborative and provide a method to reward intrinsic value through an #AECoin cryptocurrency coin. There is much more research to be carried out in this area but it holds great promise. The AECOO industry is making efforts to shape the oncoming digital transformation, BIM and now Blockchain offer real solutions for this endeavour. Society will always reorganize itself in the face of technological change. Blockchain is here to stay, it cannot be un-invented and while many have predicted its demise, the idea of Blockchain software has only increased in applicability. Many people agree that it will play a major role in the disruption of current centralised systems. The AECOO industry apparently has 3 choices, fight it, ignore it, or own it. That said, the convergence of BIM+ Blockchain technology will not seek permission to disrupt the design and engineering process. The task before the AECOO industry is to assure that changes occur for the better of the industry. Blockchain core strength is that it can provide a solution to the problem of trust. This is

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CITA​ ​BIM​ ​Gathering​ ​201​7,​ ​ ​November​ ​23​rd​-24​th​​ ​November​ ​2017 already happening and disrupting the world of finance, insurance, health and education. It is inevitable that the building and construction industries​ ​will​ ​also​ ​be​ ​disrupted.

REFERENCE [1] ​Barbrossa F., et_al., “Reinventing Construction: A route to higher productivity,” McKinsey​ ​Global​ ​Institute,​ ​2017. [2] C. Egbu, M. Vines, and J. Tookey, “The role of knowledge management in e-procurement initiatives for construction organizations,” in ARCOM Proceedings Twentieth Annual Conference,​ ​2004,​ ​vol.​ ​1,​ ​pp.​ ​661–671. [3] “Digital Built Britain | Digital Built Britain.” [Online]. Available:​. [Accessed: 04-May-2017]. [4] A. A. Ganah and G. A. John, “Achieving Level​ ​2​ ​BIM​ ​by​ ​2016​ ​in​ ​the​ ​UK.” [5] S. M. Latham, Constructing the Team: Joint Review of Procurement and Contractual Arrangements in the United Kingdom Construction Industry : Final Report. H.M. Stationery​ ​Office,​ ​1994. [6] M. Murray, “Rethinking Construction: The Egan Report (1998),” in Construction Reports 1944–98, Blackwell Science Ltd, 2003, pp. 178–195. [7] “Government Construction Strategy GOV.UK.” [Online]. Available: rnment-construction-strategy​. [Accessed: 08-Aug-2017]. [8] M. Farmer, “Farmer Review, Modernise or Die,” p-content/uploads/2016/10/Farmer-Review.pdf. [Online]. Available: p-content/uploads/2016/10/Farmer-Review.pdf​. [Accessed:​ ​01-Mar-2017]. [9] Wong and Cheung, “Structural Equation Model of Trust and Partnering Success,” J. Manage. Eng., vol. 21, no. 2, pp. 70–80, Apr. 2005. [10] C. Black, A. Akintoye, and E. Fitzgerald, “Partnering in Construction. An Analysis of Success factors and Benefits.“,” Int. J. Project Manage.,​ ​vol.​ ​18,​ ​no.​ ​6,​ ​pp.​ ​423–434,​ ​2000. [11] N. Čuš Babič and D. Rebolj, “Culture change in construction industry: from 2D toward

BIM​ ​based​ ​construction.”​ ​ITcon,​ ​2016. [12] A. Porwal and K. N. Hewage, “Building Information Modeling (BIM) partnering framework for public construction projects,” Autom.​ ​Constr.,​ ​vol.​ ​31,​ ​pp.​ ​204–214,​ ​2013/5. [13] D. R. Scheer, The Death of Drawing: Architecture in the Age of Simulation. Taylor & Francis,​ ​2014. [14] K. Schwab, “The fourth industrial revolution,”​ ​2016. [15] “[PDF]Industry 4.0: Building the digital enterprise​ ​-​ ​PwC.” [16] P. J. O’Connor, “INTEGRATED PROJECT DELIVERY: COLLABORATION THROUGH​ ​NEW​ ​CONTRACT​ ​FORMS,”​ ​2009. [17] D. E. Shipley, “The Architectural Works Copyright Protection Act at Twenty: Has Full Protection​ ​Made​ ​a​ ​Difference?,”​ ​2010. [18] M. E. Murphy, “Implementing innovation: a stakeholder competency-based approach for BIM,” Constr. Innov., vol. 14, no. 4, pp.​ ​433–452,​ ​2014. [19] C. Preidel, A. Borrmann, C. Oberender, and M. Tretheway, “Seamless Integration of Common Data Environment Access into BIM Authoring Applications: the BIM Integration Framework,” in eWork and eBusiness in Architecture, Engineering and Construction: ECPPM 2016: Proceedings of the 11th European Conference on Product and Process Modelling (ECPPM 2016), Limassol, Cyprus, 7-9 September 2016,​ ​2017,​ ​p.​ ​119. [20] J. M. Leone and D. y. S. Vornehm, “The Contract Challenges of Delivering Projects Using Collaborative​ ​Design.” [21] Blockchain For Engineering Professions ASCE​ ​Grand​ ​Challenge​ ​Presentation.​ ​2017. [22] S. Nakamoto, “Bitcoin: A peer-to-peer electronic​ ​cash​ ​system.”​ ​2008. [23] V. Buterin, “Ethereum: A next-generation smart contract and decentralized application platform,” URL https://github. com/ethereum/wiki/wiki/% 5BEnglish% 5D-White-Paper,​ ​2014. [24] C. Cachin, “Architecture of the Hyperledger blockchain fabric,” in Workshop on Distributed Cryptocurrencies and Consensus Ledgers,​ ​2016. [25] “Explainer | Permissioned Blockchains,” Monax. [Online]. Available: ains/​.​ ​[Accessed:​ ​08-Aug-2017]. [26] S. G. Seibold S., “Consensus the Internet of​ ​value,”​ ​KPMG​ ​Report. [27] J. Yli-Huumo, D. Ko, S. Choi, S. Park, and K. Smolander, “Where Is Current Research on

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CITA​ ​BIM​ ​Gathering​ ​201​7,​ ​ ​November​ ​23​rd​-24​th​​ ​November​ ​2017 Blockchain Technology?-A Systematic Review,” PLoS​ ​One,​ ​vol.​ ​11,​ ​no.​ ​10,​ ​p.​ ​e0163477,​ ​Oct.​ ​2016. [28] R. Waterhouse, “NBS National BIM Report 2011,” NBS, 01-Mar-2011. [Online]. Available: im-report-2011​.​ ​[Accessed:​ ​08-Aug-2017]. [29] “Construction Manager - Home.” [Online]. Available: mment/too7ls-alon6e-w7ont-change-our-culture/​. [Accessed:​ ​08-Aug-2017]. [30] K. Deegan and M. Mathews, “BIM: Building Information Management (not Modelling.” [31] Jongsung Won, Ghang Lee, Carrie Dossick, and John Messner, “Where to Focus for Successful Adoption of Building Information Modeling within Organization,” J. Constr. Eng. Manage.,​ ​vol.​ ​139,​ ​no.​ ​11,​ ​Nov.​ ​2013. [32] L. Khemlani, “Measuring BIM’s Disruption: Understanding Value Networks of BIM/VDC -- AECbytes Archived Article.” [Online]. Available: ion.html​.​ ​[Accessed:​ ​08-Aug-2017]. [33] Robles, “The Revolutionary Blockchain An Opportunity for Engineering Stewardship,” presented​ ​at​ ​the​ ​ASCE​ ​Grand​ ​Challenge,​ ​2017. [34] T. D. @tamaldutt et al., “What is Ethereum? A Step-by-Step Beginners Guide [Ultimate Guide],” Blockgeeks, 31-Oct-2016. [Online]. Available:​. [Accessed:​ ​08-Aug-2017]. [35] G. Greenspan, “Beware the impossible smart contract | MultiChain.” [Online]. Available: mpossible-smart-contract/​. [Accessed: 08-Aug-2017]. [36] D. R. Robles, “Insurance: The Highest and Best use case for Blockchain Technology,” _blockchain.pdf,​ ​2016.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th

A Study on Supporting the Deployment and Evaluation of Government Policy Objectives Through the Adoption of Building Information Modeling 1Shiyao



Kuang 2 Dr. Alan Hore, 3Dr. Barry McAuley and 4Prof. Roger P. West

School of Surveying and Construction Management, Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton Street, Dublin 1, Ireland

Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering, Trinity College, College Green, Dublin 2, Ireland




Abstract ̶ The world's urban population is increasing by 200,000 people per day which has now resulted in the construction industry exploring new technologies and processes to reduce construction costs, make buildings more efficient and boost economic development. An example of such an emerging process is Building Information Modelling, which is now recognised as a transformative milestone for the extended use of digital technologies. The correct application of BIM can result in public sector bodies using the model to automate the creation of inventory lists for equipment and reduce redundancy in the maintenance of facility data for FM activities. This paper will investigate international BIM policies and the key areas that must be addressed if they are to be successful. The methodology involved an initial desktop based research exploring existing literature on global BIM policies. The findings show that if a Government lead mandate is to be successful then it must be partnered with both adequate standards and funding. It is hoped that the research findings will support not only the business case for the adoption of BIM by the Irish state but also the requirement to partner this approach with the correct resources.

Keywords ̶ Building Information Modeling, National Government Policy, Mandatory Policy

I BACKGROUND The world's urban population is increasing by 200,000 people per day, all of whom need affordable housing [1]. This type of global macro-trends has challenged the construction industry to explore new technologies and processes to reduce construction costs, make buildings more efficient and boost economic development. Despite this the recent World Economic Forum (WEF, 2016) reported that while most other industries have undergone tremendous changes over the last few decades, the construction sector has been hesitant about fully embracing the latest technological opportunities. WEF (2016) acknowledges that this is beginning to change thanks to digitalisation, innovative technologies and new construction techniques, such as Building Information Modelling (BIM) [2]. BIM has grown in importance and is now recognised as a transformative

milestone for the technologies [3, 4].



of digital

BIM is recognised as an effective process which can improve efficiency and productivity within the industry, and has quickly become a requirement for international governing bodies [5]. Post construction, public sector bodies can use the model to automate the creation of inventory lists for equipment, populate current FM systems and reduce redundancy in the maintenance of facility data for FM activities [6]. This paper will investigate international BIM policies and the key areas that must be addressed if they are to be successful.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th

II AIM AND METHODOLOGY The methodology involved an initial desk-top based research exploring existing literature on global BIM policies. Based on the previous global BIM research performed by the BIM Innovation Capability Programme (BICP) of Ireland, ten countries have been selected that represent a high BIM maturity [7] This research focused on how particular international BIM programmes are organised, managed and the level of governmental support that is evident within those jurisdictions. The BICP research team originally focused on Australia, Canada, China Finland, France, Germany, United Kingdom, Scotland, Singapore and South Korea. For the purpose of this paper, this list will be narrowed down to those which only have a Government lead mandate / requirement in place i.e. China, Finland, France, Germany, United Kingdom, Scotland, Singapore and South Korea. The paper will aim to advance the findings of the BICP research team’s paper under the following established headings. • •

Policy: What type of requirement / mandate was issued by each country? Funding: What type and level of funding is required from each jurisdiction? Standards: What guidance and support mechanisms have each country deployed?


have issued publications and best practice guides toassist industry with any proposed mandates. The UK Government’s Construction Strategy published in May 2011 set out an aim to reduce the cost of public sector assets by up to 20%. To achieve this the government introduced a mandate requiring a minimum of Level 2 collaborative BIM on all centrally funded public projects by 2016. This mandate came into effect in April 2016. The government also established a dedicated BIM Task Group to assist in delivering this aim by providing support to the government and construction industry. The mandate has been considered as one of the reasons for the rapid development of BIM applications within the UK.[12,13] In December 2015, Germany's Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) launched its strategic Road Map for BIM within the transportation infrastructure sector [34]. Leading institutions and associations from design, construction and operations started the limited company Planenbauen 4.0 “Digitisation of Design, Construction and Operations” in February 2015. This joint and unique initiative supported by the German government is intended to guide and steer the implementation of BIM, or digital design, construction, operation and asset management across the entire industry in Germany [13] In 2013, a review of Scotland's public-sector procurement was carried out. The key target involved ‘projects across the public sector adopting BIM level 2 by April 2017’. Additional key targets in the 2013 review included reducing carbon and achieving higher building performance. The Scottish Future Trust (SFT) formed the BIM Delivery Group for Scotland in August 2015, and a Scottish BIM Implementation Plan was published in October 2015 [14].

BIM has been recognised as an innovation in the construction market by international project management. Public sector bodies and governments around the world have recommended or mandated the use of BIM as a strategy for addressing declining productivity [8]. A move towards BIM capability and expertise requires firms to re-evaluate and reengineer their business practices, while also highlighting that cultural business change is another challenge [9]. It will take money and time to train the staff to use BIM, to procure equipment and software, and to learn the BIM application, thus, generating loss to a certain degree [10] Therefore, many companies are not willing to undertake these risks and in instances a mandatory policy may be required.

The Confederation of Finnish Construction Industries decided in 2002 that BIM would be a core element of the future direction of the Finnish construction industry. More recently the City of Helsinki (The Real Estate Department), HUS (The Hospital District of Helsinki and Uusimaa), Senate Properties and City of Vantaa (The Real Estate Department) have produced a BIM project guideline for clients [13]

There can be many barriers keeping project participants from using the latest technologies including fears of low success, failure, high initial investment costs, the time to learn how to use the software and, most of all, the lack of support from senior leadership of the company [11]. If a Government policy is to be successful, then it will be necessary for adequate measures to be put in place to address these concerns. A number of governments

Recently, the EU BIM Task Handbook (Figure 1) has defined a strategic framework that provides a common approach for BIM's introduction into the European public sector. Establishing public leadership, communicating vision and fostering communities, growing industry capability and building a collaborative framework are the four high-level areas to fulfil, and each contains specific actions for the public stakeholder to consider. The

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th framework provides those stakeholders starting their journey with a direct route and offers a cross-check to those that have already begun [15].

The government body in Singapore issued largescale subsidies in June 2010 to encourage enterprises to start applying BIM. Each business can request financial subsidies with an upper limit of 105,000 SGD. Enterprises can use this funding for early staff training, BIM hardware and software, as well as project consulting expenses. China, as seen in the 2011-2015 Five-year Digital Construction Development Outline, have offered project incentives. The National Construction Management Committee also offer awards for organisations using BIM application. [15] The UK government has provided financial support to achieve a level 2 development for the industry and plans to invest £15 million into BIM level 3 [19]. France has invested €20 million to support their construction stimulus plan in 2015 and to implement 500,000 units of housing at the end of 2017 [20]. In October 2016, the Finnish Government started a new programme called KIRAdigi which is aiming for wider digitalisation of the construction industry, not only BIM. The programme duration runs until 2018 and has a total budget of €16 million [7]. The Federal Ministry of Transport and digital Infrastructure provides financial aid to four pilot BIM projects within a research project in the area of road and rail construction, with a total of € 3.8 million.

Figure 1–Strategic framework for public sector BIM programmes–EU BIM Task Handbook. [5] Some Asian countries are committed to relying on top-down leadership to promote the application of BIM. In Singapore the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) had a roadmap for BIM that pushed its construction industry to be using BIM widely by 2015. A related, major initiative of that government is to improve the construction industry’s productivity through the use of BIM by 20-30%. The BCA have mandated that all buildings over 5000 square meters need to deliver a BIM model [16]. In 2011, the application of BIM technology within China was proposed in the 2011-2015 Five-year Digital Construction Development Outline published by China's Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development. It states that the enterprises employing the application of BIM technology will be provided by tax incentives. This series of incentive policies resulted in a number of Chinese organisations moving towards a BIM workflow. Construction enterprises with grade-A level qualifications are required to use BIM technology [17]. South Korea has a BIM regulatory requirement in place since 2011. The Public Procurement Service (PPS) made BIM compulsory for all projects over S$50 million and for all public-sector projects by 2016. The South Korean Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport have provided S$5.8 million over a period of three years to build open BIM-based building design standards and information technology [18].

IV FUNDING Many governments have used financial support as an incentive for industries to take BIM action and further their digitisation agenda.

V STANDARDS As for international BIM standards, ISO has organised some important standards early from the IFC to IDM to IFD. In 2016, a first milestone for BIM in European standardization was reached with the adoption of the first three European Standards. This was a result of the work by the European Committee (CEN/TC 442) which was set up in 2015 to develop a structured set of BIM standards. CEN/TC 442 has developed three international standards: •

EN ISO 16739:2016 - Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) for data sharing in the construction and facility management industries.

EN ISO 29481-2:2016 - Building information models - Information delivery manual - Part 2: Interaction framework.

EN ISO 12006-3:2016 - Building construction Organization of information about construction works - Part 3: Framework for object-oriented information [13] In 2013 the British Standards Institute (BSI) released a PAS (Publicly Accessible Standard) which was sponsored by the Construction Industry

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th Council (CIC). PAS 1192-2:2013 ‘Specification for information management for the capital/delivery phase of construction projects using building information modelling’ was developed as an industry standard to provide specific guidance for information management requirements associated with projects delivered using BIM (BSI, 2013). Alongside PAS 1192-2:2013, there has been a range of supporting guideline documentation published including; Employers Information Requirements; CIC BIM Protocol, 2013; Outline Scope of Services for the Role of Information Management, 2013 and COBieUK-2012, UK edition of the schema for Construction [13]. All these standards are also used within Scotland. In Germany VDI2552 will become the German national BIM standard and will be developed in cooperation with the German Institute for Standardization–DIN [7]. PPBIM (XP P07-150) is a French standard, published in December 2014, which provides a methodology to define and manage construction product properties for digital use [13] The InfraBIM requirements (vol 1-7) were published in 2015 by buildingSMART Finland. The first volumes are now available in English. The resulting documents are used as general technical references and modelling guidelines during procurement and construction. The guidelines are accompanied by the Inframodel 3 data exchange format and the InfraBIMClassification System. The results of InfraBIM pilot projects are available online but are presently not available in English [13]. In China, a BIM application standard across all processes will be developed by next year. The standard will detail information transactions between different major stakeholders and define BIM language for easier cooperation.[21]. The Korean Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs published a National Architecture BIM Guide in 2010 to explain how to adopt BIM for all stakeholders [22]. The Singapore BIM Guide Version 1.0 was launched in May 2012 [23]. It was updated and revised into the Singapore BIM Guide Version 2.0, and released in August 2013 [24]. These BIM reference guides explain the roles and responsibilities of project members when adopting BIM.

VI KEY FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS A review of international jurisdictions has shown that if a Government lead mandate is to be successful then it must be partnered with both adequate standards and funding. The mandate must be reflective of the country’s national needs and should indirectly show the benefits of BIM use.

A well-considered mandatory policy can promote the BIM process within the Irish construction industry. Although the Irish government has acknowledged the importance of BIM it is still behind when compared with other countries. The adoption of mandatory BIM policies and partnering incentives will be a catalyst to help Ireland's construction industry catch up with the general global trend.

REFERENCES [1] McGraw Hill Construction, (2014a), The Business Value of BIM for Construction in Global Markets, McGraw Hill Construction, Bedford MA, United States [2] World Economic Forum (2016) Shaping the Future of Construction A Breakthrough in Mindset and Technology, World Economic Forum. [3] Smyth H. (2010), Construction industry performance improvement programme: the UK case of demonstration project in the construction improvement programme [J], Construction Management and Economic, 28(3):255-270, Construction Management & Economics [4] Autodesk white paper for BIM [EB/OL] 2007, Autodesk, USA, viewed 10 December 2007, [5] The Stationary Office (2014). Construction 2020: A Strategy for a Renewed Construction Sector. Government Publications [6] Brindal, T.N and. Prasanna, E. (2014) Developments of Facility Management Using Building Information Modelling, International Journal of Innovative Research in Science, Engineering and Technology, Vol. 3, Issue 4 [7] McAuley, B., Hore, A., West, R. and Kuang, S. (2017) Stewardship of International BIM Programmes: Lessons for Ireland, Proceedings of the 3rd CitA BIM Gathering, pp 1-9, Croke Park, 23rd – 24th November [8] Kassem, M., Kelly, G., Dawood, N., Serginson, M. & Lockley, S. (2015), BIM in facilities management applications: a case study of a large university complex, Built Environment Project and Asset Management, Vol. 5, Issue 3 pp. 261 – 277 [9] NBS, (2015), National BIM Report, NBS, RIBA, London [10] YAN, H. and DEMIAN, P. (2008). Benefits and barriers of building information modelling. Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Computing in Civil and Building Engineering

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th (ICCCBE XII) & 2008 International Conference on Information Technology in Construction (INCITE 2008) [11] Migilinskas, D., Popov, V., Juocevicius, V., and Ustinovichius, L. (2013). The Benefits, Obstacles and Problems of Practical BIM Implementation, Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, Lithuania. [12] BSI, (2011) A report for the Government Construction Client Group: Building Information Modelling (BIM) Working Party strategy paper. 2011 [13] Hore, A., McAuley, B. and West, R. (2017) Global BIM Study, CitA BICP, p. 52 [14] The Scottish Government, (2013), Review of Scottish Public Sector Procurement in Construction, October 2013, p. 105 [15] EU BIM Task Group, (2017), Handbook for the introduction of Building Information Modelling by the European Public Sector, EU BIM Task Group, EU [16] L Wah. (2014). THE SINGAPORE BIM ROADMAP. Government BIM Symposium [17] Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of the People's Republic of China. (2011). The 2011-2015 five-year Digital Construction Development Outline [18] Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs (South Korea). (2010). National BIM Roadmap. [19] HM Treasury and The Rt Hon George Osborne. (2016). Budget 2016. oads/attachment_data/file/508193/HMT_Budget_20 16_Web_Accessible.pdf [20] Le Plan Transition Numérique dans le Bâtiment, (2015), Plan for the digital transition in the building industry, June 2015 [21] Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of the People's Republic of China. (2017). Consultation Paper of Chinese BIM Standard [22] Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs, (2010), National Architecture BIM Guide [23] Building Construction Authority, (2012), Singapore BIM Guide Version 1.0, May 2012 [24] Building Construction Authority, (2013), Singapore BIM Guide Version 2.0, August 2013

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Building Capabilities in Complex Environments BIM Gathering 2017

CitA BIM Gathering Proceedings

BIM for Education Page 63

CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 24th -25th 2017 Integrating BIM into a Structural Engineering curriculum – From absent to infused

Ted McKenna1, Amanda Gibney2 and Mark Richardson3 1

Department of Civil, Structural & Environmental Engineering Cork Institute of Technology, Cork 2,3

School of Civil Engineering, University College Dublin

E-mail: Abstract - In conjunction with well-established technical and transferable graduate attributes, industry is increasingly seeking graduates literate in Building Information Modelling (BIM) methodologies and technologies. Third level institutions are seeking optimal approaches to address perceived knowledge and skills gaps in the area, while achieving an appropriate balance between education and training. The establishment of academic fora in Ireland, as elsewhere internationally, seek to best inform the integration of BIM within existing professional programmes. Publications, such as those by the BIM Academic Forum (UK) and the BIM Education Working Group (Australia), provide guidance to forward thinking academics and programme leaders. However, limited agreement exists within/across disciplines to suggest an optimum approach. This paper contributes to the existing body of knowledge by outlining how BIM is being integrated into a Bachelor (Honours) in Structural Engineering degree programme through a strategic approach. The research-led process of change began with a review of state-of-art literature, a survey of opinion of industry professionals and establishment of local industry focus groups. From such research, and cognisant of academic programme design requirements, a framework for appropriate integration of BIM within the Bachelor (Honours) in Structural Engineering degree curriculum at Cork Institute of Technology was developed. Implementation was phased into the programme and included a variety of pedagogical approaches. This paper details the six phases of the intervention, reports the input of key stakeholders throughout the process and the wider contribution of BIM-led curriculum change in enhancing lifelong learning skills through controlled progressive transfer of learning ownership to the student. Keywords – Engineering Education.

I INTRODUCTION There is increased adoption of BIM across the Irish Architectural, Engineering and Construction (AEC) sector, which is in keeping with growth in BIM adoption internationally [1]. A core objective of BIM is to invoke stakeholder collaboration to ensure the effective management of information throughout the lifecycle of a facility or physical asset, thus enabling better decision making [2]. In providing value for all stakeholders, the principles of ‘lean’ should always be applied to ensure effective expenditure of resources [3]. Integration into the curricula of relevant third level professional degree programmes is a critical component in optimal implementation of BIM in the construction industry [4]. However, industry application proficiency needs often conflict with academic focus on disciplinary principles, thus challenging the classic perceived difference in focus between academia and

industry [5]. In addition, agreement on an optimum approach to integrating BIM into existing AEC programmes, both within and across disciplines, is lacking [6]. This paper seeks to contribute to the existing body of knowledge by outlining how BIM is being integrated into the Structural Engineering programme at Cork Institute of Technology (CIT). The evolution of the implementation programme is described from earliest conception to delivery.


Based on published literature, Lucas [7] identified the following approaches to integrating BIM into the curriculum: 1) Teaching BIM as a single course/module within one discipline 2) Adopting BIM in a multi-disciplinary collaborative setting which is either: a) Local (e.g. within an institution) or b) Distance (e.g. between remote institutions)

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 24th -25th 2017 An alternative approach comprises BIM permeating a number of courses/modules across the curriculum. However, making ‘space’ within the curriculum for such new elements can be problematic. In response to the UK BIM Mandate in 2011, the BIM Academic Forum (BAF) was established in 2013. The BAF recognised the importance of graduate employability, developing a framework for learning, educating academic staff to support delivery of desired learning outcomes, and keeping pace with developments in practice [8]. In 2014, research by Ganah and John [9] reported limited development of undergraduate courses in UK universities to bridge the knowledge gap, however, aspects of BIM were incorporated into existing modules to ensure graduates were somewhat BIM literate. A growing body of related research exists for integration of BIM within individual modules on a programme [5, 10, 11], however, the majority relate to architecture and construction management. Scholarly evidence is extremely limited for aspects particular to structural engineering, specifically with reference to BIM integration throughout the curriculum.

III INDUSTRY SURVEY & FOCUS GROUPS BIM fundamentally involves the management and use of accurate information by adopting ‘lean’ processes and invoking multi-stakeholder collaboration. One such lean process in the discipline of structural engineering is the opportunity to use data rich object-based models to develop associated, sub-discipline, analytical and technical design models. However, traditionalists deem the inclusion of software at undergraduate level to be equivalent to training, and thus has no place in formal education [12]. Supported by ‘The Arup Foundation’, research into the teaching of structural analysis was completed by May and Johnson in 2008 [13] . Among the conclusions, the research highlighted that students’ exposure to structural analysis software applications was limited to routine verification of hand solutions. This narrow exposure is not reflective of the broader application of computer analyses in engineering practice, and typically students remain unskilled in the structured validation and verification of same. While the research was based on a UK survey, the findings resonate with the situation in Ireland due to strong similarities between the curricula of accredited engineering courses in the UK and Ireland. In the nine years since the publication of the aforementioned report, the use of BIM within the AEC sector has increased [1]. In light of this, a survey was developed to build upon the work of May and Johnson, within the Irish context. While

four stakeholder groups were considered separately as part of the investigation, a number of the findings from two groups are presented in this paper, namely Graduate Engineers and Chartered Engineers in the discipline of Structural Engineering. Graduate Engineers were asked which structural drafting/modelling software options they had used in their postgraduate experience to date. Respondents were further asked to elaborate on the specific purpose associated with their use of this software. The responses revealed that Autodesk AutoCAD was the most popular drafting/modelling software package used, with 89% of respondents reporting that they had used the software, while Autodesk Revit was the second most popular at 52% (Figure 1).

Fig. 1: Structural drafting/modelling software used by graduate engineers

The survey also revealed that while 78% of respondents used the software just to development 2D drawings, it is encouraging to note that 47% used it to develop a 3D model and associated 2D drawings, 41% used it to develop a 3D model which was then transferred to structural analysis and design software, while 35% combined all of the aforementioned. The prominence of AutoCAD and use of software to only develop 2D drawings is understandable as the industry transitions between ruling paradigms. While BIM is growing in prominence, traditional methods would appear to remain dominant. The most significant outcome from the presented survey is the fact that over 30% of graduate respondents are using the digital tools to develop multipurpose 3D models. Such models allow for efficient extraction of 2D deliverables (e.g. drawings, schedules). In addition, the 3D intelligent object-based models are being transferred to specialist structural engineering software solutions to complete the required structural analysis and technical design. An investigation of the purpose for which Graduate Engineers adopted structural analysis and design software revealed that approximately 50% had completed complex 3D frame and plate element analysis. The limited use of such an approach is to be expected as, depending on the type of structure, such 3D analysis and design may not be the most efficient approach.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 24th -25th 2017 This echoes a number of responses from Chartered Engineers who participated in the survey. When asked to identify issues that graduates experienced in undertaking computational analysis and design, one response highlighted issues with graduates “understanding what is an appropriate level of detail to model”, while another added that graduates try “to model everything in 3D right away, when there may not be a need to overcomplicate the model [as] sub-frames or 2D models would be more appropriate”. Furthermore, “diving straight into creating a model without spending some time planning the best approach” was advised against in order to prevent development of “models that are too complex too early without understanding the layers of complexity”. A consensus may be surmised from a number of responses that students should develop skills in software modelling as part of the undergraduate curriculum, thus enabling students to further understand BIM and in particular its interoperability benefits and challenges. However, it is important to incorporate software tools in the correct manner. Perhaps the best summation of such views are encapsulated by the following survey response: “Software should be used only to aid the student's understanding of engineering principles, not improve software skill levels, i.e. education is for knowledge generation, not skill development. Those with robust understanding will learn software skills quickly in the work place”. Such caution in chartered professionals and academics has its origins in the fact that the structural engineering profession, as with most engineering professions, is risk adverse which is understandable if the consequences of failure are considered. Notwithstanding such caution, there was a general consensus that it was “important to help the undergraduates to learn the use of software in the right context”, while “having the fundamentals correct” is key. A synthesis of chartered engineers’ opinions suggest that software analysis should be taught in tandem with first principles and approximate analysis. In an effort to further investigate industry expectation of graduates, the survey findings were supplemented by discussions held with focus groups. The focus groups included practicing engineers at all levels, including graduates, project engineers, senior engineers and company directors. There was general agreement with the sentiment that digital tools should be incorporated into undergraduate education. However, the one caveat articulated was that such integration should not be at the expense of technical competencies.

IV IMPLEMENTATION FRAMEWORK From review of state-of-art literature, further informed by the survey of industry professional opinion and discussions with industry focus groups, the implementation framework for appropriate integration of BIM within the Structural Engineering curriculum was developed. In evolving the largely traditional existing curriculum, the developed framework is cognisant of academic programme design requirements, such as those articulated in UCD [14]. For the purpose of the programme intervention design, BIM was considered to be based upon three simple pillars, namely people, process and technology. Such an approach resonates with Ornstein and Hunkins’ [15] contention that curriculum development encompasses how a “curriculum is planned, implemented and evaluated, as well as what people, processes and procedures are involved” such as those articulated in UCD [16]. In addition, implementation was phased into the programme and included a variety of pedagogical approaches. It is important that any curriculum integration be calibrated with course level, including prerequisites, so that it aligns with the intellectual maturity of the learner [17]. The lack of ‘room’ in curricula has been reported by Clevenger et al. [18] as a commonly observed barrier to BIM adoption in education, which has to be balanced with the necessity to retain technical competence, as highlighted by the industry focus groups.

V PROGRAMME INTEGRATION The integration of BIM, informed by the research, is implemented across six phases. Phase 1 focuses on human interaction, developing students’ abilities to successfully undertake and complete collaborative group projects. The importance of teamwork, communication skills, analytical thinking skills, and critical thinking skills are on par with BIM process knowledge and technology skills outlined by Barison and Santos [19]. Phase 2 of the implementation programme is technology intensive, with a largely instructional pedagogical approach, and comprises 25% of the assessable material in a structural design module. As suggested by Lewis et al. [20], instruction on all steps is provided at first, with the students then following the process step-by-step, as it is repeated by the instructor, with a facility for direct questions and feedback for students. However, this approach to delivery can be too fast or too slow for students of varying expertise, and can lead to student frustration [7]. The availability of supporting audio-video tutorial material accommodates the differing levels of expertise within the student

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 24th -25th 2017 group, thus mitigating the risk of student frustration. In conjunction with skills and knowledge development, the additional benefits of the information rich model (e.g. production of 2D deliverables, transfer to analysis software) are demonstrated by the instructor which is in keeping with research findings by Eadie et al. [21] which indicate that BIM should have more didactic teaching elements than traditional CAD. Phase 3 seeks to reinforce ‘people’ and ‘technology’ aspects while introducing elements of ‘process’. This is achieved via a project-based learning (PBL) approach with students setting the agenda and taking ownership of their learning. Phase 4 examines potential benefits of adopting a BIM approach within the discipline of Structural Engineering. While the student assignment work requires coordination with third party models in the object-based (BIM) model authoring element of this module, the learning objectives of the module are dominated by a focus on exploitation of the BIM model information in the development of the Structural Information Model (SIM). Phase 5 investigates the fundamentals which underpin BIM, presented via theory discourse as part of a module which also addresses management strategies and leadership. As students have participated in BIM compliant projects to date in their studies, this element seeks to reinforce learning from their experiences by setting them within the context of the construction industry. Phase 6 involves multi-disciplinary collaboration on a project that typifies that which would occur in industry. At this stage in its evolution, this element combines the final year (Level 8) structural engineering and architectural technology students. Phase 1 – First Year Module: Creativity, Innovation & Teamwork BIM is a human activity despite the prevalent role of technology. The Creativity, Innovation & Teamwork module is delivered in the first semester of first year to address the transition to a new way of learning. A significant proportion of this module involves group work, with students completing a number of projects which vary in size and type. Throughout this module, students’ skills (e.g. communication, teamwork) and attitudes (e.g. motivation, ethics) are developed. The learning environment is largely constructivist with tutor encouragement and guidance crucial as students are facilitated through to project completion. Phase 2 – Second Year Module: Structures & Design The module is delivered in the first semester of second year. Learner understanding of building construction, allied with development of 3D digital

modelling skills are key learning outcomes. The BIM element consists of a short series of computer laboratory sessions during which learners receive step-by-step instruction on the use of Autodesk Revit to develop a 3D object based model of a proposed building. Autodesk Revit was selected due to its widespread use in industry as identified in aforementioned industry survey. The adopted instructor-led method is supplemented by audiovideo tutorials which are prepared by the tutor to specifically address material presented during lab sessions. Such supplementary material is made available for learner viewing and download via a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). In terms of assessment, the students are required to develop a 3D model, and associated 2D drawings, for a multi-storey commercial building. The resultant 3D model includes both architectural and structural engineering components. Phase 3 – Third Year Module: Structural Steel & Timber Design The module is delivered in the first semester of third year. The steel design element of the module is used as a vehicle to integrate BIM teaching and learning and it takes the form of a group design project. Each group are presented with the same brief which requires them to undertake the steel design element of multi-contract design and build project. As the steel frame is only one part of the project they are required to interact with other parties including the architect, substructure/foundation designer and the floor designer. The multi-faceted nature of the project is illustrated in Figure 2. The output required includes a complete set of independently verified design calculations, construction drawings and associated specifications. The project assignment is completed over a period of nine weeks. By identifying elements of content they need to know and understand, prior to solving a particular problem, they have greater purpose in engaging with the traditional lecture presentation and material. As part of the assessment deliverables, the students are given the option to complete their work either in a traditional manner or by adopting a BIM process. It is encouraging that all student groups have to date opted to comply with the BIM process, thus skills developed in the second year of the programme are again presented in a more multilayered context, reinforcing earlier learning. In addition to the aforementioned project deliverables, each individual is required to complete a ‘Project Review (Reflection) Report’. In reflecting on the group project work, each individual is required to analyse and evaluate the people, process, technology and product elements of the project. Finally, individuals are required to synthesise briefly a strategy for improving performance.

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Fig. 2: Concept of federated model for the project

Phase 4 – Third Year Module: Digital Structural Engineering The module is offered as an elective in the second semester of third year. This module focuses on the exploitation of the BIM model information in the development of the Structural Information Model (SIM). The SIM comprises all information relating to the structural analysis and technical design of part or all of the proposed structure. An overview of the multi-model environment within which the students are required to work is illustrated in Figure 3. The model of information management depicted in Figure 3 is based on current practice within industry, as confirmed by industry professional consultations which have evolved from the industry focus groups consulted at the outset. Students are required to develop two separate 3D object-based models. The first is a model of the existing conditions (i.e. denoted as ‘3D model of existing façade, party wall and boundary walls’ in Figure 3) based on point cloud data and engineering sketches, while the second model is of the proposed structure (i.e. denoted as ‘3D model of proposed structure’ in Figure 3) which was developed in the context of the existing and third party models. During the laboratory sessions involving the BIM model authoring phase of the module delivery, the students’ existing BIM model authoring skills

are further developed. The audio-video tutorials from previous modules are again available and supplemented further to support the more complex nature of the work. The laboratory work, which involves the use of digital tools in the execution of BS/PAS 1192 compliant BIM processes, is preceded by lectures on AEC information capture, manipulation and management, including associated standards (e.g. BS/PAS 1192 series of standards). In developing the SIM to complete the necessary structural analysis and design, learners use both Autodesk Robot Structural Analysis Professional (Robot) and Tekla Structural Designer (Tekla). These are the prevalent software solutions adopted in industry, as identified from the industry survey and discussions with focus groups. As with the Revit element of the course, an instructional pedagogical approach is adopted for the development of skills and capabilities in using Robot. However, the instruction serves only to detail the process of computational analysis. Progressive lessening of tutor delivered instruction serves to further transfer responsibility for learning to the student. Developing self-directed learning capabilities is crucial given the fast paced evolution in technology.

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Fig. 3: Integration of multi-discipline models including discipline specific sub-models for structural analysis

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 24th -25th 2017 The introduction of three different software applications within one module is challenging. However, it is deemed necessary in order that learners don’t become a ‘slave’ to a single application or vendor. In addition, in the case of structural analysis and technical design software, Robot and Tekla have comparative advantages and disadvantages. When undertaking project work, learners are required to evaluate which solution is most appropriate for their needs. A challenge is to ensure that learners are not using the powerful and very capable software solutions to an end that is beyond their current knowledge levels, as all output must be verified and validated. While the efficiency of transferring from BIM to SIM is instantaneously impressive, the myriad of interoperability issues which arise follows almost immediately, thus grounding students’ often over-zealous expectations of technology. At the end of the module delivery, a number of industry professionals deliver guest lectures on their experiences of, and advice relating to, various aspects of digital structural engineering. Such lectures assist in placing digital approaches (including BIM) in context. Phase 5– Fourth Year Module: Project Management & Leadership In fourth and final year, the fundamentals which underpin BIM are presented. The assessment of learner knowledge, understanding and attitudes towards BIM, requires students to identify, summarise and critique a published BIM case study. Such an approach seeks to extend the students’ own learning experiences to the wider industry context. The use of case studies is considered beneficial to the learning experience [22]. Phase 6 – Fourth Year Module: Design Office Part of this module involves final year (Level 8) structural engineering and architectural technology students working in groups. Each group typically comprises two students from each discipline. Each group is presented with a project brief and use this to collaboratively undertake the concept and early design stages of the information delivery phase of the project as set out in PAS 1192-2. The reason for focus on the early phases of a project are twofold. Firstly, as recognised in other studies [18], time constraints exist within courses thus restricting scope to undertake a more complete design. Secondly, placing emphasis on increased effort earlier in a project timeline is fundamental to a BIM approach, as it enables greater flexibility in decisions as illustrated by the MacLeamy curve [23]. This element, if expanded to include other disciplines, would prove to be the ‘holy grail’ in terms of BIM education as it involves multidisciplinary collaboration in answering a problem which is akin to a ‘real’ project in industry.

V CONCLUSIONS BIM is gaining prominence in the construction industry, both nationally and internationally. Fast evolving technology, within fluid processes, are challenging the knowledge, skills and beliefs of existing experienced professionals. Hence, there is a perceived demand for BIM literate graduates. Such demands are challenging academia. The research-teaching nexus is designed to ensure that learners are exposed to emerging technologies and practices in their field of study, however, it could be argued that industry leads academia when it comes to BIM. A significant reported barrier to BIM adoption in education is the fact that there is ‘no room’ in current curricula. This paper details how BIM integration was and is being designed to permeate through the full curriculum of the Structural Engineering programme at Cork Institute of Technology (CIT). Such an approach aligns with the ‘infused’ BIM level as outlined in the BIM teaching impact matrix published by the UK BIM Academic Forum (BAF). Phase 1 focuses on the people aspect by developing student abilities to successfully undertake and complete collaborative group projects. Phase 2 of the implementation programme is technology intensive, with a largely instructional pedagogical approach. Phase 3 seeks to reinforce people and technology aspects of BIM while introducing elements of process. This is achieved by adopting a more constructivist learning approach which takes the form of a group design project. Phase 4 examines potential benefits of adopting a BIM approach within the discipline of Structural Engineering. Phase 5 investigates the fundamentals which underpin BIM, presented via theory discourse as part of a module which also addresses management strategies and leadership. Phase 6 provides the opportunity for engagement in a multi-disciplinary project. While facilitated approaches which require the student to develop skills and solutions (e.g. Phase 1) and more scaffolded and instructional approaches (e.g. Phase 2) are used to varying degrees throughout the programme intervention, responsibility for learning is progressively transferred to the student. This is achieved by altering the facilitation and removing the scaffolds as the learner gains experience and confidence in their ability to develop new skills and knowledge, with the anticipated legacy that learners are instilled with the necessary skills to become effective lifelong learners. This is perhaps the most significant learning outcome, as BIM is a fast developing phenomenon.

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B. McAuley, A. Hore, and R. West, "BICP Global BIM Study - Lessons for Ireland’s BIM Programme," Dublin, Ireland2017. T. McKenna, M. Moloney, and M. G. Richardson, "Potential for BIM integration into the management of Ireland’s existing primary roads infrastructure," presented at the CITA BIM Gathering, Ireland, 2015. BSi, "PAS 1192-2 Specification for information management for the capital/delivery phase of construction projects using building information modelling," ed. UK: BSi, 2013. N. Andersson, "BIM Adoption in University Teaching Programs – The Swedish Case," in CITA BIM Gathering, Ireland, 2013, pp. 163-168. J. Bozoglu, "Collaboration and Coordination Learning Modules for BIM Education," Journal of Information Technology in Construction (ITcon), vol. 21, pp. 152-163, 2016. H. Abdirad and C. S. Dossick, "BIM curriculum design in architecture, engineering, and construction education: a systematic review," Journal of Information Technology in Construction (ITcon), vol. 21, pp. 250-271, September 2016 2016. J. Lucas, "Deriving Learning Outcomes for BIM Implementation into the CSM Curriculum based on Industry Expectation," presented at the 50th ASC Annual International Conference, Virginia, 2014. BIM Academic Forum UK (BAF), "Embedding Building Information Modelling (BIM) within the taught curriculum," Higher Education Academy (HEA), UKJune 2013 2013. A. A. Ganah and G. A. John, "Achieving Level 2 BIM by 2016 in the UK," presented at the 2014 International Conference on Computing in Civil and Building Engineering (ICCCBE 2014), Orlando, Florida, 2014. M. Mathews, "BIM collaboration in student architectural technologist learning," Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology, vol. 11, pp. pp 190-206, 2013. O. Kinnane and R. West, "BIM introduction into the curriculum of Civil and Structural Engineering students: A project-based active learning approach.," in CITA BIM Gathering, Ireland, 2013, pp. 175-184. J. Carr. (2016) What are the benefits of exposing students to structural analysis and design software? The Structural Engineer. 80-87.



[15] [16]








I. M. May and D. Johnson, "The Teaching of Structural Analysis - A Report to The Ove Arup Foundation," The Ove Arup Foundation, UKOctober 2008 2008. University College Dublin. (2017, 31 August). UCD Teaching and Learning Programme Design and Development. Available: ammedesigndevelopment/ A. C. Ornstein and F. P. Hunkins, Curriculum foundations, principles and issues, 5th ed. Boston: Pearson, 2009. University College Dublin. (2017, 31 August). UCD Teaching and Learning Programme Educational Philosophy/Models. Available: ammedesigndevelopment/programmeeducat ionalphilosophymodels/#d.en.50337 A.S. Denzer and E. E. Hedges, "From CAD to BIM: Educational strategies for the coming paradigm shift," presented at the Architectural Engineering Conference (AEI), 2008. C. M. Clevenger, M. E. Ozbek, S. Glick, and D. Porter, "Integrating BIM into construction management education," presented at the EcoBuild 2010 BIM Academic Forum, Washington DC, 2010. M. B. Barison and E. T. Santos, "The Competencies of BIM Specialists: a Comparative Analysis of the Literature Review and Job Ad Descriptions," in International Workshop on Computing in Civil Engineering, Y. Zhu and R. R. Issa, Eds., ed. Miami, Florida: ASCE, 2011. A. M. Lewis, R. Valdes-Vasquez, C. Clevenger, and T. Shealy, "BIM Energy Modeling: Case Study of a Teaching Module for Sustainable Design and Construction Courses," Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice, vol. 141, 2015. R. Eadie, B. Solan, B. Magee, and M. Rice, "The Pedagogy of Building Information Modelling," presented at the Civil Engineering Research in Ireland, National University of Ireland, Galway, 2016. J. Hietanen and R. Drogemuller, "Approaches to university level BIM education," presented at the IABSE Conference, Finland, 2008. The American Institute of Architects (AIA), "Integrated Project Delivery: A Guide," The American Institute of Architects (AIA), US2007.

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Approaches to solving the problem of BIM search: towards machine learning assisted design

Hamed Khademi1 and Avril Behan2 School of Multidisciplinary Technologies Dublin Institute of Technology, Dublin 1



Abstract ̶ Due to the growing adoption of BIM and the rising popularity of cloud computing, BIM models are increasingly stored in central cloud repositories or Common Data Environments. Effective management and exploitation of these models creates the requirement for BIM retrieval systems. Thus far, the BIM industry has utilized generalpurpose, text-based search techniques that operate on BIM metadata. This paper highlights the need for a domain-specific BIM search engine and reviews various approaches to address the problem of BIM search. Three main approaches were identified as context-, geometry-, and content-based BIM retrieval. For a comprehensive BIM retrieval system, all three approaches need to be utilized. Literature about geometry- and content-based retrieval was scarce, and about context-based retrieval was almost non-existent. Context-based retrieval is a special approach that is relevant here due to the project-based and goal-oriented nature of architectural design and needs support from stakeholders in the AECO industry. Keywords ̶ Building Information Modelling (BIM), Information Retrieval, Machine Learning, Information Seeking



The number of BIM models created worldwide is growing rapidly due to increases in BIM adoption in recent years. With easy and economic availability of cloud storage and with the rising popularity of cloud computing, these models are increasingly being stored in either private or public central repositories, which in turn creates the requirement for BIM retrieval systems. Thus far, the BIM industry has utilized general-purpose, keyword-based search techniques for BIM search [1]. To develop high performance Information Retrieval (IR) systems, general-purpose IR approaches should be appropriately adapted for the BIM domain [1]. Domainspecific search engines are technically referred to as ‘vertical search engines’. They focus on one area of knowledge which gives them some advantages including: greater precision due to limited scope, leveraging domain knowledge including taxonomies and ontologies, and support for specific unique user tasks [2]. Most publicly available BIM retrieval approaches rely on metadata (e.g. keywords, tags, descriptions) which in turn are dependent on annotation quality and completeness [1]. Moreover, manual annotation of BIM models is not practical for large databases and may not capture the correct keywords to de-

scribe the models for the diverse types of user queries. Similar issues existed in metadata-based image search (a.k.a. text / concept / description-based image indexing / retrieval) which, in time, was solved by Content-Based Image Retrieval (CBIR) approach [3]. We believe that the same philosophy can be applied to improve BIM retrieval quality by going beyond metadata and taking into account data/contents stored in BIM models during the indexing process (indexing is a process in information retrieval systems that includes collecting, parsing, and storing data to facilitate fast and accurate information retrieval). There is some research that considered this approach, however, most focused on BIM ‘products/objects’ rather than viewing building models as a whole/system [1], [4]. In contrast, the goal of this research is to retrieve BIM models based on e.g. site location (latitude, longitude, elevation), space functions, building envelop shape and properties, aggregate quantities of elements, etc. In addition to content-based BIM retrieval, we also try to answer the question of whether it is possible to retrieve BIM models based on the context in which they were designed in the first place. This paper aims 1) to demonstrate the industry-wide need for a domain-specific BIM retrieval engine and 2) to investigate various approaches to address the problem of BIM search.

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Why Do We Need BIM retrieval system?

In the following, three major applications of BIM retrieval systems are presented which we hope will attract the attention of stakeholders to support the growth of this research area.

Design Recycling Building models designed for similar contexts and requirements as those of the project at hand can serve as a knowledge repository and a source of inspiration and solution for current design problems [5], [6]. This is especially the case in early stages of design [7]. Design reuse is a topic that has been discussed in several papers and textbooks. Reusing design helps to find solutions quicker and avoid ‘reinventing the wheel’ which can save project resources and, in turn, project costs [8]. Here, we use the term ‘design recycle’ to emphasise that the process of reusing previous designs, in most cases, is partially possible. The goal is not to copy previous designs identically, but rather to seek inspirations, to reuse design intentions, or to reuse a subsystem (of a whole building system), etc. One of the arguments for the possibility of design recycling is based on Case-Based Reasoning (CBR). The basic premise in CBR is that similar problems have similar solutions (see Figure 1). In CBR, a case consists of a problem description and a solution description. Aamodt and Plaza described the whole process within the CBR cycle using the verbs retrieve, reuse, revise and retain [9]. The approach of applying CBR to design and architectural tasks is known as Case-Based Design (CBD) and has been extensively researched both within and outside the domain of Architecture [10].

Figure 1. Proposed approach for the retrieval step and similarity assessment based on the case-based paradigm [7]

In order to recycle design from previous BIM models, first, they need to be collected in a central repository. Then, a BIM retrieval engine needs to be in place for retrieving BIM models with the goal of design recycling in mind. Commercial / widely publicized implementation of such system has not been found despite extensive research.

Knowledge Management Organizations have recognized that knowledge constitutes a valuable intangible asset for creating and sustaining competitive advantage [11]. Creation of knowledge in great volumes and their storage as information, in turn, creates the problem of ‘information overload’, which is increasingly recognized and documented [12]. Knowledge management systems and automated information retrieval systems have been developed to address this issue. Knowledge management (KM) is the process of capturing, sharing, reusing and maintaining the knowledge and information of an organization [13]. KM is a multidisciplinary approach to achieving organizational objectives by making the best use of accumulated knowledge [14]. The UK Department of the Environment (DOE) has funded a feasibility study into the concept of a knowledge base for the construction industry to achieve multiple objectives. Of these, the objectives relevant to this study are: 1) improving the quality and efficiency of buildings and building projects by sharing information on standards and best practice; 2) improving the efficiency of the construction market by facilitating market communications; 3) reducing the cost and improving the quality of building design by sharing design knowledge [15]. In one view, BIM models can be seen as knowledge repositories as it takes experience, knowledge, research and skills to create them [16]. This argument is strengthened with the widening scope of BIM beyond design stage to address the information needs in construction (e.g. 4D and 5D BIM) and operations phase (e.g. more Ds [17]) [18]. Significantly, efforts have also been made to capture energy-related knowledge into BIM [19]. Research shows that engineers spend a great deal of time in searching for information [20]–[22]. In doing so, accessibility of information is one of the most influential factors in choosing information sources [23]–[27]. When BIM models produced in an organization are stored centrally and made accessible to other members of the organization, they turn into organizational assets and create a ‘corporate memory’; and when these knowledge repositories grow in size, searching for information efficiently becomes an extremely critical function [28].

Kaizen (Continuous Improvement) Nearly half-a-century ago, in her study of playgrounds, Lady Allen of Hurtwood wrote: "Why so many expensive mistakes ... made over and over again? One reason may be that there is no central body whose job it is to collect experience and research throughout the world, digest it, and make it readily available to architects and planners" [cited in

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 [29]]. A casual observer may think that this problem has already been solved with today’s technology since all the ingredients to realize this idea has been available for at least two decades. Yet, this simple idea remains unrealized. Some have suggested to create a central repository for building models and complement it with Post-Occupancy Evaluations (POE) [30]. These central repositories do exist today for BIM models as a result of BIM collaboration cloud services offered by BIM collaboration software developers such as Autodesk Inc, Graphisoft and Trimble Inc. However, POE studies are rare. There are alternative methods for measuring the quality of BIM models, e.g. certificates and energy ratings [31], user feedback from Facility Management (FM) systems, data from emerging IoT systems, building data exhaust [32], expert user ratings, performance analysis results, etc. Once, successes and failures of buildings from various aspects are identified using the aforementioned methods, this data can be associated with BIM, either embedded in the model or as linked data. The next step is to provide an information retrieval system based on the quality of building projects so that the future designers can build on successes and avoid mistakes. In the long run, this practice can contribute to the generation of architectural knowledge and speed up the cycle of innovation.


Related Previous Work

Previous research on the issues core to the problem of BIM search, such as context-based or contentbased retrieval over a large collection of BIM models, is limited. Some of the previous works utilize natural language processing or other machine learning and information retrieval techniques to improve querying and searching within a single BIM model or across a collection of BIM ‘objects/products’ rather than over a collection of BIM ‘models’. Lin et al. [33] have proposed a method for querying information from within a single BIM model using natural language to make BIM querying more userfriendly for non-experts. Other researchers worked on improving information retrieval on BIM ‘objects’ by 1) enhancing semantic annotation of documents [4]; and 2) enhancing the user query mechanism [1], [34]. Regarding design reuse, information retrieval techniques have been used on (mostly CAD-based or text-based) civil engineering documents [35]. A line of research on design knowledge management conducted at the Project-Based Learning Lab at Stanford University is of particular interest here. This line of research was later continued at Loughborough University [36], [37]. These projects were based on Schön’s reflective practitioner paradigm of design [38]. First in line was a Semantic Modeling Engine (SME) which is a framework that enables designers

to map objects from a shared CAD product model to multiple semantic representations and to other shared project knowledge [39]. Then, the ProMem (Project Memory) system was developed which complements SME by adding a time dimension using a version control system [40]. ProMem captures the evolution of the project at three levels of granularity identified by SME as emulating the structure of project knowledge: project, discipline, and component. In turn, ProMem was extended in two ways to develop CoMem (Corporate Memory), which aims at 1) grouping an accumulated set of project memories/knowledge into a corporate memory/knowledge, and 2) supporting the designer in reusing design knowledge from this corporate memory in new design projects [37]. The approach used in CoMem for information retrieval was visualization of an entire repository of design content. Later, CoMem was upgraded to CoMem XML to provide support for query-driven search in addition to visual exploration and discovery [41]. In CoMem XML, the focus was on information and documents linked to buildings and building models, rather than the knowledge embedded in the design and construction processes and the professionals performing those processes. Another interesting line of research was conducted by a team at TU Munich that investigate the retrieval of BIM models from a repository based on topological relationships between spaces [7], [42]. The authors argued that such a retrieval system could be used for finding design inspiration in early design stages. We believe that this type of retrieval system can also be beneficial for space planning in later stages of design.


Indexing Depth

Before going into the subject of ‘how’ to develop and implement a BIM retrieval system, we first discuss ‘what’ it is that need to be indexed. We introduce the concept of ‘indexing depth’ at four levels of 1) metadata, 2) data 3) information extraction, and 4) domain knowledge incorporation. To go further in ‘depth’, more data processing is required; however, this effort can pay off by improving information retrieval performance (see Figure 2: Four levels of indexing depth shown against 'data processing' and 'information retrieval performance'Figure 2).

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Figure 2: Four levels of indexing depth shown against 'data processing' and 'information retrieval performance'

Metadata Metadata is “data that provides information about other data” [43]. In the case of BIM models, metadata may refer to file title and description, owner of BIM file, creation and modification dates, or any other associated information that is provided for document management purposes. BIM retrieval systems use this data to index them and later on to retrieve them by matching user queries against them. Since metadata is poor in content that matters for designers and engineers, BIM authors may be asked to fill in description attributes for BIM files with potentially useful information. This is, of course, not a practical solution. Nevertheless, this is representative of the current state of BIM search in the industry; generic text-based search on BIM metadata.

Data Although, by definition, all data stored in Building Information Models (BIM) is ‘information’, here, we are using the term ‘data’ to refer to the contents in BIM models in raw form. To search on BIM data, only selectors and filters would be used without complex processing. Data in BIM models can be extracted using BIM query languages and indexed for later information retrieval needs. This data can be as simple as ‘site location’, which exists as an explicit attribute in most BIM formats, or it can be a little more complex such as the total number of floors or rooms. In either case, BIM query languages that function similar to database query languages suffice to extract this data. This has been done at BIM ‘object’ level to some extent in's object search. [1], [4], [34] are some of the research projects on improving BIM ‘object’ search.

Information Extraction In this level, some processing is required to extract information that is not readily retrievable using BIM query languages; e.g. geometrical shape of the building envelop or total surface area of the envelope. These examples may seem simple, however, at least in the case of IFC BIM format, they can become tricky to achieve with good accuracy. The underlying problem is that there is no built-in mechanism to validate the information entered by the BIM author [44]. For example, a wall can be an external wall yet it may have been flagged as internal. Over recent years, high-level BIM query languages have been emerging that can facilitate information extraction more reliably. For example, QL4BIM can facilitate extraction of spatial information based on geometrical information rather than semantic information [45].

Incorporating Knowledge




If the domain information and knowledge is incorporated properly, it can improve search performance [34]. Incorporating domain knowledge for the purpose of information retrieval requires significant inputs beyond the contents embedded in BIM models. In a hypothetical and very likely-to-happen search query scenario, a designer may seek BIM models that are designed for similar climate profiles as the climate profile of the project at hand to potentially recycle previous designs or to get some inspiration. The traditional way to achieve this would consist of four steps: 1) extracting site location; 2) finding the climate profile of the nearest weather station to the site location; 3) finding all locations (weather stations) in the world that have similar climate profiles to that of the project in question (which is not a trivial problem); and 4) finding a BIM retrieval system that can filter models based on multiple locations. It is evident that while these steps are doable, they are not practical due to their complexity and time-intensiveness for repeated use. To abstract away the intermediary steps, BIM retrieval engines should have climate profile ‘information’ for various locations in the world, and should have the ‘knowledge’ to calculate similarity between these climate profiles. In other words, meteorological information and knowledge from an architectural engineering point of view should be incorporated into the BIM retrieval engine. Similar examples could be given for other design purposes, e.g. solar radiance intensity and angles for lighting design, soil properties for foundation engineering, seismic activities and wind speed for structural engineering, and urban and cultural context for façade design. Incorporation of domain information and knowledge related to architecture in a BIM retrieval engine may be done simply with arithmetic calculations or it may require complex machine learning algorithms depending on the area of interest.

Linked External Data The scope of the previously discussed four levels of BIM retrieval was limited to the BIM models alone. BIM models can also be linked to external data whether systematically [19], [46], [47] or using general-purpose document or knowledge management systems. Some have proposed using the Sematic Web/Linked Data platform as an alternative to IFC to provide a ubiquitous machine-readable format [48]. If associating BIM data to other data is done properly, the process of indexing them for IR purposes would be possible in an automatic manner (this would be the case if Linked Data was the BIM platform since this platform is made to be machinereadable). For other formats like IFC (which is the

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 industry’s de facto standard), machine learning techniques need to be utilized for extracting information from associated documents [49]–[51]. These documents could be project goals and requirements/constraints (such as Employers and Organizational Information Requirements as per the PAS1192 suite of standards), engineering calculations that support design decisions, legal and regulatory documents, certificates and approvals, etc. In recent years, COBie is gaining traction in the AECO industry as a standard for delivery of facility management information (it is mandatory in UK for public building projects). If COBie data is associated with (or embedded in) BIM models, it can be used for indexing and retrieval of BIM models. As discussed earlier, one of the purposes of BIM search is to enable continuous improvement by building on best practice. To identify best practice, we need a way to judge the quality of design. One approach is to source this information from BIM model-associated documents such as instrument measurements and user feedback gathered via POE studies, simulation results, or building certifications. Search users can exploit such data to judge the quality of BIM models by filtering or prioritizing models meeting minimum performance criteria. Figure 3 illustrates a comprehensive design-oriented BIM search based on combined BIM and POE data.

ing itself. The purpose of BIM search at this stage may be for finding inspiration rather than solutions. At this point, the designer needs to formulate the queries based on these contextual constraints. We call this context-based BIM retrieval. After the creation of a conceptual model, approximate geometrical boundaries (e.g. envelope shape, space adjacency and accessibility relationship as discussed by [53], etc.) of the building are determined. From this point on, the designer may need to add this approximate geometry to the pool of contextual constraints during search operation. We call this geometry-based BIM retrieval. In the design development stage, as the design progresses, more details of building elements are determined such as façade system, materials, and HVAC systems. At this stage, it may be necessary to add constraints to the search query based on these partially-determined design details. We denote this as content-based BIM retrieval. In a search operation instance, one or any combination of these three types of search (context-, geometry- and context-based retrieval) may be used depending on the specificities of the design problem at hand. This approach for categorizing BIM search, in addition to helping with structuring the research, has some other benefits including; 1) it makes it easier to identify the user needs and their type of query; 2) to test the research in real life projects, it would be easier to align it with a project’s schedule; and 3) in earlier design stages, we assume that most user queries will be related to the context, which does not require working with complex BIM models, making it easier to develop a prototype for a basic search engine based on contextual parameters.

Context-Based BIM Retrieval Figure 3: The proposed design-oriented BIM search and discovery based on BIM and POE data repository


Approaches to BIM Search

The problem of BIM search is wide and open-ended to the point that identifying all the research areas related to this problem requires a dedicated research project of its own, and is out of the scope of this paper. To give structure for this paper as well as the wider BIM search project being carried out by the authors, the natural evolutionary design process was considered in categorizing and prioritizing the problem areas. In the conceptual design stage, before creation of any models, requirements and constraints (such as functions, site location and climatic parameters, budget limits, regulations [52]) that the designer needs to meet are at their minimum and the nature of these constraints are mostly contextual to the build-

Research shows that engineers working with BIM models place particular importance on understanding of retrieved content before using it or applying it, and that exploration of context is essential for this understanding [41]. This is logical because buildings are designed ‘for’ satisfying the contextual constraints of projects [52]. Hence, if a BIM retrieval engine can utilize ‘contextual information’ in indexing BIM models, it would allow designers and engineers to perform searches based on high-level project goals/intentions and constraints rather than merely matching the low-level non-intentional contents stored in BIM models against nonintentional user queries (we refer the readers to [54] for further clarity on terminology). To the best of our knowledge, there is only a limited amount of research on the subject of context-based retrieval in other domains and even less so on BIM search. In Web search, Strohmaier et al. argue that due to the lack of explicit intentional structures and representa-

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 tions on the Web, search engines cannot associate users’ goals with the Web contents [54]. This incurs a cognitive load on users to translate their high-level goals into the non-intentional structure of the Web in the forms of specific search queries, tag concepts, classification terms or ontological vocabulary. For product search, some websites provide goal-oriented exploration of their catalogs e.g. when shopping for a laptop, it is possible to search based on application of the laptop (gaming, design, office, etc.) which frees the users from figuring out what laptop specifications (processing power, memory, display quality, etc.) would satisfy their computing needs. Similar to the Web, BIM models do not capture goals, intentions or constraints for which the building is designed, although, there has been some efforts at research level to extend BIM to include contextual ‘information’ for design automation and reuse purposes [55]. Until such efforts find their way into practice, alternative solutions need to be sought. One solution is extracting contextual information from associated project documents (see “Linked External Data” subsection above). The disadvantages of this solution are that 1) it relies on additional project documents which may not always be available; and 2) it is error prone and would require manual supervision to achieve acceptable accuracy. The second solution is following the same path that the designer/engineer may have taken throughout the design process. This can be done automatically in some cases. For an example structural design project, given a project site location, wind speed or precipitation, information can be found from national or worldwide databases (domain information). In turn, BIM models in the repository can be indexed according to this contextual domain information using simple or sophisticated algorithms depending on the complexity of the information. We identified the main contextual constraints of building projects as described in Table 1. Some of the items in the table can only be obtained from associated project documents (e.g. most items in the project category), some others can be found from national or worldwide databases (e.g. items in the climate category), and some others can be inferred from other known parameters (e.g. mandatory standards are defined by the state, which can be determined from site location).

Geometry-Based BIM Retrieval Although geometry is part of the BIM content, we categorized it separately, because, the visual aspect of geometry sets it apart from text-based search from several aspects including query modality, result visualization, indexing, similarity assessment, implementation technologies, and distinctness.

Table 1: Main subcategories of context-based retrieval




• Shape • Orientation • Ground Properties • Latitude (GIS)


• Fabric • Social • Utilities • Amenities


• Temperature • Humidity • Wind speed • Precipitation • Sky conditions


• Users • Functions & Activities • Budget • Time • Sustainability


• Material • Construction Technology


• Mandatory Standards • Optional Certificates

Geometry is one of the most important design factors in building design projects, especially the envelop geometry, which often times is constrained by the dimensions of the designated construction site. Envelop geometry has critical impacts on the performance of most of the building systems such as lighting, HVAC, structural and architectural systems. In a needs analysis study for BIM component retrieval within a single model, Demian et al. found that users need the ability to search and visualize the results in both textual and graphical mode as well as the relationship between components (a.k.a. topology) [56]. Based on this, they developed two prototype BIM ‘object’ retrieval system; one based on pure geometry and another based on the combination of geometry and topology. User evaluations showed

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 that the former outperformed the latter in all the ten questions answered by the users mostly due to the inconvenience caused by the added complexity of topology-based retrieval. Langenhan et al. proposed a new concept, namely, semantic fingerprint to capture the topological relationships between spaces in terms of adjacency and accessibility [57]. Later, they built on this concept by modeling this topological fingerprint as a graph and developed a graphbased BIM retrieval system [7], [42]. Although, we argued that geometry-based retrieval has challenging aspects due to its non-textual modality, it has positive sides as well. Firstly, due to its importance, geometrical data in BIM models are more reliable than semantic contents [53]. Secondly, sufficient research on and tools for geometry-based retrieval are available for use and this can speed up the development of a BIM retrieval engine [53], [58]. Table 2 shows various subcategories of geometry-based retrieval along with references to notable research. It is worth mentioning that well-developed commercial pure 3D (i.e. excluding topology) search engines already exist in the market (e.g. Table 2: Main subcategories of geometry-based retrieval



Graphical search (shape, dimensions & orientation)

• 2D [59]

Topological search (space composition) [7], [42], [53]

• Space set

• 3D [58]

• Space adjacency

designers would mostly be interested in querying BIM models based on these high-level concepts rather than low-level raw data stored in BIM models. This requires decrypting and understanding complex compositions of BIM objects by the search engine. For example, window-to-wall ratio, a rather highlevel concept, is kept low for designing passive houses in cold climates. To index models based on this characteristic, we need to 1) extract the windows and walls of the building model envelop; 2) extract the area of these windows and walls; 3) calculate the ratio; and 4) index the model according to this ratio. Content-based retrieval can be seen at three levels of granularity as objects, systems, and building levels. At object and system levels, users can search for building models that ‘contain’ objects or systems with specific properties, while at building level, it is the building itself as a whole that should meet search criteria defined by the user. Table 3 shows subcategories of content-based retrieval at systems and building level, which are partially based on the PhD work of Ajla Aksamija. We refer the readers to Appendix A of her PhD dissertation for further details [55]. Table 3: Main subcategories of content-based retrieval at systems and building levels



Envelope energy efficiency (e.g. dimensions & form, material, thermal properties)

• Window-to-wall ratio

• Taking into account all the above items

Content-Based BIM Retrieval Content-based BIM retrieval has been researched and commercialized for other types of media including both non-structured media such as text, images, and music, and for structured media such as product data that is stored in databases. BIM ‘objects’ can also be searched using product/database search technologies because they usually have simple data structures. is an example of a commercial BIM object search engine, which utilizes contents of BIM objects to some extent. However, the same technologies cannot be easily adapted for retrieval of BIM models because BIM models are usually made up of systems of complex compositions of simpler BIM objects that are associated with high-levels (design) concepts. We speculate that

• Exterior wall • Roof • Bottom floor/slab

• Space accessibility Combined graphical and topological [56]

• Window (glazing & frame)

• Facade HVAC systems

• Heating & cooling source (district, heat pump, fuel, el., etc.) • HVAC equipment efficiency • Air leak • Occupancy control (IoT) • Operating schedule (typical hours of use by occupants) • Lighting efficiency (internal heat gains and power consumption) • Heat from equipment • Overall heating and cooling quality and performance

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Lighting systems

• Daylighting Efficiency • Occupancy control (IoT) • Operating schedule (typical hours of use by occupants) • Shading System • Overall performance and quality

Structural systems

• Material (steel, concrete, wood, mixed, etc.) • Structural systems (frame, truss, etc.) • (Min, max, mean) span • Foundation properties (material, type, etc.)


• Performance (standards and certificates) • Aesthetics and architectural style • Vertical Transportation • Accessibility for special needs • Fire safety standard • Electricity source (renewable, grid, mixed, etc)



The current state of BIM search in the industry is as primitive as the first days of image search, which was based on surrounding metadata such as file title and textual context around the image [60]. From a data model viewpoint, BIM data has a clear advantage over image data; BIM data is machinereadable, structured data while image data is unstructured data that can only be understood by machines after processing with advanced machine learning algorithms. Yet, the image search community has overcome this challenge to a great degree and today we can enjoy Content-Based Image Retrieval (CBIR) as seen in the likes of Google and Bing. BIM search has not received enough attention from researchers let alone from software developers. The reasons might be that 1) BIM is still not in widespread use and 2) BIM is a relatively niche market; the number of BIM models is just a fraction of the number of images. With the increase in the adoption of BIM and the awareness regarding the benefits and applications of BIM search, these barriers will be reduced to some extent. Similar to the stock photog-

raphy industry, which is becoming more effective with advancements in CBIR, it is possible to build a stock BIM ecosystem. An effective BIM retrieval system (especially one equipped with context-based BIM retrieval) would play a critical role in realizing such an enterprise. We have categorized approaches to BIM search in terms of context, geometry, and content, and in turn subdivided each into subcategories. These subcategories are not comprehensive in either breadth or in depth. Breadth-wise, plumbing, electrical, security, acoustics, etc are not taken into account. Depth-wise, it is possible to further subdivide some of these subcategories. For example, a ‘roof system’ can be subdivided into: material, structural system (truss, frame, arch, etc.), load bearing capacity, etc. We left such details to be elaborated during the actual implementation of a BIM retrieval engine in a later stage of research. BIM retrieval based on geometry and content has recognizable parallels in other domains such as content-based image retrieval. However, we believe that the nature of architectural design (high volume of projects with each to achieve certain goals while satisfying a set of constraints) presents a unique opportunity for retrieval of BIM models based on a comparison with the context for which the building models were originally designed. Context-based retrieval could also be utilized together with clients in the project planning phase, in order to explore ideas and possibilities.



The aim of this research was to review the current state of BIM search and to investigate various approaches therein. We first highlighted the need for BIM search for design recycling and continuous improvement of architectural design practices, as well as its key role for a successful BIM-based knowledge management system and stock BIM ecosystem. We also introduced the concept of ‘indexing depth’ in four levels to clarify ‘what’ is being indexed by the information retrieval engine. These levels included metadata, data, extracted information, and incorporated domain information and knowledge. Finally, we categorized BIM search in terms of context, geometry, and content, and elaborated their different subcategories. To have an intelligent and comprehensive BIM retrieval engine, all of these approaches need to be covered. Geometry-based retrieval (especially topological aspects) is researched more than the other two approaches. Research about context-based BIM retrieval is almost non-existent, perhaps because such an approach is not well-researched in other domains. Context-based retrieval is most relevant in the domain of Architecture because of its unique project-

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 based and goal-oriented nature. Therefore, it is the duty of the researchers in our community to advance this approach.




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Establishing the key pillars of innovation required to execute a successful BIM strategy within a Construction SME in Ireland 1Patrick 1&2

Carroll and 2Barry McAuley

School of Surveying and Construction Management, Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton Street, Dublin 1, Ireland E-mail:


ABSTRACT The recent resurgence of the Irish Construction Industry comes at a time of global transition towards an information revolution, with technology now playing a vital role within our post-recessionary society. BIM is now seen as a core technology at the forefront of this transformational change which can present Construction SMEs with opportunities to new financial ventures. If any SME organisation is to be successful with BIM adoption then innovation must be the starting point. The aim of this paper is to establish the enabling factors required for innovating a BIM strategy within a SME Construction Organisation. The methodology involved a critical in-depth desk top study which was complimented through a series of interviews with SMEs based within the Irish AEC Sector. The interviews examined current attitudes, BIM maturity and organisation barriers with respect to the enabling factors of BIM innovation for SMEs. The research highlights that if these enabling factors are successfully addressed then BIM has the potential to in-crease consumer expectations, offer greater exposure to larger and more profitable projects. The research findings further demonstrate the need for a clear and simply understood BIM adoption Strategy amongst SMEs. However, to fully innovate BIM processes the major factor required is for the Irish Government to mandate BIM which will assist in driving SMEs forward. Keywords Ěś BIM, SME, Barriers, Innovation, Ireland

I INTRODUCTION The recent resurgence of the Irish Construction Industry comes at a time of global transition towards an information revolution, with technology now playing a vital role within our post-recessionary society. There is a need for construction professionals to embrace new technologies and adapt out-dated, fragmented work methods into a collaborative approach through building information technology. Building Information Modelling (BIM) is now seen as a core technology at the forefront of this transformational change with the global market for BIM expected to reach $7,946 million by 2020 [1]. Adopting a BIM strategy presents Construction Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) with both opportunities and challenges that can offer new financial and creative opportunities for most construction related organisations [2]

With the ever-increasing adoption of new technologies SMEs will now need to provide a service that incorporates innovative processes, such as BIM. Innovation can be described as; a change that happens in a planned manner, new processes, new procedures or new way of organising, from the tiniest improvement to the radical rethink innovation can have an important contribution to organisational success [3]. If any company is to be successful with BIM adoption then Innovation must be the starting point. This paper will explore the key factors and enablers required by SMEs who wish to innovate.


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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 SMEs account for 99.7% of all enterprises and 68% of all employment [4]. These figures are further enforced through the realisation that in 2008 approximately 95% of Irish enterprises had less than 10 employees, which has now increased to 97.5% by 2014. A concerning trend has emerged within the Irish Construction Industry which highlights that from 2008 medium to large companies have downsized, while small new enterprises with few employees have grown [5]. The high density of SMEs through Europe further expands on the importance of these organisations, with the European Builders Confederation highlighting that 99.9% of the European Construction Sector is made up of SMEs with an average of 4 employees [6]. European Construction SMEs are currently discussing how to adapt BIM and have stressed that it “must be SME friendly if it is to trigger deep innovation in Construction” [7]. Similarly, the Canadian Construction Industry have also reported that small businesses represent 99% of the employer in the Canadian Construction Industry. Recent figures also show that in the United States 59% of companies have less than 5 employees. These figures demonstrate the importance of SMEs within the wider economy and specifically within the Construction Industry, as a whole locally and internationally [8]. Although Construction SMEs have limited access to investment capital and operate under resource constraints they are better positioned to innovate than larger firms. SMEs flexibility, their simple organizational structure, their speed in decision making are the essential factors that allow them to innovate [9]. SMEs can generate, develop and deliver significant technical innovations due to the level of control that a manager has over decision making [10]. SMEs can position themselves to make decisions quickly, allowing them to be the first to market with innovative ideas, with larger organisation possibly taking months or years evaluating new ideas and passing them through multiple departments before a decision is made [11].

III BARRIERS FOR ENTRY FOR SMEs Despite their unique position to innovate Construction SMEs face a number of barriers and challenges. These include: 1. Access to Finance: Over the last number of years the SME sector has faced more difficulties than any other in accessing finance from banks. Construction SMEs are considered to be a higher

risk due to low levels of fixed capital and smaller firm size [12]. Many firms have limited financial scope to invest in current and future digital technologies and capabilities [13]. The ability of Construction SMEs to access the right type of finance is crucial for SMEs to operate, sustain and grow. 2. Cultural Change: A move towards BIM Capability and expertise requires firms to reevaluate and re-engineer their business practices, while also highlighting that cultural business change is another challenge for firms [14]. An industry reluctance to change, a ‘wait and see’ approach is slowing the inevitable uptake of BIM in the AEC industry [15]. With the Industry being so large, dynamic and the tradition of Construction SMEs it becomes harder for everyone to become innovative to change a culture or habit. 3. Poor levels of Communication and Information exchange between parties in the construction process: Traditionally stakeholders represent different professions with a set of multidisciplinary skills that can limit the scope of co-operation between them [16]. Even with the adoption of ICT within an organisation problems still exist. A significant problem is the lack of understanding of how to implement ICT into a construction organisation [17]. 4. Adopting Technology: Information technology represents a paradigm shift with respect to the transfer and management of information. Adopting a new technology always involves significant investments [18]. There can be many barriers to keeping project participants from using the latest technologies including fears of low success, failure, high initial investment costs, the time to learn how to use the software, and most of all the lack of support from senior leadership of the company [19]. The role of ICT within the construction industry can be a barrier to SMEs keeping up to date with the latest advanced BIM tools. 5. Resources/Training/Skilled Staff/Lack of Knowledge and skills: The obstacles in small markets are greater, where design and construction companies do not have enough resources to obtain and maintain theoretical BIM methodology [20]. Most SME companies do not have the resources to gain access to the relevant information and acquire the knowledge and skills to investigate and research new innovation processes or tools.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 6. Construction Project Coordination: The lack of coordination between construction supply chain parties is one of the key reasons for poor performance in the construction industry [21]. Coordination plays a crucial role throughout the building process especially during the design and construction stages 7. Procurement/Standards/Legislation and Bureaucracy: Excessive bureaucracy or red tape imposes a disproportionate bureaucratic burden on small and medium size enterprises [22].

IV KEY PILLARS OF INNOVATION WITHIN CONSTRUCTION SMEs With the rapid technological progress and increased competition amongst SMEs, they are being forced to innovate and launch new successful products and services to sustain their advantage over competitors, while also being competitive in their relative market. However, innovation is sometimes hard to implement within organisations due to users being required to learn how to use a new innovative product or service and to change the way of work practices. Due to the nature of Construction SMEs the Industry is perceived to have low levels of innovation compared with other sectors due to high levels of industry fragmentation. For BIM to grow within SMEs, they will need to innovate. In the Construction Industry, innovation has been recognised in three domains: product, process and organisation [23] These are three key elements as to what the product is, the new processes involved in implementing innovation and the role of the organisation innovating. Hardie et al. identifies and formulates construction innovation in a value tree, see figure 2, which identifies enabling factors of construction innovation [24]. The value tree represents a synthesis of the variety of influences that may have an impact on the innovation delivery process. The variety of influences are categorised in 5 distinct factors to innovation in construction SMEs, such as Company resources, Client and End User, Project Based Conditions, Industry Network and Regulatory Climate. Within these five distinct factors are subfactors which contribute to each distinct factor. The key areas to innovation and how BIM from the perspective of the SMEs targets all 5 areas of innovation is discussed below.

Fig. 2: Value Tree of Enabling Factors – variety of influences on innovation process (Hardie et al, 2011) 1.Company Resources For any company whether large or small the available resources are critical for innovation success. Company resources incorporate the internal capacity that a company has at its disposal that can be deployed towards the innovation process [25]. The value tree shows sub-elements to Company Resources which highlight a complex mix of required resources. Within the realm of company resources is staff and the motivation of individuals to adapt to innovative processes, services or products. After an organisation adapts an innovative solution such as IT or ICT, that innovation is affected by the degree of motivation or self-motivation of individuals within the company. Peansupap et al. reiterates this by explaining that “during the actual implementation period, IT/ICT use remains dependent upon the individual’s decision whether to accept or reject the application” [26]. Abbott et al. identifies other reasons why people or organisations are motivated to innovate such as “profit motive” or “economic motivation” [27]. Employment of highly disciplined and qualified staff could be an important aspect that could assist in a business’s success. The relationship between employee motivation and creation of innovation exist [28]. Human capital is essential for business innovation and it could have a positive effect on the growth on SMEs. The personnel skills of

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 employees can significantly influence the development of innovation [29]. Employees with BIM knowledge would have a strong influence on the application of BIM within a small organisation, The ability of construction sector companies to access the right type of finance is vital for them to operate and grow, however research shows that Construction Contracting SMEs face more difficulties in accessing finance from banks due to size and low levels of fixed assets [30]. The availability of finance is a key component to company resources with financial problems being considered one of the main obstacles for innovation due to low profit margins. A skilled and flexible workforce is vital for the construction sectors future performance and competitiveness. To successfully innovate BIM within an organisation money, time and skill levels are required. 2. Client and End User Hardie et al considers that the Client and End Users influence on innovation as another enabling factor of innovation [31]. It is considered that those who pay for projects in construction can have a good deal of influence on innovation within the sector. Public clients such as Governments have a critical role to play in utilising the use of BIM on public construction projects. They can encourage the use of BIM by directing and mandating enterprises to innovate or punishing those unable to tender for BIM projects due to lack of capabilities. To maximise the benefits of BIM, it is vital that the end-users are fully engaged in the design process and that their needs are fully appreciated [32]. The willingness of the client to risk share, commitment to innovation and leadership in reject planning and execution seems to be critical for the success of the innovation process [33]. All clients have different characteristics with one of the primary aims of BIM to improve the collaborative process between all stakeholders through IT collaboration.

providers. With high levels of fragmentation within the industry the relationship between Construction SMEs and the supply chain is crucial for the delivery of a project. An important factor for the successful delivery of a construction project involves early contractor engagement and continuing involvement of the supply chain in design development. This can build strong relations and provide the platform for effective site management [34]. BIM has the potential to be utilised by SMEs to improve a number of project based conditions, such as production and development of 3D models, co-ordination for clash detection and spatial analysis, quantity take off, facility management and linking specifications to models [35]. 4. Industry Networks Innovation in the construction industry is heavily influenced by the structure of relationships in the industry [36]. Open collaboration among project teams is fundamental to the core understanding of a BIM solution for the industry. However, the very nature of the Irish Construction industry is one of adversity among its stakeholders, where information is closely guarded and knowledge is seen as power [37]. This confrontational behaviour must come to an end if the potential of BIM is to be fully adhered. All stakeholders within the industry network are key enablers of BIM innovation. 5.Regulatory Climate The highest factor as an enabler to innovation is Regulatory Climate [38]. Consistent national and global standards are necessary to achieve the efficiencies envisioned by technology but it is nonsensical for there to be a large range of different systems and piecemeal approaches to BIM development [39]. Legislative regulation is an important aspect of cultural formulation especially in the construction sector, individuals understand the society through requirements posed by regulations [40]

3. Project Based Conditions Behind an organisation implementing an initiative product or process is a supply chain that incorporates skilled personnel, who in many cases hold valuable practical knowledge in the delivery of a product or service. The construction industry has a very large supply chain from professional services, sub-contractors, material suppliers and service

Regulations within the Construction Industry are a significant enabling factor to innovation. Regulation can hinder or discourage a company from innovating due to excessive “red tape” or as Zimmerman et al. states “the bureaucratic barriers put in place by legislation, legal requirements and standards as well as lengthy administration and approval procedures are a further hindrance” [41].

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 The role of Governments has a significant role to play in either driving or inhibiting innovation amongst small enterprises. Many Government Departments around the world now see the need for BIM and acknowledge its benefits to project delivery. Governments within the EU recognise the importance of the SME sector and the creative ideas for new and innovative solutions. The circular 10/14 Initiatives to assist SMEs in Public Procurement states that “buyers (Government) should, where possible and appropriate, encourage new and innovative solutions by indicating in tender documents where they are prepared to accept reasonable variants to the specification [42]. Further to this the EU the European Technical Committee (TC 5) has been established to develop the CEN 442 standards which reflect the importance of BIM for participating countries and the need for European standardisation in the BIM area [43]. The involvement of Small Business Standards in CEN/TC 442 is resulting in standards being developed that are focused on the needs of SMEs in how to design a European standardised approach to BIM.

Industry is experiencing a dramatic transition from Boom to Bust but is returning to a sustainable level of activity. However, SMEs within the Industry still face constant barriers and inefficiencies. There was a strong link and agreement between the literature and the interview findings with regards to the barriers and inefficiencies faced by SME Contractors. The lack of experienced and skilled professionals within the industry is having a severe impact on the growth of Construction SMEs. The primary research finds this is the biggest impact and barrier to the industry at present. The Literature highlighted the importance of company resources as being a key enabling factor of innovation. The consensus amongst the interviewees is it could take up to a decade before enough people come out of training and full-time education to meet the demand at present. This is very concerning with DKM in conjunction with the CIF reporting that based on the expansion and replacement demand the total labour required within the industry over the next four years is around 112,000 workers [44].

V RESEARCH METHODOLOGY For the purpose of this paper it was decided to adopt a qualitative research approach in conjunction with interviews. This method of research involves “experiences, descriptions and focuses on human behaviour as it occurs naturally. This will enable the authors to gain a deeper understanding of the attitudes towards barriers, innovation and BIM within Construction SMEs through collating opinions and experiences. The interviews were conducted with four different organisations. The interview participants were of two number SME construction contractors and two number subcontractors. The four interviewees have experience and knowledge of BIM.

VI PRIMARY RESEARCH 1. Barriers and inefficiencies faced by Construction The first objective was to establish the current barriers and inefficiencies faced by Construction SMEs in the Irish Construction Industry. The Literature review identified key barriers faced by Construction SMEs in today’s AEC Industry including access to finance, changing mind-sets and cultural change, poor levels of communication and information exchange between stakeholders, adoption of technology, the lack of resources, coordination and finally procurement. The primary research highlights that the Irish Construction

There are very significant concerns about the availability of workers with the necessary skills to meet this demand. With the severe lack of tradesmen and professionals labour costs look certain to increase. With the lack of technical and skilled people the advancement of new BIM technologies within Construction SMEs is going to suffer. An integral component of BIM is technology, BIM requires software, that software requires skilled employees with ICT knowledge. Access to finance was another considerable barrier experienced by all in the industry. BIM requires upfront investment from the very start to implement. Access to finance is a real concern for some of the interview participants, which in turn affects the resources a company has at its disposal to innovate. Each participant highlighted that poor levels of communication is still a regular occurrence in the industry, with stakeholders still closely guarding information. This is concerning as open collaboration among project teams is a fundamental requirement for open BIM. The use of ICT technologies such as common data environments are an important enabler in promoting collaboration between all the project stakeholders. A firm must re-evaluate and reengineer their business practice if a successful cultural change strategy is to be implemented. Without changing a “culture” or “habit”

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 Construction SMEs could be left behind by the industry. 2. The rational and Barriers for Innovation The second objective was to examine are Construction SMEs innovating, the reason for innovating and the factors that maybe impacting on the innovation delivery process of BIM. The literature review highlighted that due to the high levels of fragmentation within the industry the nature of SMEs within the Construction Industry is perceived to have low levels of innovation compared to other sectors within the economy. It was encouraging to see that all of the respondents have innovated, are innovating or in the process of innovating new processes or tools within their organisations. This shows there is a positive outlook within the industry. However, the interview participants are not looking to completely change their existing practices due in part to the lack of business opportunities offered by BIM processes and tools at present, but are preferring to implement BIM tools and processes in small stages. The literature review identified the main reasons why organisations innovate increase profits, advance technology within the organisation, increasing consumer expectations, etc. These reasons to innovate were all supported by the respondents. However, it was discovered that “exposure” was a further reason to innovate BIM amongst the interviewees. BIM can increase an organisations “exposure” to larger and more profitable projects as well to clients that they wouldn’t have otherwise had access to. The primary research found that profits was not a motivation for implementing BIM at present.

Each of the respondents highlighted their uses of BIM for different reasons on a project e.g. extraction of quantities, structural analysis, clash detection, off-site construction, sun-casting analysis and to give clients a better understanding of the end product. It was evident from the interviews that SMEs are using BIM in different ways. They highlighted the use of BIM for visualization capabilities and communication of the design intent. 4D BIM uses were also highlighted with the contractors using it for construction site planning related activities. 5D BIM was used for budget tracking, cost analysis and extracting quantities from the models. Finding skilled and experienced staff was a major barrier of utilising BIM as discussed by the four respondents. Other notable barriers include the accuracy of the models where re-checks on quantities are still being performed. 4. A requirement for a framework for adopting a BIM strategy within a Construction SME The final objective was to discuss whether there is a requirement for a framework for adopting a BIM strategy within a Construction SME. It became evident during the interviews that there is a need for a clear and simplified guideline so SMEs can adopt BIM processes and tools. The general consensus is that a simplified framework aligned to Construction SMEs for BIM adoption is required. With an improved guideline and framework, innovating BIM processes will not be onerous to the SME community and will assist them in overcoming some of the inefficiencies within the AEC industry.

VII CONCLUSION The key factor for the innovation of a process or product such as BIM within an organisation was primarily due to the “Motivation of Directors”. The interviewees believe implementing a BIM strategy has to come from the top management of the organisation. The research shows the leaders of organisations should be the ones to drive BIM innovation and without the motivation of these leaders BIM will not happen. 3. Benefits and Barriers of implementing BIM for SMEs The third objective was to report on the benefits and barriers of BIM within a Construction SME. The literature has highlighted the benefits that Construction SMEs are achieving as a result of BIM.

The research has established that the productivity gains associated with BIM can be realised by both larger and small enterprises. The recession has presented a number of unique barriers for SMEs who have had to adapt by considering new innovative business models. These new business models must take into account existing barriers which include, amongst others, a lack of open collaboration between stakeholders. The research has highlighted that if BIM forms a fundamental part of this business model then it can assist in breaking down these barriers by encouraging collaboration between stakeholders. To achieve this the SME must be open to change which must be communicated from the top down through an organisational

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 vision. This vision must also account for the use of important company resources such as finance. If this is done correctly it has the potential to increase consumer expectations, greater exposure to larger and more profitable projects and to clients that they otherwise wouldn’t have had access to. However, to fully innovate BIM processes the major factor required is for the Irish Government to mandate BIM on public contracts which will assist in driving SMEs to adopt BIM innovation. This will provide a standardisation across the industry which will ensure that the key requirement for innovation is provisioned for. Such a mandate must include the correct financial incentives and provisions for SMES or it will risk further alienating them within an already difficult and extremely competitive sector.

REFERENCE [1] Daedal Research (2016) Global BIM Market: Size, trends and Forecasts (2016-2020), available at global_building. [2] Arayici, Y., Coates, P., Koskela, L., Kagioglou, M., and O’Reilly, K., Usher, C., (2011) BIM Adoption and Implementation for Architectural Practices, University of Salford. [3] Baregheh, A., Rowley, J., Sambrook, S., Davies, D., (2012), Innovation in Food Sector SMEs, Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 19 Iss: 2, pp 300-321. [4] Office of Government Procurement (2015), High Level Group on SME Access to Public Procurement (Progress Report), Office of Government Procurement. [5] [44] DKM Economic Consultants (October 2016), Demand for Skills in Construction to 2020, DKM Economic Consultants. [6] [7] [8] Industry Canada. 2014. Establishments: Construction (NAICS 23). ml?code=11-91&lang=eng [9] De Lardizabal, P.M., (2016), Open Innovation in Automotive SMEs Suppliers: An Opportunity for New Product Development, Universia, Spain. [10] [24] [25] [31] [38] Hardie, M., Newell, G., (2011), Factors influencing technical innovation in construction SMEs: an Australian perspective, Emerald Insight. [11] Sponseller, S., (2015), 5 Ways Small Companies can out-innovate Big Corporations,, [12] [30] [34] Department for Business Innovation & Skills (2013), UK Construction – An

economic analysis of the sector, Department for Business Innovation & Skills [13] [14] [39] Smith, P., (2014), BIM implementation – global strategies. Creative Construction Conference 2014, CC2014, ScienceDirect [15] NATSPEC Construction Information, (2014), BIM Education-Global-Summary-Report2013, NATSPEC [16] Eddie, W.L. Cheng., Heng, L., Peter, E.D, Zahir, I., (2001), Network Communication in the Construction Industry, Corporate Communications: An International Journal, Vol. 6 Iss 2 pp. 61-70 [17] [26] Peansupap, V., Walker, D., (2005). Factors Enabling Information and Communication Technology Diffusion and Actual Implementation in Construction Organisations, ITcon Vol 10 (2005), Peansupap and Walker, pg 193. [18] Hugues, R., (2000), A Survey on the Impact of Information Technology in the Canadian Architecture, Engineering and Construction Industry, ITcon, Vol. 5, pg. 37-56, [19] [20] Migilinskas, D., Popov, V., Juocevicius, V., and Ustinovichius, L. (2013). The Benefits, Obstacles and Problems of Practical BIM Implementation, Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, Lithuania. [21] Sebastian, R. (2011), Changing Roles of the Clients, Architects and Contractors Through BIM, Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, Vol.18 No.2, pp. 176-187. [22] Transparency International, (2013), Reducing Bureaucracy and Corruption Affecting Small and Medium Enterprises, Anti-Corruption Resource Centre. [23] Stewart, I., Fenn, P., (2006), Strategy: the Motivation for Innovation, Construction Innovation 2006: 6: pp. 173-185. [27] Abbot, C., Jeong, K., Allen, S., (2006), The Economic Motivation for Innovation in Small Construction Companies, University of Salford. [28] Koudelkova, P., Milichovsky, F., (2014), Successful Innovation by Motivation, VGTU Press. [29] Wright, M., McMahan, G.C., (2011), Exploring Human Capital: Putting ‘Human’ Back into Strategic Human Resource Management, Human Resource Management Journal, Volume 21, Issue 2, pg. 93-219. [32] McAuley, B., Hore, A.V., West, W., Gunnigan, L., (2015), Ensuring that the Needs of the End User are Effectively Communicated through BIM during the Building Design Stage, Proceedings of the 2nd CITA BIM

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 Gathering, Dublin, Ireland, 12th – 13th November, pp 207-216. [33] Nam, C.H., Tatum, C.B., (1997), Leaders and Champions for Construction Innovation, Construction Management and Economics, Vol 15, pg. 259-270. [35] Eadie, R., Browne, M., Odeyinka, H., McKeown, C., McNiff, S., (2014), A survey of current status of and perceived changes required for BIM adoption in the UK, Emerald Insight. [36] Reichstein, T., Salter, A., and Gann, D. (2005). "Last among equals: a comparison of innovation in construction, services and manufacturing in the UK." Construction Management and Economics, 23, 631-644. [37] Kane, R., McAuley, B., Hore, A.V., Fraser, S., (2015), Collaborative Public Works Contracts Using BIM – An Opportunity for the Irish Construction Industry?, Proceedings of the CITA BIM Gathering, Dublin, Ireland, 12th – 13th November, pp [40] Babic Cus, N., Rebolj, D., (2016). Culture Change in Construction Industry: From 2D Toward BIM Based Construction, ITcon Vol. 21 (2016), cus Babic & Rebolj, pg. 86. [41] Zimmermann, V., Thoma, J., (2016), Focus on Economics, SMEs Face a Wide Range of Barriers to Innovation – Support Policy Needs to be Broad-Based, KfW Research, Frankfurt. [42] Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (2014), Circular 10/14: Initiatives to assist SMEs in Public Procurement. [43] European Technical Committee (TC 5)

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What Lessons Can Be Learned From The Delivery Of The First Building On The Grangegorman Campus Using Building Information Management (BIM)? Pat O’Sullivan1 and Avril Behan2 1 2

Grangegorman Development Agency, Dublin Ireland

School of Multidisciplinary Technologies, Dublin Institute of Technology, Dublin E-Mail:

Abstract: There is an acceptance that BIM, via data management, can be integrated with FM to reduce costs during the Operations and Maintenance stage of a project. However, what has not been documented is the ‘on the ground’ reality which can be reviewed as a lessons learnt exercise to improve the implementation of BIM FM for future projects. This case study sets out to explore the realities of a client’s adoption of BIM based upon the actual experience of the Greenway Hub. Rather than relying on anecdotal evidence the research was based upon the real practices and experiences of the Dublin Institute of Technology’s (DIT) own project team who were tasked with the delivery of BIM and were recorded via interview and 4th Generation Evaluation. The outcomes were cross-referenced against the literature and it was found that the experience aligned well with similar “first project” situations in other educational and public sector projects. Important findings included the need for BIM training to be delivered to end users at a level appropriate to their ultimate needs, for early and frequent engagement between the project delivery team and the end users, and for the temporary appointment of an experienced BIM FM champion to represent the client, to mentor the Institute’s own staff and to oversee the development of the Institute’s BIM Implementation Plan and associated strategies. . Keywords: BIM, FM, BIM Champion, Business Plan & Vision, BIM Training Asset Information Models (AIM) are left idle during the Operation Expenditure (OPex) stage, as initially occurred for the Greenway Hub. The Institute’s stated desire, in a competitive market, is to create a first-class sustainable teaching facility at Grangegorman. The fact that BIM is taught in the College of Engineering and Built Environment within the institute is an opportunity for the academic side of the Institute to liaise with the practical implementation of BIM both for project delivery and future operations. In order to deliver excellent FM services it is necessary to explore the theoretical and practical gap regarding BIM FM integration and to overcome the additional gap that exists between the existing state and the desired state of FM services [2]. The Institute has a unique opportunity to address these two observations and to operate in an iterative environment, thereby developing the Institute’s knowledge of BIM with every project. The desired outcome should be a coherent model and database that can be used for future projects [3] which can ‘derive significant improvements in cost, value, and carbon performance through the use of open shareable asset information’ [4]. The adoption of BIM for the Greenway Hub was more by default rather than by design. It should be noted that there was no obligation upon the

Figure 1: Greenway Hub (source; author)

I INTRODUCTION In October 2015, a directive was issued by the Grangegorman Development Agency (GDA) regarding the adoption of BIM in conjunction with the DIT as the delivery process for all ‘Programme Three’ new build projects on the Grangegorman campus [1]. The directive included both the CAPex and OPex stages. Prior to this date, as part of ‘Programme One’, BIM was used with limited client input during the CAPex stage to deliver the first new building on the campus (Greenway Hub). The opportunity now presents itself as part of a ‘lessons learned’ exercise to, firstly evaluate the client’s actual role and responsibility in delivering the new campus using BIM given the Institute’s initial experiences and secondly, to overcome the situation where future

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contractor’s project delivery team to deliver a BIM Level 2 model at handover. At the outset, other than a desire to use BIM, no client’s EIR was compiled to specify the Institute’s requirements for the operational stage of the building life cycle. BIM was driven by the design and build contractor during the CAPex stage and was used as a testing ground for their own procedures when delivering a project via BIM [5]. For the purposes of this paper FM encompasses both the Institute’s Information Services (IS) and Estates Departments.

BIM is seen as the missing link between projects and maintenance but will not be fully realised for many years [6]. Those at the forefront of the integration of FM and BIM are of the opinion that the BIM FM link can only work when FM is involved [7]. The Institute’s own academic staff have presented papers advocating the use of the United Kingdom’s Government Soft Landing (GSL) initiative and are cognisant of the need for early FM involvement to enhance the end users’ understanding of a project’s delivery and operation of a building [8]. Key for BIM FM is the ‘continuation of information rather than the separation of information between project and maintenance life-cycles’ [6]. It is accepted that the FM industry needs to further integrate with the BIM delivery process and a change in culture is needed to address this challenge [9]. Ultimately FMs will be in a better position to represent their clients’ requirements and inform their Employer’s Information Requirements (EIR) if they do so [10].

The interviews were conducted with ten representatives of the departments tasked with the delivery of the Greenway Hub, two each from Campus Planning, Estates, IS, GDA, with one representative from senior management and academic staff respectively. The interviews lasted approximately 45 minutes, were recorded digitally and the interview data analysed using a thematic approach to identify the lessons learnt in order to propose recommendations for future projects adopting BIM FM for the operations phase of a project. The case study approach was selected because it represents the most appropriate investigation for those adopting new technologies/process. The intention was to triangulate the resulting research data, creating a clear understanding of the problem and overcoming the deficiency of a single strategy [12] when restricting the interviews to a small scale cohort of interviewees. The interviews were structured to provide an in-depth collection of the opinions from those interviewed, with reference to actual events. The demography was split 80:20 between men and women. Personal interviews were deemed to have two significant advantages. Firstly, they enabled the author to determine the expectation of BIM at handover and the usage of BIM during the Operation & Maintenance (O&M) phase. Secondly, they helped to identify the barriers and challenges to implementing BIM specific to the Institute’s own FM Department. It should be noted that the number of participants invited to interview was based upon a small pool of individuals. Consequently any generalisation of the research findings is limited. With the written consent of the interviewees, interviews were recorded anonymously and digital copies have been securely filed on-line.



A mixed research methodology based upon the principles of a 4th Generation Evaluation [11] template was used to elicit responses and analyse the data in response to the research question. The research was undertaken in two parts. Part 1 was a literature review of academic papers, industry standards, guidelines and recent publications to identify best practice for BIM FM. Part 2 was qualitative, inductive and relied upon semistructured, individual and confidential interviews. The first sub-section of the interview process consisted of an independent multiple choice questionnaire comprising ten questions which sought to identify in advance an interviewee’s experience of BIM FM. The second sub-section was a semistructured interview which used interviewees’ responses to the preliminary survey results to guide the interviews to maximise the interviewees’ respective experience.

The initial multiple choice questionnaire, identified a clear distinction between those with BIM knowledge and those without. The two key facts which emerged and led to further detailed discussions during the semi-structured interviews were: 1. A lack of knowledge amongst the majority of the interviewees of the client’s role in relation to BIM as set in the PAS 1192 suite of documents. 2. A collective acceptance that BIM has something to contribute to FM and the need to involve FM personnel from the outset of a project.

II LITERATURE REVIEW a) Theory Versus Practice: Current Gap Between BIM & FM

V QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS a) Client’s Role and Responsibility The literature review revealed that current industry surveys suggests that approximately seventy-five percent of clients using BIM could be deemed to be ‘passive’ [13]. Passive clients according to Saxon are those, ‘willing to use BIM but are not able to play, the

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client role in their BIM use’. These clients receive some benefit but not the major benefits accruing to clients deemed to be ‘active’ BIM users [13]. The responses to the interview questionnaires identified that, although there was an appetite to use BIM for FM purposes within the Institute, the ‘passive’ description of the Institute as a BIM user is more apt. During the interviews, the need to be better informed and involved was accepted by the majority of the interviewees as important to implementing BIM. There was an overall willingness for the Institute to become more ‘active’ and informed to meet the mandate and their own BIM internal directive.

Institute having a unique selling point which must revolve around education and a vision of a digital campus to support the aspiration of being an internationally renowned Institute at the forefront of BIM implementation and training. Furthermore, two interviewees identified that a corporate strategic plan is required to avail of the opportunity to focus on other revenue streams through commercialisation via leveraging of the Institute’s assets during a ‘third term’ and maximising the potential that is currently lost within the Institute’s real estate assets. The interviewees all confirmed that there was no Business Plan, Corporate Strategy or BIM Implementation Plan for BIM adoption despite the Institute and the GDA’s directive in 2015 to incorporate BIM. Collectively, the interviewees welcomed the publication of a BIM Implementation Plan which would outline a clear vision for BIM adoption. The Plan should be used to generate support, and to encourage participation to transform the idea into reality. Time should be set aside to implement this. A number of interviewees confirmed that there is an in-house focus group addressing items which would traditionally have been part of a business plan. The focus group, tasked with delivering a ‘smart campus’, has representatives from across the institute’s Senior Management, IS, Estates, academic departments and the GDA. There are pitfalls that the Institute needs to avoid when adopting BIM. Williams et al. [17], highlighted that owners lacked the full understanding of the longterm operational savings and the Capital Expenditure (CAPex) to OPex divide. As a result, costs can push owners to evaluate BIM for FM out of projects [17]. It is important that ‘return on investment’ (ROI) studies demonstrate a return over the whole life of a project rather than just the CAPex stage [10]. Key performance indicator (KPI) matrices are needed to monitor the ROI and measure the outcomes. Clients need to be aware that the investment in BIM is considerable and needs to be spread out over time to ensure a positive return [18]. The investment is not just technology based but relates to training people, amending work processes and continuous improvement in relation to emerging technological trends, all of which incur costs [18]. In one interview the issue of ROI was discussed and the interviewee stated that “the Institute was taking a longer view”. In addition the Plan needs to consider potential risks which include interoperability issues, learning curves, user resistance and disruption to business activities [16]. The client’s Plan should from the outset, include budgets for investing in hardware and software as well as investment in the FM team [19]. There is a concern within the industry regarding the costs of implementing BIM and the ROI [20]. Project budgets constrains are often a reason for the failure to implement BIM for FM [21]. However, the impact of implementing BIM increases exponentially the

b) BIM Vision and Business Plan One of the key initial requirements in BIM adoption is an organisation’s vision of BIM [14]. Equally critical is the financial standing of any organisation embarking on BIM adoption [14]. BIM is a disruptive business process and needs to be carefully considered [15]. The first question to be addressed by senior management when considering BIM adoption should be why BIM is an important corporate goal [14]. According to Love et al. (2014) [16], BIM should not be seen as a technology but as a ‘business change program’ that impacts upon obtaining value from investing in BIM. The timeframe and criteria for monitoring the implementation of BIM needs to be established, monitored and defined at the outset [14]. These, along with a risk assessment, will identify the goals to define the client’s corporate strategic aims in relation to BIM. The corporate strategy should offer three competitive advantages [2]: 1. professional commitment to the needs of the end user; 2. provide effective and financially efficient services; 3. an organisational culture which enables the continuous drive for excellence. The Institute’s drive for excellence was expressed by one interviewee when addressing the Institute’s own need to be attractive in a competitive market. One interviewee stated that the Institute’s senior management is not adverse to adopting BIM FM and is keen to fully understand the value of BIM, not just its monetary worth but for the environmental and sustainability goals required to deliver the Institutes vision of a ‘green’ campus and by implication lifecycle management. The main buy-in by senior management surrounds the possibility that BIM can be used to realise these objectives during the move to the Grangegorman Campus. The interviewee in question pointed out that the Institute is a third level educational institution operating in a competitive market where there is a constant challenge to provide better facilities for students and staff. The opportunity to work and study in an active BIM environment could be a differentiator. Reference was made to the

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further along the project lifecycle that BIM is initiated [22]. There is a theory that a relevant methodology in conjunction with a valid baseline is required to evaluate the benefits of BIM from a business perspective [23]. According to Barlish & Sullivan [23], this is currently difficult to achieve with BIM, given the varying nature of documented case studies. In addition there is the dilemma an owner faces when making a decision based upon speculative benefits that capture both monetary and managerial outcomes. Furthermore, the ‘latter is a prerequisite of the former’ for owners who are seeking to adopt BIM ‘as a tool once it has been proven effective’ [23]. It was confirmed in the interviews that the Institute has taken the initial first step by issuing a directive and subsequent formation of a Smart Campus Group to implement BIM in December 2016. Akin to Birmingham City University, this initial step was seen as a ‘leap of insight’ [24] taken by the Institute’s senior management that did not rely on quantifiable proof for projects where the benefits and investments for an entire organisation cannot be measured prior to acceptance [23]. Essentially, the Institute is relying upon unknowns as highlighted by Bakis et al. [25] where ‘many management decisions are based upon instinct and intuition and the investment in information systems should not be an exception’.

of post-occupancy data between BIM and FM has been tedious and error prone [19]. According to Schley [27], even though barriers remain, the integration with FM is gaining greater traction. This was acknowledged by a minority of interviewees who made reference to the UK Government’s mandate for Level 2 BIM and the requirement to adopt GSL to provide opportunities to extract the information from the data rich AIMs for FM management. However, the software needed to accomplish this is only emerging [27]. To facilitate the handover of the AIM, it was proposed during the interviews that a phased adoption of BIM should be considered. The discussion proposed undertaking a pilot study. In general, pilot studies were viewed positively. One interviewee suggested starting with the project Safety File and using that as the initial entry into BIM. This aligns with research that advocates defining a lowest level of BIM that should apply to all projects [28].

d) Resources & Organisational Structures Research has revealed that clients considering the adoption of BIM for FM need to be aware of the implications of proceeding with BIM technology. Transferring to a BIM related FM requires a cultural change within the client’s organisation [9]. The task according to Skripac [19] can be onerous but collaboration with consultants with the requisite experience can provide direction to accomplish the transfer to a digitised facility management. Ideally this partnership should have the necessary experience to aid in the understanding of the technologies and the most appropriate ways of integrating with the organisation’s existing management systems [19]. People are a fundamental requirement to the successful implementation of BIM FM and buy-in across the Institute is key. It starts with a clear business plan that ties in with the vison and goals of the Institute and which sets out a clear strategy that is clearly communicated to the end-users. To work it requires coordinated changes in work processes, integration of people into new roles, and alterations to the existing exchange information protocols across an organisation [29], [30]. A review of the existing staffing resources and the time required to learn about BIM were cited collectively by those interviewed as key requirements for the successful implementation of BIM. This included the identification of BIM Champions within the Institute. Williams et al. [17] identified that BIM and FM rely not only on collaborative work practices and processes, but a strong emphasis on the ‘fusion of people, process and technology’. People are key to implementing BIM FM, especially given that peoplecentred issues can pose a threat to BIM adoption [30]. According to Liu & Issa [31], it is the lack of knowledge of BIM amongst FMs that hinders the leveraging of BIM throughout a building’s lifecycle. In addition, Skripac [19] writes, in relation to hospital

c) Existing FM Procedures Currently the Institute’s FM (Estates) is primarily concerned with ‘soft’ FM. In contrast ‘hard’ FM is contracted out via outsourced third party maintenance contracts. In one interview, concerns were raised about the external service aligning with the Institute’s BIM strategy. Reservations were expressed regarding ongoing training of external service providers’ personnel and the continued updating of the AIM given the ongoing challenge facing clients when procuring external FM consultants and maintenance contractors on five-yearly contracts, which are then open for renewal. This echoes other published documentation that identifies this as a barrier and there are issues when new providers are procured which results in the poor handover of FM information between FM consultants and maintenance contractors [9]. It was confirmed during the interviews that the Safety File was for the Greenway Hub was issued on a compact disc at the request of Estates. This reflects the literature review which indicated that, firstly, throughout the AEC industry, Safety File documentation is still issued in 2D format and, in over seventy percent of cases surveyed, the 3D model and Construction Operations Information Exchange (COBie) files were not presented [26] and secondly, it is at handover, when the AIM is transferred to the client organisation, where traditionally the integration

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f) Client Training Road Map

management that one person alone cannot manage BIM’s integration across the organisation and it requires the support of the whole organisation to do so. The appointment of a client representative is a requirement of BS 8536 ‘Briefing for Design and Construction. Code of practice for facilities management (buildings infrastructure) [32] and in April 2016 the GDA, who are the Institute’s agents for delivering the campus, appointed an internal BIM Information Manager to assist with the delivery of BIM across the campus.

It was clear from the interview responses that a knowledge divide exists between the people who operate the facility and the project team charged with delivering the campus. One interviewee mentioned that it is essential that the training would be relevant to an individual’s tasks to avoid any negative perception or lack of interest in BIM adoption. In general, the following was accepted amongst those interviewed: 1. Training is needed to prevent the AIM becoming redundant for future projects. 2. All FM staff need to be upskilled in relation to BIM processes and technology. 3. FM operators need to be aware of their critical roles and responsibilities in delivering BIM in order to achieve a BIM Level 2 maturity. 4. Custom-designed, ‘role’-specific training modules should be put in place for those involved with the design process during the Project Information Model’s (PIM) development. 5. Separate training is required for those involved with the operation phase, commissioning, validation at handover, AIM, Computer Aided Facility Management (CAFM) and Computer Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS). 6. Training should also address ‘soft landings’ Post Occupancy Evaluations (POE) and related KPIs. To date, the Institute’s agents have used generic EIR templates for the Institute’s initial BIM projects. Ashworth’s [10] assertion that EIRs need to become more bespoke, project-specific and client-based has been acknowledged by interviewees with BIM experience. Therefore the initial FMs training module should concentrate upon the client’s Organisations Information Requirements (OIR) and Asset information Requirements (AIR). Ashworth et al. [35] have identified the key documents that clients and their facility manager need to familiarise themselves with when developing a BIM Strategy. Known as the pillars of BIM, these documents will assist in developing better, well-defined OIRs and AIRs.

e) BIM Champion The appointment of a BIM Champion or BIM Information Manager is critical at the start of a project and this person needs to be ‘integrated fully into a client organisational structure’ [14]. ‘Someone to sit above all of this and integrate those systems to the benefit of the people using the buildings and that is the role of FM’ [33]. The Institute’s own academic staff have advocated the need to ensure that the right people were brought into the BIM delivery process at the right time for commissioning, training and handover [8] The majority of those interviewed supported and reiterated this view. The question was asked indirectly if the appointment of a GDA BIM Information Manager was seen as the Institute complying with BS 8536. Alternatively, the interviews were asked if there was an additional need for a dedicated in-house FM manager to oversee the implementation of BIM or was there a desire to appoint an external third party FM consultant. The initial question directed to the interviewees raised the possibility of new roles and the capability of existing resources in the Institute to participate in the delivery of BIM. A second related question was asked with regard to the GDA appointment. All but one interviewee stated a preference for the temporary appointment of an external third party FM consultant to advise and represent the Institute. A number of interviewees voiced their preference that the consultant should have experience of delivering BIM FM for universities/education. Ideally the consultant would work closely with an existing staff member under a coaching programme to become BIM-literate. When explored further, the main reasons for this was the belief that the person best suited to understand the existing needs of the FM department would come from within the current FM resources. This reflects previously published papers that state that a facility manager should be ‘ideally placed to understand the organization’s needs in terms of culture, corporate strategy, vision, mission and objectives’ [10]). The temporary consultant, FM individual and the GDA BIM information manager should write a BIM Project Execution Plan at the outset of a project that essentially would be a road map for the delivery of the project [14] [34].

g) CAFM Although, the majority of those interviewed had no experience of a CAFM or CMMS, the discussions revealed that a key element of adopting BIM for FM is the need to make a decision about which software and platform to use in the future. During the interviews, reference was made to ‘silo’ management in relation to the management of assets within the Institute. This is supported by the fact that across the Institute’s various departments, fifteen active enterprise systems are currently in operation. One interviewee confirmed that currently nine of these are managed by Estates and that Estates use one Building Management System (BMS) to integrate three of these systems. It was revealed

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during three interviews that both IS and Estates are reviewing their own asset management strategy independent of BIM with Estates focusing on a new generic CAFM software. Interoperability and the use of Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) came up in two interviews. One interviewee expressed the need that before adopting a BIM for FM software, a decision needs to be taken in relation to proceeding with ‘open systems’ versus ‘proprietary software’ assessing the advantages and disadvantages of both. However two interviewees need to be convinced that a full open systems is achievable. Kassem et al. [9] noted that the preference for open standards is required in order to overcome the issue regarding the disparate growth in the lifecycle of BIM technology versus the lifecycle of FM technologies. This was raised in one interview where the Institute’s decision to proceed should be based upon the awareness that the lifecycle for BIM technologies is twelve to twenty four months whereas FM technologies can last up to fifty years. The Institute needs to take a long-term view, in excess of five years, whereby the FM operators should be willing to work with differing standards and not align themselves to one particular technology [9], [36].

7. 8.

VII RECOMMENDATIONS a) Vision & Business Case People are a fundamental requirement to the successful implementation of BIM FM and buy-in across the Institute is key. It starts with a clear business plan that aligns with the Institute’s Corporate Strategic Business Plan to implement BIM which includes a bespoke Asset Management Strategy that ties in with the vison and goals of the Institute that is clearly communicated to the endusers. To work it requires coordinated changes in work processes, integration of people into new roles, and alterations to the existing exchange information protocols across an organisation [29]. The Plan should include reference to security in relation to the protection of sensitive information and systems. Once these are aligned, the roadmap set out in the plan must be followed to achieve compliance via continuous guidance, processes and a training programme. KPI metrics should be produced that form part of the POEs. Strong leadership is required and the organisational structure needs to be reviewed in order to identify key roles and responsibilities. It is the Institute’s responsibility to identify the correct personnel from the existing staffing resources to deliver BIM FM, to recruit resources where necessary and to appoint a BIM champion on the Institute’s side. To become an ‘intelligent client’ the Institute needs to become an ‘active ‘rather than a ‘passive client’ [37]. The Institute should aspire to implement a practical corporate strategy, such as BIM that requires ‘information as the rational basis for guiding the purchase, use, maintenance and disposal of every asset that an organisation needs in order to maintain and develop its business’ [14] In order to achieve the aforementioned objectives, the Institute, as a client, needs to identify if there is a need for external third party FM consultants, to advise the Institute on setting up a delivery standard and monitoring its delivery throughout the project or, alternatively, appoint an inhouse FM BIM champion who has an overall brief to manage all of the Institute’s assets. As part of the interview analysis, it was noted that there was an appetite amongst those interviewed to make contact with other universities who are deemed

VI RESULTS An analysis of the interviews revealed a number of key concerns. 1. Communication is needed to develop and implement a co-ordinated BIM FM vision and BIM Implementation Plan that reflects the different stakeholders’ expectations of BIM. There was a concern that the “ship has sailed” and that the opportunity to realise the full benefit of BIM has passed. 2. For those charged with delivering the Grangegorman project and running the operation there are no set guidelines or Project Delivery Standards (PDS) in place. 3. Existing Estates & IS resources are stretched. This needs to be reviewed in order to implement BIM for operational use. There is a desire to buyinto BIM but critically, key personnel need to be identified, trained and positioned within the organisational structure to look after the Institute’s requirements. The need for a third party external consultant procured on a temporary basis was seen as essential to deliver BIM. 4. Training is needed to address the limited knowledge of BIM. 5. Time is needed to implement a gradual roll out of BIM FM across the FM. 6. There was lack of understanding among the majority of the interviewees of BIM terminology, BIM standards and the definition of an asset under PAS 1192. This knowledge gap is a serious concern, given the potential for the Institute to continue to procure and pay for the delivery of an

AIM via the BIM process which, in reality, they may not be willing to spend time understanding the potential benefits of an AIM. There was a general lack of knowledge of CAFM, CMMS and Integrated Works Management Systems (IWMS) for BIM FM. Pertinent security questions relating to the Institute’s vulnerabilities of third party access to the AIM were raised in two interviews. The requirements of PAS 1192-5 should be included in the Institute’s BIM Implementation Plan to protect the project information on sensitive assets or systems.

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early adopters of BIM FM and who have their own BIM implementation roadmaps and PDS in place. Delivery standards are required to realise the potential of BIM for FM and should align with a campus wide asset management system to manage the data contained within an AIM. Contact should be initiated and a request made to visit these organisations. This would give the FMs the opportunity to talk directly to those carrying out the same roles and tasks. The discussion should address the impact both positively and negatively of BIM by way of benefits, cultural change and disruption, in order to get a rounded view of BIM implementation. The Institute should consider negotiating for a temporary placement of an experienced BIM FM Manager from one of the aforementioned universities to act as an advisor and assist in the delivery of BIM for FM.

data to specific, bespoke needs which BIM can deliver at handover [40]. However, it is the subsequent desirable CAFM integration with an organisation’s other management systems that needs to be further researched by the Institute’s FMs [37]. The major benefit of CAFM is the ability to harvest data about the facility from the model and assets within it for further interrogation [40]. CAFM has typically been used to accommodate the management of Space Planning, Assets, Maintenance and Facility Operations. In the short term the integration of CAFM and CMMS, combined across multiple software platforms, should be seen as the logical first step on the journey towards a modular IWMS [41]. The Institute should be aware that this does not answer fully the requirements of a facility’s overall asset management. Once upskilled, the Institute’s FMs will need to control the transfer of data, own the data and maintain the data [40].

b) Market Responsibility BIM Level 2 needs to be fully defined within the AEC industry and communicated to clients. What is needed is ‘intelligent clients’; who are willing to ‘spend more time understanding their own requirements’ [38]. However, as Saxon [13] writes, a client’s understanding of BIM does not need to be extensive and nothing like the understanding that designers, contractors and product makers need to have. Clients can, as Saxon [13] outlines, be supported by advisers ‘to define and get all the outputs they need’. This is supported by Ravenscroft [38] who suggested that it is at the start of the journey where the client should be getting ‘the quality advice they really need to understand their own part in this journey’. The tag line ‘Start with the end in mind’ [39] is often used by the BIM community as a way of ensuring early involvement. This needs to be promoted within the Institute.

VII SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION Research has revealed that the Institute’s experience post-handover of the AIM for the Greenway Hub is consistent with published papers. The literature review highlighted that it will take time to roll out a BIM implementation programme and to become an ‘active’ and ‘intelligent’ client. The final objective of this research related to identifying the ‘on the ground’ reality concerning BIM FM integration based upon the Greenway Hub experience. The underlying factor that came to the fore during the semi-structured interviews was the realisation that the Institute is the most important stakeholder in driving BIM FM adoption. Furthermore, in order to succeed with BIM FM, the temptation to persevere with the status quo must be avoided. Senior management must focus on the long term gains in order to bring immediate goals into better focus and to become an ‘active’ and ‘intelligent client’. In order to maximise the potential of BIM, a change to work practices and the skills of participants is required. This can be achieved immediately by adopting an educational programme and by appointing a third party BIM consultant. There are huge benefits to be accrued but care must be taken that this is rolled out in a manner that recognises the time, resources and technology required to change the FM culture within the organisation. Ultimately, given the scale of the Institute and the property port-folio, a clear strategy needs to be drawn up which takes cognisance of the needs of all parties from senior management to general operatives.

c) Training Key to implementing BIM is a bespoke BIM FM educational training programme that ensures that the Institute’s FM staff receive the correct training, which is role-specific and tailored accordingly. Initially training is needed that will assist the Institute’s stakeholders achieve a clear understanding of the Institute’s needs in relation to the OIR and that an OIR drives the identification of the AIR, and not just the built assets. This is an area that a ‘lessons learned’ exercise is likely to have the most impact on the ongoing use of the AIM post hand over given that it is the Institutes OIR and AIR that will determine the content of future AIMs and by extension aid building operations.



This paper is an edited version of the author’s more comprehensive paper submitted for a MSc. Applied Building Information Management and Modelling in April 2017. The author gratefully acknowledges the time given by all of the interviewees and the support of the management teams of the GDA

Training will overcome the confusion that existed in a number of interviewees’ perceptions regarding the function of an AIM. At present, AIMs use a CAFM process that is normally a web-based interface which can be automatically implemented remotely to collate

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[11] E. Guba and Y. Lincoln, Fourth Generation Evaluation, Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publishing Inc, 1989. [12] P. Kulkarni, “What is triangulation of data in qualitative research? Is it a method of validating the information collected through various methods?,” 25 December 2013. [Online]. Available: riangulation_of_data_in_qualitative_research _Is_it_a_method_of_validating_the_informa tion_collected_through_various_methods. [Accessed 21 April 2017]. [13] R. Saxon, “We need to welcome clients into BIM,” 2 November 2016b. [Online]. Available: [Accessed 27 January 2017]. [14] D. Shepherd, BIM Management Handbook, Newcastle Upon Tyne: RIBA Publishings, 2015. [15] R. DePalma, “Getting Over the First Hurdle: Developing a Business Case for BIM Integration in Your Company - Part 1,” 18 September 2015a. [Online]. Available: [Accessed 12 December 2016]. [16] P. Love, J. Matthews, I. Simpson, A. Hill and O. Olatunji, “A Benefits Realization Management Building Information ModelingFrameworkfor Asset Managers,” Automation in Construction, vol. 37, pp. 110, 2014. [17] R. Williams, H. Shayesteh and L. Marjanovic-Halburd, “Utilizing Building Information Modelling for Facilities Management,” International Journal of Facilty Management, vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 1-19, November 2014. [18] R. DePalma, “Getting Over the First Hurdle: Developing a Business Case for BIM Integration in Your Company - Part 2,” 2 October 2015b. [Online]. Available: [Accessed 4 January 2017]. [19] B. Skripac, “The next step BIM's role expands as facility managers take ownership,” 1 August 2013. [Online]. Available: [Accessed 4 November 2016]. [20] J. Deeney, A. Hore and B. McAuley, “Public/Private BIM: An Irish Perspective,” in Proceedings of the CITA BIM Gathering, Dublin, Ireland, 2013.

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017

An Exploratory Investigation into the Use of BIM during the Construction Phase of a Public Private Partnership Brian Graham1 and Brook Cameron2 School of Engineering, Waterford Institute of Technology, Waterford E-mail:


The Schools Bundle 4 (SB4) was the first public tender competition in Ireland to include a level 2 BIM requirement in the tender invitation. BAM PPP, who were appointed to SB4, have utilized BIM in the design, bidding, construction and operation & maintenance (O&M) phases. A case study of one of the SB4 projects, Comeragh College, was undertaken with a view to determining the impact of BIM on the construction phase from a main contractor’s perspective and the of handover of information to the Facilities Management (FM) team. Poor communication, inadequate information and adversarial relationships have traditionally hindered the ability of the Construction Manager to deliver projects in an efficient manner. The handover of as-built information at the end of the construction phase has also proven to be problematic. Following a review of relevant literature, the case study consisted of face to face semi-structured interviews with five site team members from BAM Contractors who had worked on the project. While much has been written about the potential benefits of BIM during construction, the case study confirmed the opportunities of BIM for the construction site have now been realized. BIM has improved access to information, communications across the project team, and design coordination. The use of a cloud-based CDE, along with iPads and QR codes has also enhanced the accountability of the site team in completing various workflows and checklists. In spite of these improvements, the timeliness of people in responding to queries via BIM has not been expedited. The handover of as-built information to the FM team has also been a success, with the information developed by the construction team ensuring a successful transition to a detailed Asset Information Model for O&M. At a broader level, it is clear that BIM is central to the successful delivery of PPPs, creating a platform for communication throughout the building lifecycle and ensuring that BAM remain leaders in the Irish market. The adoption of a strategic approach to BIM by BAM has been a significant contributor to its successful implementation. In addition to the development of a dedicated Virtual Design & Construction (VDC) department and substantial investment in technology; the support of a BIM champion in the guise of the Project Manager has been crucial to its success at project level. Future developments in the use of BIM are anticipated as BAM’s maturity evolves, particularly in terms of greater use of 4D modeling and laser scanning, advanced Augmented Reality (AR) systems and more in-depth training in software use for site personnel both within BAM and across their supply chain. Given the focus upon BAM’s own site team, it is recognized that further research with other members of the supply chain is required to gain a more holistic and balanced view of BIM during the construction phase. Keywords - BIM Implementation, Construction Management, Public Private Partnership, Site BIM.

I INTRODUCTION During the recent economic downturn, the Irish government looked increasingly towards Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) in order to procure much needed infrastructure for the country. PPPs are contracts awarded to private companies by the public sector. This allows them to operate a service for an extended period of time that was traditionally the responsibility of the public sector alone [1].

Such partnerships now allow for the public client and the private supplier to blend both their knowledge and skills creating an outcome, which alone neither party may be able to achieve [2]. PPPs are not just one-off engagements for private companies to supply goods or services, as would be under normal commercial arrangements. Instead, there is an emphasis on long term contracts and performance related payment structures [1]. These long-term contracts are designed to give certainty to the client by transferring the risks onto the private

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 company, who are deemed to be in the best position to manage them [3]. The contract involved in PPPs customarily enlists the private company to design, build and finance the project. The company then receives revenue from the public sector for providing the managerial, financial and technical resources involved in its operations over a defined period. Therefore, the private company bears all the risk in making sure an acceptable facility is constructed and an efficient operational service provided, in order to recoup its investment plus additional profit [1]. There is a need to create better coordination and integration between the contractor, end users and the public sector throughout the length of a PPP to ensure increased certainty for all. It is suggested that BIM can act as the catalyst for future proofing PPPs, creating a clear platform for communicating information, so that projects can be successfully managed throughout their entire lifecycle [4]. The benefits of BIM have been widely recognized in the design stage of projects, but have been seriously underutilized during construction. It has previously been pointed out that [5]: “with few notable exceptions, most of the academic and industrial research…. deals with design and with pre-construction planning. There has been far less effort to develop Building Information Modelling based tools to support coherent production management on site.” The symbiotic relationship between the PPP approach and BIM offers a genuine opportunity for the construction industry to move beyond the persistent problems of inadequate communication and information exchange, poor productivity, and management of risk. This paper will deal with these issues in relation to the use of BIM during the construction phase of a PPP project, the context of which will now be considered.

II RESEARCH CONTEXT Considered PPP market leaders in Ireland, BAM operate across the full spectrum of sectors, including Civils, Building, Property and Rail. In recent years, they have established a dedicated Facilities Management business (BAM FM) to take advantage of this growing market and also to service their own PPP contracts through the operation and maintenance (O&M) phase. In terms of PPPs, BAM Contractors have successfully delivered projects such as the N7/N11 and Schools Bundles 3 and 4. Current major PPP projects include the N25 New Ross Bypass and M11 Gorey Enniscorthy road projects and the Courts PPP Bundle. With an increase in contractor-led procurement on their projects (i.e. D&B and PPP), BAM have devised a strategy for implementing level 2 BIM into all their projects by 2020, which is supported by a dedicated Virtual Design & Construction (VDC) department. They recently became the first construction company

in Ireland, and one of the first in the world, to achieve the BSI Kitemark for PAS 1192-2. BAM have a global framework agreement with Autodesk and extensively use their suite of BIM products throughout a project’s lifecycle. As part of the Irish government’s Schools Programme, Schools Bundle 4 (SB4) consists of four new post-primary schools. It was the first public tender competition in Ireland to include a BIM requirement in the tender invitation, citing a level 2 BIM mandate. BAM was awarded the contract for SB4 in late 2014, which entailed designing, building, financing, operating and maintaining the educational facilities. With construction completed in early-tomid 2016, all schools are presently in the 25 year O&M period. The focus of this research is upon the construction phase of the new Comeragh College in Carrick-On-Suir, Co. Tipperary, a 500 pupil, 6300 sqm building, comprising teaching, sports and catering facilities. Specifically, the case study will seek to ascertain the following: • The impact of BIM upon the construction phase of the project; including associated benefits, challenges and wider implementation issues • The implications of BIM on PPP projects and in the handover of information from construction to the subsequent O&M phase This will be achieved through a review of literature relating to these issues and interviews with key members of the site management team on the case study project.

III LITERATURE REVIEW Recurring problems such as inadequate communication and the inability to attain information on construction sites leads to poor productivity [6]. According to [7], effective communication is crucial for further efficiency gains within the construction industry. Building Information Modelling (BIM) is emerging as the tool in achieving this; it is revolutionizing and transforming the way we look at construction projects. It is allowing projects to be virtually constructed, which are then explored and analyzed by project team members and experts before, during and after construction [8]. It encourages close collaboration throughout the entire process, opening lines of communication that once never existed [9]. It now offers mobility with the ability to access real time project information instantly anywhere on-site [10]. Document control and versioning are now all streamlined through the use of central cloud files. This allows all project teams, at every phase, to be working and sharing around one central current source of information [8]. A critical element of any successful construction project is the capability of the Construction Manager. Their ability for timely and

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 accurate understanding of information received onsite is vital for facilitating management decisions [10]. In addressing the inadequacy of traditional 2D construction documentation, BIM has emerged as a new system for generating, and managing the information needed for construction sites [11]. This in turn is generating a new breed of construction knowledge workers [10]. BIM is viewed as “the” management tool to bring about change and finally bring the construction industry into the digital age, yet there is still resistance to change from some construction managers and site personnel [12]. Construction managers must, therefore, take on the responsibility of embracing BIM today, as tomorrow it will be fully embraced by the industry, making it the accepted way to do business [8]. Research into the main advantages of BIM in commercial construction, shows that communication comes out on top closely followed by; scheduling, visualization, coordination and clash detection [13]. Improved Communication: real time communication of information is vital for fast detection of deviations from the time, cost and quality of a project and any disputes or problems that may arise causing delay to the planned construction programme [7]. BIM is now meeting this demand, and effective communication is increasing on construction sites, because all stakeholders are now interacting in real time, around one central source of information [14]. Such advancements through BIM will provide unprecedented opportunities to enhance existing workflows, and create a new generation of on-site management processes [10]. Scheduling: four-dimensional modelling (4D) has huge potential in improving current construction processes. 4D modelling is the integration of a 3D model with the project’s time scheduling information. A 4D model will give a depiction of what the construction site will look like at any specific given date [15], by virtually simulating the sequence of work tasks and processes involved in the project [16]. This allows construction managers to anticipate any potential work conflicts or clashes virtually before they become an on-site reality [17]. 4D modelling also enhances site processes such as; site safety, utilization of space, site layout, planning of workspaces, movement of mobile cranes and clash detection. The degree of intuitive comprehension by construction managers also is greatly increased in regard to these site processes, especially when compared to traditional scheduling methods such as Pert and Gantt charts [14]. Visualization: a major development for sitebased BIM visualization is Augmented Reality (AR), which is an interface with overlaid digital information over the user’s view, spatially aligned to their current surrounding environment. The view for the user is usually a photograph of their physical

surrounding. A video image is then augmented with digital display information, which is then rendered on top of the photograph using an AR device, which may be either head worn or a handheld mobile device [18]. In simple terms it takes real surroundings as a base to which virtual elements are added. A form of AR now allows for visualizing of 3D models on-site, enhancing the ability to track project progress during construction and identify and locate existing building components during the operation phase [19]. When coupled with Quick Response (QR) Codes, BIM can provide a cost effective AR solution for Construction Management. QR codes are a 2D barcode which are easily produced using simple software and a printer at a very low cost [20]. This information is easily accessed by scanning the QR code with either a smartphone or tablet, which then directly links you to the relevant information, such as the information contained in the BIM model [21, 22]. Coordination and Clash Detection: the coordination of traditional 2D drawings has proven problematic, with many issues and clashes only being identified once construction work had commenced. Coordination and clash detection utilizing BIM highlights constructability issues during the design phase of a project, saving huge costs and lost time for the project [23]. When two or more BIM models are federated in a clash detection programme, any potential clashes between the models can be identified, allowing for them to be redesigned prior to work commencing on-site [24]. Long term PPP contracts, which include an Operation & Maintenance (O&M) phase of twenty years or more, have come to the fore because of the cost implications of running and managing this phase [4]. One way to effectively manage these costs is through successful Facilities Management (FM); however the way in which information is transferred from construction to O&M remains one of the biggest barriers to successful FM [21]. Traditionally, a large volume of 2D based documents were handed over that the end of the construction phase, including hard and/or softcopies of specifications, drawings, changes, submittals, record documents, RFIs etc. However, they do not necessarily contain the required information for a Facility Manger to carry out their job; this is due to the fact that their intended use was to construct a facility, not operate one [8]. BIM now offers FM a powerful means of retrieving information from a visually accurate, virtual representation of a facilities physical properties, helping to bridge the gap between the construction and O&M. BIM models that are being readied for FM use must be accurately and constantly developed, revised and updated during the construction phase [21]. The final BIM model that is created before handover to FM is sometimes

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 referred to as the as-built model; it is this model that should be synchronized to create a successful FM system [4]. It is more often than not the job of the construction site team to be in charge of constantly updating or supplying information for the creation of the as-built BIM model. They are best situated for this task as they have been exposed to the changes and issues that have occurred during the construction phase, and can develop a more usable model [8]. IV METHODOLOGY Taking the themes identified, a case study was carried out on the construction phase of the SB4 Comeragh College Project, with members of a BAM Contractors site team interviewed about their experiences of using BIM on the project. A case study can allow the researcher to obtain real life meaningful and holistic characteristics of individual lives, organizational and managerial processes and the maturation of industries [25]. The type of case study employed within this research was an explanatory case study, which is identified as being appropriate for directly comparing sets of facts to one another, in an effort to find a relationship between them [26]. In this study, the goal being to ascertain whether the theoretical issues identified within the literature were supported in practice. One-on-one semi-structured interviews were conducted with five individuals from the construction team including: Project Manager, Site Foreman, Senior Engineer, Site Engineer and BIM Coordinator. These were completed by one of the authors on-site between late November 2015 and mid-January 2016. The interviewer had previously worked on the project, so was familiar with all of the participants; this is particularly important in terms of building a rapport with the interviewees and also for the researcher to know enough about interviewees’ so they know what is only important to ask [26]. Specifically, the interviews sought to understand how they used BIM on the project, implementation issues, the implications of using of BIM on PPP projects, and handover of information to FM. In adopting such an approach to the research, the limitations must be recognized; specifically the participation of only BAM’s site management team and the potential for bias, given that the interviewee is considered an ‘insider’ within the organization. V BIM FOR CONSTRUCTION MANAGEMENT Apart from the PM, this was the first time the site team had used BIM on a construction project. The PM had previously used it on a pharmaceutical project in 2008 “for clash detection for the mechanical and electrical services.” In articulating their understanding of BIM, all respondents placed most emphasis on the management of information. The PM stated: “I see it as all about

information…collecting, managing and sharing project information through close collaboration with design team members.” Both Engineers also spoke about BIM in terms of the 3D model, with the Senior Engineer adding “around which all relevant project information is incorporated and managed at a much higher level than before.” At the outset of the bidding stage of SB4, BAM implemented a cloud-based CDE for all information management [27]. Utilizing the full suite of Autodesk products, the BAM site team experienced a much more seamless transition of information from the bid stage, whereby “all the documentation including drawings, reports, models etc. was easily identifiable and of course the models were useful as a project overview tool to better inform those who had not been involved in the project [27].” Based on their experiences of using BIM during the construction phase of the project, the main benefits identified by the site team were: instant access to information out on site; improved communication; greater accountability; and improved clash detection. These issues will now be considered in further detail. a) Instant Access to Information The efficiency and speed in which information can be accessed while out on-site was cited as the number one benefit, lending itself to the definition of BIM where the focus is on managing projects to get the right information to the right place at the right time [28].” With the rapid developments of mobile technology improving the usability of BIM out on the site, the interviewees were asked about their use of Autodesk’s BIM 360 Field on iPads. All of the respondents, with the exception of the Site Engineer felt that having instant access to the information has increased the speed in which decisions are made onsite. This corroborates the statement that the use of BIM and modern mobile computing technology has changed the landscape of the modern construction site. It now allows for quick and versatile access to project information in near real time [8]. Interestingly, the Site Engineer is somewhat lacking confidence in BIM, stating: “generally, I would prefer to come back to the office and actually make sure I am 100% right before making a decision.” The main benefits derived from having information readily available included: using the model for visualizing upcoming works with workers; raising queries/RFI’s; carrying out safety and quality checklists; collaborating with the design team, all in real time. This correlates with the study which discovered that it was the issuing of portable tablets that resulted in the biggest impact, and became the driving force behind the use of BIM on-site [29]. This also reinforces the claim that the new strengthened features of smartphones and tablets will enable a new generation of on-site management processes [10]. This is further evident in the use of

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 QR codes during the construction phase of the project, whereby as the project progressed, “we have setup QR codes for each individual room…that code will relate to information contained in the BIM model and on into O&M,” the Site Engineer noted. b) Improved Communications Within the site management team, BIM has also had a positive impact, with the Senior Engineer explaining, “we will all sit around with the model open between us, discussing an issue…straight away everyone is on the same page.” All team members believe communication has been enhanced with fellow workers on-site, with the visualization aspect of the 3D model being seen as the biggest advantage. The Foreman has seen this as a great benefit, “I’m not sketching up on the back of a piece of paper or the side of a pallet, we are actually looking at the drawings on the iPad…that has definitely changed.” All respondents agreed that the implementation of BIM has improved their ability to collaborate and communicate with the various members of the design team. The BIM Coordinator noted that previously this was “one of the biggest problems in the construction industry, design and site teams not communicating.” However, the PM recognizes that the introduction of BIM has placed “much greater pressure on the design teams to deliver a properly coordinated design.” While all respondents indicated that the use of BIM has improved how information is shared across the wider project team, particularly in relation to RFI’s; the BIM Coordinator summed up an issue that still remains; “when you see an issue or need information you can instantly request it, however it is getting the required information back or the issue resolved is the slow part.” This is corroborated by the PM who feels that the RFI process has been improved but not expedited through BIM, “speed has not increased…but it does allow for greater collaboration and communication of problems and solutions.” There is also a general consensus that the interaction with the client has changed for the better with the Senior Engineer saying that BIM is “a much better system for them and for us.” BIM gives the client a much clearer view of what they will be getting, with the BIM Coordinator stating that the benefit of this is that “they can easily comment on what they require or want to change in the building before it is actually built.” It is evident that BIM has enhanced the ability of the site team to communicate and collaborate both internally and with remote stakeholders including the design team and client, as previously cited [14]. c) Greater Accountability The PM acknowledged that BIM has forced the site team to be more vigilant in completing checklists, “before you might not have been fully compliant to protocols. …the reality of it is that these things were left to the last second. Now with

BIM it is just something you have to do on a daily basis. Everything is done through the app; it makes everything a lot more worthwhile and better way of doing things.” d) Clash Detection The case study has also confirmed the view that BIM has substantially improved coordination and clash detection [23]. “Clash detection is definitely one of the main advantages BIM offers,” according to the Senior Engineer, who continues “it allows the design team to get it sorted before it gets here onsite, when it would normally become our problem because the clash has been spotted too late.” This sentiment was echoed by all interviewees, particularly in the area of building services, which was highlighted by the PM, “with proper M&E designs vetted and modified by the contractors, BIM has greatly reduced the amount of site routing in the field which was always a problem in the past. It is now much easier to visualize the installation before it commences and modify as necessary before the clashes take place.” VI IMPLEMENTATION ISSUES The BIM Coordinator acknowledged BAM’s commitment to having “every single project in BAM to be fully using BIM by 2020.” This is clearly stated within BAM’s business strategy and mirrors the advice that BIM must be incorporated into the business strategy, changing workflows and behaviours from senior management right through to personnel at production level [30]. The successful use of BIM on the Comeragh College is attributed to 2 key enablers, according to the interviewees. Having the right mobile technology is seen as the main enabler for BIM by the site team. The Foreman stating: “having everything on one little iPad, having every bit of information in your hand when you need it…it lets you be out on site all day where you’re really needed.” The second enabler identified by the team was having the leadership and support of the PM behind the use of BIM, with the Site Engineer commenting, “having a Project Manager that believes in its use is a big aspect.” This point was reinforced by the BIM Coordinator, “a good strong construction team with a good leader… the PM here is brilliant and he has really got behind it.” This echoes the view that commitment and support of management is one of the most important factors when trying to implement BIM; “without it, the staff and the entire implementation effort will fracture [31].” All of the interviewees recognized that the company is still in early stages of BIM implementation, with many more aspects of BIM yet to be utilized. Key areas identified by the site team included: increased utilization of 4D modelling, smaller tablets for improved site mobility, laser scanning for capturing as-built conditions, while

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 both Engineers recognized the need for further training in the use of the various Autodesk packages, as being important. However there are still challenges to be overcome, with some of the main barriers to successful BIM implementation during the construction phase identified as: a lack of knowledge of BIM across the supply chain; fear of change; and the associated costs. The PM also spoke about getting “information that is properly usable in the first place. Having the confidence in the work that is given to you by the designer, not having to recheck everything before issuing it.” This is corroborated by [11], who state that BIM has emerged as the tool to address these inadequacies of traditional construction documents, giving more confidence in supplied information from designers. VII IMPLICATIONS FOR PPPS BAM have invested so much time and money in BIM to strategically place themselves “ahead of all their competitors and be the contractor of choice when it comes to PPP and design & build,” according to the PM. Risk mitigation by the private partner is viewed as a major aspect of PPP delivery [1], and utilizing BIM on PPP projects is seen as a means of achieving this. The PM reinforces this point, noting that “certainty is the key driving force for the company and all accept that a fully developed design early in tendering is the least risky type of work to be engaging in.” Both the PM and BIM Coordinator noted that the client (NDFA) and BAM recognize the benefits of BIM in the delivery of PPP projects, with the BIM Coordinator stating; “the client for us is the NDFA and they’re big into BIM, and BIM will be a necessity for all future public sector projects.” In the context of a PPP project, the PM talks about how cost accuracy, safety and quality, have all improved because of enhanced, communication, tracking and closing out of issues via BIM from the initial bid stage, through construction and into the O&M phase. The Foreman noted; “we have to look and think about how not only the school will be built but how it will run for the next 25 years.” This point was expanded upon by the Site Engineer; “the PPP style project lends itself to being able to predict costs… …a private company running the building, they will understand the cost a lot more throughout its entire lifecycle.” While the outcome of the O&M phase remains to be seen, it is evident that the use of BIM has indeed created a clear platform for communicating information, as previously noted [4]. VIII HANDOVER TO FM The whole site team believes that using BIM to create an AIM will help in overcoming the problems associated with the traditional paper-based handover. According to the Site Engineer, “creating an asset

information model from the building information model is the way they are going and using it throughout the twenty-five-year period.” This will lead to an improved handover of O&M information, with the BIM Coordinator noting, “instead of getting several folders full of paper on all of the assets within the building, which you have to trawl through to get the information you need.” Not only will there be a seamless handover of information but according to the PM, “the FM staff will have the most accurate as built drawings than any project I have ever been on, all the O&M information will be accessible from the model through an iPad or desktop via the Autodesk Building Ops app.” Building Ops is Autodesk’s new CAFM system, which BAM have been heavily involved in developing. In preparing for the transition from construction to O&M, BAM FM have worked closely with the VDC team to ensure that their digital needs were going to be met, this has included capturing all relevant asset information in accordance with COBie. Captured asset information can then be accessed via a QR code on the asset, which when scanned, lead to information including; location, product data sheets, commissioning certificates, maintenance requirements, photographs and history of previous issues, failures or replacements [27]. It is evident that one of the biggest barriers to successful FM has been overcome through the close coordination of data between the BAM construction and FM teams. Previous research has identified the important role of the construction team in developing an accurate as-built model, which ultimately can create a successful FM system [4, 8]. Subsequent analysis by BAM has found that the transition of the Comeragh College BIM model to their FM system was completed in significantly less time than traditional methods (from 4 months on a similar project to 2 hours on Comeragh College). and resulted in cost savings of €15,000 when compared to similar previous projects [27]. VI CONCLUSIONS BAM are at the forefront of rapid technological advancements in the Irish construction industry, with Comeragh College being one of the first projects to fully utilise level 2 BIM. This exploratory investigation sought to ascertain the impact of BIM upon the construction management team. Based upon the case study, comprising interviews with 5 key members of BAM’s construction team, the following conclusions can be made: •

BIM has had a significant impact upon the construction phase of the project. The use of a cloud-based CDE and its associated workflows, coupled with iPads, Autodesk software and QR codes has enhanced the

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 teams ability to communicate with each other, the design team and the client. •

The main benefit to have been derived from BIM during the construction phase has been the instant access to a single source of project information, particularly when out on site. Information can also be captured on-site in real time through RFI workflows, safety and quality checklists, reducing the necessity for duplication of data entry associated with paper-based forms. This has also resulted in greater accountability with non-compliance with workflows and checklists now being much more readily identifiable via the CDE interface. The use of BIM during the earlier design phase has resulted in a more coordinated model, with less clashes being encountered during construction. Notwithstanding the mostly positive experiences, a number of challenges remain. BIM does not necessarily enhance the reaction time of project team members to queries raised. There was also some hesitance to trust the information available via BIM, with one respondent still feeling the need to return to the site office to confirm details.

The implementation of BIM is part of the BAM’s business strategy and has been supported through substantial investment in the development of the VDC department and the required hardware and software. At site level, the need for a BIM champion was recognised as being central to successful implementation, along with mobile technology that is appropriate to site conditions.

BAM have strategically positioned themselves as the contractor of choice for PPPs in the Irish market, and the use of BIM has been central to supporting this goal. BIM has created a platform for managing the building through the entire PPP lifecycle and the construction phase has played an important role in this. The previous bottleneck of information being handed over from construction to O&M has now been removed. By having clearly defined digital requirements for FM, the construction team have contributed to the development of an Asset Information Model (AIM), which is superior to any previous paper-based handover file. The transition of as-built BIM information to BAM’s CAFM system was a fraction of the time and cost of previous projects.

With this being the first time that the team had used BIM on a construction project, there was recognition that further improvements can be

achieved as maturity increases within the BAM organisation. Specific areas were identified as: greater use of 4D modelling and laser scanning, enhanced AR, and more indepth training in the relevant Autodesk packages. In realising the full potential of BIM, further work is required to overcome the lack of BIM knowledge across the supply chain; particularly resistance to change and the financial costs associated with BIM adoption. It can be concluded that BIM has had a mostly positive impact upon the construction phase of the Comeragh College PPP project, yielding significant benefits for the site management team. However further research is required to ascertain its utilisation during the 25 year O&M period. As BAM’s capabilities in BIM grow, more in-depth research is also required in terms of the impact upon the site management team, particularly measuring productivity gains; their engagement with the wider supply chain; and the ongoing challenges of implementation. REFERENCES [1] D. Grimsey & M. Lewis, “Are public private partnerships value for money? Evaluating alternative approaches and comparing academic and practitioner views,” Accounting Forum, Vol. 29, No. 4, pp. 345-378, December 2005 [2] A. Akintoye, M. Beck & C. Hardcastle, “Public private partnership in infrastructure development,” Public Private Partnerships. Aylesbury, The Bath Press, p. xix, 2003 [3] L. Boeing Singh & S. N. Kalidindi, “Traffic revenue risk management through Annuity Model of PPP road projects in India,” International Journal of Project Management, Vol. 24, No. 7, pp. 605-613, 2006 [4] P. E. D. Love, J. Liu, J. Matthews, C. Sing & J. Smith “Future proofing PPPs: Life-cycle performance measurement and Building Information Modelling,” Automation in Construction, Vol. 56, pp. 26-35, 2015 [5] R. Sacks, M. Radosavljevic & R. Barak, “Requirements for building information modelling based lean production management systems for construction,” Automation in Construction, Vol. 19, No. 5, pp. 641-655, 2010 [6] J. Y. Ruwanpura, K. Hewage & L. Silva, “Evolution of the i-Booth© onsite information management kiosk,” Automation in Construction, Vol. 21, pp. 52-63, 2012 [7] V. Ahuja, J. Yang & C. Hardcastle, “Study of ICT adoption for building project management

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ing and Documentation,” Proceedings of the IEEE, Vol. 102, No. 2, pp. 137-154, 2014 S. Meža, Z, Turk & M. Dolenc, “Measuring the potential of augmented reality in civil engineering,” Advances in Engineering Software, Vol. 90, pp. 1-10, 2015 T. M., Lorenzo, B. Benedetta, C. Manuele & T. Davide “BIM and QR-code. A Synergic Application in Construction Site Management,” Procedia Engineering, Vol. 85, pp. 520-528, 2014 Y. C. Lin, Y. Su & P. Chen “Developing Mobile BIM/2D Barcode-Based Automated Facility Management System,” The Scientific World Journal, pp. 1-16, 2014 S. Demir, R. Kaynak & K. A. Demir, “Usage Level and Future Intent of Use of Quick Response (QR) Codes for Mobile Marketing among College Students in Turkey,” Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences, Vol. 181, pp. 405-413, 2015 U. Sagar, BIM 101: An Overview for Beginners, Amazon Digital Services, 2014 C. Eastman, P. Teicholz, R. Sacks & K. Liston, BIM Handbook: A Guide to Building Information Modeling for Owners, Managers, Designers, Engineers and Contractors, Second Edition, Hoboken, John Wiley & Sons, 2011 Yin, R. K., Case Study Research: Design and Methods, Third Edition, Thousand Oaks, SAGE Publications, 2003 S. G. Naoum, Dissertation Research & Writing for Construction Students, Third Edition, New York, Routledge, 2012 P. Brennan, Achieving Level 2 BIM: Schools Bundle 4, BAM Ireland, CMG BIM Initiative of the Year, 2016 F. Jernigan, BIG BIM little bim, Second Edition, Salisbury: 4Site Press, 2008 R. Davies & C. Harty, “Implementing ‘Site BIM’: A case study of ICT innovation on a large hospital project,” Automation in Construction, Vol. 30, pp. 15-24, 2013 D. K. Smith & M. Tardif, Building Information Modeling : A Strategic Implementation Guide for Architects, Engineers, Constructors, and Real Estate Asset Managers, First Edition, Hoboken, John Wiley & Sons, 2012 E. Epstein, Implementing Successful Building Information Modeling, First Edition, Norwood, Artech House, 2012

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Building Capabilities in Complex Environments BIM Gathering 2017

CitA BIM Gathering Proceedings

Digital Technologies that Support BIM Page 109

CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017

Automatic Validation of As-Is and As-Generated IFC BIMs for Advanced Scan-to-BIM Methods Shawn O’Keeffe1, Neil Hyland2, Conor Dore3, and Shane Brodie4 1,2.3, & 4

BIM & Scan, Co. Dublin, Ireland

E-Mail:,, 3, and Abstract ̶ The authors have developed a Scan-vs-BIM validation approach that computes correspondences between reality capture data and Building Information Models (BIMs). The tool utilised for producing correspondences is called AutoCorr and was developed as a key component in the authors’ cyber-physical system known as the BIM & Scan® Platform. The tool’s algorithms automatically detect, highlight, and virtually display differences between an IFC Coordination View in STEP Physical File Format (SPFF) and its corresponding point cloud in E57 format. AutoCorr, when using as-is, as-built, or as-designed BIMs, helps to answer important questions, e.g. “Is what was agreed, what has been built on-site?” and “Is the construction-in-progress going according to the agreed design?”. Furthermore, the tool enables the validation of “as-generated” IFC BIMs created automatically via our AutoGen reconstruction tool, helping to answer the question: “How accurate is the as-generated model according to the point cloud it came from?”. The presented automatic validation approach allows the authors to study the accuracy of traditional and reconstructed BIMs during different phases of the facility life cycle, hence affording possible automated resolutions to discrepancies between the real and virtual worlds. Keywords ̶ Scan-to-BIM, Scan-vs-BIM, IFC, As-Generated, Model Validation, Laser Scanning.

I. INTRODUCTION Currently, it is becoming more and more common for owner contracts to require “as-built” building information models (BIMs) at the handover stage of a project. There exist many philosophical debates around the need for as-built models at handover, i.e. are these models usable due to the fact they do not represent exactly what has been built? For instance, not everything constructed in the built environment is exactly plumb and with parametric BIM tools models are by default plumb. We believe that asbuilt BIMs are needed at handover because this is where the final as-built drawings come from and these models should represent what has been built. Many, however, truly believe that such as-built BIMs represent the final constructed facility or structure, on-site, which is not the case. Nonetheless, with these debates aside, there exists a need to validate if what has been built and delivered to the owner represents what was agreed in the final designs given to the contractor. Many papers address the need for and use of laser scanning technology,

BIMs, 2D drawings, and site visits to validate and verify as-built BIM data for different uses of that asbuilt BIM, especially for operations and maintenance purposes [1][2]. We also recognise that in the AEC/FM industries, technologies for solutions to these problems are forever changing, hence more reason for the research reported in this article. There are many problems to address the concerns surrounding: “Is what was built, what was designed?” Various mediums for this data acquisition and analysis are: 2D drawings, site visits, Scan-vs-Model, Scan-vs-BIM methods, etc [3][4][5]. Our focus in answering queries about these problems is to utilise two components. The first is the final submitted IFC design BIM Model View Definitions (MVDs) in STEP Physical File Format (SPFF), i.e. the finalised design coordination model views, which correspond to the final 100% complete native model used to generate construction drawings. The second component is reality capture data in E57 format of the “as-is” site conditions after construction is finished, which matches those models delivered, e.g. similar to methods developed

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 by other research groups [6][7]. It is common knowledge in AEC/FM industries that these two technologies – BIMs and point clouds – are currently utilised to compare the design while the construction is taking place or after the construction is finished [8][9][10][11]. There are even tools that exist to assist stakeholders in this process [12]. However, no tools on the market solely utilise open standards during these analyses. One topic mentioned in this paper discusses the utilisation of open standards, i.e. IFC as-built BIMs in SPFF and E57-formatted reality capture data point clouds [13], for automatic Scan-vs-BIM validation methods. Another topic we address herein is that the same technology we have developed to validate as-is BIMs can be utilised to validate “as-generated” BIMs from one of our custom tools for Scan-toBIM. As-generated models, pictured in Fig. 1, are models that are automatically generated from a series of computations that utilise the data points as a map to generate and classify semantic model elements in IFC SPFF. Our “black box” tool that performs such a reconstruction is called “AutoGen”.

and deviations, are serialised in BCF format and the user is taken directly to the issues for resolution. Despite the need for multiple tools to solve a common problem, the method used in this article, to match the IFC model elements with the corresponding elements in the point cloud, can be conducted in an objective fashion and this is covered in the later sections of this paper. We intend to further develop these tools into fully-fledged components of a complete cyber-physical platform over time.

Fig. 2: Web-based point cloud viewer utilised for the display of as-is and as-generated model validation results.


Fig. 1: An as-generated BIM from the AutoGen tool visualised in an IFC Viewer.

Currently, there are many Scan-to-BIM approaches, but there are no tools currently on the market to address the quality and accuracy of these BIMs generated from point clouds. We are trying to change this with the ongoing development of the BIM & Scan® Platform, which is our evolving cloud-based cyber-physical system. Our novel approach and tooling for automatic IFC-formatted BIMs from point clouds is outside the scope of this paper, but we want to demonstrate in this paper that we can, in fact, address the quality of our asgenerated models from the AutoGen tool with the same technology we have implemented to validate as-is BIMs on BIM & Scan® in-house projects. We want to be clear to readers that the methodology mentioned in this paper has some subjectivity to it. The human end user is responsible for noticing the detected differences when viewing the final results, i.e. in a web-based viewer as shown in Fig. 2. We have addressed this subjectivity problem in a separate publication on our “AutoDiff” tool where found issues, detected model variances

In the AEC/FM industries, as-built and as-is BIMs are in high demand and there is a basic need to validate these models, i.e. to address the quality and accuracy of manually-created and automatic machine-generated BIMs in IFC STEP format. Currently available solutions/tools for Scan-toBIM and Scan-vs-BIM do not fully support both open standards and a methodology for validating the semantic and geometric output of these tools. Also, there exist no tools to date for commercial use that automatically generates semantic-rich IFC model view definitions (MVDs) from point clouds while also providing a method for validating such output. Automatic 3D models that conform to ISO 16739 [14] have been desired for many years and many research projects have attempted and succeeded in producing such models [15][16][17][18]. However, no research to date properly addresses the automatic validation of these as-generated IFC models in SPFF. The method developed by Ochmann et al. [18] is the best reconstruction methodology for the automatic creation of IFC MVDs to date. This method was part of a larger-scope project to support claims, for digital preservation purposes, that models that are automatically created from point clouds should be in formats that conform to ISO 16739. We agree with the argument those authors so elegantly warranted, and this follows suit with many major demands, initiatives, and mandates for IFC-based

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 deliverables and practices globally, e.g. UK, US, EU, etc. Such deliverables and practices are endorsed and pursued by academics and industry because they believe that IFC-based deliverables shall pass the test of time. On the surface of that topic, the idea seems to be true and fully understood. However, contrary to popular opinion, just because one has an IFC Model View serialised in SPFF, does not warrant that it shall pass the test of time. Academic and industry practitioners who utilise IFC and develop IFC-based tools are very familiar with the fact that IFC MVDs are unidirectional and fit only for particular purposes, e.g. the most commonlyused is the IFC 2X3 TC1 Coordination View 2.0 MVD. The 2X3 CV 2.0 MVD is often incorrectly referred to as an “IFC file” [19], however, there is no single definition that describes an “IFC file”. This is made apparent when studying the published IFC standards [14]. While this misnomer exists in industry and has the effect of muddying the waters, these are still “.ifc” MVD exchange files serialised in ISO 10303-21 STEP format [20], used as an open standard means of storing and transferring BIM data. Lastly, the serialised MVD is only as good as the tool(s) that exported it and the tool(s) that can deserialise it. IFC MVDs are not backwards compatible, so the claim that they pass the test of time is fuzzy, but more-or-less true. For those who fully understand the claim of IFC-formatted data persisting in any meaningful capacity in future technologies and industry, this simply refers to built environment data in any format that conforms to an IFC schema standard [14] and not the unidirectional Model Views used for design, etc. In any case, whether traditional (manual) or automatic, the questions in relation to validation, as presented in this paper, are simple and remain the same: “Is what was agreed, what has been built on site?” Another question highly related to this domain of interest that can be answered with the methodology presented in this paper is: “Is the construction-in-progress going according to the agreed-upon design?” Answering the latter question can positively impact the former question. In some cases, only the latter need be answered, and in the end, there may be no errors to address. Answering the second question with persistence can help one devise a truly lean methodology for Scan-vs-BIM to deliver an accurate as-built BIM at handover stage. Nevertheless, when it comes to automatically creating models from point clouds, the main concern is: “How accurate is the as-generated model according to the point cloud it came from?” For the case of validating traditional manually-developed BIMs from point clouds, there exist many methods for checking one’s development, mentioned in the Introduction section of this paper. These methods are very tedious, laborious, and costly. Fig. 3 and 4

show some examples of real world projects produced by the authors of this article. These projects and the methods were indeed very timeconsuming and tedious.

Fig. 3: Model not matching the agreed design in an advanced industrial environment where many thousands of this same finding exists.

Fig. 4: Time-consuming traditional Scan-vs-BIM process finding differences between the design model and the as-is reality capture data of a tablet coating drum in a pharmaceutical plant.

III. Our VISION The optimal scenario of scheduled scanning on-site occurs very frequently during construction. These technologies have also become less cumbersome onsite, and more affordable. With all these scans and a system that can model semantic-rich IFC-based BIMs from them, and the ability for these models to check themselves to see if they match the as-is state(s), we can finally conceive of an automatic BIM-to-BIM process. Inclusive in this new process is as-designed or asbuilt BIMs that transform themselves into up-to-date as-is BIMs when requested at any time throughout the facility life cycle. It is our aim to use all components at our disposal, i.e. the algorithms and in-development tools from all our research in this domain, to finalise a system that can perform such a feat. We have defined BIM-to-BIM as the process of automatically generating an as-built or as-is BIM model, when given its as-designed counterpart and a

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 point cloud of the as-is facility. The as-designed model is modified and refined using the point cloud as a reference. The result is a more accurate as-built or as-is BIM model for a particular point in time. Furthermore, BIM-to-BIM as a concept is not limited to any particular format, Model View, nor domain. However, we do remain focused at this time on ISO 16739:2013 schema edition IFC 2X3 TC1 formatted and serialised as ISO 10303-21:2016.

IV. METHODOLOGY The implemented automatic validation approach, a tool we developed called “AutoCorr”, can be summarised in three steps. Firstly, the point cloud data and IFC model must be aligned into the same coordinate space, either manually or via an automated registration algorithm, e.g. the widelyused Iterative Closest Point (ICP) technique [21]. For our validation of as-built and as-is BIM use cases, such as handover models or models during construction progress checking, we perform a manual alignment of the model and scan data. However, for cases where we are analysing asgenerated models from AutoGen, the point cloud and BIM are already in the same spatial location due to the reconstruction process, i.e. the as-generated IFC MVD is derived from an as-is point cloud, therefore, they share a common 3D origin. Secondly, the points present in the scan data must be associated with individual IFC model entities, in order to identify correspondences between constructed objects in the point cloud and BIM. This step is technically referred to in prior work as association. We adopted an association approach devised by researchers involved in the DURAARK project for historical digital preservation [6]. The idea behind this approach is to simulate the process of reality data captured within a virtual environment, e.g. the utilisation of a TLS on a tripod [22]. For each scan origin, i.e. the position, or pose, of the scanner during the reality data capture, rays mimicking the original laser beams are virtually casted in 360 degrees within the virtual environment, which is an algorithmic approach also utilised by model reconstruction researchers [17][18]. By comparing the results of model geometry hit by the rays and the subset of points in the same region of space, points and IFC model entities are associated. This technique relies on the assumption that the scanner positions are stored alongside the point cloud data, which can be found in the E57 data file, and the needed points are grouped with each scan position. These caveats ensure the scan data accurately represents the observable built environment at each scan position, and that the virtual scanning, i.e. ray-casting, in the 3D model matches the actual real-world scanning process as closely as possible. The output of this

stage is a list of IFC entities and GUIDs serialised along with the corresponding subsets of the point cloud produced by the association step. The existing research implementation [6] serialises the GUIDcloud subset mappings into an XML file structured according to the RDF (Resource Description Framework) schema, who’s authors had the eventual goal of creating a web-based platform for the storage/retrieval of association data. Our own implementation does not require the use of RDF specifically, but future integration with web-based systems may lead us to utilise RDF-IFC mappings in the method envisioned by prior research [6]. Thirdly, we use the collated association data captured in the step above to colourise the original point cloud. Despite it being partially subjective, the existing approach correctly associated model objects and point cloud data with good accuracy and colourised (highlighted) the resultant point cloud using a binary colour choice for true/false (associated/un-associated). We extended this methodology to utilise per-element-type colouring to reduce the visual subjectivity in prior methods, to afford the user a more objective viewing experience. This allows at-a-glance representation of different structural model elements and their valid associations when viewing the point cloud. For our use cases, we restricted the set of model elements to simple structural elements that are found in asgenerated BIMs produced by AutoGen. Finally, the colourised point cloud showing the new multicolour associations can be exported in E57 format from our tool, and this E57 output can then be utilised in other processing tools – such as CloudCompare – for various other uses. See Fig. 5 for examples. We also used the Potree WebGL point cloud viewer [23] and its converter tool [24] to generated a deployable web-based viewer for the visualisation of the Scan-vs-BIM association results.

Fig. 5: Colourised point cloud computation captured and serialised in E57 format then opened in CloudCompare for further analyses/uses.

The colours in the viewer represent associated IFC entities and their corresponding representations within the point cloud. The current colours mappings are: red (un-associated), light blue (wall), dark blue (door/undetermined opening), green (window), grey (roof/slab), pink (column), and white (other associated objects we have not provided specific colours for). An important note is that all modelled

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 objects can be associated, and we can colourise any associated objects from ISO 16739 serialised in ISO 10303-21 SPFF. For an example, see Fig. 8, where one can see that there are many white associated objects that are not given unique colours, such as window blinds, electrical conduits and outlets, a TV on the wall, etc. We can colourise these objects if so desired; however, currently, we have only colourised the specific IFC entities of interest to this research at this moment in time.

V. DEMONSTRATIONS & RESULTS Several test case demonstrations would need to be conducted to address the answers to all the validation questions raised in the Introduction and Background sections. For sake of brevity, we have divided the validation demos into two categories. The first case answers the questions in relation to the construction matching the agreed design, or construction in-progress meeting the agreed design. This first case can, in fact, be demonstrated utilising the as-is BIM scenario. In relation to the AutoCorr tool’s positive results for the as-is IFC model, the asdesigned IFC model and construction progress checking scenario would produce similar results. The principles are the same, i.e. Virtual-vs-Real [25]: “Does the (virtual) model of an instance of time match that same (real) reality capture data instance in time?”. The second case, however, is quite different. Therefore, we created a second demonstration category for the automatic validation of as-generated models. In all cases, the principle and technique for association are the same. However, the questions being answered and scenarios involving a model and matching point cloud are different. We conducted two test cases to demonstrate the methodology for this paper: a) an as-is BIM versus the point cloud that BIM was manually created from, and b) an as-generated BIM versus the point cloud that BIM was automatically generated from. It is important for the reader to know there were many experiments conducted and these two cases were simply chosen as the best examples to warrant our methodology. The first case, although using as-is BIM, replicates an as-designed scenario. This case establishes that the questions: “Is what was agreed, what has been built on site?” and “Is the construction-in-progress going according to the agreed design?”, can, in fact, be answered by utilising the AutoCorr algorithms and easily visualised via a web-based viewer. The second case warrants that the question: “How accurate is the asgenerated model according to the point cloud it came from?” can also be answered using the exact same technique and viewer as in the former case.

a) As-Is BIM Validation Demonstration NOTE: (also applicable to validation for asbuilt and as-designed BIMs and during construction progress checking). Firstly, data of an office interior space was captured using a Faro Focus 120 scanner and that data was registered and saved in E57 format via the Faro SCENE software (Fig. 6). We exported the point cloud data as “ordered scans” in order to maintain the presence of the original scan positions. The E57 was imported into ARCHICAD 20 and a BIM was modelled from the point cloud (Fig. 7). The BIM model was serialised as an IFC 2X3 CV 2.0 MVD. Next, using our AutoCorr tool, we processed the IFC CV MVD and the E57 point cloud to produce the results seen in Fig. 8.

Fig. 6: Registered point cloud of built environment.

Fig. 7: As-is BIM manually modelled from point cloud in Fig. 6 using ARCHICAD.

Fig. 8: Web-based viewer showing results from the AutoCorr tool. The as-is BIM elements are associated with the corresponding regions of the point cloud via colour.

It is visually clear, that the results in Fig. 8 showing associated BIM objects with colourised regions in the point cloud, are associated with a high degree of accuracy. The large green area is, in fact,

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 an IfcWindow, part of the interior framed glass wall shown in Fig. 6 and 7. The occluded data in the green association in Fig.8 is where a sofa was present in the room during the scanning, and the dark blue in the right-hand side of the image is the parts of the (open) IfcDoor object that was detected and correctly associated. All light blue in Fig. 8 is the actual IfcWallStandardCase entities in the as-is model the tool correctly associated. On the far wall, at the top of Fig.8, one can see some interesting results. Firstly, the window was correctly associated and the placement of the associated window in the wall is correct. Secondly, all reflections/noise were associated red, which is the appropriate colour for un-associated/erroneous data. Lastly, the white associated points (in the case of the back window these were associated to the blinds), show us that the IFC model contained more entity types than we accounted for, and as such, they were given the default associated colour. For example, the radiator located under the window is technically an IfcSpaceHeaterType entity. If we give IfcSpaceHeaderType entities their own RGB value, as was done for the current set of colourised entities, then it would be easy to identify and check for issues. We intend to revisit our methodology in future to provide a wider range of colours for a larger number of IFC entities. During the colourisation step, IFC types are mapped to an RGB value representing a unique colour. Next, the colourisation process uses the associated mapping of points to IFC entities, crossreferenced with the type metadata of each entity, to define the set of points that need to be colourised for each entity. Then, for each associated entity/point set the appropriate colour is retrieved, passing the IFC type to the unique colour map. Points that are a part of a particular set are coloured with the appropriate RGB values previously defined. Lastly, as per the methodology described, the AutoCorr tool serialises an E57 file with the colourised objects that can then be converted into a web-based viewable form or loaded into other E57-supporting software. b) As-Generated BIM Validation For the as-generated BIM validation demo in this paper, we used a point cloud BIM & Scan® had produced of a commercial building in Dublin, Ireland. The client wanted an as-is BIM of a multistorey structure as quick as possible and specifically for an interior retrofit. The AutoGen tool was proposed to produce such a model, presumably to minimise expenditure and time. Incorporating AutoGen into the process did save a minimum of 2 weeks on an 8-week contracted Scan-to-BIM project. The main question we needed to answer in relation to the as-generated BIM integrated into our

existing Scan-to-BIM workflow was: “How accurate is it?”. After running AutoGen, AutoDiff, and AutoCorr, and conducting reviews of the results produced, we straight away noticed that all the IfcColumn entities, shown coloured pink in Fig. 10 and 11, were completely accurate within the building. Manually modelling and checking hundreds of poured concrete columns is very timeconsuming and painstaking. Knowing these columns were automatically modelled correctly saved most of the 2 weeks mentioned above. We were able to simply skip the modelling of these objects in the BIM authoring tool and simply leave the IFCColumns as they were from the as-generated coordination view MVD. Of course, we also produced statistics from performing deviation analysis in our AutoDiff tool, but that is outside the scope of this paper. The visual validation results for as-generated BIMs from the AutoCorr tool are very useful. One benefit we found very useful is, when AutoGen is utilised in a Scan-to-BIM workflow and one produces an as-generated model as the basis to begin manual modelling, the results assist the user in ranking what to model first versus users/modellers randomly picking an object/area to begin with. In the case of the columns mentioned above, we simply kept the as-generated results in the BIM authoring tool environment (Fig. 9). Furthermore, any IFC entities created from the AutoGen that are 100% correct in the as-generated MVD can simply be left alone and exported from that authoring tool later when the modelling is complete, as an IFC MVD in SPFF or other format for other purposes.

Fig. 9: As-generated IfcColumn objects from AutoGen in Revit 2017 with the original point cloud overlaid.

As-generated BIMs have another unique behaviour that is worth noting. If the object from the as-generated MVD is correct, i.e. the geometry is correctly modelled, is the correct IFC entity type, and placed in the correct location (as it tends to be much of the time), but does not have the desired family type (which is a common problem because IFC CV MVDs do not retain the family name properties and parametricity linked to that software’s API), then it is a simple matter of selecting that object in the authoring tool and changing the family type from a drop down list.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 A simple example: if an Architect has an asgenerated BIM for a retrofit with walls correctly generated by the AutoGen tool, it is possible to change the family type to represent new wall detail. In authoring software, this is possible by simply selecting and altering the wall’s family type. This enables all allowable preconfigured parameters from the software’s API to be brought into the object. Finally, section, details, etc., can be generated from the object(s) in whatever 3D view is desired. Fig. 10 and 11 show the AutoCorr tool results for the as-generated MVD the AutoGen produced from the point cloud data shown in Fig. 9. Fig. 10 shows good examples of correct associations for columns, walls, slabs, and doors, while Fig. 11 shows correct associations of windows within walls. The astute reader would notice the dark blue throughout the images and ask why this is so. These are AutoCorr false positive results created due to false positives in the AutoGen tool output. When the room detection labelling is executed within the AutoGen tool [17], very large open areas within single floors cause the room-point labelling process to generate false positive openings, i.e. “fake” openings. These “fake” openings occur at the boundaries of estimated rooms, when the rays casted from each original scan position are sparse enough that the points are weighted equally to both scan positions. This causes the area to be divided into rooms based on the indeterminate overlapping point labels within scans, and when reconstructing the environment, the AutoGen tool places openings in the dividing space as it cannot find existing walls. Due to the fact the current solution behaves this way during opening detection for the generation and labelling of doors, we are investigating more robust solutions that will solve this problem. Nevertheless, we see great potential in the current research presented in this paper and shall move forward with this solution for validating as-is, as-built, and as-generated BIMs.

Fig. 10: As-generated BIM validation results showing correct column association (pink), positioning and proportions in the built environment.

Fig. 11: As-generated BIM validation results showing association of window openings (green) in the built environment.

VI. CONCLUSIONS The AutoCorr tool has provided great insight into a novel approach for validating as-generated BIMs. Furthermore, it was of great interest that the same method we sought to validate AutoGen-produced models, in turn, presented a solution for the validation of as-is and as-built BIMs. The volume of accurate results for as-is and as-built BIMs further intrigued us because we did not set out to accomplish this in our original scope of validating the quality of as-generated models generated by our AutoGen tool. The delivery of as-built BIMs is in high demand and it is not anticipated that this contracted delivery will diminish. Due to this, we propose a further use of our technology for the validation of as-built and as-is BIMs. Additionally, we intend to pursue the validation of as-generated BIMs. It is recognised that there are many issues to overcome in both the automatic generation/reconstruction of semantic-rich 3D models from point clouds and the validation of these so-called “as-generated” models. While conducting this research, it is evident that there exist many different approaches to handling IFC data for different uses and it is far too common that the AEC/FM industries are vastly focused on archaic ISO 10303-21 serialisations of IFC data, when in fact many formats are currently used or are proposed for IFC data go beyond simple file-based transactions. These industries shall see many other means of serialising IFC data, especially in web-based applications where formats like JSON and XML reign supreme for data communications and the human interaction with such data. For the research herein, and in the future, we aim to further exploit IFC data in formats such as RDF, etc. especially in the domain of reconstruction. We also see opportunities in the use of IFC data in binary representations where EXPRESS data is mapped to HDF5 utilising ISO 10303-26 as in the proposed

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 new entity type IfcPointCloud [26]. IFC-XML, which uses ISO 10303-28 is another propositional format for the exchange of validation results. The Construction Operations Building information exchange (COBie), as per Ch. 4.2 in the NBIMS US V3, is a great example of a standard that has an MVD that can be expressed in ISO 10303-21 and ISO 10303-28. In this case, both STEP serialisation formats are acceptable. Perhaps future revisions of that standards specification will be open to other web-based formats like RDF, and efficient binary storage of IFC model data alongside point clouds in HDF.

VII. FUTURE WORKS First and foremost, we want to merge the functionality of our AutoDiff and AutoCorr tools. This would make the overall dimensional control compliance [25] process much leaner and userfriendly. Secondly, there is the need to correct the false positives for openings from AutoGen to in turn solve the false positive opening issue present in the AutoCorr results shown in this paper. This work requires a rethink and re-design of two of our current tools, and therefore will be time-consuming to achieve. Nevertheless, we plan to accomplish our stated goals of merging and improving AutoDiff and AutoCorr at some point in the future. There is also the strong need to revisit the current methodology and included colours for all other associated IFC entity types, and define a standard set of colourisation properties for the IFC data model to ensure consistency. This is highly recommended for the recognition of all other entity types afforded by ISO 16739. We are interested in pursuing this primarily for high-density facilities like semiconductor, pharmaceutical, and food processing plants. Another potential use case for the AutoCorr tools is for automatic point cloud segmentation and cleaning. At present, the removal of noise, clutter, erroneous points and outliers in a point cloud is a time-consuming manual process. Using the AutoGen and AutoCorr tools, points un-associated to generated IFC entities could be automatically segmented and removed. Future work will involve adding the ability to export a sub-set of points associated to specific IFC entities or un-associated points. Lastly, we will continue our pursuit of achieving a BIM-to-BIM transformation algorithm that exploits the research herein to afford users a leaner, less expensive and time-consuming, and more effective approach to the validation of BIMs.

REFERENCES [1] B. A. Brucker, M. P. Case, E. W. East, B. K. Huston, S. D. Nachtigall, J. C. Shockley, and J. T. Wilson. Building Information Modeling (BIM): a road map for implementation to support MILCON transformation and civil works projects within the US Army Corps of Engineers (No. ERDC-TR-06-10). CONSTRUCTION ENGINEERING RESEARCH LAB (ARMY) CHAMPAIGN IL. 2006. [2] E. Rojas, C. Dossick, and J. Schaufelberger. Developing Best Practices for Capturing AsBuilt Building Information Models (BIM) for Existing Facilities. SEATTLE PACIFIC UNIV WA. 2010. [3] E. M. Rojas, C. S. Dossick, J. Schaufelberger, B. A. Brucker, H. Juan, and C. Rutz. Evaluating Alternative Methods for Capturing As-Built Data for Existing Facilities, Computing in Civil Engineering. 2009. [4] B. Giel and R. R. A. Issa. Using Laser Scanning to Assess the Accuracy of As-Built BIM, Computing in Civil Engineering. 2011. [5] F. Bosché, A. Guillemet, Y. Turkan and R. Haas. “Tracking the Built Status of MEP Works: Assessing the Value of a Scan-vs-BIM System”. ASCE Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering, 28:1-28, 2014. [6] DURAARK. Documenting the Changing State of Built Architecture – Software prototype v2. Deliverable Report D4.2 (2015). [7] S. Ochmann, R. Vock, R. Wessel, and R. Klein, "Towards the Extraction of Hierarchical Building Descriptions from 3D Indoor Scans." 3DOR. 2014. [8] F. Bosché, Y. Turkan, C. Haas and R. Haas. “Fusing 4D Modelling and Laser Scanning for Automated Construction Progress Control”. 26th ARCOM Annual Conference and Annual General Meeting, Leeds Metropolitan University, Leeds (UK), 2010. [9] Y. Turkan, F. Bosché, C. Haas, R. Haas, “Automated progress tracking using 4D schedule and 3D sensing technologies”, Automation in Construction, Volume 22, 2012, Pages 414-421, ISSN 0926-5805, 2011. [10] F. Bosché, M. Ahmed, Y. Turkan, C. Haas, R. Haas. "The value of integrating Scan-to-BIM and Scan-vs-BIM techniques for construction monitoring using laser scanning and BIM: The case of cylindrical MEP

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 components", Automation in Construction, Vol. 49, Part B, pp. 201-213, 2015. [11] M. Golparvar-Fard, S. Savarese, and F. PeñaMora. "Automated model-based recognition of progress using daily construction photographs and IFC-based 4D models." Construction Research Congress 2010: Innovation for Reshaping Construction Practice. 2010. [12] ClearEdge3D, Inc. “Verity 1.0”, 2017. Available online: (last accessed August 2017). [13] ASTM International. “ASTM E2807-11 – Standard Specification for 3D Imaging Data Exchange, Version 1.0”. ASTM Volume 10.04 Electronics; Declarable Substances in Materials; 3D Imaging Systems; Additive Manufacturing Technologies, 2015. [14] ISO/TC 184/SC 4. “ISO 16739:2013 – Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) for Data Sharing in the Construction and Facility Management Industries”, 2013. Available online: (last accessed August 2017). [15] C. Nagel, Claus, A. Stadler, and T. H. Kolbe. "Conceptual requirements for the automatic reconstruction of building information models from uninterpreted 3D models." Academic Track of Geoweb 2009 Conference, Vancouver. Vol. 38. 2009. [16] Duan, Yucong, Christophe Cruz, and Christophe Nicolle. "Architectural reconstruction of 3D building objects through semantic knowledge management." Software Engineering Artificial Intelligence Networking and Parallel/Distributed Computing (SNPD), 2010 11th ACIS International Conference on. IEEE, 2010.

definition/coordination-view-v2.0 accessed December 2016). [19]


[20] ISO/TC 184/SC 4. “ISO 10303-21:2016 – Industrial Automation Systems and Integration – Product Data Representation and Exchange – Part 21: Implementation Methods: Clear Text Encoding of the Exchange Structure”, 2016. Available online: (last accessed December 2016). [21] F. Pomerleau, F. Colas, and R. Siegwart. "A review of point cloud registration algorithms for mobile robotics." Foundations and Trends® in Robotics 4.1 pp. 1-104, 2015. [22] M. Tamke, M. Zwierzycki, H. L. Evers, S. Ochmann, R. Vock, and R. Wessel. “Tracking changes in buildings over time - Fully automated reconstruction and difference detection of 3D scan and BIM files”. In proceedings of the 34th eCAADe Conference, Oulu, Finland, pp. 643-651, 2016. [23] M. Schuetz, “Potree open-source WebGL point cloud viewer”. Available online: (last accessed August 2017). [24] M. Schuetz, “PotreeConverter”. Available online: (last accessed August 2017). [25] S. O’Keeffe and F. Bosché. "The Need for Convergence of BIM and 3D Imaging in the Open World." Proceedings of the CITA BIM Gathering, Dublin, Ireland. pp. 109-116, 2015. [26] T. Krijnen and J. Beetz. "An IFC schema extension and binary serialization format to efficiently integrate point cloud data into building models." Advanced Engineering Informatics. 2017.

[17] S. Ochmann, R. Vock, R. Wessel and R. Klein "Automatic generation of structural building descriptions from 3d point cloud scans." Computer Graphics Theory and Applications (GRAPP), 2014 International Conference on. IEEE, 2014. [18] S. Ochmann, R. Vock, R. Wessel and R. Klein. “Automatic Reconstruction of Parametric Building Models from Indoor Point Clouds”. Computers & Graphics, Special Issue On CAD/Graphics 2015, 54:94-103, 2016. [19] buildingSMART International. “Coordination View Version 2.0 Summary”. Available online:

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Verifying BIM Deliverables with Neil Reilly1, Ralph Montague2, Anthony Buckley-Thorp3 ArcDox, Dublin, Ireland, San Francisco, USA E-mail:



Abstract ̶ This paper describes a methodology for a model checking procedure for verifying the presence of required data in a BIM using a combination of the Uniclass classifications and Level of Development in the NBS BIM Toolkit, for checking compliance, and custom web apps developed by ArcDox. Keywords ̶ COBie, BIM Data, Uniclass Classification,, DPOW, NBS BIM Toolkit, Autodesk Revit, Dynamo, Level of Information (LOI), Product Data

I THE PROBLEM It is easy to say that building owners should receive all the data they need to maintain and operate their buildings at handover in digital COBie (Construction Operations Building Information Exchange) format, but how does a building owner actually know that they are getting the information they want or need? There are thousands of components (systems and products) and managed assets in buildings, with hundreds of data points each. That could equate to many hundreds of thousand data points to be provided, and to be check. It is not possible for humans to check all these data points manually (and consequently, they don’t get checked). We need technology to help.

II THE IDEA The only way to verify BIM data, is to compare what was required against what was provided. In the UK and Ireland, construction clients and project teams are beginning to use the free NBS BIM Toolkit1 to define the project requirements in a “Digital Plan of Work” (DPoW). The toolkit records the list of project participants, their roles, and for each project stage, defines the tasks and deliverables for each role. The deliverables (systems & products that make up the building) are classified using the Uniclass Classification System2 (which is compliant with ISO12006), and there is a defined specification for the Level of graphical Detail (LOD) and Level of non-graphical data or Information (LOI), for each deliverable, for each project stage, based on the Uniclass Code for each deliverable, as well as a 1 2

downloadable Product Data Template (in Excel format) for manufacturers to provide any relevant information. Since the Digital Plan of Work, is a welldefined list of requirements, expressed as digital data points, this research looks to see how we could “computationally” compare this list, against the information being provided in models, to check if they deliver on the requirements.

III FLUX.IO TO THE RESCUE is an online tool for capturing, storing and manipulating “data” in a visual programming interface. Working with, ArcDox developed a workflow to test the idea of verifying deliverables using For the “proof of concept” and purpose of this project, we worked with Autodesk Revit model data (since we already have a Flux plug-in for Revit). We also focused on the LOI (Level of Information) specification, as these are explicit information “attributes” (parameters or data points) that could be “computationally” crosschecked (ie they either exist or don’t, they either have a value or don’t). This concept could be expanded further in future, to include other model types (as Flux plug-in for those become available), and to begin to set “rules” (ie value expected, or range of values expected, etc), to further enhance the model checking procedures. This research details a model checking procedure and workflows established to compare the requirements of a Digital Plan of Work (DPoW) file from the NBS Toolkit, against the Revit Model Deliverables, using, to computationally verify if all the required data points have been completed/provided to the client.

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IV SCOPE & DEFINITION OF THE PROJECT The scope of the project is limited to “verifying” data deliverables. “Verification” only checks if the information is present in the models, it does not confirm if the information is correct. It is the responsibility of the party contracted to provide the information to ensure that the information is correct, at the stage for which they are contracted to provide the information. The process of “validation” determines if the information is correct, but is not included in the scope of this project. Of course, computational algorithms can be developed to determine “rules” which help determine if information is correct, but ultimately the responsibility lies with the professional providing the information, be it a designer, contractor or supplier. Automating the model checking against the Digital Plan of Work (DPoW) list of deliverables, using “computational” methods, can however achieve 3 helpful things that help ensure the quality of information:  Check Code Compliance – do objects/components in the model, have a required Uniclass classification.  Check Level of Information - do objects/components in the model, have the associated LOI parameters/attributes for an associated classification.  Check Completeness – does the parameter or attribute in the model object/component have a value?  Check Continuity – how does the value of the parameter or attribute compare to the previous value from a previous project stage? Has it been added, has it been changed? This may help to identify or flag items that need more scrutiny in the checking procedure. There can be great “philosophical” debates as to whether all the attributes or parameters should be contained in “the model” or not. Some feel the model should contain minimal data, and that the information can be provided/maintained elsewhere. Others feel the models should be the place to maintain the data, and there are various positions inbetween. If the participant is following a true BIM process, then all the Graphical Data, and NonGraphical Data (attributes) required to derive, extract or generate, the output drawings and schedules should be in the model. It could be argued that COBie (the construction operations building information exchange) is a “schedule” that is extracted from the model, so the data to complete COBie should also be contained in the model. Nevertheless, the scope of this project does not try to resolve this debate, but assumes, for the purpose of the research, that all the parameters, will be

contained in the model, for the purpose of checking them, even if the “value” is a hyperlink to another system or file which contains the actual parameter value.

V OUTLINING THE CHECKING PROCEDURE The model checking procedure compares the list of deliverable requirements (set out in the Digital Plan of Work using the NBS BIM Toolkit), against the list of actual objects/components contained in the model provided by the supplier (designer, specialist, contractor, sub-contractor, product supplier, etc).

Figure 1 Example of Classifications to be assigned

The raw data for these two sources of information, can be brought into, and then parsed (sliced and diced, sorted and filtered, etc), using the visual programming tools in, to get them into a common format, that can be “computationally” compared, and then report the results. Once the procedure has been implemented in, it is then available to be used for any subsequent model checking process (ie automating the model checking process). These are the steps:     

Getting raw data into from both NBS BIM Toolkit (requirements) and Autodesk Revit model (deliverable). Preparing data for comparison - getting data into a common format and set, which can be directly compared. Carry out the comparison between the requirements, and the deliverables. Report of results in a “user friendly” format. Assist users in the resolution of issues.

VI IMPORTING DATA INTO FLUX.IO The methodology for importing the data from the 2 data sources required into is as follows: a)

Importing data from NBS BIM Toolkit

Since the NBS BIM Toolkit and are both online tools, it would have been ideal to directly link, through an API RESTful web services

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 query or call, but unfortunately the NBS do not currently have an API to directly access “project” specific data. So, the only option available at the moment, is to “export” the project data as a DPOW file (which contains all the project requirements in a JSON format – Javascript Object Notation). This JSON data can be directly copied/pasted into a data key within Unfortunately, while the DPOW data export from NBS BIM Toolkit contains a list of all the deliverables, by uniclass code, for each stage, as well as the assignment of the responsible party, it does not contain the list of the all the LOI (level of information) attributes or parameters required for each deliverable.

We also had to develop an app to go and fetch, as an API RESTful web services query or call, the list of LOI parameters for each of the items in this extracted list (see Unifluxx app on Github3 - thanks to John Egan of for help in developing this app).

So we developed a visual script, in, to extract the list of uniclass codes for the deliverables.

Figure 4 UniFluxx Web Application Figure 2 DPOW file in

It is anticipated that as the API for NBS BIM Toolkit is developed, to allow access directly to project data, that this step of collecting the LOI parameters will be unnecessary. b) Importing data from Autodesk Revit have a plug-in for Autodesk Revit, which can directly export data from the model to the service. Unfortunately, in testing the plug-in, it was discovered that the categories of data that were exported from Revit were limited, and would not include all data required for the full comparison of deliverables against the requirements. A detailed list of the included and excluded categories exported from the Flux plug-in is located online.4 An alternative methodology was tested, where another visual scripting tool, called Dynamo5, which 3

Figure 3 Classification as per Role From DPOW

4 dNte_tBfwwgWtzkwJ0_YYMgN97h4WpuR3k/edit? usp=sharing 5

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 can directly access the Revit API, could extract all the relevant data from the Revit model. also have a plug-in for Dynamo, and this allowed the data to flow from the Revit Model, to the service, via Dynamo. It is anticipated that once the plug-in for Revit is more advanced, to include all categories, this step of processing data through Dynamo will be unnecessary.

VII Preparing Data for Comparison Now that the raw data from these 2 sources of information are in, we need to prepare the data for direct comparison.

required attributes, or parameters, as specified by the NBS Digital Plan of Work, for the project stage being assessed, otherwise the next test of checking if a value is present will not work. The result of this test is a report to the relevant supplier, of parameters that need to be added to model components. The results of this report will depend on the criteria being used for the test (i.e. which stage of the project is being checked, and what LOI value was set for that stage). In this test we are checking for all stages, meaning all the parameters\attributes for all deliverables are required to be in the model.

The data from the NBS BIM Toolkit, must be filtered to only include information relevant to the project stage being assessed, and the model (or role) being assessed. A script in the data “flow� performs this action. And results in a new list, which is only the relevant requirements for the model being checked, which can then be directly compared to the data extracted from the model

VIII Carrying out the Data Comparison The data from the Revit model must first be checked to ensure all required objects/components have a Uniclass classification code, otherwise they cannot be checked. The result of this first test will be a report to the relevant supplier, including a list of items in the model, that have no classification code. The supplier will have to update their model to classify all items. The second test determines Classifications required (is listed in the NBS BIM Toolkit), but not found in the model. The result of this test is a report to the relevant supplier, including a list of items that are not found in the model.

Figure 6 Parameters\Attributes required

The forth test is to identify objects or components in the model, which do not correspond to the list of requirements (i.e. additional items). The result of this test is a report to the relevant supplier, to confirm if these are indeed additional requirements to the project, which should then be added to the NBS Digital Plan of Work. The data for this can be extracted from the first check of classifications in the model.

Figure 5 Details of findings

The third test is to verify that the objects/components in the Revit model, have the

Figure 7 Deliverables not in DPOW

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The fifth test is to verify that the required attribute or parameter for the object or component, has a value. The result of this test is a report to the relevant supplier, of values missing from the model, compared to the requirements. Again, this check can be performed on a single stage or for all stages. The sixth and final test, is to compare the value of the attribute or parameter, against the value from a previous test, from a previous project stage (assuming it was required at the previous project stage), and to report on whether the value has changed. This report will flag or highlight key items that may need to be reviewed (to question why it has changed).

IX VISUALISING TEST RESULTS (REPORTS) A key element of the research was to determine how to best present the results of the tests above to users in a way that helped them to easily understand what the status of the model was, and what was missing. Long list of raw data can be meaningless to non-technical users. The data needs to be summarized, and presented in a way that is meaningful, and allows for easy reporting and quick decision making. The purpose of this part of the research, was to take the results of the test above, and perform further manipulations in the environment, to make sure it was visually meaningful and actionable. Carrying out this manipulation within the visual scripting environment, meant that once set up, it would always apply to each subsequent model check.

Figure 9 Parameters Required

X ASSISTING IN RESOLUTION OF ISSUES While it is useful to identify problems and to report on deficiencies in model deliverables, we felt that the technology solution should also be able to assist users in resolving some of the issues. For instance:  Creation of required parameters in models.  Populate parameters from an online form.  Trigger alerts (emails or Common Data Environment alerts) when issues are found:  Upload a BIM into a web application, target a DPOW file and perform the data check online.  Alternatively create a plugin that connects to and the NBS API to perform checks and parameter creation/population.

XI CONCLUSIONS The results of the checks can be shared with all shareholders if they have the required access. The data driving the reports is derived directly from the model and the NBS toolkit\DPOW. We have created the workflows for reporting that can be independent (using or Dynamo) so that the resulting report can be inspected and models can be improved using the provided reports.

Figure 8 Report Overview of Deliverables

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Figure 10 Overview of Workflow

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CITA BIM Gathering, November 23rd-24th 2017 Technology Integration for Complete BIM Implementation

JP Kelly Principal Client Manager Murphy Survey Ltd. E-mail: Abstract ̶ BIM should be a complete digital representation of every physical asset and should be the information core of every project and facility. Without accurate survey data there cannot be an effective and efficient BIM. ‘Accurate survey data’ must be captured at the start of every project. This forms the real foundation of any BIM project and will be used by all parties for the entire project life cycle and beyond. After the initial concept and planning stages the second key ingredient for total BIM Implementation is ‘Accurate Validation’. Regular and accurate validation of the construction, upgrade or retro-fit phase of a project is essential. Using various survey methodologies and combining them to monitor and record construction activities, ensures that every single physical asset on site is intrinsically linked to its corresponding digital asset in the BIM. Murphy Surveys call it ‘BIMovate’. This is a unique and industry leading initiative changing the way BIM survey data can be captured and combined into one deliverable. There are multiple layers of information made available in one deliverable without the need to trawl through multiple drawings, different surveys, reports and databases. Within one delivery portal the entire site and design model can be viewed in a variety of ways. Underground, Topographical and Aerial data is combined into one BIM to provide the client with all information required to accurately design, build and operate their project and facility. This initiative was implemented by using common hardware and software solutions for data capture and processing combined with bespoke in-house workflows to support ‘big data’. Recent significant investment in our own in-house server farms at all our office locations allow Murphy Surveys to securely save large combined data sets. Our customers can then view all their secure data via client portal on any web browser, downloading what they need when they need it at any time. Before this initiative clients would gather much of their survey data separately and sometimes from multiple suppliers and in different formats. They would commission a topographical / boundary survey for planning. A site survey or measured build survey might be requested just before the construction stage. During the construction stage, a utility survey would be carried out before any major excavations. Roof inspections would be carried out separately, and so on. This resulted in disjointed data in multiple formats some of which was not viewable together or in digital format. Our ‘BIMovate’ team work closely with each client throughout the entire life cycle of their project to deliver what they need. Continual investment in the latest surveying equipment and technology allows us to provide the most efficient solutions that reduce risk and cost for our clients, while meeting the highest standards in accuracy and detail.

Keywords ̶ BIM, Survey, Validation, Digital, Asset, Data.

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I Site Control The first stage on every BIM project must be to establish a precise survey control network. This is the only way to ensure accuracy of all 3D data and to bring a project to a successful conclusion within the required design tolerances. An accurate site control network which is regularly checked, maintained and updated during the project will greatly reduce the risk of dimensional errors for the entire lifecycle of the project. All stakeholders and contractors must work in one coordinate system to ensure that the BIM is accurately created, maintained, validated and updated with consistency.

Fig. 1: GPR Trolley unit

Using a combination of the latest Global Positioning Systems (GPS), Robotic Total Stations and Digital Levels, the survey network is established around the site or facility. High precision traversing and levelling is carried out between stations located in key positions around the site. Control points are also installed on each level of every building to ensure absolute dimensional accuracy is maintained on and across all basements, floors and roofs alike.

Fig. 2: GPR Mobile Unit

Survey control points are located carefully and strategically by experienced surveyors. Sufficient redundancy and multiple checks of all measurements will detect any measurement errors and ensure reliability throughout.

II DATA CAPTURE- SURVEY TO BIM After the survey control network is established data capture for BIM can commence. This can be done using many different survey techniques and technologies. It is assumed that laser scanning is the only way of capturing data for BIM projects, but this is not the case. There are multiple ways of capturing data, which in turn can be combined to create a data rich and accurate BIM. These “Survey to BIM” methods of data capture include:

All such sub surface utility data can be processed and formatted in 3D and is then added to the final BIM for the project. b) Topographical and Building survey equipment Topographical and Building data can be surveyed in many ways and all this data is BIM ready. Laser scanning is an excellent way of capturing 3D data for BIM but it is not the only solution. More traditional methods using total stations, MBS equipment or indeed cameras provide very quick and accurate BIM inputs. Daily, weekly or monthly validation on a BIM project can be recorder quickly and efficiently in this way and reduces the amount of “big data” laser scanning on a project. All surveys are in 3D and can be brought directly into a BIM environment without the need for days of post processing.

a) Sub Surface Utility survey equipment The term Sub surface utility survey refers to the location, positioning and identification of buried services, pipes and cables beneath the ground. The successful detection and mapping of buried utilities involves the combination of several techniques, the results of which are synthesised down to a single interpreted plot. The techniques and methodologies used will primarily depend upon the required outcome from the survey, the site conditions and the type of pipes or services being surveyed.

Fig. 3: Total station data capture for BIM For more difficult to access areas hand held scanners can be used. When close range sub millimetre accurate data is required, specialised close range scanning equipment is used.

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Fig. 4: Close range high accuracy Laser scanning of heritage feature

c) Aerial survey equipment In recent years aerial data capture has become more accessible and achievable. However, this data must be captured using stringent and professional survey techniques to ensure survey grade accuracy and reliability. Accurate ground control points are tied into the main site control network to ensure this data is BIM ready. Good aerial data captured by qualified surveyors using UAV provides BIM ready digital surface models, orthorectified imagery and point cloud of the site. 3D point cloud is created using Photogrammetric techniques. This data can be used for volume calculations, volume analysis and reporting, roof inspections, health and safety inspections, periodic progress reports, ground truth and boundary surveys, contiguous elevations and cross sections for planning and design stages.

Fig. 5: Falcon 8 UAV octocopter with mounted high-end camera for aerial point cloud capture Careful and methodical post processing of this aerial data is vital. This BIM ready survey data can be combined with sub surface and surface data to provide complete and site wide coverage. When combined, all this accurate and real-time survey data becomes the foundation and reference point for a successful and effective BIM project. All this data, captured by various forms of technology is then combined and delivered to the client as one model. This is “Technology Integration for BIM”.

III BIMOVATE DELIVERABLES “BIMovate” is a unique and industry leading initiative changing the way BIM survey data is

captured and combined into one deliverable and thereafter managed as part of the final project BIM. There are multiple layers of information made available without the need to trawl through multiple drawings, surveys, reports and databases. All data is available to the client via an online portal where the entire site and design model can be viewed. Underground, Topographical and Aerial data is combined into one BIM for using during the design, construction and operational stages of a project. On a recent project, the above techniques were successfully introduced and the full benefit of this initiative was realised. The site was in a busy city centre location and the property developer required many different surveys to initiate the planning and design stages. These were as follows: a) Full topographical Survey b) Contiguous Elevations c) Measured Building Survey of existing buildings d) Detailed Elevations e) Internal Sections f) Ground Truth Survey g) Sub surface utility survey Sub surface, Ground and Aerial surveys were combined to deliver one complete BIM for the client. Using Total stations, GPS and digital levels an accurate primary survey control network was installed around the site. From there ground truth checks on boundaries were completed to complement and act as a check against the aerial survey. Ground markers for the aerial survey were installed and tied into the main survey control network. Measured Building data was captured using a combination of laser scanning and MBS. Topographical data was captured using a combination of laser scanning, total stations and aerial data. Sub surface utilities were surveyed using GPR and other tracing techniques. When all surveying was completed, the data and aerial imagery was put through a vigorous and thorough QA process. The first processing stage involves completing a relative orientation calculation. Here, the software finds common points between the aerial photographs and recreates the geometry of the photos at the time of capture. Then the ground control points are added to calculate absolute orientation, which relates the position of the photos to the real-world coordinate system. After these stages are completed, a 3D output in point cloud format is calculated. The next

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CITA BIM Gathering, November 23rd-24th 2017 step is to create the Digital surface model (DSM) and Orthophoto and finally a high resolution textured 3D model is produced. Some samples of the deliverables issued after this complete BIM survey are shown below:

All data was then combined and brought into one 3D model deliverable. On this occasion Revit was used but all this survey data is fully compatible with any 3D BIM software. A combined delivery showing the orthophoto, topographical survey, utility survey and ground truth survey is shown in Fig. 9 below:

Fig. 6: Sample Point Cloud from aerial data Fig. 9: Sample Combined delivery

Fig. 7: Sample of 3D textured model

All this BIM data is then made available to the client via the online BIMovate portal. The client does not need to invest in expensive software or server storage and can view and manipulate the BIM data on a standard web browser using his/ her PC, tablet or even mobile phone. Specific outputs can be requested at any stage of the project and all such outputs can be tailored and delivered in the preferred format. Design teams can request any element of the surveyed data for their specific needs as the project progresses. All the BIM data is stored, maintained and updated on a secure server with access only possible using encrypted passwords.

IV BIM VALIDATION Fig. 7: Sample Digital Terrain Model created from the aerial point cloud

Fig. 8: Sample Contextual elevation form the aerial point cloud

After investing in and creating a comprehensive design model by adopting the foregoing methods it is then imperative that the construction stage is carefully validated. The project BIM must be updated and maintained in an equally professional and accurate way. Each stage of the construction process must be checked not only visually or by traditional red lining methods but by using the same level of accurate geometrical survey measurement that was used to create the BIM in the first place. This does not need to be a costly or complicated process but it must be allowed for and accounted for in the project Bill of Quantities and set out clearly in all contractor’s scope of works. Too often, the validation and update of the project BIM is poorly managed and often forgotten about which means the final “as built” model does not in fact represent the real world as built environment. BIM should be a

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CITA BIM Gathering, November 23rd-24th 2017 complete digital representation of every physical asset. This includes the geospatial position of every asset on the project. The construction stage must be validated in real time so that the final BIM which is handed over to the owner operator is an exact match with the as built world. Foundations, structures, sub structures, mechanical and electrical installations, architectural features, fixtures and fittings and final finishes should be validated regularly throughout the duration of the project. Laser scanning can be used but often total station measurements will suffice. Daily check surveys can be issued directly back to the BIMovate coordinator for live and immediate validation. The BIM continues to be updated and validated daily and it grows with the project. Meta data can be linked to asset QR codes and PNIDs and this tagging can be carefully managed and tracked by the BIM site surveyor. This validation work is completed using the same site control network and site coordinate system. The method of data capture and survey methods must be consistent and managed centrally. The data is checked, and all meta data is gathered and the final BIM starts to evolve.

many ways of capturing this 3D BIM ready dataLaser scanning is only one way. Ongoing, carefully controlled and consistent validation of the construction stage is also vital. The final BIM must be an accurate digital representation of the physical asset. It is then that the power of BIM can be fully realized by the end user. It is then that one can truly BIMovate!

V BIM COMPLETION When the construction stage is completed so to should the BIM be fully realised. It is from this point on where it should prove invaluable to the Owner/ Operator, by improving efficiency and reducing risk on a daily basis. By unifying data from all necessary sources, the BIM will be the central hub of information for the facility and becomes the backbone of the digital asset. The BIM will provide appropriate information access, validation and control to all stakeholders and will support critical project and operational activities. It should be the single, trusted source of information for improved collaboration and decision making and if used and managed correctly will reduced risk throughout the entire life cycle of the facility.

VI CONCLUSION BIM is a journey which should start at the conception stage of all projects. It must be fully embraced by all stakeholders and especially by the end user or Owner/ Operator. If this is not the case then the journey will be a difficult one. Furthermore, BIM cannot exist without accurate geospatial 3D data. This data must be captured by professional surveyors, using the most suitable methodology equipment and software for the project. There are

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 IMPRESS BIM Methodology & Software Tools (iBIMm) for Façade Retrofitting Using Pre– fabricated Concrete Panels

Adalberto Guerra Cabrera1, Shirley Gallagher2, Nick Purshouse3 and Dimitrios Ntimos4 Research and Development division 1,3,4

Integrated Environmental Solutions LTD, Glasgow, United Kingdom 2

Temperature Limited T/A Sirus AirCone, Dublin, Ireland

E-mail: 3



IMPRESS is a H2020 funded project that is developing three innovative prefabricated panels to reduce building energy demand while preserving or improving building aesthetics and thermal comfort. In order to accelerate and optimise the retrofit process, IMPRESS has also developed an Iterative Design Methodology, which incorporates all stages of the DesignConstruct-Install-Operate process and aims to bring energy efficiency as early as possible in the design process. Additionally three software tools have been developed for this purpose; (i.) an online Decision Support Software (DSS), to inform decision making on which panel type is suitable for the building; (ii.) an interoperable data exchange server (IDES) to allow storage and exchange of all information related to the design, construction, installation and operation of the facade; and (iii.) an online management platform (OMP) for coordination through all construction stages. The merger of the design methodology, software tools, standards and guidelines is called “IMPRESS BIM methodology (iBIMm)” which enables design teams to make informed decisions based on building information models. IBIMm includes the representation of the three panels as BIM objects; the transformation of the 3D-scanner data from point cloud files to IFC geometry; the assessment of existing buildings; building energy simulation; execution plan; 3D printing; quality assurance through regular audits; and ongoing operations and maintenance. The validation of the methodology is being carried out in two demo sites located in UK and in Romania. Keywords ̶ BIM, Façade, Retrofitting, Methodology, Iterative Design, Energy Efficiency, IES VE

I INTRODUCTION IMPRESS is a H2020 collaborative project that is developing three different prefabricated panels for the over and re cladding of building facdes: (i) a polyurethane based insulated panel (ii) a thin, lightweight pre-cast concrete sandwich panel and (iii) a lightweight pre-cast concrete sandwich panel incorporating Phase Change Materials (PCM) to adapt the thermos-physical properties of the micro particle based coating1. To create the panels, an innovative manufacturing process is being created that includes Reconfigurable 1

For more information:

Moulding (RM) techniques, 3D laser scanning and 3D printed technology. In addition, 3D printed microstructured formworks are being developed as a permanent external layer for the polyurethane panel to match the existing building aesthetics and provide solar radiation efficiency. The overall manufacturing process will (i) allow for mass production of panels, which take into account complex architectural and aesthetic issues, (ii) allow for faster production while lowering prefabrication costs and (iii) develop new controlled and cost effective solutions. IMPRESS has also developing a new Iterative Design Methodology, which incorporates all stages of the Design-Construct-Install-Operate process and brings energy efficiency in as early as possible in the

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 design process. This is being integrated with a BIM cloud based database focusing on the interoperability between software tools required for the prefabricated process. The result will be demonstrated on two existing buildings where final as-built product performance will be validated against the initial design. This paper describes the origins and main characteristics of the iterative design methodology, followed by the three software tools developed in this project, which are (i) Decision support software, (ii) online management platform and (iii) an interoperable data exchange server. Finally, the IMPRESS BIM methodology (iBIMm) is explained, which ties the Iterative Design Methodology with the use of the software tools in order to achieve a successful façade retrofitting project using the IMPRESS panels.

II ITERATIVE DESIGN METHODOLOGY For the development of the iterative design methodology, the different design methodologies available in the industry were examined and the most relevant and proven ones were considered for greater critique. These were Integrated Project Delivery (IPD), Integrated Design Process (IDP) and Integrated Energy Efficient Methodology. Briefly, the main characteristics of these area described in table 1, as well as their main weaknesses in table 2. Table 1: Main characteristics of the design methodologies considered. Integrated Project Delivery [1] [5] Involvement of key groups; Shared risk and reward (with liability waivers among key participants); Iterative design with collaborative decision making and control; Jointly developed goals.

Integrated Design Process (IDP) [2][3] Sustainability and Energy Impact; Not lowest installation cost but lowest LCC; Whole system performances considered.

Energy Efficiency Design (EED) [4] Address energy management during design phase; Minimise energy use; Reduce oversi zing and costs of heating and cooling systems; Energy performance of operational phase.

Table 2: Main drawbacks methodologies considered.







Separation of contracts is not clear;

Client full driven;

Designed for Industry;

Design costs augmented;

Architectural aspects not included;

Different economic interests at stake; Increased cost of coordination;

Demonstrate value to client is a challenge.

This methodology applies mainly to the design phase.

Does not consider energy performances and LCC goals. The strengths of each methodology highlighted in table 1, and the weaknesses in table 2, were reviewed to create a new methodology that takes in to account: • In-depth stakeholder analysis understanding the interests, drivers and motives of those involved in the prefabricated renovation process. • Value chain analysis to identify primary and secondary tasks. • Adequate communication mechanisms and energy management skills for the stakeholders in the process. • Energy design considerations as early in the design process and carries these through to the operation of the building. • New penalty based business models to ensure that all stakeholders in the design-construct-installoperate process are responsible for the final product performance. • An auditing strategy to ensure that performance brief is being met. The main requirements of the new iterative design methodology (IDM) were also: • Iterative and incremental, meaning that each iteration will result in an increment on the design process. • Risk-focused, requiring that the project team address major risks before moving to the following stage.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 • Model based decision-making, meaning that BIM models containing all the available information from stakeholders is used for making any relevant decision.

stages in the methodology, reducing resource allocation and hence increasing overall efficiency.

• Incorporation of all stages of the Design-ConstructInstall-Operate process, allowing decision to be made considering the whole life-cycle analysis of the retrofitting. • Tested, validated for IMPRESS panels, and replicable for future façade renovation projects. To address all these requirements, a 5-stage methodology was developed: Initiation and viability, detailed design, manufacturing, installation, and operations and maintenance.

Fig. 1: High-level steps of the IDM.

These steps are intended to allocate as many resources as possible in the early stage of the renovation process. The use of building energy models throughout the design process are expected to provide informed reducing performance inefficiencies. In a similar manner, the use of improvised manufacturing techniques shall reduce material waste and improve the quality of the IMPRESS panels. Figure 2 explains how the starting and ending point of high-level tasks, which are required to any façade retrofitting process.

Fig. 3: Summary of the resource allocation for high-level tasks in the five stages (colour coded) of the iterative design methodology comparing to traditional designconstruct-operate approaches. Resources for the Initiation and Viability stage to drop over time as knowledge and experience from case studies is incorporated.

The defined the steps are indicated in table 3. Notice that colour code is including indicating the five high level stages. Steps that include (*) indicate the work is carried in the panel manufacturer’s facilities. Table 3: Steps of the Iterative Design Methodology.

Step ID



Identification of Need and Awareness of Possible Solutions


Use IMPRESS website and Decision Support Software


Contacted by IMPRESS Commercial Service

Fig. 2: Resource allocation for high level tasks in the five stages of the iterative design methodology.


Building Survey/ Assessment

It can be noticed, this methodology is intended to focus recourses and effort in the initiation and viability as well as in the detailed design stage. Manufacturing and installation process require strict quality assurance tasks (penalty base business model) and finally Operation and maintenance require a performance monitoring to provide feedback to the models developed during the first two stages.


Agree Project Performance (iterative with step I.2)


Evaluate and Cost Project Resource Requirements


Establish an in-house Project Team


Provide Costed Options based optimised Integrated Design Process

The two case studies developed for IMPRESS and any new renovation project will feedback early



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Agree and sign contract (Milestone)


Implement QHSEE Management Policy and Procedures


Undertake 3rd Party Consultation- Site Development Issues


3D Building Survey


Generate BIM Model


Develop panel design and structural support system


Energy Performance Simulation (iterative with step I.4)


Complete and Approve BIM generated design documents




Incorporate monitoring sensors*


Panel casting*










Install and commission Panel sensors


Ongoing BMS Sensor Monitoring and Data Collection


Decommissioning and End of Life Plan

the building pre- and after refurbishment. The building energy simulation software embedded in the tool is the IES Virtual Environment (IES-VE). IMPRESS DSS is a freely accessible tool to help people assess their options for retrofit cladding for their own building. However, it is not designed to replace the work of an engineer or architect, but merely to engage potential clients, help them better understand the potential benefits of a façade retrofit for their particular building and create a building energy model as early as possible. Thus, potential energy / CO2 emission / etc.; savings calculated by the tool shall only be seen as a guideline rather than as a promise to the user to save exactly this amount. The main benefits of these tools are: • Minimum data collection; • Can be used by non-experts; • Generation of results in a few minutes; • Creates an energy model that is used as starting point for the design stage in case clients decide to go for the IMPRESS solution. This tool is intended to work with the IMPRESS pre-fabricated panels as it has preloaded thermal performance information from panel manufacturers. Hence IMPRESS solution will range between the three types of panels or “non suitable” for the cases where construction codes restrictions or existing high-performance facades would suggest that IMPRESS panels are not adequate. Other solutions such as windows and/or HVAC retrofitting are not addressed in the DSS.

III DECISION SUPPORT SOFTWARE (DSS) The web tool helps users to make informed decisions on whether IMPRESS pre-fabricated panels are a suitable refurbishment option for their building and which of the three different panel types suits best. The software carries out this analysis by mapping users’ answers from a questionnaire to suitable retrofit options. Additionally, it assesses what effect the refurbishment will have. Aspects of interest are financial, energy and CO2 emission savings. The decision is based on building energy simulations of

Fig. 4: Welcome page of the Decision support software (DSS).

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Fig. 5: In the DSS, user selects the building on the Open Street Map and then fills in a simple questionnaire.

The result page in the DSS is similar to figure 6. Notice how potential savings are displayed terms of percentage of reduction as compared to a baseline model. This approach allows simple calculations of the return of investment (ROI) for feasibility analysis.

Fig. 7: Building energy breakdown estimated in the building energy simulation based on the questionnaire information provided by the user.

The validation of these results from the two casesties and future renovations will increase overall accuracy of the DSS minimising risks for stakeholders. In addition, the early stage energy model can be used as starting point for the following stages in the process. This is described in figure 11.


Fig. 6: Percentage in heating energy, carbon emissions, and total energy savings for two IMPRESS panels as compared to a baseline model.

Additionally, an estimated building energy breakdown is available for users to better understand opportunities for energy savings, as shown in figure 7.

The Online Management Platform (OMP) is a web based project management and collaboration tool designed to ensure correct use and easy uptake of the iterative design methodology. It includes all the necessary tools to allow for efficient collaboration between the project team of a facade retrofit project, and the friendly and customisable user interface encourages the passive stakeholders to engage and participate in the iterative BIM Level 2 friendly design process. The main features include an interactive Gantt chart, which lists all the tasks in the project with their status and deadlines, fully customisable and manageable by the user according to their needs and based on their level of access. The platform also includes a file upload mechanism which was designed to follow BIM level 2 collaboration standards, to enable easy file sharing, reduce the unnecessary file duplications and allow for auditors to verify and authorise files shared among the stakeholders in the retrofit project.

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Fig. 8: Gantt chart view in the Online manage platform.

The users of the OMP will be all the stakeholders involved in a faรงade retrofit of a building using prefabricated concrete panels. Depending on the level of participation of each stakeholder, various levels of access have been created in the platform, including administrators and standard users. Project managers are able to organise and track the progress of tasks defined as part of the methodology while ensuring a secure, easy and efficient collaboration and file sharing. Additionally, this tool is auditing-friendly designed to allow regular audits for quality assurance purposes and is available on desktop, tablet, and mobile. In the context of BIM Level 2 standards, there is a task view to visualise work in progress (WIP) tasks, also metadata features such as suitability and versioning are required for any file upload upon upload. These files are in turn stored into a shared section for collaboration.

Fig. 9: Tasks view in the Online manage platform.

V INTEROPERABLE DATA EXCHANGE SERVER (IDES) The Interoperable Data Exchange Server (IDES) allows all software tools and data within the prefabricated renovation process to communicate and exchange data with each other. This software is currently under development and will ensure the interoperability of various domain models, e.g.: 3D CAD Modelling Software for Architectural Design3D, Laser Scanning Software for creation of point cloud data, Energy Design Software, Prefabricated Panel Software for manufacturing and ongoing monitoring. This will be achieved through a web-based platform able to store and merge industry the foundation classes (IFC) data models from each discipline or domain alongside with other formats such as Comma Separated Values (CSV) for the case of Building Management Systems (BMS) and other metered data.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Figure 12 describes the relationship of the 5 stages of the iterative design methodology, IMPRESS software, 3rd party software and the main actors involved in the renovation process.

Fig. 10: Integration of data models from different disciplines in the IDES.

A federated model –which is a model consisting on connected but distinct models [7] – is created to maximise collaboration and information exchange between stakeholders thanks to its model merging capabilities.


A BIM methodology based on the Iterative Design Methodology that can be integrated seamlessly with the software tools is necessary to guarantee an optimal workflow and guarantee efficiency in the process. Figure 11 shows how the iterative design methodology is linked with the three above described software tools in a high level.

Fig. 12: Detailed relationship between stages in the iterative design methodology, IMPRESS software and 3rd party software.

Regarding versioning, the IDES is developed to support model versioning between project stages. At the end of each stage, models created shall be archived for future reference.

Fig. 13: Model versioning in the IDES. At the end of each project phase the latest version of the models shall be referenced for future references.

The main benefits methodology are:





• Avoidance of duplication of information; Fig. 11: Integration of the Iterative design methodology (in green) with the IMPRESS software (in blue).

A core part of the iterative methodology is the model collaboration for decision-making; hence, the IDES is a key software that converts an early stage energy model created with the DSS into a more detail BIM model as the project moves on. Also, it enables an optimal workflow specially when dealing with the iteration of the design between stakeholders. The role of the OMP lies throughout all the stages of the project, and together with the Interoperable Data Exchange Server (IDES) constitutes the Common Data Environment (CDE), in the context of BIM level 2.

• A comprehensive methodology that covers not only the design stage but also operational phase; • Online management platform containing all the required tasks per stakeholder; • Maximum collaboration between stakeholders providing them with the most updated information available; • Enables an iterative design by allowing the quick exploration of multiple design options and the impact on the energy consumption of each of them.

X CONCLUSIONS The iterative design methodology can be summarised as an iterative and incremental, riskfocused, approach for model based decision-making

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 during all stages of the Design-Construct-InstallOperate process, that and has been tested, validated for its use on building facade renovation with IMPRESS panels. The DSS is an early stage energy simulation tool that help non-expert users to make informed decisions on whether IMPRESS pre-fabricated panels are a suitable refurbishment option for their building, and when this is the case, the DSS creates a report with the potential energy savings by using each of the three IMPRESS panels. The OMP contains all the tasks from the Iterative design methodology allowing visualising and following up each of the required tasks. Also works as a file management platform. The IDES is a web-based tool that enables model based collaboration between different disciplines through federated models. iBIMm consist on the seamless integration of the Iterative Design Methodology and three pieces of IMPRESS software that enable energy efficiency considerations in the early stage of the design process.

( EED ) Energy Efficiency Design ( EED ) Energy Efficiency Design ( EED ) Energy Efficiency Design ( EED ) EED Me,” 2014. [5]

M. Mihic, J. Sertic, and I. Zavrski, “Integrated Project Delivery as Integration between Solution Development and Solution Implementation,” Procedia - Soc. Behav. Sci., 2014.


The British Standards Institution, “BS 1192-2007 +A2: Collaborative production of architectural, engineering and construction information,” BSI Stand. Publ., 2016.


Construction Industry Council, “BUILDING INFORMATION MODEL (BIM) PROTOCOL. Standard Protocol for use in projects using Building Information Models,” p. 15, 2013.

During later stages of the project, further validation work on the two case-studies will be carried out to ensure that the iBIMm is taking full advantage of the developed web tools.

XI ACKNOWLEDGMENTS This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme under Grant Agreement no. 636717


N. Azhar, Y. Kang, and I. U. Ahmad, “Factors influencing integrated project delivery in publicly owned construction projects: An information modelling perspective,” in Procedia Engineering, 2014.


N. Larsson, “The integrated design process,” Int. Initiat. a Sustain. Bult …, pp. 1–7, 2004.


Autodesk, “Autodesk Whitepaper : Improving Building Industry Results through Integrated Project Delivery and Building Information Modeling,” Autodesk Whitepaper, p. 12, 2008.


A. O. Connell, “The Energy Efficiency Design Review Process What is Energy Efficiency Design ( EED ) What does EED look to achieve ? Energy Efficiency Design

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th

The BIM & Scan® Platform: A Cloud-Based Cyber-Physical System for Automated Solutions Utilising Real & Virtual Worlds. Shane Brodie1, Neil Hyland2, Conor Dore3, and Shawn O’Keeffe4 1, 2, 3, & 4

BIM & Scan, Co. Dublin, Ireland

E-Mail:,, 3, and, Abstract ̶ The authors developed a cloud-based cyber-physical system known as the BIM & Scan® Platform. This platform facilitates a scalable interface for applications that support verification and validation methodologies in the digitisation of the built environment. These methodologies support, but are not limited to, assuring what was designed is what was built and delivered. The platform operates utilising open standard data formats for real and virtual worlds. This paper emphasises the need for and utilisation of “open” standards and serialisation formats for quality assurance of contracted deliverables, i.e. as-built BIMs and COBie. The paper further demonstrates the BIM & Scan® Platform’s current tools (AutoGen, AutoCorr, and AutoDiff) for automatic generation of ISO 10303-21 formatted IFC MVD files from reality capture data, automatic COBie file verification and quality check (QC) reporting, and using IFC SPFF, BCF, and E57 formats for automatic dimensional control compliance methods and reporting. Keywords ̶ Scan-to-BIM, Scan-vs-BIM, BIM, Verification, Validation, Laser Scanning.

I. INTRODUCTION The BIM & Scan® Platform is a suite of tools and services developed internally by our company to assist in the efficient production and analysis of Building Information Models (BIMs). These tools are based on open standards for BIM, namely the Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) [1] serialised in STEP Physical File Format (SPFF) [2] for models, and the E57 reality capture data format [3] for point clouds produced via Terrestrial Laser Scanning (TLS). The platform comprises of multiple prototype modules, including: “BIM Server”, “Cloud Viewer”, “AutoCorr”, “AutoGen”, and “AutoDiff”. Each of these modules is either provided to users as webbased viewers, in the case of the BIM Server and Cloud Viewer, or utilised internally to process scan and BIM data (AutoCorr, AutoGen, and AutoDiff), the results of which can be made available through the aforementioned viewers. Our BIM Server provides a data repository and viewing platform for IFC2X3 TC1 Coordination View’s in SPFF [4], and it has plugins that support the

COBie [5] Model View Definition (MVD) along with quality checking/reporting of COBie data, i.e. automatic verification. Our Cloud Viewer aids in the visualisation of large point clouds, and can be run inbrowser on many devices – including office standard laptops and smartphones. The Cloud Viewer is also deployed as a viewer for the analysis of results from the AutoCorr tool described below. AutoCorr is a tool developed for correlating models with point clouds, which enables a quick and accurate visualisation for Scan-vs-BIM analyses. When using a per IFC entity type object recognition colourisation approach, one can at-a-glance identify various model components in the scan environment that match the BIM, as well as those that fail to match to the physical reality of the built environment. Existing methodologies require a subjective walkthrough of models overlaid with point clouds, relying on the human eye to spot areas of interest. AutoCorr identifies immediately the components that are accurate/inaccurate through a configurable colour scheme. This tool has a plethora of uses, e.g. validating as-built BIMs, as-generated BIMs (output from AutoGen), construction monitoring, etc. etc.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th AutoCorr can also preform Scan-vs-Scan, and AutoDiff described below can perform BIM-vs-BIM, both afford the users a medium in which to solve many other problems that cannot be solved when preforming Scan-vs-BIM. AutoDiff is a tool we designed for the automatic identification and measuring of differences between modelled objects and the physical reality capture in the corresponding point cloud. This tool was developed as part of our R&D efforts with support from Enterprise Ireland, and attempts to solve the more fine-grained analytical approach to Scan-vsBIM, acting as a supplement to the AutoCorr tool’s free-form visualisation. Results produced from AutoDiff are serialised into the open standard BIM Collaboration Format (BCF) [6], enabling responsible parties, e.g. architects/engineers, to locate detected differences and decide whether to correct in the virtual model, or instruct correction in the realworld built environment. The AutoGen tool was developed for the automatic generation of open standard BIMs directly from point cloud information. AutoGen has enabled us to achieve a 20-60% improvement in our traditional workflows for developing as-built BIMs for refurbishment projects, speeding up the initial phases of tracing the point cloud by providing an approximate as-generated model as the base.

Fig. 1: Example BIM & Scan® Platform dashboard for accessing different services/results.

Each of these tools offer novel solutions to existing problems in the AEC industries. AutoCorr and AutoDiff allows one to validate the what has been built matches the design and highlight errors, while AutoGen reduces modelling time by providing a suitable basic model that can then be tweaked, modified, and built upon to create a proper BIM.

II. BACKGROUND The efficacy of model-based design should be well established. Rausch et al. [7] point to the first adoption of BIM to be coordination and clash

detection. They, however, focused on so-called “dimensional variation” solutions. Their research demonstrates that Dimensional Variation Analysis (DVA) – a manufacturing industry technique – when applied to building production resulted in a percentage different of less than 1%. However, the reality of AEC in Ireland is that few projects, apart from large-scale developments, have routinely adopted BIM or modern verification/validation techniques as of yet. Where BIM has been adopted, it has been focused on clash detection and interdisciplinary coordination, or alternately used to enable contractors to extract value through lower cost construction methods and, in some cases, better materials control and efficiency. Unless construction is ongoing, it appears to be quite rare that (TLS) scanning during construction is occurring and apart from traditional methods of Scan-vs-BIM [8] and dimension control, there does not yet exist the focus on dimensional accuracy during or after construction. However, it must be supposed that – as pointed out by Rausch et al. – the increasing adoption of newer modelling and manufacturing practices in industry will necessitate a change in approach. Building Controls Amendment Regulations 2014 (BCAR) introduced more stringent two-stage certifications [9]. Firstly: design certification where a Design Certifier must certify without qualification that the design meets with extant building regulations. Secondly: an Assigned Certifier must certify without qualification that the physical building matches the certified design and building regulations. The Assigned Certifier “must provide an unqualified opinion that the building has been built in accordance with the designs filed with the Commencement Notice (together with such amendments as may have been notified); that the Inspection Plan drawn up having regard to the Code of Practice has been implemented using reasonable skill, care, and diligence; and that the building ‘as-constructed’ complies with the Building Regulation” [9]. In jurisdictions such as Denmark, Finland, Sweden, and Singapore open standards-based BIMs are a required submittal for certain (or all) building types. Using either commercially-available or bespoke tools, models can be inspected using highly-efficient software for building regulation compliance. This provides much improved and repeatable assurance of regulatory compliance – as opposed to an unqualified opinion on 2D artefacts that cannot easily or cheaply be reassessed. It also provides a much higher level of objectivity since rules must be codified and precise for computing. However, even within these jurisdictions’ building control regimes, there remains the need to ensure that submitted models reflect exactly what has been built, hence the need for Scan-vs-BIM methods supported by the BIM & Scan® Platform.

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III. INDUSTRY NEEDS The traditional design process involves a diverse team of consultants from different practices, each with their own specific area of expertise. The finalised design – or at least an issue for construction – is then sent to the construction contractor and its supply chain, which includes specialists, suppliers, installers, subcontractors etc. Traditional processes have evolved elaborate communication methodologies that formally record communications between parties in the form of RFIs, Submittals, and Transmittals that include 2D drawings, sketches, and mark-ups. Responsible parties update their document(s) or drawing(s) based on the received document, if change is required. Modern practices utilise BIMs as virtual representations of previously-physical drawings and design documents. These should be federated into different models: Architectural, Structural, Civil, Mechanical, Electrical, Security etc. with each model owned by a consultant who alone has the right to change the design elements. Each of these stakeholders have divergent areas of responsibility, and ensuring that issues are discovered, raised, and resolved correctly by said owners before they become a real problem is important. Proper use of IFC-formatted BIMs, along with supplementary open standards for issue communication (BCF) and reality capture data (E57) ensures that the integrity of design responsibility can be maintained through BIM development workflows. Validating that which has been constructed matches the design model is traditionally undertaken via expensive Design Verification walk-downs or at a minimum the “red-lining” of 2D drawings with only a subset of record drawings actually updated, leaving the end user with a series of marked-up and red-lined drawings. With BIMs, industries need 3D computational methods of validating models against the built environment. The use of Terrestrial Laser Scanning (TLS) has offered stakeholders a means of comparing BIMs to the real-world, although the automated integration of TLS for Scan-vs-BIM has not typically been available for inclusion in design and construction workflows, barring some niche commercial tools. Similarly, manual approaches to Scan-to-BIM, i.e. the creation of models from point clouds, are timeconsuming and laborious. Existing automated or semi-automated solutions available that claim to reconstruct or generate BIMs in a Scan-to-BIM workflow are limited to geometric reconstruction, with little to no semantic data, thus not completely satisfying the need for semantic-rich data models in open standard formats. The AEC industries’ needs remain constant overall: reduce cost and increase quality. BIMs and TLS are mechanisms for improved quality. They can also lead to lower total cost. Initial application has

improved coordination and material management (waste reduction). However, TLS in particular and the use of real-world scan data to analyse as-designed or produce as-built/as-is BIMs is expensive. Average use of BIM authoring tools focuses on facilitating new designs rather than providing as-built models of existing structures/facilities. That being said, as technology advances the cost of TLS is reducing. Furthermore, alternative methods of sourcing/providing scan data, e.g. photogrammetry, are becoming more widespread. Thanks to this widespread scanning, client requirements can be made more precise, creating a need for better accuracy reporting. As cost decreases, so too will the industry need to turn to innovative solutions to deliver validation and generation of BIMs that reduce cost and increase quality.

IV. OUR PLATFORM We refer to the BIM & Scan® Platform as a cloudbased system, i.e. a hosted implementation of several different technologies with the goal of delivering scalability and ease-of-access to computing resources. We aim to unify these disparate offerings over time, creating an ever-more-tightly integrated cloud-based cyber-physical system. Currently we offer access to web-based viewers alongside our services as a company, to view BIMs and point clouds, and results of some analyses performed by our tools. By leveraging existing open standards and open-source technologies the viewers we provide are largely client-agnostic, relying merely on standard web browser capabilities. a) Cloud Viewer Visualisation)





Our web-based Cloud Viewer is used to display point clouds of varying scale. As a purely browser-based system, users can view point clouds on any device with a compatible browser and WebGL environment. The Potree point cloud format and streaming system [10] is the technology behind this modified viewer system. Scans are processed into a spatiallysubdivided form, allowing fast access to subsets of the point cloud as requested by web clients. This allows us to host very large datasets in our system and ensure no lag or inability to load large clouds on even mobile and resource-constrained devices. The use of the Cloud Viewer is twofold. Firstly: as a quick visualisation of point clouds produced by TLS or other methods, see Figure 2. Secondly: as a viewer for analysis results produced by other tools, see Figure 3.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th and edge-to-edge deviation measurements are taken. Resultant measurements that are above a margin of error threshold are serialised into BCF reports automatically for consumption by other tools. Accompanying the measurement information is camera viewpoint data that allows supporting viewers to bring users directly to the reported deviation. Text comments suggest to users what a potential fix may be, e.g. move element ~100mm to the left (based on current viewpoint). Figure 6 shows an example deviation found on a column object between the as-designed BIM and the AutoGen as-generated of the same object. The user has opened the current deviation and can immediately see the offending element highlighted in his viewer, along with a text comment describing the issue and potential fix.

Figure 7 shows the output achieved on a single floor of a multi-storey shell and core building – for which an as-built BIM was required as a starting point for the architect to complete their fit-out design. On this particular project, AutoGen was able to complete in two hours what would have taken a designer working in BIM authoring software in excess of a week.

Fig. 7: Refurbishment shell and core (as-generated).

Fig. 6: Column deviation report and associated information loaded directly into ArchiCAD.

In buildings consisting of many hundreds or thousands of objects the application of the AutoDiff tool/workflow enables faster and more precise dimensional control compliance and decision-making by relevant designers/stakeholders. Additionally, the BCF-serialised reports makes the process extremely efficient by bringing users directly to a view of the deviation. Time wasted in documenting a deviation found and its characteristics is eliminated. Time wasted in manually navigating to and finding the location of a known deviation is eliminated.

The best result was the identification and reconstruction of columns in the build environment, where the tool produced near-100% accurate size and placement of columns in the resultant model, with no assumptions about plumb-ness and level. Figures 8 and 9 show the source point cloud before per-floor segmentation and the final BIM respectively. The completed model is a combination of each floors’ asgenerated model after review and manual update/extension by modellers. As-generated models are compatible with IFC2X3 TC1 CV 2.0 MVD certified tools and the testing herein confirms that ArchiCAD and Revit both support the use of asgenerated BIMs in Scan-to-BIM workflows.

d) AutoGen (IFC BIMs from Reality Capture Data) Our AutoGen tool processes a point cloud in E57 format and outputs a basic IFC BIM model of common structural elements, e.g. walls, windows, slabs etc. This tool implements a model reconstruction algorithm [12], which uses registered scans in E57 format, ordered on a per-scan basis with the original scanner position encoded within, and builds a semantic model of structural IFC types from a series of algorithms. The tool operates on a per-floor basis, and currently supports non-sloped environments. We term the result of such a process an as-generated BIM to better differentiate between asdesigned, as-is, and as-built BIMs and their roles/uses. At present as-generated BIMs are serialised as an IFC2X3 TC1 CV 2.0 MVD.

Fig. 8: Refurbishment shell and core (original point cloud).

Fig. 9: Refurbishment shell and core (final BIM).

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A 100% accurate automatic generation of a semantic-rich BIM for an entire facility/structure for scan data is highly unlikely to ever happen. From our research we are not convinced at this point one actually needs an 100% correct model, and in fact this raises another research topic outside the scope of this paper, which is, what is the definition of a 100% correct as-generated BIM? We know as experts in this area that each BIM, especially MVD in SPFF has a particular use and there is no one for all BIM model in SPFF. Furthermore, human interpretation of existing materials and human ability to decide what is not visible/correct from a point cloud cannot be completely replaced. For example, point cloud data in any environment with glass surfaces, partitions, or walls is of poor quality due to reflections whereas a human can better interpret such an environment. However, where point cloud data is interpretable by AutoGen – and this includes occlusions of sparse patches of data, as the tool can cope with a degree of junk data – the output is much faster and generally more accurate than an equivalent human trace-over. Projects conducted to date have delivered a 20-60% reduction in modelling effort. e) BIM Server (IFC repository, viewer, and COBie) We offer hosted BIM Server functionality via our Platform, for storing/viewing models in IFC2X3 TC1 or IFC4 format. Based on the open-source “BIMserver” developed by van Berlo et al. and the OpenSourceBIM collective [13], we have modified it to suit our needs. As part of the server, COBie extraction and checking tools are included. Use of COBie is increasing across the AEC/FM industries [14], and ensuring its correctness and fitness-forpurpose is something this system can help guarantee. Open standards-based technologies such as this are extensible and not beholden to proprietary software solutions, making them an ideal platform for BIM storage and viewing, e.g. publicly-funded building controls, estate management solutions, or archives. Bespoke software typically encapsulates owner data in proprietary code and data formats that prevent or severely inhibit free/open transfer to other (perhaps newer) systems in future. Interoperability with open standards is important to maintain and ensure the longevity of BIMs and related data when it comes to building design and review. Figure 10 is an example of a building model serialised into its IFC2X3 TC1 Coordination MVD, loaded onto the BIM Server and accessible for users to utilise. Figure 11 is an example of a mechanical plumbing model serialised into an IFC2X3 CV MVD, which can be federated within the BIM Server with other models.

Fig. 10: Model stored on the BIM Server in IFC format.

Fig. 11: Plumbing model stored on the BIM Server in IFC format.

COBie serialisation and verification of derived COBie Model View data is available through our BIM Server. Figure 12 shows the verification of COBie design data through the QC Reporting tool exported via BIM & Scan’s BIM Server. The same can be done for COBie construction data. At present the BIM Server COBie Plugin and its equivalent COBie QC Reporter Command Line Tool are the tested/recognised tools for checking COBie data properly according to the original specification NBIM US V3 Ch.4.2. The authors BIM & Scan Platform BIM Server offers downloadable COBie files in spreadsheet (XLSX) format and SPFF, for use downstream in other software systems such as CMMS and CAFM, see Figure 13.

Fig. 12: COBie verification for design data.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS We would like to thank our company director at MMA for allowing and supporting these developments to be conducted at our BIM & Scan department. We would also like to thank Enterprise Ireland for their support on the dimensional control compliance portion of the published works herein.

REFERENCES Fig. 13: COBie XLSX format (spreadsheet).

Just as it is possible to apply verification to COBie data it is also feasible to write new QC Checkers for other information exchanges. This will lead to opportunities for better BCAR checking. An example of using IFC-based rule-checking for BCAR was published by Gu et al. [15]. Choi et al. provide a review of analogous situations in South Korea [16], which currently, like Ireland, uses 2D submissions for BCAR. As they point out, both Singapore and Norway have already implemented IFC-based systems. However, as noted by Ho et al. [17] in a review of Singapore’s building controls there are bigger institutional policy questions which would first need to be resolved.

V. SUMMARY The BIM & Scan® Platform is a suite of tools and services offered by our company to assist users in the efficient production and analysis of BIMs. Currently we offer services based on our tools AutoCorr, AutoDiff, and AutoGen, as well as visualisation tools for BIMs and point clouds in the form of our Cloud Viewer and BIM Server. We already find them useful on various real projects, and have seen efficiency improvement to our own workflows thanks to tools discussed in this paper.

VI. FUTURE WORKS Based on our progress so far, we have several areas to explore in more detail. We intend to develop our tools further to consume all types of reality data capture. We also aim to further our goal of providing a featurerich cloud-based cyber-physical system to our customers, and further more deploy it as general user base service via the web. The flexibility of existing open-source and open standard tooling will allow for far more verification and validation approaches in the future. Those which we find necessary to implement we intend to include in updates to our hosted software. As BIM Server evolves, so will it as an offerings on our Platform. We aim to produce a cyber-physical system with a single all-in-one endpoint for users to connect to and work with.

[1] ISO/TC 184/SC 4. “ISO 16739:2013 – Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) for Data Sharing in the Construction and Facility Management Industries”, 2013. Available online: (last accessed January 2017). [2] ISO/TC 184/SC 4. “ISO 10303-21:2016 – Industrial Automation Systems and Integration – Product Data Representation and Exchange – Part 21: Implementation Methods: Clear Text Encoding of the Exchange Structure”, 2016. Available online: (last accessed February 2017). [3] ASTM International. “ASTM E2807-11 – Standard Specification for 3D Imaging Data Exchange, Version 1.0”. ASTM Volume 10.04 Electronics; Declarable Substances in Materials; 3D Imaging Systems; Additive Manufacturing Technologies, 2015. [4] buildingSMART International. “Coordination View Version 2.0 Summary”. Available online: (last accessed February 2017). [5] E. W. East. “Construction-Operations Building Information Exchange (COBie)”. buildingSMART Alliance, National Institute of Building Sciences, Washington DC, 2012. [6] buildingSMART International. “BCF-XML Documentation”, 2017. Available online: (last accessed March 2017). [7] C. Rausch, M. Nahangi, C. Haas, and J. West. “Kinematics Chain-Based Dimensional Variation Analysis of Construction Assemblies Using Building Information Models and 3D Point Clouds”. Automation in Construction, 75:33–44, 2017. [8] F. Bosché, A. Guillemet, Y. Turkan and R. Haas. “Tracking the Built Status of MEP Works: Assessing the Value of a Scan-vs-BIM System”.

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[9] Engineers Ireland, “Guidance Building Control (Amendment) Regulations 2014 and the New Regime”. 2015. [10] M. Schuetz. “Potree – WebGL Point Cloud Viewer for Large Datasets”, 2017. Available online: (last accessed April 2017). [11] DURAARK. “Documenting the Changing State of Built Architecture – Software Prototype v2”. DURAARK, Deliverable Report D4.2, 2015. [12] S. Ochmann, R. Vock, R. Wessel and R. Klein. “Automatic Reconstruction of Parametric Building Models from Indoor Point Clouds”. Computers & Graphics, Special Issue On CAD/Graphics 2015, 54:94-103, 2016. [13] OpenSourceBIM Collective. “Open-Source Building Information Modelserver”, 2017. Available online: (last accessed March 2017). [14] E. W. East, S. E. O’Keeffe, R. Kenna, and E. Hooper. “Delivering Construction Operations Building Information Exchange (COBie) Using AutoDesk® Revit”. Prairie Sky Consulting, 2017. [15] J. Gu, H. Zhang, M. Gu. “Automatic Integrity Checking of IFC Models Relative To Building Regulations” International Conference on Internet Multimedia Computing and Service, Pages 52-56, 2016 [16] J. Choi, and I. Kim. “Development of an Open BIM-based Legality System for Building Administration Permission Services”. Journal of Asian Architecture and Building Engineering, vol. 14, no. 3, pp. 577-584. 2015. [17] S. Ho, and A. Rajabifard. “Towards 3D-Enabled Urban Land Administration: Strategic Lessons From the BIM Initiative in Singapore”. LAND USE POLICY, vol. 57, pp. 1-10, 2016.

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The Automation of BIM for Compliance Checking: A Visual Programming Approach Jonathan Reinhardt1 and Malachy Matthews2 Department of Built Environment Dublin Institute of Technology, Dublin, Ireland E-mail: DATECH 2 DIT

Abstract Ěś A study by FIATECH confirmed that human interpretation causes inconsistencies in applying building compliance & regulations (Solihin & Eastman, 2015). Producing, updating and quality assuring such processes is inconsistent and unreliable (Preidel & Borrmann, 2016). A barrier to interpretation of building regulations is that software is designed by developers that are separate to local authorities (Solihin & Eastman, 2015). The current literature suggests Singapore, Norway, USA & Australia have all implemented BIM automation systems for building regulations. This study reviews current automation systems and based on this proposes a system of creating a checking system is efficient in the control of professionals skilled with local authority and building regulation knowledge. Dynamo visual programming software is selected as the software to assist the automation due to the open source availability and widespread adoption in the BIM field. A methodology of Design Science is applied to diagnose the problem of manual checking through review of the current literature (Kehily & Underwood, 2015). An automation solution is proposed and evaluated in a design office. Architectural professionals provide feedback of the implemented solution and this feedback is applied iteratively to a second automation solution, where feedback is also obtained from users to further improve the solution. Results show a change in workflow and an improvement of traditional compliance checking. The study concludes by proposing a similar BIM automation approach could be applied in local government, within the Irish Planning and Building Control (BCAR) system. Keywords Ěś BIM, Automation, Compliance, Dynamo

I INTRODUCTION Compliance checking is a complex task to ensure the functionality of the built environment. In scenarios such as Assigned Certifier role under the Building Control and Regulation and Planning Compliance is a key aspect that should be conducted effectively and efficiently. However, there are key challenges in the current practice such as manual checking, some of which involves interpretation of complex technical documents. The challenges in Building Compliance are revealed more when the information is non-compliant during design and construction of buildings (Solihin & Eastman, 2015).

There is a need for optimising compliance checking for planning and building compliance. A study by FIATECH confirmed that human interpretation causes inconsistencies in applying Building Regulations (Solihin & Eastman, 2015). Producing, updating and quality assuring such processes is inconsistent and unreliable (Preidel & Borrmann, 2016). The certification process is carried out manually by assigned certifiers with a dependence on contractors workmanship. Due to inconsistencies and uncertainties in the process; double-working and revising of design changes causes unnecessary time consumption and is prone to error (Malsane et al., 2015). The compliance requirements of BCAR and Planning compliance of

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 a building such as Accessibility and Floor Area Standards require a reliable approach due to implications of construction reworking. It is also important to identify non-compliance at design stage to avoid revising designs while buildings being constructed. Floor area compliance should not be overlooked at design stage as this impacts the planning decision if non-compliant. Best practice projects of automated compliance such as Singapore's E-Plan Check System and BIM E-Submission, the ByggSøk System in Norway, DesignCheck in Australia, SmartCodes and the General Services Administration in USA projects provided some evidence of gains and benefits from automating compliance checking. Some key benefits are: ● Streamline business approaches in the construction industry ● Improve application turnaround time. ● Increase quality and productivity. ● Reduce the burden of compliance with regulations. ● Provide feedback to assist Architects and clients in designing buildings. However, there is still a lack of clear evidence on whether and how BIM could benefit decision making in compliance checking at design stage. That is to say, despite acting as a virtual building, more benefits from BIM for compliance are still to be clarified and explained in an itemised way. The issue should be explored and assessed with current practice workflows. This research paper applies Dynamo visual programming software to assist in automating compliance checking.


A literature review, conducted around automated systems provided information on current systems. Singapore BCA BIM E-Submission (2016) Currently developments of a Gross Floor Area larger than 5,000sqm is accepted by Singapore BCA in a native BIM format, Revit Archicad or Bentley. These were submitted in a dwf or pdf format until recently. Since October 19th 2016 BIM models can be submitted in a Native BIM format. BIM submission is voluntary, this is intended to support industry in familiarizing themselves with BIM submissions. Mandatory BIM submission will be required in the second half of 2017 (Tan Jwu Yihn, 2016). It aims to improve business approaches in the construction industry to improve application turnaround time, quality and productivity. In turn this will streamline the construction sector.

E-Plan Check Singapore (2005) The E-Plan Check project was an effort to check building codes automatically through IFC & CAD. It was implemented in the Singapore Building Authority in the year 2000 by CORENET. This system failed initially due to the proprietary nature of the application and its inability to handle bad data. It was aimed at Architecture and Building Services checking. The solution aim of the project was to reduce the burden of compliance to regulations. This effort brought together expert knowledge of regulations, artificial intelligence and BIM Technologies (Khemlani, 2015). The complexity of rules in Singapore, led to as much as 30% of the total time to implement an automated rule within an automated system. The complexity of Building Regulations and variations of interpretation are typical features of automating regulations. A study by FIATECH confirmed Building Inspectors from varying local authorities gave different interpretation of building regulations The CORENET system went through several iterations as a result of human interpretation (Solihin & Eastman, 2015). An independent platform; FORNAX, was developed to extract basic BIM information from IFC data and links to regulation information (Khemlani, 2015). Australia DesignCheck (2006) Designcheck is an automated regulation checking system for the Building Code of Australia (Ding, Drogemuller, Rosenman, Marchant, & Gero, 2006). The system employs a shared object oriented database with and Express Data Manager Platform (Drogemuller, Jupp, Rosenman, & Gero, 2004). The EDM contains model schmeas, rule sets and querying schemas (Lee, Lee, Park, & Kim, 2016). The rule sets define the regulations to validate data models using the Express language. The initial feasibility project “Design for access and mobility” building regulation was encoded. Object based interpretation was tested for specification and used descriptions, requirements of performance, objects, properties and relationships to domain specific knowledge. The object based interpretation was encoded into the EDM rule sets (Lee et al., 2016). ByggSøk Norway (2009) ByggSøk in Norway is a public system of zoning and building information. The electronic system handled building applications and zoning proposal information. This system was part of a collaboration with Singapore to share experiences. The Norwegian system is based on the Singapore CORENet E-Plan Check System platform and

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 performed accessibility and spatial checking against regulations (Lee et al., 2016). The system uses dRofus software with Solibiri Model checker. The model is in IFC format and stored on an IFC model server (Greenwood, Lockley, Malsane, & Matthews, 2010). The project suggested six stages for a standardization process (Lee et al., 2016): 1. Define scope and source for regulation data. 2. Computability assessment, 3. Committee assessment, 4. Logic rule notation, 5. Selection of rule format and 6. Implementing of the rule in checking software. USA International Code Council SmartCodes The SMARTcodes project of the International Code Council implemented code checking with Model Checking Software (See & Conover, 2008). The system was developed to automate regulation compliance checks for federal and state codes (Wix, Nisbet, & Liebich, 2008). Architects and designers could submit their BIM model online as part of a planning application . The hierarchy of this system linked table information in a cell format, similar to Excel (Choi & Kim, 2015). The system was a bespoke programming based on XML to only address Smartcodes commands and operations (Wix et al., 2008). The models are viewed using Solibiri Model Viewer through an IFC format. Dynamo BIM Dynamo BIM is a visual programming platform developed as an open source download. It aims to extend BIM with the data and logic environment of a conceptual graph method. The platform works on C## and Python programming language (Rahmani Asl, Zarrinmehr, Bergin, & Yan, 2015). It reduces the requirement to understand computer programming by providing a node based environment. The author was aware of Dynamo and this was chosen based on its prominence in architectural offices, knowledge was gained from attending the Dynamo Users Group Ireland. Other visual programming tools include Grasshopper and Flux, this study has not used these platforms. Dynamo was selected due to its integration in Revit, it is a plugin that resides in the Revit toolbar and automatically links to the open Revit file. A limitation of the research is that not all visual programming tools were tested for automation. Although, based on the research of Eastman et al (2015) of conceptual graph mapping that was applied in the Singapore BCA checking system, Dynamo functions as a form of conceptual graph mapping.

II ANALYSIS OF IMPLMENTED SOLUTION The proposed solution was developed and tested as Solution No.1. An Architectural Technologist who is familiar with Revit was used to test the solution in practice. A user feedback survey was provided after the use of the solution. The feedback from Solution No. 1 was applied to Solution No. 2 in order to further develop the solution in a cyclical process. Solution No. 1 This was an initial automation carried out through Dynamo and Revit to Excel. The Dynamo element was entirely not part of the users assessment as the subject only needed to operate Revit and then to view the spreadsheet of areas. However, users were given a demonstration of the function of the Dynamo Solution No. 2 The second solution was based on user feedback from Solution No. 1. Additional features were added as a result of the feedback from Solution No 1. A lookup table of standards was compiled in a spreadsheet in Excel. This was linked to the floor area output data from Dynamo. Formulas were added for floor area data to be retrieved and checked against the standards lookup table. Excel allowed the data to be filtered by house type and house number. This was enabled by adding a parameter in the Revit model to each room tag.

Figure 13 - Solution No. 1 linked Revit to Excel using Dynamo.

Figure 14 - Dynamo nodes creating Revit Link to Excel.

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Solution No. 2 focused on enhancing the spreadsheet function. A lookup table of Figure 16 was created in a spreadsheet and condition functions were added in Excel. This function was not ran in Dynamo due to the complexity of the data required.


7. 8.

submission. This means skilled staff are not wasting time printing drawings. The local authority planning department perform a similar checking task facilitated through their own Dynamo link to the model. This could be their check to confirm no information has been misrepresented in the submitted model. At this point the compliant areas have been checked. The information of floor areas is now stored in the model and can be retrieved along a building supply chain at any point in time, including land registry.

Each automation workflow aims to save time and maintain consistency of information. The significant changes in the manual checking tasks of architects practices and local authorities achieved through BIM Based processes is reported in the results of user feedback. However, there was a steep learning curve for all involved and this caused more problems for some employees than others.

Figure 15 - Quality Housing for Sustainable Communities, Department of Environment (DOE, 2007) The linking of this information to Dynamo and Revit workflow outlined below. 1.

2. 3.



Local Authority and relevant design standards are established before a project is modelled. The design standards are cross-referenced to BIM space and room parameters. Compliant and Noncompliant elements highlight in Green or Red within a Revit Schedule and in a linked Excel spreadsheet. The next step is to correct non-compliant spaces or note them accordingly should a dispensation be sought from the local council. The architect / technician or technologist preparing the application, submits the BIM model to the council via an online

The automation process has a profound impact on the current work practices of individuals and on offices as a collective. Without implementation of BIM-based Automation processes, architects, technicians and technologists were involved in manual tasks in relation to the checking of floor areas and again when revisions were made and then to update an isolated spreadsheet document. Skilled workers can now solely focus on design because they have automation tools that are managed by a BIM specialist, as opposed to each individual having their own method of checking. As long as the visual scripting is well-managed and reliable it takes the onus away from individuals. The BIM environment is very different to traditional CAD.With BIM modelling software a tag must simply be added to an area immediately the associated spreadsheet is populated with floor areas. Their trust is now placed in the reliability of the software and in the individuals responsible for maintaining the Dynamo programming link. Upskilling is required for designers to use BIM modelling software but programming skill is only required by but programming by BIM management or their sub-contractors. The ability to tracing of the information which could be considered invasive by professionals, could also be a major positive once fully

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 implemented due to reduced in the full lifecycle of a project. Evidence of this benefit was shown in a case study of lean processes in the off-site manufacture of mechanical components (Keane, McCarthy, Ahern, & Behan, 2014). During the early stages of implementing automation, a risk is involved if users do not name their rooms and spaces to stringent modelling and naming standards. This could be overcome once users are familiar to the new workflow and a model guideline document is implemented similar to Singapore (Samaniego, 2016). The visual programming through Dynamo that was central to this particular study of automating a manual process, provides a linking of software to workflows that wasn't previously possible. When first used the software did not have all the functions currently available but the researcher in conjunction with individuals feedback, customised and developed to optimise the solution and to ensure that it supported rather than hindered the workflow. Among other items, the automation connects information that can be reused at a later stage similar to the Korean system of linking planning to legal information (Yoo et al., 2015). If a problem arises with boundary information or site areas in the future. It can be traced back through the supply chain from design office to planning to sale of a building. This could act as an incentive to improve the quality of information along the supply chain. It also ensures that BIM information maintains a consistent standard. The data recorded may also indicate the timeline and productivity of an overall office or local authority workflow (Yoo et al., 2015). This may inform operational costs and lead to cost savings (Yoo et al., 2015). Although there may still be occurrences of the system proving to be too rigid, a flexibility could be built into the automation process to not entirely remove the human factor of traditional practices. In solution No. 1, standard areas that are known to be fixed in a planning system were trialled as according to Survey no. 2 these can take cad users additional time to ensure areas are correct. Some additional skills and workflow changes are required to adopt visual programming as the automation facility. For example this research was based on mainly cad users, the automation however is based on BIM software with a requirement to learn visual programming. Despite the additional requirement, user feedback on the use of the automation demonstrated a more efficient process.

III CONCLUSION The research presented here demonstrates the results of applying BIM Automation at a small scale in an architects practice. It has shown that it can work and be efficient, particularly through good management of the automation programming. It was predicted by the researcher that automation would appeal to architectural professionals surveyed, surprisingly the returned data proved that design rigidity i.e. being bound to rules was a concern as certain regulations have unforeseen outcomes. This is addressed in the research by suggesting that flexibility of design is always considered at design stage by allowing compliance exemption suggestions. The automation is a design assist rather and at local authority level a stringent rule enforcer. However, as suggested by Ding et Al (2006) the certification process is improved by the automation process, thus in an Irish context, this offers rigour to the Assigned Certifier role under the Building Control and Regulation Amendments 2014. Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) has been identified as adding value to semantically rich models. IFC is used in the countries covered in this paper to adopt a compliance system. This is due to IFC adding value to semantically rich models. This research does not use IFC parameters but could be applied due to it having such comprehensive schema coverage (Malsane et al., 2015). Evaluation of BIM automation through Design Science methodology by. This methodology set out by Diagnosing the Problem, Developing a solution and Evaluating the solution with user feedback has been completed (Von Alan et al., 2004). The Dynamo visual programming that has been adopted and implemented in support of automation fills the gap, identified by reviews of most national automation systems of the required computer programming-development skills.. As suggested by Choi and Kim (2015) in Korea an open source and easy to use software does not hinder but rather enhances creativity. The easy to use Dynamo software gives control of BIM information to BIM Managers, Architectural Technologists, Technicians and Architects. As a result of this research, the researcher and users involved have developed skills by observing visual programming. The mundane manual tasks have been removed daily users of the automation. This allows designers to focus on more complex

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 compliance and design challenges. It is envisaged that these factors will support consistency of information throughout the supply chain of a building’s delivery; i.e. Design, Planning, Tender, Construction and Handover. The use of visual programming similar to Dynamo offers a flexibility of compliance checking. In systems implemented globally all these rules are hardcoded with knowledge of computer programming required. This hard coding does address the risk of non compliance but it does take out the human element. Human interpretation is still required in some elements of design and can vary on a case by case basis. This human element can be further applied through conceptual graphs of visual programming.


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Rahmani Asl, M., Zarrinmehr, S., Bergin, M., & Yan, W. (2015). BPOpt: A framework for BIMbased performance optimization. Energy and Buildings, 108, 401-412.

Von Alan, R. H., March, S. T., Park, J., & Ram, S. (2004). Design science in information systems research. MIS Quarterly, 28(1), 75-105.

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Weise, M., Liebich, T., & Wix, J. (2009). Integrating use case definitions for IFC developments. eWork and eBusiness in Architecture and Construction.London: Taylor & Francis Group, , 637-645.

Wix, J., Nisbet, N., & Liebich, T. (2008). Using constraints to validate and check building information models. ECPPM 2008 Conference, Sophia Antipolis, France, pp. 467-476.

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Automatic Open Standard Reporting for Dimensional Control Compliance Neil Hyland1, Shawn O’Keeffe2, Conor Dore3, and Shane Brodie4 1, 2, 3, & 4

BIM & Scan, Co. Dublin, Ireland

E-Mail:,, 3, and Abstract Ěś The authors have developed a novel methodology utilising open standards for the reporting and correction of IFC-formatted BIMs during comprehensive dimensional control compliance. The problem being addressed is that as-designed BIMs rarely match exactly what is built on-site. Traditional methods for ensuring the design matches the built environment are very tedious, costly, and time-consuming as project stakeholders must manually navigate through the model to find problems, relying on their subjective judgement. An efficient method to develop accurate as-built and/or as-is BIMs is by comparing point cloud reality capture data against the as-designed BIM to reflect the realworld state of the built environment. The novel methodology presented in this paper uses automatic model reconstruction techniques to create a comparable data model between the as-designed BIM and as-is point cloud, and employs the open standard BIM Collaboration Format (BCF) in the communication and correction of as-designed BIMs to match the as-is state. BCF enables project stakeholders to share comments, notes, and potential issues with one another without the need for exchanging the entire model. Our automated dimensional control compliance solution produces BCF-based reports containing issues recognised as an error/deviation measurement between the as-is state and the asdesigned BIM. These deviation reports contain the necessary data to refer stakeholders to the model elements in question through encoded camera viewpoints, supported by major BIM authoring tools, and viewers. The methodology outlined in this paper was validated using real-world scan data and a corresponding BIM. Keywords Ěś Dimensional Control, Scan-vs-BIM, BIM, Verification, Validation, Laser Scanning.

I INTRODUCTION Current workflows employed for dimensional control compliance remain time-consuming, expensive, and unreliable [1]. Although use of laser scanning techniques are becoming more widespread, the automation of dimensional control compliance remains elusive to many practitioners. There exists a need for automated dimensional control compliance to assure that the built environment matches design models, and that as-built and record drawings and models match the physical reality. As AEC/FM industries try to escape from 2D flatland [2] into the vast world of Building Information Modelling (BIM), traditional 2D CAD

workflows need to be re-established within 3D information rich virtual environments. These new BIM workflows have been evolving over the last few decades to provide integrity of design responsibility. New data exchange methods are also needed to assure integrity of design responsibility going forward. The research documented in this paper contributes an innovative solution to automated dimensional control compliance and the utilisation of open standard data exchange methods that supports design integrity and stakeholder responsibility. Traditional design processes involve a diverse team of stakeholders from many different practices, each with their own specific area of expertise. The

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 concept of design responsibility is nothing new to these professionals. Commonly, finalised designs are issued to the construction contractor and its supply chain, which includes specialists, suppliers, installers, and sub-contractors. Over time, traditional design processes have evolved into elaborate communication methodologies that formally record communications between parties in the form of RFIs, submittals, and transmittals that include 2D drawings, sketches, mark-ups, etc. The underlying principle of the traditional methods is to ensure the integrity of design responsibility. A key premise of this paper is that this integrity must be maintained within virtual design and construction. In short, only the responsible party updates their own design model elements and documents based on the transmitted information about their design model. The decision to update or change a model element remains solely to the domain of the party responsible. When developing BIMs in today’s world of virtual design and construction practices, disciplines, such as Architectural, Structural, Mechanical, Electrical, etc. are required to share coordination issues. In the past, coordination of drawings was achieved with a light-table beneath a set of overlayered discipline drawings. The resulting sketches and RFIs were the traditional means of interdisciplinary communication. The BIM Collaboration Format (BCF) and Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) are the mediums that should now be used to formally communicate coordination issues that are to be resolved in virtual space. This paper emphasises that in traditional practice the relevant parties have always been responsible for modifying their design according to model element clash issues being communicated to them by others, and this process is unchanged when using BCF with IFC exchange files. In poorly-implemented virtual construction and collaboration environments practitioners may have the ability, while assuming design liability, to resolve issues that do not belong to them. This in turn may lead to disputes that can be avoided if IFC and BCF are properly utilised to communicate and resolve design conflicts of interest. Traditionally, the final contract deliverable includes a set of record drawings and/or marked-up red-line drawings. These traditional deliverables are most commonly achieved through subjective and expensive design validation processes performed manually by stakeholders. In more modern construction practices, Terrestrial Laser Scanning (TLS) hardware is commonly used on-site for surveying. The TLS hardware captures reality as data in the form of a point cloud. Surveying methods like TLS afford major exploitations of the data gathered such as progress control, structural health monitoring,

dimensional control, and as-built BIM modelling [3]. In this paper, we focus on best practices for communicating dimensional control compliance utilising point clouds and corresponding design BIMs. To date there has been no known standard method to automate the communication of the deviations and variances detected when performing dimensional control compliance. Current best practices are to overlay models with point clouds. The process of identifying and resolving issues remains a time-consuming, painstaking, costly, and ultimately subjective, process performed by individuals virtually “walking” through the building. We developed an objective and controlled process for identifying and reporting dimensional control compliance issues automatically. Using a collaboration format (BCF), the responsible stakeholder is taken directly to a view of the issue(s) discovered. Additionally, this automated process provides explanations and suggestions to the requisite stakeholders on how the detected issues may be resolved. Our focus in relation to dimensional control compliance is that when modelled structures are built, they are not always built exactly to the design. Often there are unrecorded field changes that cause variations between the real built environment and the virtual design model. To ensure ongoing spatial control of the physical build, scanning of completed building works allows for a methodology of identifying differences, i.e. Scan-vs-BIM [4]. While current commercially-available tools support Scan-vs-BIM workflows, they rely on the human eye to navigate through all parts of the building and manually identify and then correct variances. For this research we utilised software modules from the BIM & Scan® Platform, which is our evolving cloud-based cyber-physical system. With these novel modules/tools, it is now possible to create a workflow that automatically identifies model deviations and then presents those variances in BCF format containing suggested fixes. The responsible stakeholder can then decide on whether to correct the model as our automatic reports suggest. In a large building, there could be many hundreds of potential variances between the design model and the construction happening on-site. The design engineer responsible for deciding what to do with each individual variance needs to be brought directly to the problem visually and not spend hours searching for each one. The solution described in this paper provides a semi-automated systematic workflow that utilise IFC in conjunction with BCF.

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II BACKGROUND Examples of dimensional control compliance performed using manual methods are shown below in Fig. 1 and 2. Both examples display the use of reality capture data to subjectively find variances between the design model and as-is facility. In both cases this was performed manually by designers searching for points of interest where such deviations from the design model occur. BCF could have been incorporated into this previously implemented workflow. However, even if BCF was utilised for error reporting of issues it would have been a subjective exercise and manual creation of BCF-formatted reports for stakeholders. Our aim was to automatically find the issues in an objective manner, and automatically serialises the issues found into BCF formatted reports.

Fig. 1: Manual check of design model (highlighted) using point cloud scan data to visually dispute the alignment of components in a facility.

Fig. 2: Differences between real-world scans and corresponding design model (highlighted blue) in a complex manufacturing environment.

BCF has been included in traditional BIM workflows as an exchange medium for multidiscipline design coordination, review, and issue reporting. BCF is supported in various BIM authoring tools, viewers, and model checkers. A few examples are: Tekla BIMsight [5], Solibri Model Checker [6], Autodesk Navisworks and Revit (through third-party plugins) [7], and ARCHICAD

[8]. There are also offerings of server or cloud based BCF systems. The proprietary KUBUS BIMcollab platform provides cloud-based BCF issue management and interoperability with multiple software packages [9]. In the area of open-source technologies, van Berlo et al. originally proposed the integration of BCF with the open-source BIMserver platform to support centralised collaborative design review [10]. Future versions of the BIMserver are expected to support proper BCF integration. There exists a large user base for BCF, as established in the software examples shown above, who have a wide range of tools at their disposal. The conventional approach when utilising the BCF methodology is to create BCF files containing a set of topics and then to send these files to project stakeholders via the Internet or physical transfer. The aforementioned software packages support this workflow. A BCF file can be thought of as a type of report. These BCF report files can be distributed to stakeholders and broadcasted to design personnel across multiple different disciplines based on the BCF file’s content. For example, GRAPHISOFT present sample BCF-based project workflows as part of their ARCHICAD documentation [11]. They describe the use of model checking software, e.g. Solibri Model Checker or Tekla BIMsight, to collate potential issues for reporting. Then, by dispatching these BCF reports with extra comments to the various disciplines, they enable each stakeholder to perform a review of the noted issues relevant to their specific discipline, so the appropriate responsible party can make the required amendments. Other examples in GRAPHISOFT’s documentation include cases for MEP clash detection whereby an MEP modeller creates a BCF report to send to the structural engineer to identify problems found, and the use of BCF by modellers to highlight design changes to structural engineers [11]. These use cases show the versatility of BCF as a medium of exchanging model-related data. BCF can also be used for more than issue reporting, like notifying others about important design changes, adding notes to key areas for review, etc. GRAPHISOFT themselves emphasise the usefulness of BCF for exchanging data on model collisions in multi-model projects, and that they directly support BCF-based workflows in their software by mapping ARCHICAD’s existing “Mark-Up” feature set to BCF [12]. We can see from the existing marketplace there are many compatible tools for BCF usage.

III OUR APPROACH We have adapted these ideas as part of an approach that utilises our automated dimensional control compliance custom tools to generate reports for use by project stakeholders. Like existing approaches,

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 these BCF reports contain the necessary information to communicate detected issues and bring the user to view the corresponding model elements in one of the many BIM authoring tools or viewers. However, our reports are automatically generated and serialised as BCF ready for distribution. Our automated adaptation of these practices represents an improvement over manual issue creation without overstepping the bounds of proper BCF usage as a medium for exchanging workflow information relevant to IFC model data. No modifications or extensions to the BCF schema have been made to accommodate our research. Creation of the reports through automation does not interfere with existing usage of BCF, and can easily coexist alongside manual creation and distribution of BCF files. We discuss further our approach to using BCF in later sections. BCF data can be structured in two ways: a traditional file-based format (bcfXML) and a webbased API specification (bcfAPI). The bcfXML schema describes a file that stores a set of “topics” that refer to an IFC data model [13]. This paper’s focus is on using the file-based bcfXML schema. This schema requires data to be serialised into a single ZIP archive, with the file extension “.bcfzip”. Two XML files in the root of the archive contain basic metadata. These are: project.bcfp, an XML file containing the Global Unique Identifier (GUID) and name of the project the topics refer to; and bcf.version, an XML file containing the schema version number, e.g. either 1.0, 2.0 or 2.1, of the current BCF file [13]. BCF topics are given a GUID and stored as directories in the ZIP archive, which are named according to their GUID. Each topic directory can contain multiple files and can include files that do not adhere to the BCF schema. The files markup.bcf and viewpoint.bcfv are stored in each topic directory. There can also exist an optional snapshot.png, an image file used as a per-topic thumbnail for the user interface of supporting tools. The markup.bcf file contains the bulk of the topic data [13]. Each topic is categorised into a type, e.g. Comment, Issue, Request, and Solution. Furthermore, each topic has a title, creation date, status (Open/Closed), in addition to optional extra attributes like author, date modified, priority value, etc. The main body of a topic is a text comment. The viewpoint.bcfv file contains 3D camera viewpoint information for supporting software to bring the user to a particular model element [13]. It defines a 3D camera, using either perspective or orthographic projection, along with the position and orientation of the camera. Included alongside camera configuration are GUID references to specific IFC model elements, allowing them to be highlighted by supporting tools when the topic is selected.

For this paper, we specifically use the bcfXML file structure to serialise, per-model element, a set of topics representing dimensional control compliance issues detected by our “AutoDiff” tool as BCF reports. To support this system, we utilise a modified semantic model reconstruction algorithm, with the help of work by Ochmann et al. [14], to provide a means of converting reality capture data to IFC model data via our “AutoGen” tool. The output of the AutoGen tool is provided as input to the AutoDiff tool, alongside the input of the design IFC, to compute deviations between the design model and real-world built environment. The output of this process is a BCF report containing the computed deviations. The following section covers the implementation of this approach.

IV METHODOLOGY Our dimensional control compliance solution, that performs automated deviation analysis, uses the authors’ developed AutoGen and AutoDiff tools. This approach utilises the open standards ISO 16739:2013 [15] for models in the form specified in ISO 10303-21 [16], BCF for reports, and E57 for point clouds, to ensure that our tools are interoperable for use with other systems and likely to pass the test of time in relation to proprietary formats. The Model View Definition (MVD) used in this research for IFC-formatted as-designed model is the IFC 2x3 CV 2.0 MVD [17]. Our system at present automatically creates “valid” IFC model elements from reality capture data in E57 format [18] and automated dimensional control compliance issues in BCF format, for several primary IFC “Entities”, i.e. IfcWallStandardCase, IfcWindow, IfcDoor, IfcSlab, IfcSpace, and IfcColumn. The methodology comprises two main components: AutoGen and AutoDiff. The utilisation of these two in harmony for dimension control compliance deviation analysis and reporting can be broken down into five steps as shown in Fig. 3.

a) Step 1: Input & Pre-processing The first stage of our approach takes as input one E57 file containing a series of scans with corresponding metadata. The 3D points in the reality capture data are grouped per-scan, with one or more scans per-room as recommended for good coverage of the target built environment. Each scan also contains the position of the scanner when the laser scanning was performed. This position is commonly referred to as the scanner “pose”, serialised as a 3D coordinate and rotation quaternion in the header section of the file. The authors currently exploit the utilisation of scan positions when automatically creating IFC Coordination View MVDs from point

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 cloud data. This process is conducted by our AutoGen tool as stated in Step 2. For this research, we used the FARO Focus 120 Terrestrial Laser Scanner and the provided software SCENE [19], to register and process the scan output for E57. The replication of this methodology is not limited to this scanner. We export ordered scans to serialise the necessary scan positions into the E57 file. Ordered scans in this case refer to a set of one or more individual scans, produced by TLS, where each scan contains a set of 3D points and the positions of the scanner used to capture these points.

where a set of 3D boxes in space are computed over the input point cloud. Then, each box (“voxel”) is reduced to a single point, by calculating the centroid from the set of contained points. This method allows the sub-sampled point cloud to better approximate continuous surfaces than a random or statistical sampling method. Secondly, we estimate point normal on the sub-sampled data using the standard k-Nearest-Neighbour approach [21] (Fig. 3: Step 1b). Note that we also take as input one IFC 2x3 TC1 Coordination View v2.0 “.ifc” MVD exchange file, as the semantic 3D model for the as-designed BIM. This input is only processed in Step 3 of our approach, the handling of the IFC data is discussed in detail there. For the as-designed BIM, we can use any BIM authoring tool capable of serialising an IFC 2x3 TC1 Coordination View v2.0 MVD as an exchange file.

b) Step 2: Model Reconstruction

Fig. 3: Dimensional control compliance workflow.

It is necessary to perform some pre-processing on the E57 input data. First, we apply a subsampling algorithm to reduce the size of the input point cloud (Fig. 3: Step 1a). This sub-sampling algorithm employs a voxel-grid approach [20],

The second stage of our approach uses our AutoGen tool, which automatically serialises, from the preprocessed E57 point clouds in Step 1 above, an IFC 2x3 Coordination View v2.0 MVD, which is noted in the header section of the exchange files produced. The Coordination MVD produced is a primary set of as-is model elements that represent the building as per the reality capture data that was inputted. The authors have coined the term “as-generated” BIM for the output produced by the AutoGen tool. The asgenerated Coordination MVD can now be compared, for dimensional control compliance purposes, with the corresponding elements in the asdesigned BIM. The as-designed BIM must also be an IFC 2x3 CV v2.0 MVD. We do not advise replicating this methodology with different versions of Coordination MVDs, the reason being that conflicting versions of CV MVDs may include/exclude certain IFC types from the deviation analysis. The AutoGen tool requires a point cloud with estimated normals, as produced in Step 1. An automated reconstruction algorithm is then applied to derive semantic-rich IFC model elements from the reality capture data (Fig. 3: Step 2c). Currently, the authors adopted and modified the approach devised by Ochmann et al. [14]. Our approach requires the aforementioned scan positions to be present in the input data. We elaborate upon, in the Future Works section, the current in-development redesign of the AutoGen tool that has no dependency on pre-existing scan positions and should be able to produce the same results mentioned herein from various types of reality capture input sources. The IFC model entities mentioned earlier are generated from a plane-based reconstruction of the

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 indoor scan environment, using RANSAC shape detection to create an initial set of surfaces [22]. Surfaces are then labelled per-scan from the scan positions using a ray-casting approach, and the resultant labels are weighted to segment the scan data into potential rooms. Next, the detected surfaces are projected into a graph of 2D line intersections. Then, a connected components analysis is performed, where identically-labelled planes denote rooms, and the edges between differently-labelled planes denote walls. These “wall candidates” are extruded upwards from the floor plane to create 3D wall model representations. Similarly, openings in walls are detected using ray-casting, i.e. finding holes in the scan data, and interpreting the openings as windows or doors. Further explanation in these regards can be found in the original paper [14]. For this research, we have expanded on research by Ochmann et al. by automating the reconstruction of cylindrical IFC Entities, which was accomplished by extending the RANSAC search parameters to include further object detection. Lastly, Step 2 provides us with one of the direct inputs to Step 3: the as-generated BIM, a counterpart to the as-designed BIM, as seen in Fig. 3.

c) Step 3: Semantic Model Element Extraction The third stage of our approach extracts the “valid” set of IFC Entities from both the as-designed and asgenerated IFC MVDs, and then computes and generates the valid comparable elements using tessellation. The authors made use of the IfcOpenShell toolkit [23] for creating 3D geometry. IfcOpenShell provides a tessellation functionality to generate triangulated mesh geometry from IFC Entities in “.ifc” STEP exchange files. This functionality is available in two distinct methods: 1) directly incorporating the requisite libraries as a dependency in a project for the C++ and Python programming languages, and 2) inputting IFC data in STEP Physical File Format (SPFF) for consumption by the “IfcConvert” tool, via the command-line. This tool handles the transformation of IFC models serialised in SPFF to common mesh formats [24], e.g. OBJ and Collada. We have implemented approach 1) above, which does not utilise mesh formats like OBJ. Our AutoDiff tool directly loads IFC STEP files and iterates over their sets of valid Entities (Fig. 3: Step 3d). Next, the tool performs tessellation to generate 3D geometry from each IFC Entity defined shape representation (Fig. 3: Step 3e). The resultant virtual meshes are stored in no particular order in memory. However, each mesh does have basic metadata, e.g. GUID and IFC type, extracted from the originally

loaded Entities. We refer to the combined generated 3D geometry and associated metadata for each IFC Entity loaded in this approach as an “extracted” model element. Extracted model elements are now passed on to Step 4 of our methodology. It is important to note that the quality of the generated 3D geometry that will be used for deviation analysis depends on both the accuracy of the AutoGen output and the accuracy of the computed mesh tessellation output from the IfcOpenShell toolkit.

d) Step 4: Deviation Analysis The fourth stage of our approach applies the main dimensional control compliance process to the extracted model elements in the as-designed and asgenerated models (Fig. 3: Step 4f). Several sub-steps must take place in order to perform the analysis. First and foremost, elements in the as-designed model must be mapped to corresponding elements in the as-generated model. This enables our AutoDiff tool to understand what elements it should be comparing to each other when the analyses take place for detecting deviation. This is achieved by first restricting the mapping to elements of the same IFC type, e.g. IfcDoor as-generated vs. IfcDoor asdesigned. Next, a spatial search is performed using a bounding-box whose extent is defined by the shape and size of the extracted element’s geometry, scaled up to widen the search area. We always regard the as-designed elements as being checked against the as-generated, so this search box is centred on the asdesigned element’s position. All nearby elements in the as-generated model of the same type are ranked as potential candidates for mapping. These potential candidates need to be prioritised in some way for logical ranking. Our approach in this regard is to create virtual flattened images of the triangulated meshes using cut planes in the principal X, Y, and Z axes, and compute the overlap ratio of the as-generated vs. as-designed element geometry. The combined X, Y, and Z overlap ratios are treated as a vector. The magnitude of this overlap vector is used to rank the mapping of each extracted as-designed model element to nearby potentially-corresponding as-generated elements. The highest-ranked mapping between them is assumed to be the most suitable correspondence, i.e. they refer to the same object/structure in the built environment. Next, for each mapped corresponding pair of as-designed and as-generated elements, we automatically construct a viewpoint to begin deviation analysis. Each viewpoint is created from a target position and direction vector. The target position is computed as the centre point of the combined vertices of as-designed and as-generated meshes, using a smallest-enclosing-sphere approach

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 [25]. The direction vector is computed from the normal of the largest planar surface of the asdesigned mesh. The viewpoint origin is positioned facing the target point, oriented along the direction vector, and offset by the radius of the enclosing sphere. A camera “look-at” matrix is created from this data, representing the final viewpoint. We use the camera look-at matrix and an orthographic projection matrix to transform the as-designed and as-generated geometry into a 2D representation according to each viewpoint. From the projected 2D points, we compute representative bounding-boxes for the as-designed and as-generated meshes. By measuring the distances between corresponding bounding-box edges, values are produced that represent the displacement on the X and Y axes relative to the viewpoint projection/orientation. To ensure the values are consistent with the original geometry of the extracted model elements, we calculate the difference in scale between the projected 3D points before the Z dimension is discarded, and the unprojected original 3D mesh. This is accomplished by comparing the distances between minimum and maximum corners in their bounding-boxes. We then compute a scale factor by dividing the projected by the un-projected min-max bounding-box corner distance, which gives us a scalar multiplier that is then applied to the measurements to ensure they represent the correct displacement in un-projected 3D space. Results of edge-to-edge distance measurement are treated as an actual deviation if the measured displacement in either the relative X or Y axes is greater than a defined minimum error threshold.

Fig. 4: Visualisation of the deviation analysis during Step 4 applied to two cylindrical columns.

Fig. 4 above shows a representation of the results of the deviation analysis process. These points and measurements were recorded during a debug run of the AutoDiff tool, and plotted in an external graphing package. Two columns were compared, they are: the green geometry representing as-designed and the blue geometry representing as-

generated meshes. The bounding shapes of the columns derived from the projected 2D geometry are also present. The viewpoint was oriented top-down, i.e. looking downwards to where the columns meet the floor slab. The horizontal and vertical displacement is shown as ~0.7 and ~0.3 metres respectively. The tool can thus present a description of a possible correction to the displacement/offset in BCF using these values.

e) Step 5: Reporting The fifth stage of our approach takes the measured deviations and reports them in a user-friendly format, to be used in external software. Originally, we proposed serialising the deviation analysis results in a spreadsheet format, e.g. CSV or XLSX. Early prototype output of the calculated results looks like Fig. 5. After further investigation into the use of BCF for data exchange among industry stakeholders, we decided to adopt it as our primary medium for reporting deviation results, instead of our early spreadsheet idea.

Fig. 5: Example table produced by early dimensional control compliance prototype.

As mentioned in the Background section, we use the bcfXML file-based implementation of the schema. Our reports, serialised as “.bcfzip” archives, are composed of a set of topics categorised with the BCF type: “Issue”, comprising text comments and 3D camera viewpoint information that corresponds to the IFC CV MVD and facilitates communication and visualisation of issues among users. Each topic records a deviation between corresponding as-designed and as-generated IFC Entities, where the measurements taken from the deviation analysis in Step 4 are formatted into text comments for users to read when the BCF data is loaded into compatible BIM authoring tools or viewers. Our approach for utilising the BCF reports is shown in Fig. 6: (a) the design model is checked using (b) the AutoDiff tool, and (c) the resultant BCF report is used by stakeholders to (d) review the reported issues in a collaborative manner. Stakeholders either remove the issues if they are false positives, or choose to accept them and make changes to the design model based on the information provided. This cycle is repeated until all stakeholders are satisfied with the accuracy of the design model, which now should reflect the as-is

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 state as per the point cloud from the reality capture data.

Fig. 6: Using BCF reports in the design, check, and review cycle.

This approach uses the existing open standards IFC and BCF in harmony to support automated dimensional control compliance deviation analysis and reporting. Furthermore, the inter-linking between IFC and BCF via GUID references allows BIM authoring tools to directly associate model elements with BCF topics. Everything serialised in the BCF reports could be created through a tedious manual process of visually checking the design model against reality capture data. We present detected deviations to users in an interactive and IFC compliant way by taking advantage of the existing file-based schema for bcfXML and the existing support BIM authoring tools and viewers offer.

V RESULTS We tested our dimensional control compliance solution on several datasets, with the goal of representing the use cases of an architect and a structural engineer performing checks on model elements. Our dimensional control compliance solution was provided with design IFC models and E57 point clouds representing the as-designed and as-is state of a built environment. In all cases we have used ARCHICAD 21 “Mark-Up Tools” that support BCF to visualise the resulting reported deviations produced by our custom tools. Details on the exact process for importing and exporting, and using BCF in ARCHICAD is provided by GRAPHISOFT’s documentation [26]. We conducted three main experiments to gather result information about our solution to lead us forward in further development. The first two mentioned below are of a conference room and the third is of a commercial building, which is from a real project by BIM & Scan.

Fig. 7: Design model (IFC format) for testing.

Fig. 8: Reality capture point cloud (E57 format) for testing.

Fig. 9: As-generated model from point cloud (IFC format) for testing.

To control our first two experimentations, our test data consisted of an office conference room design BIM and a point cloud of 2 registered laser scans of that conference room, which provided the two input datasets for our AutoGen and AutoDiff

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 tools. Fig. 7 shows the design model used, serialised according to the IFC 2x3 Coordination View v2.0 MVD specification. The corresponding point cloud is shown in Fig. 8. Fig. 9 is the as-generated IFC BIM model derived from the point cloud, demonstrating how the AutoGen tool reconstructs basic model elements from scan data. The roof of the conference room in the given images has been hidden to make the interior visible.

Fig. 10: Window (highlighted red) test result in ARCHICAD.

Fig. 10 shows the design model, point cloud, and resultant BCF report loaded into ARCHICAD. The user is directed to the window in question when the appropriate BCF topic is selected. The 3D view of the BIM authoring tool is automatically set up according to the encoded camera viewpoint in the BCF topic data. The generated comment contains the correction instruction: “move deviated element by ~466mm to the right, move deviated element ~89mm down”, pictured in Fig. 11. In this case the user could move the window back into place by reading the correction instruction and cross-referencing that with the visualised discrepancy between the point cloud and model to perform the necessary fix. Despite a minor loss in accuracy from the actual deviation and the reported due to the quality of the as-generated window element produced by the AutoGen tool, the correction was implemented in accordance with the reported deviation. The accuracy loss is caused by the AutoGen algorithm’s approximation of element geometry when reconstructing the model from the point cloud. As we proceed with future improvements to the AutoGen we will then “feed” back these improvements into the quality of the reported deviations. However, depending on the tolerance allowed in the contract, in this case for windows, our found loss in accuracy may or may not actually be an issue. In the case of a window, the approximation mentioned above is not a huge issue in many cases.

Fig. 11: BCF comment containing correction instructions.

As seen in Fig. 9, the AutoGen tool provides us with a comparable as-generated model so that the AutoDiff tool can perform deviation analysis between the two sets of model elements. To test the AutoDiff process on planar/cuboid objects, and demonstrate the use case for an architect, we apply an offset to the main window in the as-designed model, which is visible on the far side of the model in the images shown. We moved the window 500mm to the left and 100mm up along the wall. The BCF output was expected to produce an issue highlighting the window element and a comment containing the necessary correction, e.g. move window 500mm to the right and 100mm down. This correction is relative to the viewpoint generated by the AutoDiff process for the window element.

Fig. 12: Column (highlighted red) test result in ARCHICAD.

Next, we tested the comparison of cylindrical objects and demonstrate the use case for a structural engineer. We created a column in the as-designed model, and one in the as-generated model, to simulate the existence of a column in the actual conference room built environment. The asgenerated column was placed 100mm away from the as-designed. Fig. 12 and 13 show the reported deviation correction relative to the camera viewpoint: “move deviated element by ~38mm to

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 the right, move deviated element by ~92mm down�. The hypotenuse between these two values is approximately ~100mm, representing the true deviation. Again, the user could correct the deviation thanks to the instructions given.

point cloud and design BIM of a full floor from a multistorey building. The hypothesis was that AutoDiff produces the best results for the best autogenerated objects. This is in fact true as shown in Fig. 14 and 15. Fig. 14 shows the dimensions that the column should be moved for correction. These measurements were used as inputs to place the column in to the correct position and the corrected column is shown in Fig. 15.

Fig. 13: BCF comment containing correction instructions.

Fig. 16: Deviation reported when design wall (highlighted red) extends beyond visibility of scanned environment.

Fig. 14: BCF comment containing correction instructions for column & ARCHICAD visualisation.

Fig. 15: Column after deviation correction was applied by user in ARCHICAD.

Our third experiment shows the true potential of our methodology. We utilised our AutoDiff tool on a real data set from one of our clients with the primary focus on the poured concrete columns, i.e. a

When handling false positives, e.g. deviations reported due to incorrect mapping of as-designed to as-generated elements, the onus is on the user to go through each reported deviation and check its validity. For erroneous results, one simply deletes the offending issue. As such, false positives have little to no effect on the usability of the workflow, BCF treats each topic as standalone, therefore deletions are a trivial matter of selecting the topics you don’t want and removing them before distributing the BCF report to other interested parties. An example false positive is shown in Fig. 16, where a wall element in the design model extends beyond the point cloud, causing the AutoDiff tool to report a deviation that was not applicable. Reducing the occurrence of false positives such as these, as produced by the automated process, requires further development of the mapping heuristic for pairing as-designed and as-generated model elements together, and is a highly ranked area of research for our future developments on AutoGen. We have noticed that of all the IFC entities the AutoGen can generate from point clouds, the AutoDiff results for windows is the poorest. This is due to the complexity of windows and the variance of window types, i.e. sills, frames, window panes, etc. As reported above, cylindrical columns produce the best results. As we improve upon the automatic generation of IFC object, the results of the AutoDiff tool shall improve.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 As the AutoGen tool is integral to the dimensional control compliance approach we have developed, ensuring good scan coverage, and the quality of the as-generated models are essential to maintain the accuracy of the AutoDiff tool’s reporting. We used scan data obtained via TLS in our test cases, however we are not limited to this method of scanning. If the AutoGen tool is provided with suitable point clouds with scan positions we can conduct deviation analysis. Other testing with photogrammetry data with a single scan position from a mobile capture device produced a basic asgenerated model. We can improve upon this input method by reducing the dependency on pre-existing scan positions. This is another highly ranked area of research for our future developments on AutoGen. Given the results we have already achieved, we think our approach to using BCF in tandem with automated dimensional control compliance technologies has promise. Despite the anticipated future improvements on AutoGen, our research and development on AutoDiff shows that the open standard BCF as a method to communicate issues among stakeholders during design, when stakeholders are utilising IFC, is the most effective communication tool as it falls in line with traditional methods for IFC based coordination and use of BCF during coordination. We strongly believe that other areas in this domain such as progress control, structural health monitoring, and as-built BIM modelling will also follow suit.

VI CONCLUSION A novel utilisation was presented of BCF as the reporting medium for automated dimensional control compliance. The feasibility of our approach was established through the testing of real-world scan data against the corresponding design model via the methodology laid out in this paper, and producing BCF reports that were usable in external BIM authoring tools and viewers. Reporting deviations in design BIMs, and assisting users in resolving them in an automated and interactive manner, is of huge benefit to designers and stakeholders throughout all AEC/FM domains. The use of BCF in this manner is a novel application of the existing best practices for BCF-based collaboration put forward by BIM software vendors and other proponents. In the future, we hope to see more widespread adoption of the open standard BCF used in the development of Scan-vs-BIM tools. Current scan versus model tools do not support BCF as the medium to report the deviations found within their tools. The authors of this paper have spoken to some of these vendors and there are various reason why BCF support is not there. The primary reason is these tools do not support IFC MVD input nor output. However, these vendors claim that they will move into the direction

of supporting open standards for dimensional control as industry has chosen open standards over proprietary ones in other predominate workflows, e.g. coordination, COBie, rule-based model checking such as building codes, etc.

VII FUTURE WORK We are currently expanding upon the AutoGen tool discussed in this paper, regarding improving the quality of its output, and removing the reliance on scan positions encoded in the input point clouds. Current research efforts in the field of automatic model reconstruction from scan data use the scan positions as a quick way of approximating realworld visibility when estimating rooms and detecting openings. We have already greatly reduced the need for scan positions and move from only TLS data to also including photogrammetry input data, with one scan position, delivering promising results. Therefore, one of our primary aims is to totally remove the need for scan positions to be contained within the scan data files, which will allow our tool to work with a far greater variety of input sources. These include economical and more mobile scanning devices, increasing the flexibility of our approach. Also, since our method depends on outputs from our AutoGen as inputs into our AutoDiff tool for dimensional control, we plan to investigate alternative solutions to current problems in the model reconstruction domain by exploring other algorithms that may be more accurate, performant, and robust, e.g. tolerant of incomplete or poorquality data and better outputs of complex geometry like windows. We also intend to expand upon the AutoDiff tool discussed in this paper. We also aim to investigate a possible two-step methodology whereby we perform a more advanced 3D mesh comparison. Further investigations shall include the use of point cloud data directly and extrapolating from the resultant transformations a set of deviation measurements suitable for BCF reporting. We have found that there are several ways to solve automated dimensional control compliance problems, and there appears to be no single best way. In fact, all approaches solve slightly different problems. We remain focused on solving problems in this domain, whilst exploiting the use of BCF for reporting deviations. The research herein supports that BCFbased reporting within dimensional control compliance workflows is extremely practical and pragmatic.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS We would like to thank our company director at MMA Environmental for allowing this R&D to be conducted at our BIM & Scan department. We would also like to thank Enterprise Ireland for their

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REFERENCES [1] F. Bosché, Y. Turkan, C. Haas and R. Haas. “Fusing 4D Modelling and Laser Scanning for Automated Construction Progress Control”. 26th ARCOM Annual Conference and Annual General Meeting, Leeds Metropolitan University, Leeds (UK), 2010. [2] E. Tufte. Envisioning Information, Published by Graphics Press, Cheshire, Conneticut, 1990. [3] S. O’Keeffe and F. Bosche. “The Need for Convergence of BIM and 3D Imaging in the Open World” CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 12th-13th 2015. [4] F. Bosché, A. Guillemet, Y. Turkan and R. Haas. “Tracking the Built Status of MEP Works: Assessing the Value of a Scan-vs-BIM System”. ASCE Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering, 28:1-28, 2014. [5] Trimble Solutions Corporation. “Tekla BIMsight – Construction Collaboration Software”, 2016. Available online: (last accessed December 2016). [6] Solibri Inc. “Solibri Model Checker”, 2016. Available online: (last accessed December 2016). [7] KUBUS BV. “BCF Managers”, 2016. Available online: (last accessed December 2016). [8] GRAPHISOFT SE. “ARCHICAD”, 2016. Available online: (last accessed December 2016). [9] KUBUS BV. “BIMcollab – Cloud-based BIM Issue Tracker”, 2016. Available online: ollab (last accessed December 2016). [10] L. van Berlo and T. Krijnen. “Using the BIM Collaboration Format in a Server-based Workflow”. Procedia Environmental Sciences, 22:325-332, 2014. [11] GRAPHISOFT SE. “Workflows for using BCF in Project Mark-Up”, 2016. Available online: d-20/archicad-20-referenceguide/collaboration/project_markup/project_mark-

up_interface/workflows_for_using_bcf_in_proj ect_mark-up/ (last accessed December 2016). [12] GRAPHISOFT SE. “BIM Collaboration Format – BCF”, 2016. Available online: d-20/collaboration-guide-for-archicad20/interoperability/bim_collaboration_format_ bcf/ (last accessed December 2016). [13] buildingSMART International. “BCF-XML Documentation”, 2017. Available online: (last accessed January 2017). [14] S. Ochmann, R. Vock, R. Wessel and R. Klein. “Automatic Reconstruction of Parametric Building Models from Indoor Point Clouds”. Computers & Graphics, Special Issue On CAD/Graphics 2015, 54:94-103, 2016. [15] ISO/TC 184/SC 4. “ISO 16739:2013 – Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) for Data Sharing in the Construction and Facility Management Industries”, 2013. Available online: (last accessed December 2016). [16] ISO/TC 184/SC 4. “ISO 10303-21:2016 – Industrial Automation Systems and Integration – Product Data Representation and Exchange – Part 21: Implementation Methods: Clear Text Encoding of the Exchange Structure”, 2016. Available online: (last accessed December 2016). [17] buildingSMART International. “Coordination View Version 2.0 Summary”. Available online: (last accessed December 2016). [18] ASTM International. “ASTM E2807-11 – Standard Specification for 3D Imaging Data Exchange, Version 1.0”. ASTM Volume 10.04 Electronics; Declarable Substances in Materials; 3D Imaging Systems; Additive Manufacturing Technologies, 2015. [19] FARO Technologies Inc. “SCENE Laser Scanner Software”. Available online: (last accessed January 2017). [20] Open Perception Foundation. “Downsampling a Point Cloud using a Voxel-Grid Filter”, 2014. Available online: voxel_grid.php (last accessed February 2017).

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th 2017 [21] Open Perception Foundation. “Estimating Surface Normals in a Point Cloud”, 2014. Available online: normal_estimation.php (last accessed February 2017). [22] R. Schnabel, R. Wahl and R. Klein. “Efficient RANSAC for Point Cloud Shape Detection”. Computer Graphics Forum, 26(2):214-226, 2007. [23] IfcOpenShell. “The Open-Source IFC Toolkit & Geometry Engine”, 2017. Available online: (last accessed January 2017). [24] IfcOpenShell. “IfcOpenShell – README & Usage Examples”, 2017. Available online: (last accessed January 2017). [25] K. Fischer, B. Gärtner, and M. Kutz. “Fast Smallest-Enclosing-Ball Computation in High Dimensions” Proc. European Symposium on Algorithms (ESA), 11:630-641, 2003. [26] GRAPHISOFT SE. “ARCHICAD 21 Reference Guide”, 2016. Available online: ad-21/archicad-21-reference-guide/ (last accessed April 2017).

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Special Education Needs (SEN) School as an example of conversion of CAD based design data and non-graphical information into Common Data Environment with the use of BIM designing programme.

Piotr Nabzdyk1 JSA Architects Ltd 10 Booterstown Ave, Blackrock, Co. Dublin E-mail: Abstract ̶ The subject of this paper is to show how CAD based and non-graphical information has been converted into Common Data Environment (CDE) on the example of SEN School. Initially, school was designed in Cad 2D software with gradually implemented information from Engineers (graphical and non-graphical), technical data from building product Suppliers (documentation) and through information management. Project has been commissioned under Department of Education and Skills (DoES) and entered Stage 2A that required multidisciplinary design coordination. Architects decided to convert all the information acquired so far, into BIM based CDE, with Civil and M&E consultants already working on BIM software. Information Model created in Revit contained the imported and converted CAD drawings sent to Civil Engineers for Structural Analysis and to M&E Consultants for Light and Air-Conditioning Analysis. The returned structural elements have been implemented into model. Light analysis brought the changes to the amount of windows and corrections of suspended ceiling height. Using Site Toposurface created in model, Civil Engineers designed all site services capable to feed the school building. Due to site restrictions, the playground area for older children has been located on the school flat roof. The flooring product for playground required specific roof insulation, slab thickness, that have been specified in the model. To accomplish Stage 2A, coordinated school model has been exported as an IFC file to Quantity Surveyor for information extraction required for Bill of Quantities. The results of the work conducted in CDE was Stage 2A Report with information extracted from the model and delivered supporting documentation that has been handed over to Client. Keywords ̶ BIM, Common Data Environment, Education, SME

I INTRODUCTION JSA Architects, an Architectural Practice from Dublin started designing work over the Special Education Needs School (SEN) building in 2013. The task has been assigned Project Number of 3312 in the Company’s Project Registrar. The Client was St Michael’s House, a charity organisation that helps disabled people (of various dysfunctions, from mile to severe and profound) to acquire the education and care of various degree. The Preliminary stage of the project began from careful site investigation. There were two sites taken into consideration – one in Leopardstown and the second in Ballinteer. After few preliminary design options provided by JSA in Autodesk’s

AutoCAD, Client decided to explore design location in Ballinteer.

II SITE CONDITIONS Site of 5,688 sq.m of area has been located in Ballinteer, Dublin 16, north of the existing petrol station Ballinteer Avenue with the site access to the east of it. There is Our Lady’s Girls National School located to eastern boundary of the subject site and residential houses (Broadford Rise) to the north of the site. Both, the existing girls school and residential area have been defined as the local design obstructions. There are the remains of the residential building located near the southern boundary of the

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 site. These have been planned to be removed from the site. The site is not even in terms of site topography. The levels range from +87.77 in site north west corner to +92.40 at site south entrance. There are mature trees allocated along the eastern boundary of the site. Also there are trees located along the western boundary of the site abutting the open space designated for the existing adjacent residential development. Both location of the trees were to be preserved. There were no existing services on site which were working.

III PROPOSED SITE PLAN Proposed Site Plan took into consideration close location of the residential area in the north of the site, leaving 11,0 meters perimeter free from any built-up area. Proposed L-shape form of the School with internal angle of ca. 135degrees between its wings enabled to allocate the staff car park with school bus bays in front of building entrance and playground area with sensory garden to northwest of the building. Proposed site entrance with the series of adjacent pedestrian ramps has been located at the existing site entrance. The distance from existing girls’ school to eastern end of proposed school is 34.1m and 11.1m to petrol station. The distance of 19.4m from the existing residential development to the end of the northern wing of the proposed building. In order to ensure privacy to school users the existing palisade fencing has been proposed to be replaced with paladine fencing (from petrol station / park side.

above. 6deg roof made of Kingspan standing seam panels on system purlins sloping north covers this part of building that also contains ambulant staircase with the lift, boiler room in lower ground floor level. The middle part is 3 storey high accommodating the classrooms on ground, kitchen, dining rooms, on 1st floor with the play area of porous soft rubber floor on the top, with the access to escape stair leading to ground floor. 2nd floor contains the potential future expansion of the school (classrooms / offices). Eventually, the height of the School drops down to one storey school hall with 6degrees green roof with the barrel vaulted roof lights. This part of the building deliberately is the lowest to have the smallest impact on the adjacent residential buildings. The Zero level of the Project has been set up +89.50m above sea level.

V CAD DOCUMENTATION Basing on DoES Guidelines, JSA responded with the series of CAD drawings (Site Plan, Layouts, Section and Elevations) and the report meeting the requirements of DoES’s Stage 1. Stage 2 required multidisciplinary design coordination accompanied with Bill of Quantities and Construction Cost. Bearing in mind lowering down the costs and provision of the appropriate design coordination, Design Team Members decided to use Autodesk Revit LT 2016 software.

Fig. 2: Site Plan in AutoCAD

Fig. 1: Site Plan

IV FORM AND ARCHITECTURE Proposed building is L-shaped. It has the highest 4storeys part located closest to the site entrance. This part contains classrooms on ground and first floor level, offices and sensory rooms on second with the exit to play area over 1st floor level and plant room

Fig. 3: Ground Floor Plan in AutoCAD

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 level modelled. After 1st floor had been modelled, second floor has been modelled and then the roof using standard Revit tools. Architectural grids have been added during modelling.

Fig. 4: Second Floor Plan in AutoCAD

VI REVIT CONVERSION The AutoCAD drawings have been imported to Autodesk Revit software using ‘Import CAD’ tool from ‘Insert’ tab. Fig. 7: First Floor Level View modelled in Revit

Fig. 5: Import CAD Tool on Insert Tab

Then, using Import CAD Formats dialogue window, the specific CAD file name has been selected (.dwg). Revit asked about Colours, Layers, Units, Positioning and Placement setting (at which Level).

Fig. 8: Roof View modelled in Revit

Fig. 6: Import CAD Formats dialogue window

CAD file has been imported to Revit and placed on specific Project level. CAD file contained all the levels needed to start creating the model using the wall / slab / floor / roof properties as in CAD drawings. CAD file was drawn precisely in order to avoid misalignments after the file has been imported. Proposed model has been constructed level after level, i.e. after ground had been modelled, the imported CAD file has been shifted to the next level (first floor,) simply by changing field ‘Base Level’ in Properties window), properly located and then the 1st

Fig. 9: Imported CAD file into Site Plan view

After the building had been modelled, site has been modelled using Toposurface tool (under Site tab) by placing points where they were located in the imported CAD file. JSA was able to model the site using CAD with Z-coordinates or using Points File (.txt) but those files did not exist at that time. Therefore, Toposurface has been modelled point by point using imported CAD file in underlay.

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Dun Laoghaire Rathdown (local authority) due to sewage and drainage water treatment requirements raised the issue that specific percentage of the site area was designed to be soft landscape and covered with porous asphalt (playground and car parking spaces).

Fig. 12: Glazed Canopy over the main school entrance

Fig. 10: Modelled Site with given site surface and roof surface areas

JSA incorporated green roofs (31% of roof area) in the design (above school hall and above 1st floor level where the roof exit is located) using Bauder XF301 Sedum Blanket Green Roof product. Also soft surface (porous asphalt) in the play area on the roof in middle part of the building (37% or roof area) was proposed.

The curved polycarbonated rooflights (width =1,6m with f=5) have been modelled over school hall (using Sloped Glazing Roof system family) to provide additional daylight to meet the requirements of Building Regulations. JSA also incorporated protective fencing around the outdoor play area located to the northwest of the building as well as the sensory garden in a form of group of several planters.

Fig. 13: Curved rooflights, protective fencing and planters

Fig. 11: 3D View of modelled building from east

VII MODEL DETAILS The modelled building contained a lot of architectural details to enhance its perception by the Client. There were several items on the price list which Client could have considered as unnecessary, like glazed canopy over the main entrance to school building. Glazed canopy also required usage of gutters and rainwater pipes. Fig. 14: Mesh over 2nd floor play area with escape stair

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 JSA proposed protective mesh over roof play area being the first barrier against danger of falling from the height. The green roof with Bauder Blanket over escape stair has been equipped with proper fascia, the gutter and rainwater pipe. Due to differences of the levels on the roof surface, walls with coping have been proposed. There was a roof security ladder proposed over school hall in the model.

Fig. 17: 1st Floor Slab (fragment with the roof structure over school hall) of Downes’ structural model

Fig. 15: Roof ladder over school hall

Fig. 18: 3D View of fragment of Downes’ structural model

Downes’ model contained many structural sections with the series of construction annotations.

Fig. 16: 3D View from northeast to Main Entrance

VIII STRUCTURAL INPUT Downes & Associates were appointed as Civil and Structural Design Consultant and were responsible for site services and structural elements for proposed school building. That included foundations, floor slabs, roof structure, stairs structure design. Downes based on JSA’s architectural model with gridlines, proposed wall thicknesses and rooms dimensions, created their own structural model of the building which contained structural elements. Fig. 19: Section F-F through foundation footing

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Fig. 20: Section J-J through 2nd floor slab and external wall Fig. 23: JSA’s Section C-C with incorporated Downes’ structural design

Structure design by Downes has been incorporated to Architectural Model of the school. That included foundations, 250mm deep hollowcore slabs with min. 50mm screed, steel girders, roof purlins etc.

Fig. 24:JSA’s Southeast Elevation (classrooms, offices, plantroom)

Fig. 21: Section E-E roof slab in play area and mesh proposed nett

IX MECHANICAL & ELECTRICAL INPUT Varming were appointed as M&E Consultants for this project. During Stage 2a they were responsible for Daylight calculations (which has an influence on size of the windows in classes) or ventilation (deciding which of the windows quarters were openable). However, Varming delivered design for Hot Water, Heating, Soils & Waste Services as well as for Electrical drawings, basing on previous Design Stage. Here, M&E Consultant used BIM Level 0 approach (CAD) only, but based on architectural model.

Fig. 22: Downes Associates Logo

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Fig. 25: Varming’s 1st Floor, Protective Services Layouts (fragment)

After the consultation with Varming, JSA has increased the sizes of several windows adding more openable quarters. Also, Varming did Daylight calculations which contributed to the increased windows sizes in the classes / offices.

Fig. 27: Export Revit model as IFC file

XI CONCLUSIONS It is clear that using Revit software increases the pace of work, minimises the risk of human error and provides better interdisciplinary design coordination. Also, creation of complete digital model of the building generates variety of 3D views for presentation. “The real value in BIM is the interoperability of model geometry and metadata between applications (…)Using Revit (…) ensures consistency because the model is the sole source for design geometry” 1.

Fig. 26: Varming’s Ground Floor, Ventilation Services Layouts (fragment)

X QUANTITY SURVEYOR / COSTS Quantity Surveyor needed the Revit model for the material calculations, however in specific, i.e. IFC format. That format enabled to calculate each element in the model regardless of its UniClass.

Fig. 28: 3D View from north with context

Model had to be exported through Application Menu using Export as IFC file..

Fig. 29: 3D View from south with context (petrol station in front)

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REFERENCES [1] Read P., ,Krygiel E., Vandezande J., Mastering Autodesk Revit Architecture 2013, John Wiley & Sons Inc., Indianapolis, Indiana, USA, 2012, p.8.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017


Simon Fraser

Ralph Montague

Hussey Fraser Solicitors


17 Northumberland Road, Dublin 4 E-mail:

311 Q-House Sandyford Dublin 18 Email :

Abstract ̶ The publication by the Government Construction Contracts Committee (GCCC) of its position paper entitled “A Public Sector BIM Adoption Strategy” on 15th March 2017 is a very welcome development and indicates a clear intention on the part of the Government to incorporate BIM processes into the public procurement of construction projects. As the position paper sets out, the adoption of such BIM processes in other countries and also in parts of the private sector in Ireland is already well advanced and it is to be hoped that this experience can be built upon in order to advance the adoption of BIM in the public sector in Ireland quickly. At seminars and presentations regarding the adoption of BIM one issue that arises repeatedly among construction professionals (and, in particular, among architects and engineers) relates to whether the adoption of BIM changes the legal position in relation to the protection of designs and intellectual property. There is a sense and a concern that once a complete 3D software model of a building or structure has been created the intellectual property created by the designer is, in some way, more vulnerable to being “stolen” or used inappropriately. In this paper it is intended to address this issue in the context of the current position of the law in Ireland and in relation to the adoption of Level 2 BIM processes. Keywords ̶ BIM Level 2, Intellectual Property Rights, Copyright, Licences, CIC BIM Protocol.

Copyright One starting point is to identify the rights in law which a designer in construction can claim to his/her work. In this regard the primary right is copyright and, in Ireland, copyright is governed by the Copyright & Related Rights Act 2000 (the CRRA 2000). Copyright protection under common law appears to

have been replaced by the statutory framework. In Intellectual Property Law by Clarke & Smith (1), it is stated (at page 206) as follows: “The protection afforded to an original work through the law of copyright is entirely dependent upon the statutory provisions of the Copyrights Acts, for common law copyright protection has been held to have been swept away by copyright legislation”.

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Copyright is a property right which permits the owner of the copyright to authorise a third party to do certain things in relation to a work which would, except for the existence of the CRRA 2000, be prohibited or restricted. Copyright is a negative right preventing the reproduction, including copying, of physical material and it subsists in a wide variety of work.

Who Is the Owner of the Copyright? The ‘author’ is generally taken to mean the person who creates a work. Section 21 of the CRRA 2000 defines the term ‘author’ by reference to different circumstances. For example, the ‘author’ includes ‘the individuals or group of individuals who made the database, in the case of an original database’ (s21 (g), CRRA 2000). The ‘author’ of the work is the first owner of the copyright (s 23, CRRA 2000) however where the work is made by an employee in the course of employment, the employer is the first owner of any copyright in the work subject to any agreement to the contrary. Copyright in a work which is computer generated lasts for 70 years after the date on which the work is first lawfully made available (ss 30, CRRA 2000) and under the provisions of s 37, CRRA 2000, the owner of copyright has the exclusive right to undertake or authorise others to undertake all of the following acts:(a) To copy the work; (b) To make the work available to the public; (c) To make an adaptation of the work; Each of these acts is called “acts restricted by copyright” and copyright is infringed if any of the acts restricted is done by any person without the consent of the owner / author of a copyright. Secondary infringement comprises a number of dealings without the permission of the copyright owner including selling, importing, making or having in his or her possession, custody or control a copy of the work knowing it to be an infringing copy, or having an article specifically designed or adapted for making copies of that work knowing that it has been or is to be used to make infringing copies. The CRRA 2000 also sets out certain acts, which are exempted from infringement (s 49 – 106, CRRA 2000) for example, copyright is not infringed when a back-up copy of a computer programme is made

(s 80, CRRA 2000) or when anything is done for the purposes of reconstructing a building (s 96, CRRA 2000). Section 17(2)(a), CRA2000 requires that the work be original. The work must originate with the author and be more than a copy of other material (2). An original work, to exist, should demonstrate the exercise of skill or judgment; it should also be an act of individuality (3).

Copyright and works of architecture or engineering It appears that architects and engineering plans can be protected as artistic works. At page 227 [para. 11.43] of Clarke & Smyth it is noted: “Architects’ plans can be protected as such, whether they be of a building or the floor layout of a house or building or a shopfront. Engineering plans are also artistic works.” The CRRA 2000 includes copyright in ‘buildings’ (s 2(1), CRRA 2000). At page 229 of Clarke & Smyth it is stated: “Works of architecture being either buildings or models for buildings [11.53] The use of the word ‘building’ as defined in CRRA 2000 as including ‘any structure’ leave open the question of how far the scope of protection can extend, particularly when there are no design drawings in existence. It has been held that a tennis court can be a building (4) as indeed can a fibre glass swimming pool (5). The unauthorised construction of a facsimile of a building which is of recent construction or the use of a design model to produce a building will infringe copyright in the original building or model for as long as the building or model is within copyright. While many cases involve copying from plans, taking the main features of a building which is itself innovative in design terms may infringe copyright as long as there is a ‘substantial taking’ of the original building (6). In this context the moot issue will sometimes be who is the copyright holder – it may not be the owner of the building because the commissioned work exception in s 10 (3) of CA1963 (now repealed) does not cover architectural work – and it can transpire that substantial taking of design features in

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 order to enhance an extension or addition to the original building may infringe the architects copyright (7).” In the RIAI Contracts by David Keane (8), it is stated at page 82 as follows: “The primary function of copyright law is to protect from annexation by other people the fruits of a man’s work, labour, skill or taste (White and Jacob, Patents, Trademarks, Copyright and Industrial Design [Sweet & Maxwell]). An architect’s copyright of his design lasts for the architect’s lifetime and for a period of seventy years after his death. It is not enough for the Architect to prove that he has designed the building in question in order for him to be protected by copyright. The Architect must be able to prove that his particular design is unusual or original to such an extent that it is unlikely that any other architect would have come to the same design solution. This is difficult to establish in practice. Many designs produced by Architects are generic. This can apply to all classes of buildings but most of the disputes that arise in this particular field deal with houses. If an architect can show that the design derived from a well-known example of the house type, then similarity to other designs also so derived would not constitute infringement of copyright”. And in relation to remedies Keane (8) notes on page 83 that: “If copyright can be established, the only remedy available to the Architect after construction has commenced is damages. An injunction to prevent construction starting could be sought otherwise (The Copyright and Related Rights Act, 2000). The Architect’s claim for damages would relate to the size of his design fee. In this regard White and Jacob referred to above says ‘Architects work for modest scale fees’”. Traditional construction contracts such as the RIAI Contracts did not, however, explicitly provide for the licencing of intellectual property in design. It therefore appears that copyright can subsist in the designs of architects and engineers and that the ‘author’ can authorise a third party to use the work. The question then arises as to whether these rights are altered if the work is created in a BIM


Copyright and BIM In Claims Disputes and Litigation Involving BIM by James M. Doherty (9), it is stated at page 126 in relation to possible legal issues and potential claims relative to BIM / VDC (Virtual Design and Construction) as follows:“The analysis started with a disclaimer that both reported case law and popular reports of BIM / VDC claims / disputes are sparse. Nonetheless, the literature reveals that major issues such as responsible control, legal status of the model, and so on are being considered from a BIM / VDC perspective. In the case of the ConsensusDocs 301, issues like Spearin warranties* and standard of care are explicitly clarified. While issues like 2D3D conversion may present an environment for claims to emerge, there is nothing to suggest those conversions will have a different potential for errors or increased liability to the parties than currently exists in the tracing and iterative use of pure 2D-2D documents. In terms of copyright and intellectual property the Court in Meshwerks Inc v Toyota Motor Sales USA Inc ** (10) was forced to address digital modelling, generally. Specific to BIM / VDC, form documents from the AIA (American Institute of Architects) and ConsensusDocs address data ownership. Likewise, many owner BIM guidelines are explicit in their ownership of BIM deliverables with an eye towards long term facilities management and renovation work. Whether or not BIM / VDC claims will increase in number or type was not a concern” [*Spearin warranties relate to implied warranties as to the adequacy of plans and specifications] [**In the Meshwerks case (10), the court held that a wireframe mesh model of car designs which were produced by digitising actual physical cars and then postprocessing those digital models to produce exact replicas for marketing campaigns did not include anything original and did not deserve copyright protection.] At the BIM Legal Forum – Defining the Legal Landscape – Part 2 (11), Caroline Hayward of

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 Trowers & Hamlin Solicitors evaluated the IPR positions under the JCT, NEC3, PPPC 2000 forms of contract and the CIC BIM protocol. She concluded that: 

The lion’s share of issues are more factual / practical than legal.

Much greater attention is needed with regard to IP record keeping.

Greater development of standard approaches to dealing with IP issues is needed.

The above should lead, longer term, to fewer disputes.

It was noted that, ultimately, the only real requirement is for sufficient licences to be included in the contractual documentation and that intellectual ownership needn’t ever really come into it. Concern over how much IP can be “stolen” and put into the next project should be managed by putting appropriate licences in place for that specific project at that moment in time, as necessary. The current proposal in relation to the adoption of a BIM strategy in Ireland (as noted in the GCCC position paper (12)) is in relation to BIM Level 2. In this regard it is noted by Lesley Currie in “Building Information Modelling: Its Impact on Insurance, Intellectual Property Rights and Design Liability” (SCL paper, May 2014) (13) at page 5: “It is proposed that Level 2 is unlikely to alter “traditional” responsibilities as understood on a non-BIM project. As Level 2 involves each designer creating individual Models which are subsequently brought together, it should be clear, as a matter of fact, which designer was responsible for which element of the design.” And at page 6: “In respect of design, the liabilities in a BIM project are no different from those in a non-BIM project”. Currie concludes at page 13 of the paper: “It is the conclusion of this paper, that although BIM may involve radical changes to the construction industry on the ground, there will be no radical changes required to the legal framework of the

industry generally”. In relation to copyright and BIM it was noted by Marcus Harling, William Gard and Steven James of Burges Salmon LLP (14) that: “The advent of BIM means that the protection of copyright and other IP rights should be considered afresh although BIM (Level 2) in itself does not really change anything in respect of IP rights or law, the creation and use of BIM will require the use of copyright material. Therefore, copyright licences in the project documentation should now allow for copyright material to be used in BIM”. The message is that consideration should be given at a very early stage in the process as to how the licencing of intellectual property in the BIM design is to be managed during the full life cycle of the building or structure. Most of the standard form contracts which provide for BIM, such as the CIC BIM Protocol (15) (‘the BIM Protocol’), address the issue of intellectual property. The Introduction and Guidance to the BIM Protocol suggests that “All parties involved in the use, production or delivery of Models on the Project (“the Project Team Members”) are required to have a BIM Protocol appended to their contracts” (page iv). Clause 6 “Use of Models” addresses the issue of rights in the models and provides that any rights (including copyright) subsisting in the models shall vest or remain vested in the designer (Clause 6.2). Therefore the BIM Protocol does not move rights away from the designer. The BIM Protocol does, however, grant non-exclusive licences to transmit, copy and use the models for the “Permitted Purpose” (Clause 6.3). “Permitted Purpose” is defined as a “…purpose related to the Project (or the construction, operation and maintenance of the Project) which is consistent with the applicable Level of Detail of the relevant Model (including a Model forming part of a Federated Model) and the purpose for which the relevant Model was prepared”. In short, under the BIM Protocol a designer grants a licence to others to use the model for the purpose for which it was prepared.

Designers’ Concerns At recent conferences and presentations regarding the introduction and take up of BIM Level 2 in Ireland one of the recurring concerns raised by

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 designers relates to the ways in which BIM may facilitate the inappropriate and unauthorised use of designs by others. In particular, early adopters appear concerned that, as certain BIM objects were not available from manufacturers but were required for the particular design that was being produced, the designers created the required objects at considerable cost to themselves. Such objects may also have been embedded with data which combination represents a design decision. The fear is that, once these models are shared with third parties, the third parties will be in a position to copy the objects and reassemble them into another design (which may be a different design but using the same objects). In addition, designers appear to fear that by sharing models, others will have the ability to change the model and recreate (extract, derive) new sets of drawings and schedules based on the amended model, with changes that are not approved by the original designer. In relation to these concerns and copyright, the question arises as to whether the level and quality of input and contribution of the designer is sufficiently “unique” and “individual”, etc. to attract protection under the legislation. If so, such copyright should be protected by appropriate licences, the terms of which, if broken, may be grounds for legal action by the designer. If, however, copyright does not subsist in the input and contribution of the designer, then the designer must, prior to tender, factor in the costs and risks associated with creating objects and models that may, ultimately, be used by others. In any event, with the increased adoption of BIM, manufacturers are increasingly making objects for their products and systems available for use in designs and it appears that this concern will decrease over time.

Conclusions Arising from the above it appears that the following conclusions can be drawn:-


In cases where the work is made by an employee in the course of employment, the employer is the first owner of any copyright in the work subject to any agreement to the contrary.


Under legislation the copyright owner may authorise a third party to use the work or make the work available to others. This is usually done through licensing.


The emergence of BIM in construction appears to have caused the various interested parties to more carefully consider the IP issues involved.


Copyright can be asserted in relation to a computer generated model such as a BIM model.


The CIC BIM Protocol provides a licencing structure to facilitate the transmission, copying and use of BIM models on a project.


BIM Level 2 does not appear to change anything in respect of IP rights or law. BIM Level 3 (a wholly integrated model) may, however, raise concerns regarding issues such as ownership of copyright in the integrated model as a whole and its component parts.


All contracts which propose the use of BIM should specifically and clearly address the issues that arise in respect of the management of IP.

10. All contacts that propose the use of BIM should include appropriate licences to facilitate the works and to cover the full life cycle of the building or structure.

Bibliography (1)

Intellectual Property Law in Ireland (Second Edition), Clarke & Smyth, Tottel Publishing, ISBN 1-84592-020-1.


Victoria Park Racing and Recreation Grounds Co. Ltd. v Taylor [1937] 58 CLR 479, at 51.


Copyright in buildings or models for buildings is protected under Irish legislation.


MacMillan & Co. Ltd. v K & J Cooper [1923] 93 LJPC 113.


However, in order to assert copyright the design must be innovative, unusual and/or original and this may not be easy to establish.


Half Court Tennis Pty Ltd v Seymour [1980] 53 FLR 240.


Darwin Fibreglass Pty v Kruhse Enterprises Ptt [1998] 41 IPR 649.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd – 24th 2017 (6)

Eg Beazley Homes Ltd. v Arrowsmith [1978] 1 NZLR 394; LED Builders Ltd. v Eagle Homes Pty [1996] 35 IPR 215.


Meikle v Maufe [1941] 3 All ER 144.


The RIAI Contracts, A Working Guide, 4th Revised Edition, David Keane, RIAI, 2001 ISBN 0946846 588.


Claims, Disputes and Litigation Involving BIM, Jason M. Dougherty, Routledge, 2015, ISBN: 978-0-415-85894-6


Meshwerks, Inc. v Toyota Motor Sales USA, Inc 528 F.3d 1258 (10th Cir. 2008)



GCCC Position Paper, A Public Sector BIM Adoption Strategy, CPP 01/17, 15 th March 2017.


Building Information Modelling: It’s Impact on Insurance, Intellectual Property Rights and Design Liability, Leslie Currie, Society of Construction Law, May 2014,

(14), 28th January 2014, Burges Salmon LLP (


CIC BIM Protocol, Construction Industry Council, CIC/BIM Pro first edition 2013

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 An investigation into the combined use of Graphical Programming and Building Information Modelling to automate the Passive House Verification Process through the use of practical case studies.

Andy McNamara Department of Building and Civil Engineering Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology & Coffey Water Ltd. E-mail: Both Building Information Modelling (BIM) and Passive House (PH) design have recently grown in popularity within the construction sector. BIM and PH verification are very different processes; however, there is one common denominator: Information. Information and data are central to both processes, yet there is currently no method available to easily transfer pertinent data from a BIM to the excel based PH verification software, Passive House Planning Package (PHPP). The author has previously written on a similar topic relating to BIM and PH verification using C# and VBA add-ons to link the BIM authoring software to the PHPP. This process resulted in time savings of 99.98%, however, lead to a one-way flow of information, rather than the dynamic, “live-link” that this paper proposes. Typically, when verifying a Passive House, hundreds of pieces of data are manually inserted into the PHPP. This is extremely time consuming and often results in human error. This paper aims to change that, by developing a methodology and workflow to holistically merge the Passive House verification process into the BIM process during the design phase through the use of custom scripts developed through graphical programming add-ons. The paper will demonstrate the process of creating a “live-link” between a PH designed using a BIM authoring software and the PHPP, meaning that if an element is modified in the BIM authoring software, the corresponding elements in the PHPP will update, thus ensuring the analysis is always up to date and accurate, allowing for real-time analysis of the design model. Keywords - Passive House, Dynamo, Revit, Automate, Verification

I INTRODUCTION The Passive House concept was created in 1988 by Dr. Wolfgang Feist (Institute for Housing and the Environment) and Professor Bo Adamson (University of Lund, Sweden). The concept was developed though a number of practical research projects resulting in Dr. Feist building the world’s first Passive House in Darmstadt, Germany in 1991. In 1996, Dr. Feist founded the Passive House Institute (PHI). The Passive House standard is a voluntary building standard of construction that incorporates extreme levels of air tightness, “superinsulated” thermal envelopes and very low amounts of energy consumption. A Passive House is defined as: "a building, for which thermal comfort (ISO7730) can be achieved solely by post-heating or post-cooling of the fresh air mass which is required to achieve sufficient indoor air quality conditions – without the need for additional recirculation of air” (1). When built to Passive House Standard, a building should remain at a constant temperature of 20°C

throughout the entire year. 20°C is considered to be the ideal indoor temperature (2) and offers year round comfort. This constant temperature is usually achieved by virtue of highly efficient heating, ventilation, air conditioning (HVAC) Systems and heat exchangers paired with an “air tight” and “super insulated” envelope. The main premise of Passive House is “minimising heat losses from the building and maximising heat gains into the building” (3). For a building to be certified as Passive House standard it must comply with Table 1. (4). Table 1: Passive House Energy Performance Requirements Annual Heating

≤ 15 kWh/m2

Annual Primary Energy

≤ 120 kWh/m2


≤ 0.6 ACH @ 50 Pa

To be sure a building genuinely meets Passive House standard there is an independent verification

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 process. The certification process can only be carried out by Passive House Certifiers accredited by the Passive House Institute in Darmstadt, Germany. The only Certifier in Ireland is MosArt, Co. Wicklow. Although the standard is voluntary, it offers a reassurance to the home owner knowing their home / building is built to a high standard (4). Once the building has been adequately modelled in the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) and all drawings are completed, they are submitted to a certifier. Rather than reviewing and checking the designer’s complete PHPP file, the certifier produces their own separate PHPP calculation using the information provided by the designer as an independent check. “The Passive House Planning Package is a design tool to help architects and Passive House Designers achieve the Passive House or near- Passive House ultra low energy standard. It takes guesswork out of the design process by accurately predicting a proposed design’s energy performance” (5). PHPP is a detailed dynamic energy simulation program required to plan every Passive House. It is a Microsoft Excel (Excel) based set of algorithms comprised of 36 separate worksheets and divided into two parts; building and material properties, and mechanical services. Among the inputs are the treated floor area, the orientation and type of windows (both glazing and frames), detailed construction of the walls, the floor and the roof with the thermal conductivity and the thickness of each material, rather detailed data for the ventilation system including length and insulation of the ductwork, the heat distribution and Domestic Hot Water system, as well as data for boilers and electricity. PHPP incorporates all these figures into the algorithm and calculates the annual heating demand and total primary energy (1).

Fig. 1: Diagram outlining the information flow throughout the PHPP (6).

II PHPP CALCULATION PROCESS As seen in Fig. 1, different worksheets are linked to other worksheets and affect the calculation results in the Verification worksheet. The program does not require that every cell be filled in. If the user does not specify any information the program uses the default values, or leaves it out of the calculation (1). The results of the analysis are displayed on the Verification worksheet. This Verification worksheet is the single most important output of PHPP. As its name implies, the verification worksheet displays the criteria outlined in Figure 1 and the numerical value of each criteria. By doing this, the user instantly knows if a house meets the Passive Standard. It is worth noting that the PHPP is not a temporal building simulation software system; i.e., it cannot calculate the building energy usage at a given time or on a given day. The package uses monthly averages for its climate data when calculating the building performance and as such the calculations used within the package will give a very close approximation of how a building design may perform but not predict the buildings performance at the extremes of a local climate.

III BIM for Passive House Design “Research is lacking regarding the use of BIM to support accreditation/certification to schemes such as Passive House” (7). Despite this, it is obvious from the limited research that has been carried out that collaboration between the two processes is possible and would be greatly beneficial in all aspects of design, construction and cost savings. While it has been proven that the combined process could work and positively impact a build, there is still no way to implement these changes using a BIM authoring tool and the PHPP. Cemesova and Hopfe et al., (7) state that “in order for BIM to support Passive House certification, data transfer would have to be more direct between BIM tools and the PHPP analysis tool.” Similar to the PHPP, BIM increases productivity and accuracy, while saving time and money but does not design a well planned, sustainable buildings. Neither PHPP, nor BIM authoring software of any kind can achieve this without the input of competent individuals with the expertise, experience and understanding of how buildings work and how people use said buildings. (8). To summarise, several parallels can be seen between BIM and Passive House design: a)

Design and process are central; neither are a box-ticking compliance exercise.

b) Information matters most. Colourful, graphical images alone are of no benefit

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 to the process. c)

Rigorous model analysis and testing are crucial; the design is built virtually to get it right, then built only once on site.

meet a number of practical, research based objectives. These objectives are outlined below: a)

IV GRAPHICAL PROGRAMMING & DYNAMO Graphical programming, also termed visual programming uses the concept of textual programming, but simplifies the process by replacing textual code snippets with graphical components. The graphical code snippets are without syntax errors and are visually presented as graphical nodes. The nodes can have inlets, outlets, input fields, sliders, buttons etc. Memorable graphical interfaces like buttons, sliders, switches and visual display units are recognized by the users from the real world (12). Dynamo is a free, open source software that allows the user to access the API of numerous software packages including Revit and Autodesk Navisworks through graphical programming (13). It has been “heavily influenced by a number of visual programming interfaces that have come before”, namely the graphical programming tool for Rhino; Grasshopper. (14). “At its core, Dynamo is built to be deployed to any application, and to create new opportunities for cross-platform and cross-discipline collaboration” (15). Primarily, Dynamo accomplish two tasks: it “creates its own geometry with parametric relationships” and it “reads and writes to and from external databases” (13). This transition into graphically driven parametric design introduces the possibility of bulk manipulation of components as well as quick modification of model entities allowing combatant users to increase both accuracy and workflow. The open source nature of Dynamo means it is not possible to licence or sell individual scripts. This has caused controversy within the Dynamo community relating to developers protecting their intellectual property rights to scripts (12).

V METHODOLOGY A certified Passive House was identified and chosen as a case study. The dwelling is a 178m2 traditional style, three bedroom Irish home of block construction. Taking into account 2011 (when the dwelling was designed) prices the heating cost of the house is €121.00 per annum and cost €190,393.00 to build. This dwelling was modelled using the BIM authoring tool, Autodesk Revit. The focus of this study is to analyse the combination of Passive House verification paired with BIM and graphical programming while exploring new areas and issues where little guidance is available. This study aims to

Create a standard Revit to PHPP template file. It is hoped that this paper is used as a future guide for others if they decide to implement and embrace its principles. Workflows will be developed to allow quick and simple implementation of BIM in Passive House design in the planning stage through the use of a case study.

b) Develop a “Live-link” between the BIM and the PHPP. The data transfer from the BIM authoring tool to the PHPP workbook will be completed as directly as possible, with minimal interaction in a bi-directional fashion (windows only). c)

Time reduction. The amount of time required to populate all the data required on the window, shading, area and volume, wall, roof, floor areas and building information worksheets for the above case study by the Passive House Designer was 21 hours.

The methodology has been divided into two stages. The first stage aims to develop a number of Revit parameters to facilitate the information requirements of the PHPP. The aim of the second stage is to transfer pertinent information from Revit to the PHPP using the visual programming tool; Dynamo. These parameters can be saved to a Revit template for use in future projects without the need to recreate them for future projects. The Revit parameters in question mimic those required by the PHPP for its calculations. For example, by default in Revit, a window has a number of parameters. These parameters include Width and Height. Thanks to the parametric nature of Revit, as the window size changes the Width and Height parameters automatically update to reflect the changes. These parametric values will be passed through a Dynamo graph to allow them to be transferred to the appropriate cells in the PHPP Excel sheet. This process will be used to allow the transfer of all pertinent data to the PHPP. Due to the large quantity of data that will be transferred from the Revit model to the PHPP, this paper will focus only on two major sections of the PHPP; treated floor area & volume and windows & shading.

VI AREA AND VOLUME IN PHPP Unlike the majority of energy simulation software, PHPP does not use the “true” floor area of a building (9). PHPP measures the floor area by measuring the Treated Floor Area (TFA). The TFA deals only with living or useful area, also known as the “carpeted area” (10). It is a measure of the utilisation of the

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 building. Using TFA, each area is weighted as a percentage (100%, 60% or 0%) depending on the use of the rooms. The weighting is outlined in the table below: Table 2: An explanation of treated floor area percentages(1).

Fig. 2 : Example of utility room schedule within Revit (left) and custom room tag (right) displaying the newly created parameters. Once the additional parameters were created and populated with information, Fig. 3 was created in order to better understand the data flow from Revit to the PHPP.

The volume figure required by the PHPP is known as the enclosed volume. This volume does not include walls or intermediate floors. It is best described as “fill a building up with water, pour it out, measure the volume of the water.” (PHPP Definitions, n.p.) When dealing with area and volume figures within PHPP, numbers to two decimal places are sufficient. Autodesk Revit can automatically calculate the area and volume of any given room using a standard room family and display this information through room tag. Despite this, it cannot measure the TFA of a room without the addition of custom parameters and equations. The standard Revit room tag generally only shows three parameters, the room name, room area (m2) and room volume (m3). To determine the TFA, two new parameters must be created: a)

Fig. 3 : UML Activity Diagram outlining the data flow required to complete the transfer of TFA data from Revit to the PHPP.

TFA Percentage

b) TFA TFA Percentage is shown as a percentage and must be inputted by the designer in accordance with Table 2 depending on the use of the room. TFA is a result of a simple formula comprising of the Room Area and TFA Percentage. The equation is as follows: TFA = Room Area x TFA Percentage. For example, if a utility store (TFA Percentage = 60%) has a gross floor area of 6m2 the calculation would be:

Fig. 4 : Dynamo script used to capture the appropriate room parameters and transfer to the relevant cells in the PHPP.

TFA = 6m2 x 60%
 TFA = 3.71m2

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VII WINDOWS IN THE PHPP Windows are critical elements in any Passive House or low-energy building, and this is reflected in the PHPP. Window areas, window u-values, solar radiation through the glazing and the corresponding reduction factors are determined in the “Windows” worksheet. Values for the glazing and frame are taken separately from the “WinType” worksheet. By doing this, different glazing may be used with different frames, or vice versa to achieve the best performing combination. For ease of use, the WinType worksheet will be completed manually as it is short and takes a minimal amount of time. In order for the PHPP to perform its calculations, certain information must be provided. The criteria are discussed below as per (1). a)

Angle of inclination from the Horizontal: Describes the angle between an imaginary line normal to the window and the zenith. Thus, a vertically installed window will have an angle of 90°.
Orientation: This is automatically calculated using the “Deviation from North” data.

h) Window Rough Openings: The dimensions of the windows height and width taken using the rough openings.
 To facilitate the window data from Revit to the

PHPP, a number of parameters must be created matching the above criteria. Once created the below UML diagram (Fig. 5) was developed to generate the data flow. Once the data flow was confirmed, a Dynamo graph (below) was created to replicate this flow of data.

b) Description: A word or name used to describe the window. W-N-01 (Window – North – 01).

Deviation from North: Measured as an angle in the horizontal plane between a line perpendicular to the window and the northsouth axis. North is used as the reference direction. All angles are measured in the clockwise direction relative to North. North - 0°, South - 180°, Southwest - 225°.

d) Installation: A measure of the thermal bridge effect or Psi-value measured in W/mK. e)

Quantity: The quantity of each window type listed.


Results: The results of the window calculations are shown here. The results show the window area, glazing area, window u-value and fraction of glazing for each window listed.

g) The installed, glazed, frame, g-value, uvalue and ψ-spacer are all calculated from the WinType Worksheet.

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IX CONCLUSIONS The manual nature of populating a PHPP workbook is a clear burden to Passive House designers. The workflows proposed in this paper aims to automate the majority of this process in order to save time and reduce the risk of human error. The findings of this paper have been promising with each of the three research objectives in section V being achieved. The open source nature of Dynamo paired with the obvious advantages of integrating the BIM and PH verification processes allow the research outlined in this paper to be further expanded upon for future research and development that could potentially become an integral part of PH design in the future.

REFERENCES Fig. 6 : Dynamo script used to transfer data from the BIM to the PHPP. The above Dynamo graph (Fig. 6) outlines the data transfer of the Width and Height parameters from each window in Revit to the PHPP. This process is identical for all window data to be transferred.

[1] W. Feist, Passive House Planning Package PHPP, 1st ed. Darmstadt: Passive House Institute, 2013. [2]

S. Hyun, "Shifting of Thermal comfort zone Due to Outdoor temperature", MSc, The University of Texas, 2006.


L. Antonelli, "21st Century Fox - Detached home gets passive house makeover in Foxrock", Passive House Plus, no. 04-09, 2009.


J. Cotterell and A. Dadeby, The passivhaus handbook, 1st ed. Cambridge: Green Books, 2013.


J. Cotterell and A. Dadeby, The passivhaus handbook, 1st ed. Cambridge: Green Books, 2013, p. 91.


S. Lewis, PHPP illustrated. A Designer's companion to the Passive House Planning Package. London: RIBA Publishing, 2014.


A. Cemesova, C. Hopfe and Y. Rezgui, "PassivBIM", in EWork and eBusiness in Architecture, Engineering and Construction, G. Gudnason, Ed. Hoboken: CRC Press., 2012, pp. 29-36.


E. Burrell, "BIM for Passivhaus design: delivering radical reductions in energy in use",, 2013. [Online]. Available: imForPassivhausDesign.asp#!. [Accessed: 08- Jun- 2017].


J. Cotterell and A. Dadeby, The passivhaus handbook, 1st ed. Totnes, Devon: Green Books, 2013, p. 57.

IIX RESULTS As outlined in section III, the large amounts of time required to model a building in the PHPP is a huge barrier to many Passive House designers. As stated in V the time taken to model the window, shading, area, volume, wall, roof, floor areas and building information of the case study took the designer approximately 21 hours using traditional methods. The time taken to complete these tasks using the methods described in this study was approximately 9 seconds. This colossal time reduction not only shows the time saving and productivity aspects of the methods described in this paper, but also the huge commercial potential in a market that until now, remains almost completely untouched. The “live-link� feature discussed in V was achieved, meaning when an element in the BIM authoring tool is modified, the Dynamo graph will refresh itself and the data in the PHPP will update to reflect those changes. During the case study it was found that this process began to slow the software until eventually becoming unworkable. The simple solution to this is to disable the Dynamo graph from running constantly in the background and manually run the graph when required. This will update all the linked data between the Revit model and the PHPP in an average of 9 seconds, allowing the designer to see all instantly assess the buildings performance. All custom Revit parameters and Dynamo graphs

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 [10] Passive House Planning Package ....the essential Passive House design tool. SEAI, 2010, p. 48. [11] "PHPP Definitions", . [12] T. Vogt, "Current application of graphical programming in the design phase of a BIM project: Development opportunities and future scenarios with 'Dynamo'", MSc, UNIVERSITY OF NORTHUMBRIA AT NEWCASTLE, 2016. [13] M. Sgambelluri, "Simply Complex: WHAT IS DYNAMO?", k, 2015. [Online]. Available: 1/what-is-dynamo.html. [Accessed: 21- Jun2016]. [14] K. Kensek, "Integration of Environmental Sensors with BIM: case studies using Arduino, Dynamo, and the Revit API", Informes de la Construcciรณn, vol. 66, no. 536, p. e044, 2014. [15] F. Fralick, "Presentations: Computation | BIMForum", [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 22- Jun- 2016].

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Building Capabilities in Complex Environments BIM Gathering 2017

CitA BIM Gathering Proceedings

BIM Education and Training Page 187

CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 The potential to enhance and develop BIM capabilities of companies in the AEC sector through collaboration with third level institutions in knowledge transfer partnerships (KTPs)

Gervase Cunningham1 Sharon McClements2 Mark McKane3 and David Comiskey4 School of the Built Environment Ulster University E-mail: 3 Abstract ̶ Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) are projects that are developed between third level educational institutions such as universities or colleges and companies through which these institutions share and develop knowledge and assist industry in business development. The KTP process provides businesses with the opportunity to improve their competitiveness and productivity through the better use of knowledge and technology. The KTP process also permits the increase in business relevance of knowledge based research and teaching for the educational institutions involved. This paper looks at the potential of KTPs between academia and companies in the AEC sector and how they could achieve a range of objectives in the development of theoretical and practical educational materials for BIM curriculums. Keywords ̶ KTP, BIM, ADOPTION, POTENTIAL, CAPABILITIES, BARRIERS, EDUCATION, LEARNING, ACADEMIC, COLLABORATION, IMPLEMENTATION

I INTRODUCTION Higher education institutions have a responsibility for the dissemination of managerial knowledge in society (Rajat, 2012). This is developed further in the research of Hope (2016) who observed that the remit of higher education institutions such as universities in recent years has progressed beyond education and research to that of engaging with a diverse range of stakeholders to deliver services that provide social and economic benefits, shifting to an inclusive model for the exchange of knowledge. With regard to the construction industry the Lambert Report (2003) recommended that universities should develop knowledge exchange activities with industry in order to complement and stimulate teaching and research capabilities within the higher education sector. The research of Arayici, Egbu & Coates (2012) also established that within construction organisations learning was increased and there was a better shared understanding of BIM was established through knowledge exchange. The research further noted that forward lean thinking was established which led to investigations as to how further efficiencies could be gained and also how BIM could benefit other aspects of construction activities such as health and safety, labour training, communication

on site, construction planning and monitoring. Therefore, the construction industry’s route map to collaboration and high efficiency can only be underpinned by BIM and the importance of its adoption cannot be overestimated (The Farmer Review of UK Construction Labour Model, 2016). The one key area that industry and academia could benefit from closer collaboration is on BIM. This need for to collaborate has been emphasised by the rapid evolution of BIM technology which has not only highlighted the importance of research and development to improve knowledge of BIM, but has also encouraged innovation in the application of BIM in real-world projects (Jack & Cheng, 2015). However, BIM is not just a technology; it is also a project management tool and process, which allows all project stakeholders to collaborate more efficiently and effectively than under traditional processes (Xianbo, 2017). This paper outlines the Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) process and how its philosophy of collaboration between academia and industry and focus on knowledge exchange and development can be harnessed to further promote BIM adoption in industry and to also enhance knowledge on BIM within both industry and academia. Kwawu et al (2010) observe that successful knowledge transfer will provide innovative ideas that can then be applied to

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 successive projects. This is further developed in the research of Hope (2016) who observed that KTPs have also been identified as being very important in promoting innovation (Hope, 2016). Innovation that is based on mutual interest and trust (Edwards, 2007).

II OUTLINEOF THE KTP PROCESS Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) have emerged as an important method of facilitating knowledge exchange as they address the limitation in the development of associated educational material (Coates & Arayici, 2010). The KTP process is a formal relationship between a company and an academic institution, which will facilitate the exchange and transfer of knowledge, technology and skills to the company partner who cannot access these from other sources and to provide practical industry experience back to the academic partner (Hope, 2016). For the KTP to work the company requires to identify a core strategic need and in collaboration with the academic partner develop innovative solutions to this need that can assist in business growth (Choudrie & Culkin, 2013). Therefore, it is an approach that has also been extremely successful in encouraging practicebased learning at higher education level (Harris, Chisholm & Burns, 2013). The KTP was created in the UK in 2003 as a government-led initiative to support and assist organisations and were formerly known as the Teaching Company Scheme (Choudrie & Culkin, 2013). They arose in the 1980s from UK government economic policy that has pursued a strategy of encouraging the creation of an economy that is knowledge (Edwards, 2007). The partnership uses a recently qualified graduate known as an associate to work in the company generally for twenty-four months, but can be for a period of between six and thirty-six months, on a project of strategic importance to the business, whilst being supervised by university academics (Hope, 2016). It is important to note that a KTP can involve more than one associate (Choudrie & Culkin, 2013). As well the recently qualified graduate or graduates a KTP project will also involve an industrial supervisor and an academic who collaborate to share knowledge for mutual benefit (Edwards, 2007). In the arrangement the KTP associate holds a pivotal place in the collaboration and is central to the knowledge transfer capacities of such projects (Gertner, Roberts & Charles, 2011). Therefore, these collaborative arrangements are established for the purpose of allowing members of the host firm to work with academics and the associate or associates to resolve a business problem through

the introduction of new technologies or management practices (Edwards, 2007). In the UK governmental support for a KTP is provided through a subsidy for participating organisations: This subsidy contributes towards the cost of the academic institution’s participation and the company makes up the balance of the project cost. Therefore, the subsidy is provided to cover the academic supervisor’s time providing expertise to the project and attending meetings. However, the subsidy is not entirely provided externally and entirely by the government. It requires a vested interest from the organisation when diffusing an innovation. Therefore, from a monetary aspect the KTP risk is shared between the academic institution, the government funding agency and the company (Choudrie & Culkin, 2013).

III THE POTENTIAL BENEFITS OF KTPs TO ENHANCE BIM CAPABILITIES BIM has developed over the last three decades into an important technology in the AEC sector in the capturing, storage, sharing and management of building information over the whole life cycle of a building (Jack & Cheng, 2015). Choudrie & Culkin (2013) noted in their research that following completion of a KTP, there is usually significant increased profitability for the company as a result of the improved quality of operations and accessing of new markets. Evidence in the research of Arayi, Egbu & Coates (2012) develop this further by noting that BIM implementation through a KTP project is a relevant alternative to addressing key construction sector issues, and offers solutions that increase productivity, efficiency, quality; reduce costs, lead times and duplications through the effective application of collaboration and communication amongst stakeholders on construction projects. With regard to the academic institution KTPs lead to an enhancement in teaching and learning from subsequent course content development (Choudrie & Culkin, 2013). This is as a result of academics gaining access to the work-based environment where they can experience working alongside company staff on current projects, building knowledge which in can subsequently develop future research and the delivery of work-based case studies (Harris, Chisholm & Burns2013,). This is confirmed in the research of Hope (2016) who observed that benefits to university’s include the development of relevant and current teaching materials, the opportunity to initiate new research projects and publish research papers, all of which may contribute to funding and quality assessments

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 such as the UK Research Excellence Framework. Therefore, academic supervisors gain industrial experience allowing them to become more knowledgeable tutors (Coates, Arayici, Koskela, & Type, 2010). The KTP process has also provided a sustainable and successful method for universities to engage with employers at post-graduate level (Harris, Chisholm & Burns, 2013). The associate or associates employed on the KTP, also benefit from the opportunity to manage a challenging project and participating in a recognised career development programme, where on average of 73 per cent of associates have been offered employment by the company involved upon completion of their project (Hope, 2016). Therefore, the KTP process can provide a range of benefits for each partner taking into account globalisation, continual technological innovation and the need for a competitive economy (Harris, Chisholm & Burns, 2013). With regard to BIM Eadie et al (2014) observed that a KTP can facilitate more efficient implementation by learning through a bottom-up approach and dealing with resistance to change rather than top-down approach from management. Therefore, partnership between industry and academia is one of growing importance as technologies continue to be developed and need to be implemented into the classroom as well as industry (Anon).

IV BIM BARRIERS TO SUCCESSFUL IMPLEMENTATION OF KTPs TO ENHANCE BIM CAPABILITIES Peattie (1993) cited in Edwards (2007) observes that many of the barriers to the successful delivery of a KTP project include process difficulties linked with the control and delegation of responsibilities in any partnership. Context issues and the extent to which the nature of the firm influences the innovation process were also highlighted as well as content issues linked with knowledge communication. This was also noted by Gertner, Roberts & Charles (2011) who observed that developing a shared understanding among the partners to facilitate knowledge transfer was an issue. Contractual difficulties and fears over confidentiality in the KTP agreement can also result in inadequate knowledge exchange (Hope, 2016). This is also confirmed by Xianbo (2017) who noted that conflicts over intellectual property (IP) rights for knowledge and innovation can be an issue. Facilitating the important role of the associate partner as focal point to drive the project and to

transfer knowledge between university and industry was identified as a potential issue.(Gertner, Roberts & Charles, 2011). Another potential barrier to a successful KTP project is the competence of the associate in the knowledge transfer process and that they must become competent in both the university and industry community through the adopting of a dual identity (Gertner, Roberts & Charles, 2011). There may also be a reluctance of academia to get involved as Choudrie & Culkin (2013) observed in their research that the main beneficiaries of a KTP are the company rather than the academic institution. Xianbo (2017) also noted that higher education institutions are rated as low importance as a source of knowledge for innovation. Harris, Chisholm & Burns (2013) record that academics are still reticent and employers still, in the main, fail to see the advantages of KTPs. The research of Eadie et al (2014) observed a number of barriers to BIM implementation generally which include lack of senior management support, cost of implementation (software and training),scale of culture change required, other competing initiatives, lack of supply chain buy-in, staff resistance and ICT literacy, legal uncertainties, ownership and intellectual property, contractual arrangements, product liability risks, professional indemnity insurance and authenticity. However, the research of Eadie et al (2014) further identified that the main barriers by those already using BIM were concerns about return on investment and a general lack of vision of benefits, the scale of culture change required within the organisation and then the lack of flexibility� and cost of training, barriers that could be overcome by the promotion of BIM. In comparison the three least important barriers for those who already implementing BIM were, legal uncertainties, staff resistance and lack of staff ICT literacy and technical expertise. The three least important barriers for those who had not implemented BIM were the lack of senior management support�, other competing Initiatives and the cost of training, which indicates that senior management generally are supporting the move towards BIM adoption. However, effective knowledge transfer between higher education institutions and industry is inhibited by the inherent barriers which exist in the transfer of knowledge such as lack of relevant tacit knowledge on behalf of the researchers who create knowledge; the ineffective documenting and disseminating of knowledge created which inhibits diffusion of knowledge; the lack of adequate motivation within practitioners to change their current mindset and behaviour patterns and the ineffective contextualisation and adaptation of knowledge by practitioners restricting effective

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 utilisation of new knowledge by industry (Xianbo, 2017).

V PRELIMINARY SURVEY AND DATA ANALYSIS In order to elicit the key drivers and barriers for the use of the KTP process to enhance BIM adoption a preliminary electronic survey was issued to professional members on Linkedin. The survey was produced using LimeService. Using data analytics within LimeService, the results of the survey have been analysed to determine the means ranking of the key drivers and barriers to KTP. In total 19 surveys were completed and returned. The largest AEC sector to return the survey was Construction with 11 survey responses (58%), followed by Architectural and Surveying with 7 survey responses (37%), then Engineering with 1 survey response (5%). Respondents were then asked to identify their knowledge of KTP. Overwhelming the majority of the respondents had previous experience of KTP , 68%, and only 32% of the respondents had previous/ current experience of KTP. Table 1 identifies the level of knowledge and understanding that the respondents have regarding KTP. Table 1 – Levels of knowledge with AEC sector on KTP



No Knowledge

6 (32%)

Limited Knowledge

7 (37%)

Fair Knowledge

3 (16%)

Good Knowledge

2 (11%)

Excellent Knowledge

1 (4%)

Collectively the respondents had no - limited knowledge of KTP (69%), with (31%) of respondents have fair - excellent knowledge. This data highlights the need for Institutions offering KTP to do more to make the AEC sector aware of this provision. Table 2 presents the findings on the respondents’ level of knowledge of BIM

Table 2 – Levels of knowledge with AEC sector on BIM Response


No Knowledge

0 (0%)

Limited Knowledge

3 (16%)

Fair Knowledge

13 (68%)

Good Knowledge

3 (16%)

Excellent Knowledge

0 (0%)

Table 2 identifies that the majority of the respondents had fair knowledge in BIM (68%), whilst 16% have limited knowledge and 16% have good knowledge. No respondent felt that they had either no knowledge or excellent knowledge. Data analysis was conducted in the survey response to ascertain the means ranking of the key drivers and key barriers of using KTP to enhance BIM. Table 3 – Ranking of Drivers of KTP to enhance BIM adoption Driver


Improved Quality of Operations


Improved Collaboration


Enhance Communication


Efficiency of BIM implementation


Improved Efficiency


Increased Productivity


Access to New Markets


Reduced Costs


Increased Profit


Table 3 identifies the highest-ranking (moderate) drivers for using KTP to enhance BIM is Improved quality of operations, improved collaboration between project stakeholders and enhanced communication between project team members.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 The lowest ranking (slight to moderate) barriers related to reduced cost and increase in profit. These finding suggests that cost is not a key driver and that the benefits of improved quality, collaboration and communication outweigh the cost of implementing at KTP. Table 4 – Ranking of Barrier of KTP to enhance BIM adoption



Lack of Senior Management Support Unknown Cost Competing Initiatives

3 3 3

Transfer of Knowledge Competence of Associate

Technical Expertise Delegation of Responsibilities Staff Resistance Shared Understanding Lack of Vision Cultural Change Issues of Conflict

1 1

6 7 7 9 9 9 12

Dissemination of Knowledge IPR Reluctance of Academic

13 13 13

Contractual/Legal Issues


Return on Investment


ICT Literacy


VI CONCLUSION In the analysis of the preliminary survey it has highlighted there is a clear linkage between the levels of knowledge of KTPs within the AEC sector and the ranking of barriers to the use of KTPs to enhance BIM adoption. The survey as previously outlined recorded that a combined total of 69% respondents have limited or no knowledge of KTPs which is reflected in the response to the main barriers to the use of KTPs to enhance BIM adoption being the ability of a KTP to effectively transfer knowledge, the competence of the associate appointed, the unknown cost and competing initiatives. Therefore, the survey has identified a clear need for the AEC sector to be better informed about the adavantages of using the KTP process and confirms the research of Xanibo (2017) outlined earlier which identified lack of adequate motivation within industry to change their current mindset and behaviour patterns which restricted effective utilisation of new knowledge such as BIM and its adoption. The preliminary survey also highlights and confirms literature that academia need to be more proactive in promoting the advantages of the KTP process to the AEC sector to enhance BIM adoption. However, the preliminary survey has identified the requirement for a larger a survey across the AEC sector in Northern Ireland to obtain more comprehensive and detailed data and identify how the KTP process to enhance BIM adoption within the AEC sector can be promoted and implemented more effectively. There is also the potential of carrying out a similar survey in the Republic of Ireland and to subsequently compare and contrast results.

REFERENCES Table 4 identifies the highest ranking barrier to KTP to enhance BIM adoption. The results show that the highest ranking barriers (moderate barriers) are the ability to effectively transfer the knowledge and the relative competence of the associate employed by the KTP, then lack of senior management support and the unknown costs. These barriers suggest that there is still insufficient understanding on how KTPs operate and how knowledge is captured and utilised effectively. The lowest ranking barriers (a slight to moderate barrier) to using KTP to enhance BIM adoption included ICT literacy, Return on Investment and Contractual Issues. These lowest ranking barriers show that the technical and legal and financial aspects of KTP were not major deterrents in implementing a KTP.

1) Arayici, Y. Coates, P. Koskela, L. Kagioglou, M. Usher, C. O'Reilly, K. (2011) "BIM adoption and implementation for architectural practices", Structural Survey, Vol. 29 Issue: 1, pp.7-25 2) Choudrie, J. Culkin, N. (2013) "A qualitative study of innovation diffusion: the novel case of a small firm and KTP", Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 20 Issue: 4, pp.889912. 3) Coates, P, Arayici, Y and Koskela, LJ (2010) “Using the knowledge transfer

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 partnership model as a method of transferring BIM and lean process related knowledge between academia and industry: A case study approach”.Coates, P, Arayici, Y and Koskela, LJ Type Conference or Workshop Item. 4) Eadie, R. Comiskey, D. McKane, M. (2014) “Teaching BIM in a multidisciplinary department”, Proceeding of Education, Science and Innovations, 2014 5) Edwards, T. (2007) "A critical account of knowledge management: agentic orientation and SME innovation", International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, Vol. 13 Issue: 2, pp.64-81. 6) Gera, R. (2012) "Bridging the gap in knowledge transfer between academia and practitioners", International Journal of Educational Management, Vol. 26 Issue: 3, pp.252-273

Association of Researchers in Construction Management, 839-848. 12) Patterson, J. (2014) "Walking with intangibles: experiencing organisational learning", Journal of Management Development, Vol. 33 Issue: 6, pp.564579 13) Xianbo Z. A scientometric review of global BIM research: Analysis and visualization Automation in Construction 80 (2017) 37 – 47 14) http://www.constructionleadershipcouncil r Review.pdf. 15) view_final_450.1151581102387.pdf

7) Gertner, D. Roberts, J. Charles, D. (2011) "University‐industry collaboration: a CoPs approach to KTPs", Journal of Knowledge Management, Vol. 15 Issue: 4, pp.625-647 8) Harris, M. Chisholm, C. Burns, G. (2013) "Using the Knowledge Transfer Partnership approach in undergraduate education and practice‐based training to encourage employer engagement", Education + Training, Vol. 55 Issue: 2, pp.174-190 9) Hope, A. (2016) "Creating sustainable cities through knowledge exchange: A case study of knowledge transfer partnerships", International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 17 Issue: 6, pp.796-811. 10) Jack, C.P. Cheng, Q. L. (2015). A review of the efforts and roles of the public sector for BIM adoption worldwide. Journal of Information Technology in Construction (ITcon), Vol. 20, pg. 442478 11) Kwawu, W, Elhag, T and Ballal, T (2010) Knowledge transfer processes in PFI/PPP: critical success factors. In: Egbu, C. (Ed) Procs 26th Annual ARCOM Conference, 6-8 September 2010, Leeds, UK,

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“Tri-varsity, Inter-disciplinary BIM Workshop” An Action Research International Example Chisholm, G.(1), Duxbury, L.(3), Müller, E.(2), Olner, G.(3), Robertson, F.(3) 1. Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT), Waterford, Ireland: 2. VIA University, Aarhus, Denmark: 3. Sheffield Hallam University (SHU), Sheffield, England: ABSTRACT: The negative effects of adversarial attitudes among those with architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) backgrounds in the industry has been highlighted by various reports advocating the need for inter-disciplinary working skills from those entering practice. The education of those in the AEC sector is determined in collaboration with professional bodies and educational quality assurance agencies which ratify this recommendation. This presents a challenge for Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to devise opportunities for collaborative working across disciplines, traditionally educated in ‘silos’ and, more importantly, to encourage innovation in the assessment of the learning involved. The challenge often necessitates an attitudinal shift in the educators in HEIs, often accused of mimicking and perpetuating said adversarial behaviours in practice. This paper proposes that a collaborative BIM project presents an ideal opportunity to devise an educational vehicle to simulate 21st century, inter-disciplinary practice; taking the form of an inter-varsity, interdisciplinary, fictitious collaborative design using BIM, devised in collaboration with Danish, Irish and UK architectural technology (AT) HEIs. The educators initially came together through ICAT net-working and Erasmus exchange. They had experienced the benefits of international exchange both educationally and culturally. The workshop was envisaged and collaboratively devised to introduce collaborative Building Information Modelling/Management (BIM) workflows to the students across the three institutions; primarily with students from Architectural Technology (AT) and Construction Management programmes but later included, during the North Quays Project at WIT, Sustainable Energy Engineering (SEE4) and Quantity Surveying (QS4) students. The multi-national approach not only allowed staff and students to experience and learn from the implementation of BIM within other institutes but also to appreciate the nuances of each AT programme: its curriculum, approach to construction and educational setting. This paper presents the cyclical process of the development of the tri-varsity, inter-disciplinary BIM workshop following its inception through its three evolutionary sessions; Sheffield Hallam University (SHU) (March 2015), VIA University (VIA) (October 2015) and Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) (November 2016). Each participating university, through discussion and reflection, summarises the professional and cultural self-development of participants at each sequential, evolutionary stage of the process; including any under-pinning theory and involvement of professionals in the AEC sector. The fourth workshop scheduled for November 2017, and hosted by SHU, aims to enable integration between student, educator and practice participants. Thus, it is anticipated, creating opportunities for a positive, paradigmatic shift away from adversarial relationships between the AEC disciplines in practice and education. Keywords:

adversarial attitudes in the AEC sector, the challenge of collaboration across disciplines, collaborative BIM project, pedagogy of inter-disciplinary/collaborative design, action research, reflective practitioners, integration between education and practice

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Devising Architectural Education Collaboratively


The theory that the project team in practice is composed of ‘domain experts’ each with welldefined and explicit fields of knowledge (Penn, 2008) underpins this research. The negative effects of adversarial attitudes among those with architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) backgrounds in the industry has been highlighted by various reports (Latham, 1994; Egan, 1998) advocating the need for inter-disciplinary working skills from those entering practice. This presents a challenge for Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to devise opportunities for collaborative working across disciplines, traditionally educated in ‘silos’ and, more importantly, to encourage innovation in the assessment of the learning involved. The challenge often necessitates an attitudinal shift in the educators in HEIs, often accused of mimicking and perpetuating said adversarial behaviours in practice. A vocational course such as architectural technology (AT) must be devised with an evolving curriculum which reflects changes in professional practice. In order to provide evidence of what the curriculum should be, effective and conclusive research needs to be done (Emmitt, 2006). The educators involved with this BIM initiative, came together as like-minded people, through net-working during the International Congress on Architectural Technology (ICAT) 2013, hosted at Sheffield Hallam University. There were subsequent Erasmus partnerships and teaching exchanges. Thus, they had experienced the benefits of international exchange both educationally and culturally. The initial workshop was envisaged and collaboratively devised to introduce collaborative Building Information Modelling/Management (BIM) workflows to the students across the three institutions; primarily with students from programmes in Architectural Technology (AT) or AT and Construction Management, but later included, during the North Quays Project at WIT, Sustainable Energy Engineering (SEE4) and Quantity Surveying (QS4) students.

The Challenges to Collaborative Working Emmitt (2002) states that over the last fifty years successive government reports and much research have encouraged those in the building industry to work more collaboratively to repair the damage done by increasingly fragmentary and adversarial relationships. Egan (1998) building on Latham

(1994) stated that whilst the UK construction industry at its best is excellent, there is too much client dissatisfaction, low profitability and little investment in capital, research and development, and training. The Egan report was the work of a Task Force of industry specialists informed by their experience of radical change to improve in other industries. It recommended five key drivers of change; committed leadership, a focus on the customer (client or end-user), integrated processes and teams, a quality driven agenda, and commitment to people. The way of achieving reduced cost, construction time and defects was through radical changes to the processes by which projects are delivered: specifically, through the creation of a more integrated design and construction process (Egan, 1998). On consideration of the three main phases of a construction project; conceptual design, detail design, and site assembly; there are two identifiable links in these three sequential activity areas where the transference of information is crucial to the faithful realisation of the building project from conception to completion. Architectural technologists are ideally placed to act as this constructive link (SAAT, 1984) and the more effective and clear the communication is between the participants in the process, the better the completed building will meet the beneficiaries’ needs (Emmitt, 2002). Technical knowledge and skill are not enough in practice, the participants in a building project must have the necessary social skills to work together effectively and efficiently (Emmitt, 2010). This social interaction might be face-to-face or by means of Information Communication Technologies (ICTs). Concepts highlighted in the Egan report were; design, project and construction management, quality management, inter-disciplinary practice and teamworking, understanding of client and user requirements, ‘lean thinking’ and business efficiencies, and value management (Egan, 1998, page 22). The more recent HM Government, Department for Innovation and Skills report, Construction 2025 (2013) provides an update on the future aspirations of the construction industry. This has five visions for the future of the industry; broadly they envisage a diverse industry with rewarding and attractive career prospects, a worldleader in research and innovation which embraces ICTs and smart construction, sustainable through design, cost, supply and life-cycle efficiencies, and with clear leadership from the Construction Leadership Council. In their publication of 2012 entitled ‘Boosting Employability Skills’ the Confederation of British Industry (CBI, 2012) reported that businesses require graduates who not only have the

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 skills to do the job but who can aid the organisation to evolve in the face of continuous and rapid economic and technological change. The rapid change in the building industry is the reason that the QAA benchmark statement for architectural technology (QAA, 2014) is revised every seven years but perhaps this period is too long: employer surveys have reported such a rapidly changing workplace that it is difficult to predict the skills required of graduates even in the next two years (Helyer and Lee, 2014). This future uncertainty should not just be assumed but through collaborative research between academia, industry and the professional body, the future application of ICTs to the practice of architectural technology should become more predictable.

ment. Again, the students were required to present their Revit designs models from a costing and construction project management perspectives. At the de-brief session, the educators agreed that the next workshop should allow both educational and cultural exchange. The students had experienced the rigours of a Danish education’s timetable: an early start and long days. The prospect of the incorporation of students from more disciplines was promoted. The pedagogy at VIA is premised uniquely on group working and the partner institutions felt they could learn a lot from the collaborative educational model. Ernest Müller from VIA provided the background theory to group co-operation.

WORKSHOP 1 - Sheffield Hallam University (SHU) (March 2015)

The students from the Architectural Technology and Construction Management program (ATCM) at VIA University College (VIA) participated in the Tri-varsity workshop for the first time in October 2015, in Horsens, Denmark. A lecturer from VIA was, however, present as an observer at the first workshop in March 2015 at SHU, UK. Prior to their arrival in Denmark, the SHU and WIT students were pre arranged into groups with counterparts from VIA. The groups were put together arbitrarily with only care to include approximately the same number of people in each group and have at least one student from each institute, and, of course, allocate the necessary disciplines to each group. The size of each group was approximately 8-10 students.

The first workshop took place over two days, starting with some keynotes speakers from Autodesk and architectural (technology) practice. Student participants were from the tri-varsity collective and from the universities of Derby, Huddersfield and Sheffield. The participants worked on a given simple Revit model and worked in their teams to divide the model into work sets. Ernest Müller from VIA gave an introduction to the construction management software on the second day. There was a varying degree of success in using both Revit and the costing and programming software amongst the groups. The feedback from participants, gained via a survey, conveyed that both their knowledge of and use of BIM Modelling/Management software had increased during the workshop. Educators surmised that the workshop should be longer, more structured and there should be more lectures and tutorial help with the implementation of the software.

WORKSHOP 2 - VIA University (VIA) (October 2015) In May 2015, Liane Duxbury visited VIA from SHU on an Erasmus teaching exchange. It was felt that her area of expertise, the environmental design should be the theme of the second workshop. During this workshop, there was a keynote environmental design case study. The students attempted to use Revit daylight analysis during the workshop to test the appropriateness of their façade design as a mediator of daylight into the internal environ-

THE TASK Teaching staff at VIA set the assignment for the workshop, which was approved before the workshop commenced by SHU and WIT. A 3D BIM-model, comprising a column-beam load bearing structure and the empty shell of a building was delivered to the groups. Each group was asked to design an architectural layout proposal for an office building or shopping mall within the confines of the said 3D model. Apart from the layout proposal, a lighting analysis for the building (required by SHU), a cost estimate, and the scheduling of the implementation of the project, including the cash flow for costs, were a requirement at the end of the 3-day workshop. Software such as Revit (3D design), Sigma (cost estimation), Sefaira (Environmental Analysis) and MS-Project (scheduling) was to be

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 used as tools to achieve the desired result. The proposal was to be delivered as 3D, 4D and 5D. This was a multi-disciplinary task, which would require the involvement of several disciplines and, because VIA already used it, Problem/Project Based Learning (PBL) was used as the pedagogical method for the workshop. Briefly put, PBL is: “A learning method based on the principle of using problems as a starting point for the acquisition and integration of new knowledge.” (Barrows and Tamblyn, 1980). The major factor that differentiates PBL from other pedagogical models is the “problem-based” element, which is: “work on the problem is explicitly used to get the students themselves to identify and search for, the knowledge that they need to obtain in order to approach the problem” (Ross, 1991:36). Pettersen (2001) writes: “in order to make the work of teaching truly student-centered, it is necessary for it to take its outset in practical and open tasks, which find their content and themes from concrete and practical situations” In other words, by giving the students a description of a situation, we are putting them in a functional context, i.e., in a situation which contains the same challenges and issues that they will face in a real-life context, and letting that situation be the outset for their learning (Pettersen, 2001). This also meant that teaching staff would only give introductory lectures in connection with the assignment, an introduction would be given to new software, etc., but teachers would generally work in a supportive role. Presentations of group proposals, and how they arrived at them, was the requirement at the end of the 3-day workshop, and all group members should participate in the presentation. At VIA, the traditional method of teaching ATCM courses in accordance with the “focused method1” had already been abandoned in the late seventies in favour of the more multi-disciplinary project orientated pedagogical methods, and later PBL. This was approximately about the same time as PBL was introduced at Harvard University in the USA and other institutions in Europe, such as Limburguniversitetet in Holland and


A polite name for the ”silo”term mentioned in the abstract

Hälsounviversitetet in Linköping, Sweden (Pettersen, 2001). VIA has had an international ATCM course comprising students from a multitude of countries working in multinational groups from the very outset of PBL in Denmark. These students have worked in groups with PBL projects throughout the whole 3½-year duration of their education. Therefore, VIA-teachers were confident that their own students were well equipped for the Trivarsity collaboration in October 2015. A substantial part of the study in PBL is working in basic groups. The idea is that the group will function as a support network for the individual student, and is a safe social platform for the learning process and the learning effort (Pettersen, 2001). In comparison to VIA´s collaborative educational course, SHU and WIT use the “focused method”, which is highly curriculum driven and the product is, therefore, specialists in specific disciplines. VIA´s ATCM course teaches a combination of disciplines comprising architecture, construction, structural design, installations and project management. Therefore, the product here are generalists in all these fields of construction. At the Tri-varsity workshop, we were, therefore, mixing the focused method´s specialists (from SHU/WIT) with the PBL method´s generalists in common groups, and basing the task on PBL. THE CHALLENGE: The mixing of students of the two pedagogical methods at the Tri-varsity workshop results in challenges as we are establishing a new structure for student-based learning. Pettersen (2001) writes that the problemsolving strategy of PBL tries to create a proximity and similarity between the learning situation and the future, practical real-life context. In addition, that research by Godden and Baddeley (1975) shows that groups, which were tested for their knowledge in a changed context, fared worse than the ones that were tested in the same environment as the learning had taken place in. Therefore, it is assumed that this is also true with regard to learning in the workshop environment. Namely, that the students who are used to PBL would find it easier to work in the workshop environment and get benefit from it than the students who were not

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 used to PBL. However, further research on this subject is necessary in order to determine whether this is true or not. So, one of the first challenges in ordinary PBLlearning is to establish a common culture conducive to cooperation between group members (in our case, between specialists and generalists) while at the same time establishing an environment for teaching staff, whose role it is to motivate the learning process, to empower the students, to give directions and occasionally answer questions. Under no circumstances must the teaching staff revert to teaching in accordance with traditional methods. The PBL environment has particularly pronounced challenges because of the requirement for process skills like project management, communication and collaboration, and the cultural diversity in the PBL groups necessitate these skills from both students and educators – and all this in addition to their technical abilities ( Kolmos, Du, Holgaard & Jensen, 2008). A challenge arises in connection with particular disciplines or extending the groups with new disciplines from workshop to workshop. As the groups get bigger and bigger from workshop to workshop (as witnessed at WIT in Nov. 2016), the more unmanageable the group work becomes, and the less and less the disciplines on the periphery of the group feel as part of the social network of the group. Pettersen (2001) writes that learning does not happen in a social vacuum, as it is a social and interpersonal process, which happens in relationships within the groups. Participation, dialogue and reflection are key to the understanding of group life, group processes and interactions within the group. Members must, to some extent, be engaged in active cooperation to be able to call it a group. It is about interaction in face-to-face relationships involving close physical of social contact. The idea is that the group must function as a supportive and safe social platform to facilitate the individual´s learning, as this can be seen as an agent for the individual´s and group´s learning process. An example with regard to the Tri-varsity group work, especially where the “focused method” students are concerned, is that it is difficult for some specialist disciplines, e.g., the Quantity Surveyors, to take ownership of, e.g. the architectural proposal, and be part of the social

fabric of the group, as they are not active in the initial design process and are usually in a waiting stance to do “their bit” in the assignment – usually at the very end of the assignment. So, for much of the time, these students are idle in their groups or do not arrive into the groups before it is time for them to be there. Therefore, they do not always feel that what has happened before their arrival is part of their sphere of expertise or responsibility. The ideal size for groups in a PBL setting is from 3-9 persons (Pettersen, 2001). Because of the many disciplines involved, the BIM-workshop groups are only borderline ideal. Students´ participation level is important for effective learning in a PBL context (as mentioned above). Student-centered learning emphasizes the hands-on approach to solving the assignment and it is important that the students communicate with one another and the teachers (Kolmos, Du, Holgaard & Jensen, 2008). It is also difficult to determine students´ participation level in large groups, and ways must be found to engage everyone in the group in discussions on all issues. The question, therefore, for the planning of future workshops is: how do we make the specialist students participate and take ownership of the whole project, and is new research in the area for mixed-pedagogical method groups necessary? During 2015/16 the SHU educators devised a new level 6 ‘Inter-disciplinary Practice’ module. The learning gained from the workshops and the psychologies of group work were both incorporated into the content of this module. The third workshop, hosted by WIT, was used as the basis of an assignment in this module.

WORKSHOP 3 - Waterford Institute of Technology (November 2016): The initial workshop in Sheffield explored 3D modelling, 4D time & 5D cost from a given model. The second workshop introduced sustainability to the mix and the additional aspects of daylight analysis to optimise the building floor plate. Students were awarded marks as part of their respective modules within each programme for the workshop final presentations. The feedback following these workshops from staff and students was to include students from other AECO disciplines, develop cultural trips, prior knowledge

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 of software to be used, timescale and method of approach for the workshop; above all, the students enjoyed the collaborative workshops. The BIM collaborative process for WIT AT students built upon the previous academia-industry partnership project completed in May 2013 in which a commercial project at the tender stage was shadowed by WIT Architectural Technology, Quantity Surveying & Construction Management students, then presented to the design team. The outcomes from this identified the benefits of real world problem solving to the student's education along with enhanced engagement/participation. Although each discipline worked well in their respective areas (silo’s) collaboration was limited due to the allocated project time on each programme (Thomas. K, 2013). In preparing a brief for the third tri-varsity workshop the wider WIT AEC programmes were invited to participate from the outset to ensure participation in the development of the workshop and that all students would be involved for the full three-day event. This allowed the development of a brief that covered design, structure, solar, energy and wind analysis and to cost the projects. The brief was to redevelop Waterford North Quays, recently designated a Strategic Development Zone in January 2016; with eight towers, each approx. 10,000m2 and min. 30 storeys tall and a 50/50 mix between office & residential accommodation. There were eight teams of nine students mixed evenly between institutes & disciplines. A fundamental element to the work process established was the formation of a ninth team comprising of one person from each team who would develop and coordinate a master plan for the overall site and feed this back to their respective teams. The North Quays Project methodology built upon the earlier feedback and expanded the role of the WIT Architectural & BIM Technology year 3 students. A full module (Architectural Communication & BIM 5) was dedicated to the workshop. In preparation, the students set up and managed a common data environment (CDE) using Autodesk BIM 360, inviting team members to join, developed a BIM execution plan (BEP) including Gantt charts, prepared project Revit files with shared coordinates and set up file management & naming conventions per BS 1192 2007+A2 2016. This ‘prelude’ all served to break

the ice within the student teams as they all contributed and agreed their roles and responsibilities prior to the workshop kick off meeting in Waterford. The key outcome to the prelude was to establish a clear project management structure for the delivery of a coordinated team to design, analyse and cost a 30 plus storey mixed use building as part of the redevelopment of Waterford’s North Quay without the teams losing time organizing themselves on the first workshop day. The opening presentation was made by Chris Bakkala, a specialist engineer in tall building design. His presentation was exceptionally informative for the students & staff and formed the basis of the tower designs & analysis, in particular, core design and “hiding from the wind”. Throughout the workshop, the students collaborated within their own teams, across teams via the master planning team and inside their respective disciplines to deliver a complex building design, master planned and costed within effectively a 2-day workshop. The North Quays Project was a snap shot of an ongoing and evolving collaboration between three institutes delivering Building Information Modelling within their respective programmes. Conclusions from the Waterford workshop are that future projects are set around the delivery of a tall building. This suits all three institutes as tall building design is not covered anywhere else on their programmes; the next workshop in Sheffield will look at refurbishment and extension of a local condemned tall building. Maintain the prelude set up and develop real-time collaboration during the workshop. The WIT Sustainable Energy Engineering & Quantity Surveying programmes will attend future workshops and SHU who are hosting the next event intend inviting other SHU disciplines to take part. The energy and enthusiasm that each student, team and Institute has brought to the workshops was again clearly evident in the final presentations and sets up the Inter-disciplinary BIM Workshops for long and vigorous future.

Built Environment Futures Research The fourth workshop scheduled for November 2017, and hosted by SHU, aims to enable

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 integration between student, educator and practice participants. Thus, it is anticipated, creating opportunities for a positive, paradigm shift away from adversarial relationships between the AEC disciplines in practice and education. This will involve practitioners, as well as educators and the knowledge gained, will be used to inform practice through education and vice versa. It is the intention to disseminate this research thus contributing to the application of theory into practice for the AT professionals of the future. The premise of the current workshop is to explore collaboration in the 'cloud': specifically, to create a collaborative exercise which requires the participants to create an architectural 3D model from a given 3D structural model. The student and practice participants, put into teams, are enabled to work collaboratively 'in the cloud' prior to coming together physically during the three-day workshop. They will be given a schematic 3D MEP model at the beginning of the workshop and use clash detection software to identify and design out the unacceptable clashes collaboratively, between their distinct disicplinary groups within their project teams. Feedback will be sought from all participants. Already, the challenges are being revealed; the main one being the negative reaction from architectural practices that use different 3D modelling software: the concomitant barriers to information exchange across platforms thus, antithetically, inhibiting their inclusion in the workshop exercise. Resolving this is an on-going task and the focus of the research-informed evolution of the tri-varisty and industry collaboration.

DEPARTMENT FOR BUSINESS, INNOVATION AND SKILLS, 2013. Construction 2025: industrial strategy for construction - government and industry in partnership. HM Government. EGAN, J., 1998. Rethinking Construction. London: Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions. EMMITT, S., 2006. Investigating the Synergy between Teaching and Research in a Teaching-led University: The Case of an Architectural Technology Undergraduate Programme. Architectural Engineering and Design Management, 2(1), pp. 61. EMMITT, S., 2002. Architectural technology. Oxford: Blackwell Science. FELLOWS, R., and LIU, A., 2008. Research methods for construction. 3rd ed.. edn. Chichester; Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell. GODDEN, D and A.D. BADDELEY, 1975. Contextdependent memory in two natural environments: On land and under water. British Journal of Psychology. HELYER, R. and LEE, D., 2014. The Role of Work Experience in the Future Employability of Higher Education Graduates. Higher Education Quarterly, 68(3), pp. 348-372. KNIGHT, A., and RUDDOCK, L., 2008. Advanced research methods in the built environment. Chichester; Oxford: Wiley; Wiley-Blackwell. KUHN, T.S., 1962. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions Vol. LATHAM, M., 1994. Constructing the Team. London: HMSO. QAA, 2014. Subject Benchmark Statement: Architectural Technology. Gloucester: The Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education. PETTERSEN, ROAR C, 2001. Problembaseret LĂŚring PBL, for elever, studerende og lĂŚrere, Universitetsforlaget, Oslo ROSS, B, 1991: Towards a Framework for ProblemBased Curricula. Boud & Feletti SOCIETY OF ARCHITECTURAL AND ASSOCIATED TECHNICIANS, 1984. Architectural Technology: The Constructive Link. London: SAAT. THOMAS, K (2013). Collaborative BIM Learning via an Academia-Industry Partnership, Construction IT Alliance BIM Gathering 2013, Dublin.

References ANETTE KOLMOS, XIANGYUN DU, JETTE E. HOLGAARD and LARA PETER JENSEN, 2008. Facilitation in a PBL Environment, Aalborg Universitet BARROW, H. S. and TAMBLYN, R.M., 1980. Problem-based Learning: An approach to Medical Education, New York: Springer. CONFEDERATION OF BRITISH INDUSTRY (CBI), 2012-last update, Boosting Employability Skills. Available: [12/18, 2014].

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Linking Geospatial Engineering into Collaborative Multidisciplinary BIM Projects - an Educational Perspective

Avril Behan1, Helen Murray1, Jonathan Argue2, Ronan Hogan1, Audrey Martin1, Pat O’Sullivan3, Robert Moore3, and Malachy Mathews1 Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton Street, Dublin 11 Topcon Ireland, Blanchardstown Corporate Park 2, Ballycoolin, Dublin 152 Grangegorman Development Agency, Dublin 13 E-mail:



Abstract ̶ This paper describes the background to and execution of a postgraduate project undertaken by students on DIT's MSc in Geospatial Engineering (GeoEng). The students carried out a survey of an existing structure and its surroundings for level 2 BIM usage by students on the MSc in applied Building Information Modelling & Management (aBIMM). The requirement for the aBIMM project was to carry out a multidisciplinary, BIM-based retrofit of and new build extension to the Grangegorman Clock Tower Building. In support of this requirement, an external and internal survey of the existing structure and its surrounding topography was required. The aBIMM students and staff acted as the Design Team who subcontracted to the Geo Eng group. The Geospatial Engineers were organised into a survey team with a Topcon Ireland surveyor as team leader and with the support of a survey equipment specialist and a number of Chartered Geomatics Surveyors. Facilitated by the Grangegorman Development Agency, the survey team carried out a reconnaissance and survey of the Clocktower building and area over a 2-week (part-time) period using robotic total stations, GNSS, and laser scanners. Data was processed using a variety of proprietary and open-source software applications to create a homogeneous point cloud and supporting topographic information. The point cloud data was provided to the aBIMM students in Autodesk Recap format in Irish Transverse Mercator co-ordinates and they developed their designs towards submission for Planning Permission. The aBIMM teams also carried out significant analysis of energy performance, constructability and costing. Students and staff, at the end of the project, recognised the need for significant upskilling of both Geospatial and Design professionals around the different requirements, time-scales and costs, associated with surveying for BIM versus traditional survey deliverables. The experience of this project showed that these design teams would be prepared to pay for a more value-added product than the basic point cloud. The onus now is on Geospatial practitioners to take advantage of the opportunity afforded by collaborative BIM to engage early, often, and meaningfully in projects, and this will bring benefits to the geospatial profession as well as to the client, to the design team, and to the wider economy. Keywords ̶ BIM Education, Collaboration, Geomatics, Surveying, Laser Scanning, Point Cloud.

I INTRODUCTION The interdependence of BIM and Geoscience is clearly articulated in this quote from two editors of the International Journal of 3-D Information Modelling, Sisi Zlatanova and Umit Isikdag: “BIM

does not apply abstractions or simplifications; all components are represented with their true 3D shape” [1]. To capture this “true 3D shape”, both accurate and precise geospatial measurement techniques are required.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 While Geospatial Engineers have, for over 20 years, utilised geospatial databases to underpin graphical representations of reality via Geographic Information Systems (GIS), due to the scale of these systems, typically regional or national, some features are represented in generalised, simplified form. This is the digital equivalent of the simplified representations (symbols) used in medium- to smallscale mapping, e.g. at scales of larger than 1:10560. The new aspect of surveying for BIM is that the survey information can now be readily viewed by the client, in this case the designers, at 1:1 scale. It is thus essential that Geospatial professionals communicate clearly and comprehensively with their clients about the quality of their data and its appropriate usage. No measurement is error free. All survey instrumentation is shipped with specification information that defines achievable accuracies and precisions in ideal situations. (A concise definition of the terms accuracy and precision, in the context of level 2 BIM, is given in [2]). Instruments must be calibrated to both maintain the original specifications and to measure inherent errors (e.g. in lenses, lasers or levelling). Once instrumental errors are known, they can be minimised through the application of appropriate adjustments [3]. Errors in method are minimised through the utilisation of proper procedures and the implementation of checks during all workflows. Although systematic methods are used to minimise errors, geospatial professionals must ensure that endusers are aware of the limitations of their data and that data is only utilised in the appropriate context. The Survey4BIM (@Survey4BIM) working group of the UK BIM Task Group has produced a number of guides to assist with dissemination of this information to clients including ‘Survey and the Digital Plan of Works’ [4] and a ‘Client Guide to 3D Scanning & Data Capture’ [5]. Private companies such as Murphy Surveys and Ploughman Craven have also produced excellent client guides for this purpose. Currently, the Survey4BIM group, of which some of the authors are members on behalf of the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland’s (SCSI) Geomatics Professional Group, is working on the Big5 geospatial challenges to Geo-Enable successful BIM level 2 [6]: Accuracy, Geospatial Interoperability, Metadata, Level of Detail / Definition, and Generalisation. All of this work requires translation into industry, which is being achieved through widespread dissemination activities at conferences such as Geo Business and Survey Ireland, and in relevant publications such as the Civil Engineering Surveyor journal of the Chartered Institute of Civil Engineering Surveyors. The importance of appropriate use of geospatial data also needs to become embedded in the

education and re-education professionals around BIM.



This paper describes the progress made to date at the Dublin Institute of Technology in relation to creating a Geo-enabled BIM culture. In the next section, the context is described for a specific initiative where Geospatial Engineering (Geo) and applied Building Information Modelling & Managing (aBIMM) postgraduate students jointly addressed a Client EIR in relation to the Clocktower Building at Grangegorman. Next the operation of the initiative is described, followed by lessons learned. The paper finishes with some conclusions about the future of Geo-enabled BIM education.



DIT has promoted the integration of BIM and Geoscience since as early as 2007 when the teaching of Autodesk Civil 3D was first incorporated into the BSc (Hons) in Geomatics in the School of Surveying & Construction Management. Since 2013, a full BIM module, focussing on the integration of geospatial data, such as point clouds, into BIM authoring software, has been operational on that programme [7]. Learnings gained on the DIT programme have been shared with Geomatics educators in other locations, such as HTW Dresden, University of Applied Sciences, and the outcomes have been published at FIG (International Federation of Surveyors) Working Week 2014 [8]. DIT has a unique position in the provision of BIM education in Ireland with a College of Engineering & Built Environment (CEBE) that is organised into seven Schools (Figure 1), all of which have current or potential links to full lifecycle BIM.

Fig. 1: Schools in the College of Engineering & Built Environment at DIT

From seeds in the Dublin School of Architecture and accelerated by Government funding through the Springboard initiative, two CPD Diplomas at level 8 were developed in BIM and Collaborative BIM and delivery commenced in 2012 [9]. A development team of staff from across the College created a programme to meet the challenge of upskilling professionals from the construction sector during the crash after the Celtic Tiger. Over the next three years,

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 these programmes were developed into a suite of level 9 modules with exit awards at Postgraduate Certificate and Postgraduate Diploma levels, and a terminal award of MSc in applied Building Information Modelling and Management (aBIMM). The first stage of the MSc programme comprises 15 ECTS credits of discipline-specific, technologyfocussed modules (named as Streams), 10 credits of core, common modules (in Theory & Practice of BIMM and Federated BIM Collaboration), and a 5credit elective where students gain overview knowledge of the technologies and processes associated with another BIM discipline. The second stage focuses on interaction between multidisciplinary teams with Collaborative BIM Process (10 credits) and Multidisciplinary Collaboration Project (15 credits). The final 5 credits in this stage are collected from a suite of electives. Stage 3 combines a 5-credit Research Skills module with a 25-credit Capstone Experience, where students confront a current problem in BIM and produce a journal-style paper (see Reinhardt, O’Sullivan and Mady at this conference) and an ePortfolio detailing their proposed solutions, results and learning journey. One of the major intentions of the transition from CPD Diplomas to a level 9 aBIMM suite of modules was to support integration with a range of existing and future postgraduate programmes in the College. As well as sharing of elective modules, two particular integration initiatives are noteworthy: a) Civil & Structural Engineering Students undertaking the Civil & Structural Engineering stream of the MSc in aBIMM take two modules jointly with students on the MEng in Sustainable Infrastructure. These modules are Introduction to Sustainable Infrastructure and Advanced Structural Design b) Geospatial Engineering Developing from a single module of Geomatics content that was included in the previously mentioned CPD Diploma in BIM Technologies [9], two modules of the Geomatics stream of the MSc in aBIMM are shared with the MSc in Geospatial Engineering: Point Cloud Science and Systems & Practice 2. Additionally, in the 2016/2017 academic session, students on the MSc in aBIMM who chose to undertake the Cross-Domain Geospatial Engineering module (i.e. the elective where professionals have the opportunity to sample another discipline’s technologies and processes) were taught jointly with all students on the MSc in Geospatial Engineering who were taking a core module called Geospatial Engineering for BIM.

One of the goals of this integration was to develop deeper mutual understanding between professionals. The final cohort included students from the disciplines of Civil Engineering, Architectural Technology, and Building Services Engineering, in addition to the Geospatial Engineering group. The delivery of the module was designed to maximise the cross-pollination between disciplines by encouraging interaction and by requiring students to work in mixed groups to solve problems or to undertake tasks that required knowledge from both the Geoscience and BIM arenas. In support of these links between the aBIMM and Geospatial Engineering programmes, a further initiative was undertaken in the 2016/2017 academic session. Students on the Geospatial Engineering programme have an option of undertaking 100 hours of Work Placement. This can be difficult to operate in reality because it equates to only 2 weeks of placement time, which is of limited value to employers. To address this difficulty, while still ensuring that students achieved the learning outcomes of the Work Placement module, the Programme Team of the Geospatial Engineering programme liaised with the aBIMM Team to set up a reflective scenario. During the 2nd stage of the aBIMM programme, students undertake an intensive Multidisciplinary Collaboration Project worth 15 ECTS credits (approximately 300 learning hours). Multidisciplinary teams of construction and design professionals receive a brief for a design project that must be produced, up to planning stage, including appropriate construction scheduling and adherence to sustainability and lean principles. A detailed description of the pedagogy unpinning the delivery of the module is given by Mathews in [10]. While previous collaboration projects on DIT’s BIM programmes had been based entirely on new builds, in 2016/2017 the decision was made to base the project around the retrofit and extension of the Clocktower Building at Grangegorman, thus incorporating both new and as-built BIM.

III CLOCKTOWER BUILDING, GRANGEGORMAN a) History Designed and built in 1816 by the architect Francis Johnston (1760-1829), the building’s first function was as the Richmond Penitentiary [11]. Johnston was an architect for the Board of Works (predecessor of the Office of Public works (OPW)) and his work there included the Chapel Royal at Dublin Castle and the General Post Office. Among his other important

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Dublin buildings are Griffith’s Barracks, St Andrew’s Church, Royal Hibernian Academy, St George’s Church, the former Central Bank in Foster Place and the former Houses of Parliament in College Green.

Fig 3: Plan of Grangegorman building from survey [12] To support the collaborative design work, the programme team were provided with plans, sections and elevations of the building by the Grangegorman Development Agency. However, the team designing the project wished to incorporate a wider range of surveying techniques, particularly, the use of point cloud measurement, to replicate the norms developing in industry. c) Response to the brief

Fig 2: Clocktower Building, Grangegorman (DIT photo) b) The Hypothetical Design Brief The design brief provided to the MSc students was hypothetic and does not represent the actual plans for the building or the site. All updates on the development of the Grangegorman site are available at: For this project the Client’s brief specified: 1.


Retention of the existing structure parallel to the road (running along the left side of the plan in Fig. 3) and refurbishment for use by administrative staff. Buildings to the rear of the Clock Tower (Fig. 3) would be demolished and replaced by a fully serviced 300-seat auditorium with coffee shop, car parking and stage access.

A group of five Geospatial engineering students were set up as a Survey Team with a Surveyor from Topcon Ireland as the Team Lead. Supports for the Survey Team were provided by a DIT Survey Equipment Specialist and by a number of Chartered Geomatics Surveyors who lecturer on both MSc programmes. The students were provided with a verbal briefing on the Client’s Requirements by the Multidisciplinary Collaboration Project’s coordinator and a discourse followed to further explain the specific requirements. The Geospatial lecturers interpreted the client’s verbal and brief and converted it into a Client Survey Specification (CSS). The CSS was defined with reference to national and international survey guidance documents, and to the requirements for surveying identified in the BIM pillars documentation [13], [14], [15], [16], [17], [18], [19], [20] and [21]. The students’ first task was to interrogate the Client Survey Specification and to convert it into a survey plan. The plan encompassed equipment, software, and method specification and as well as the production of a Method Statement and Risk Assessment for approval by the site owners. The students also applied standard project management principles to the organisation of people, equipment and time.

IV SURVEYING FOR BIM Much has been written about the ability of modern survey techniques to reduce the time taken for the survey of existing assets to assist with documentation, augmentation and reuse in BIM contexts, e.g. [22], [23] and associated. a) Control Network While BIM in the design phase does not require geospatial location information (i.e. real world coordinates), both planning and construction phases do. Thus, any 3D measurement for BIM must include geospatial location in a local, regional or, preferably, national co-ordinate system (in this case Irish Transverse Mercator). Thus, the first task of the

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 survey team was to establish co-ordination for the project in ITM. The students had been provided by the client with a set of coordinates for a control network (a reference framework to which all other measurements connect) from a previous surveying campaign and the requirement was to establish whether any points had been damaged or otherwise made unusable because of activity on site. The second control requirement was to densify and expand the networks both to the rear of the Clocktower structure and into its interior. The latter was particularly challenging, as interior to exterior survey always is, because of the logistics required. This portion of the survey took significantly longer than was planned for, mainly due to the logistics on site but also due to the inexperience of the survey team. Although the team lead and mentors could have stepped in and expedited the work, this would not have enabled the students to learn about the pitfalls and how to solve typical problems that arise. b) Topographic Survey The topographic survey proceeded very quickly. In a real world scenario, this would be undertaken in parallel with the control checking but, to ensure that the students could clearly distinguish the requirements of different elements, these were carried out sequentially. Students utilised Topcon ES reflectorless total stations and downloaded their data directly to Magnet Office, where it was edited and tidies before delivery to the client. c)

Point Cloud Survey

Once the control had been established internally and externally, the point cloud survey proceeded quickly and seamlessly using the Topcon GLS 2000. To achieve LOD 300 modelling, a point cloud spacing of ±10mm was selected. Data was downloaded in Topcon Scan Master (Magnet Collage will be used in the future) and the point cloud was colourised and the geo referencing checked to create a seamless point cloud from interior to exterior of the building. The data was moved into Trimble Realworks, because the students were more practised in its use, for segmentation and removal of unnecessary data point, e.g. people and vehicles moving through the scans. The final point cloud was delivered to the client in .e57 and .rcs formats both as a full cloud and subdivided into different regions, defined by the surveyors (see Lessons Learned).

V MODELLING FROM THE POINT CLOUD After delivery of the point cloud, associated photographs, and survey data, the aBIMM teams undertook to model at LOD 300 for the retrofit

requirements of the project. While a number of students attempted to model from the point cloud, most reverted to the plans, elevations and sections as this was the method with which they were most familiar and how they through that they could make the most rapid progress. The models produced were not checked for validity. This has significant implications that are addressed in the Lessons Learned section.

V LESSONS LEARNED The Geospatial Engineering students undertook the survey with significant enthusiasm but the scale of the work was too large for the available time. The fieldwork took significantly longer than was intended (some of this was entirely unavoidable as one student of the five was taken ill on the second day of the survey). The full engagement of Surveyors suggested by Survey4BIM’s ‘Survey and the Digital Plan of Work’ document should be implemented between the two groups of students. This level of coordination is difficult to achieve in an academic setting where some students attend during daytime and some in the evenings, and where the sequence of learning of both students groups cannot be fully aligned because of other requirement. In this context, although the aBIMM group were entirely focussed upon the Grangegorman project, the Geo Engineering group also had requirements from four other modules to meet in parallel. In future, the Geo Engineering students need to undertake the Geospatial Engineering for BIM module before the Work Placement, rather than after as happened unavoidably on this occasion, and the 200 learning hours of the Geo Engineering Work Placement module should be spread over a longer period. This would allow direct, face-to-face engagement between the two groups of students, acting as joint members of the BIM project and utilising the direction of the Survey and the Digital Plan of Works document. It would be strongly recommended that the delivery of all survey data should align with the Volume Strategy defined for the project, as per: “PAS 1192:2 which states that a volume is a “manageable spatial subdivision of a project, defined by the project team as a subdivision of the overall project that allows more than one person to work on the project models simultaneously and consistent with the analysis and design process” [16]. Early involvement of the survey team in the overall project team is essential to maximise the benefit of the volume strategy. The validation of the model against the tolerances specified by the client is an essential element of the overall utilisation of point clouds. This was not explored on this occasion but needs to be accommodated in future deliveries.

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X CONCLUSIONS & RECOMMENDATIONS The Geo-enabled BIM project was partially successful in this educational context but it has the potential to be improved upon significantly in future iterations. In particular, the scale and complexity of the building / area being surveyed must be constrained to ensure that both the survey and modelling work are completed to the required standard within the available time. The Geospatial Engineering students gained valuable experience of an in-demand set of skills and two of the five students chose to undertake dissertations on related topics, verifying how important they judged this area to be for their future careers. The learning curve to take students from no knowledge to competence in how to measure for BIM using geo-referenced point cloud surveying is steep. Similarly, the challenge of modelling from point clouds is equally difficult when compared to the speed and expertise that some students have already gained in modelling from standard line and point measurements combined with plans, elevations and sections. However, the potential for error in a model produced from plans, elevations and sections is significant. As with so many other aspects of BIM, the temptation to return to the old way of doing things when deadlines get tight is ever-present. However, without dedication to upskilling and practising in the area of modelling from point cloud data, the true value of the data (up-to-dateness, reality capture, full 3-dimensionality) will not be realised. While software for modelling from point clouds has improved significantly and products such as ClearEdge3D’s EdgeWise, Leica Geosystem’s Cloudworx and Trimble’s Realworks enable rapid fitting of regular shapes, complex buildings (such as the myriad public building requiring retrofit to nZEB standards within the next two years) require much more manual modelling. This is both expensive and time-consuming, and the expertise needed for this role must be built up over time. While a small number of companies have specialised in modelling from the point cloud, in the case of many project consortia, there is a gap between the survey company who produce the point cloud (with appropriate accuracy and precision) and the (designer) client who would prefer to receive, and indeed pay for, a model rather than a raw point cloud. The opportunity for growth in this area of service provision is significant.

XI ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The authors would like to express their gratitude to the staff of the GDA and DIT who were based in the Clocktower building and who navigated the

inconvenience of multiple survey days without complaint. The support of Topcon Ireland as a DIT Education Partner and provider of industry-standard equipment is also gratefully acknowledged.


S. Zlatanova and U. Isikdag. (2016) The need to integrate BIM & Geoinformation. GIM International. 27-29. Available:

[2] J. Kavanagh. (2017) Defining Accuracy. Land Journal. Available: [3] C. D. Ghilani, Elementary Surveying: an Introduction to Geomatics, Fifteenth edition ed. New York: Pearson, 2017. [4]

I. Bush and Survey4BIM, Survey and the Digital Plan of Works, BIM Task Group, London, UK2015, Available:

[5] T. Randall, Client Guide to 3D Scanning & Data Capture, BIM Task Group, London, UK2013, Available: [6] B. Gleeson and M. Penney. (2016) What are you prepared to do? Land Journal. 14-15. Available: [7] A. Behan, Update on the BIM Education of Geomatics Surveyors, presented at the CITA BIM Gathering, Dublin, Ireland, November 14th -15th 2013, 2013. [8] C. Clement, E. McGovern, and A. Behan, Teaching BIM to Geomatics Students, presented at the FIG Congress 2016, Christchurch, New Zealand, 2016. [9] E. McGovern, A. Behan, and K. Furlong, Geomatics and developments in BIM education in Ireland, presented at the FIG Congress 2014, Kuala Lumpar, Malaysia, 2014.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 [10] M. Mathews, BIM: Postgraduate Multidisciplinary Collaborative Education, presented at the BIM 2015 International Conference, Wessex Institute, 2015, 2015. Available: 009&context=bescharcon Available: [11] Irish Architectural Archive. (2017, September). Johnston, Francis. Available: TON-FRANCIS

[22] T. Mill, A. Alt, and R. Liias, Combined 3D building surveying techniques – terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) and total station surveying for BIM data management purposes, Journal of Civil Engineering & Management, vol. 19, pp. S23-S32, 2013. [23] D. Suwardhi et al., 3D Surveying, Modeling and Geo-Information System of the New Campus of ITB-Indonesia, The International Archives of the Photogrammetry, pp. 97-105, 2016.

[12] Grangegorman Development Agency, Grangegorman Clock Tower plan from survey of existing facility, int_Part7_small.pdf, 2008 [13] Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland, Surveys of Land, Buildings and Utility Services at Scales of 1:500 and Larger: Client Specification Guidelines, 1st Edition, B. King, ed., 2001 [14] Ploughman Craven UK, BIM Survey Specification and Reference Guide, Edition 4.0.01, 2017 [15] J. Parsons-Moore, Drawing Naming In Revit In Accordance To BS1192:2007, Graitec Group, 2017 [16] PAS 1192-2:2013 Specification for information management for the capital/delivery phase of construction projects using building information modelling. (2013). 2nd ed. London: British Standards Institute. [17] PAS1192-3:2014 Specification for information management for the operational phase of assets using building information modelling. (2014). 2nd ed. London: British Standards Institute [18] PAS 1192-4: 2014 Collaborative Production of Information. (2014). BSI Standards Publication. [19] PAS 1192-5:2015 Specification for securityminded building information modelling, digital built environments and smart asset management. (2015). BSI Publications. [20] BS 8536-1:2015 Briefing for design and construction. Code of practice for facilities management (Buildings infrastructure). (2015). BSI Publications. [21] BS 8536-2:2016 Briefing for design and construction. Code of practice for asset management (Linear and geographical infrastructure). (2015). BSI Publications.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 Incorporating Building Information Modelling learning on BSc(Hons) Quantity Surveying & Commercial Management programme at Ulster University

Gervase Cunningham1 Sharon McClements2 Mark McKane3 and David Comiskey4 School of the Built Environment Ulster University 1

E-mail: 3 Abstract ̶ Building Information Modelling (BIM) is beginning to have a significant impact on the role of the quantity surveyor in consultancy and the commercial manager in the contracting sector. This will create many challenges for both, but will also provide opportunities to diversify and innovate that will ultimately lead to major changes in the roles. The aim of this paper will be to highlight the relevance of BIM to the quantity surveying and commercial management professions. It is imperative therefore, that the education of QS students embraces and embeds BIM within the curriculum and a detailed case study of how Ulster University has embedded BIM within the programme will be provided. This will illustrate how BIM is being taught both as a theoretical concept and subject and also as a practical skill to ensure that graduates entering the workplace can understand and also utilise BIM in practice. The presentation will also outline how members of the course lecturing team through their PhD research and academic enterprise will facilitate further embedding of BIM in the course curriculum.. Keywords ̶ BIM, EDUCATION, LEARNING, CURRICULUM, QUANTITY SURVEYING, COMMERCIAL MANAGEMENT, ACADEMIC, COLLABORATION, ENBEDDING, IMPLEMENTATION

I INTRODUCTION The aim of this paper is to outline how Building Information Modelling (BIM) learning has been embedded on the BSc(Hons) Quantity Surveying & Commercial Management programme at Ulster University. Building Information Modelling (BIM) is increasingly becoming a process and technology used in the management of construction projects (Puolitaival & Forsythe, 2016). BIM is largely concerned with the collection of data that can be structured for reuse on future projects through their life cycle by providing information to support and improve quality and decision making during the design, construction and operational phases (Pittard & Sell, 2016). Therefore, in comparison to a traditional project, executing a BIM project requires expertise which in turn creates a need for graduates to be knowledgeable about BIM (Puolitaival & Forsythe, 2016). This has been recognised internationally and many governments have established BIM as a necessary requirement (Zeiss, 2013). This has created an urgent need for educators in the industry to train

BIM-ready graduates in order to meet industry requirements globally (Rooney, 2014). Therefore, academic institutions can play an essential role in the overall success of BIM implementation (Camps, 2008). This is further acknowledged in the research of Wong & Fan (2013) who recommended that more construction related degree programmes should incorporate BIM in their curriculum. In the United Kingdom (UK) the BIM Academic Forum (BAF) through its BIM Academic Framework assisted by sponsorship by the UK’s Higher Education Academy (HEA) is co-ordinating the embedding of BIM in taught programmes.

II THE IMPORTANCE OF BIM TO QUANTITY SURVEYING AND COMMERCIAL MANAGEMENT In quantity surveying the traditional methods of working and providing quantity surveying services will eventually become redundant and education, training and adoption of BIM will be the only way to ensure survival of the quantity surveying

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 profession (Crowley, 2013). BIM will create radical changes to the quantity surveying role necessitating learning new skills and new ways of working (Pittard & Sell, 2016). Therefore, it is important to develop a plan for bringing BIM into the curriculum (Adamu & Thorpe, 2016). BIM allows the QS to gain significant time advantage in the quantification and calculation tasks providing additional time to perform new and enhanced QS services (Crowley, 2013). The research of of Pittard & Sell (2016) confirm this when they note that for the quantity surveyor BIM will foster innovation and enhance the existing services that they provide and develop new service streams to provide a wider portfolio. BIM changes workflows and practices, improves productivity, brings cost efficiencies and allows the QS to add value to services (Crowley, 2013). BIM implementation in essence requires a change of attitude and mindset which includes a more open approach to collaboration (Pittard & Sell, 2016).

III THE NEED AND CHALLENGES TO EMBEDDING BIM IN QUANTITY SURVEYING PROGRAMMES BIM is having a significant effect on higher education programmes and their accreditation. This has prompted the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) to review their pathway guides to attaining professional membership which has necessitated reviewing degree programmes to incorporate BIM with core skills (Pittard & Sell, 2016). The research of Adamu & Thorpe (2016) observes that academics should be capable of embedding BIM in their modules. The main consideration is that BIM content needs to reflect current developments in working practices and organisational structures (Coulson-Thomas, 1989). Therefore, it is imperative to develop a plan for bringing BIM into the curriculum (Adamu & Thorpe, 2016). This was further developed in the research of Crowley (2013) who identified that the aim of embedding BIM into the curriculum should be to integrate BIM within existing education and worked based learning rather than to create an additional tier of qualification. This approach is also favoured in the research of Puolitaival & Forsythe (2016) who observed that there was some consensus in academic literature on an integrated approach that embedded BIM in existing courses. However, the research of Abdirad & Dossick (2016) contradict this when they note that when it comes to including BIM in the curriculum, education literature provides limited guidance, except to identify the need for it to be industry

informed. Therefore, there is a relative shortage of pedagogical literature and case studies about curriculum development and teaching experiences regarding BIM in UK higher education (Adamu & Thorpe, 2016). With regard to the specific challenges to embedding BIM in the curriculum of constructionrelated programmes, Kymmell (2008) identified a lack of understanding of the BIM process. The lack of expertise amongst staff, up-skilling needs and the necessity of remaining current with a constantly evolving BIM environment were also identified as barriers to the implementation of educational BIM by Puolitaival & Forsythe (2016). Adamu & Thorpe (2016) also identify an inflexible or tight curriculum as a potential barrier. The research of Sacks & Pikas (2013) also identify a lack of competent BIM educators as a barrier for incorporating BIM. However, the research of Puolitaival & Forsythe (2016) noted that this may be as a result of staff being unwilling to change an existing curriculum in order to incorporate BIM.

IV BIM IMPLEMENTATION WITHIN THE BSc(Hons) QUANTITY SURVEYING & COMMERCIAL MANAGEMENT PROGRAMME AT ULSTER UNIVERSITY In the first year of the programme at Ulster there is a focus on introducing BIM in the specific “BIM Fundamentals” module delivered in semester 2. This module develops an understanding of the key drivers and barriers to fully implementing Level 2 BIM and points towards the development of level 3 BIM working in the near future. The module also develops foundational skills in the application and use of BIM software such as Revit and Navisworks. The module is also delivered across a number of first year construction programmes illustrating the importance across specialisms and the influence of collaboration. This is an approach that is recommended in the research of Adamu & Thorpe (2016) in a case study where the first year focussed on fundamental principles and concepts of BIM, awareness and basic use of basic BIM technologies and appreciation of collaboration and interoperability issues. Progressing into second year BIM has been embedded in the learning outcomes of a number of modules. This is an approach that Adamu & Thorpe (2016) have observed in their research creates advantages and opportunities to further embed and develop BIM learning. In the “Commercial Construction Measurement” module students are introduced to BIM measure and quantification and billing software for measuring

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 and preparing descriptions in accordance with NRM2 for a variety of construction elements such as substructures, structural frames, finishes etc. This is further embedded in the “Cost Planning & Design Value Economics” module where learners use BIM measure software to prepare cost plans and estimates in accordance with NRM1. The “Commercial Management” module also incorporates BIM learning using BIM technologies to assist in the preparation of estimates, construction programmes and cash-flow projections. The module of “Procurement & Administration” outlines the increasing importance of BIM in the tendering process and the “Construction Contracts” module deals with the evolving implications of BIM contractually. In third year the students are on industrial placement and exposure to BIM is very dependent upon the organisation with which they are placed. However, it is encouraging to note that an increasing number of students are involved in the use of BIM and that many are being involved in the BIM implementation process with their placement employer whilst others are becoming aware of the issues that are discouraging BIM adoption. This is also confirmed in the research of Adamu & Thorpe (2016) who observed in their case study that students on industrial placement are expected to appreciate industry needs and utilisation of BIM, hopefully improve their practical BIM skills and gain an awareness of the opportunities and barriers to BIM adoption. As a final year student the learner will again be exposed to BIM across a number of modules. These include “Advanced Measurement” where are again learners use BIM software to quantify a variety of elements such as piling, pilecaps and ground beams, services, civil engineering structures etc. The “Construction Economics” module builds on the second year economics module and again uses BIM measure software to prepare cost plans, cost estimates and whole life costs. Moving on to a more strategic level the “Project Management” module examines the implications of BIM for the project manager in terms of managing and controlling a project to ensure it is delivered on time and on budget as well as the applicability of BIM during the operational phase of a structure. The “Quantity Surveying Project” module provides the opportunity to again use BIM software to produce costs estimates and address hypothetical issues or problems associated with BIM implementation and/or delivery through scenario based tasks. There is also the opportunity for a student to undertake a major piece of individual research on BIM through the “Research & Dissertation” module and there is an increasing number availing of this opportunity prompted by

prior academic learning or experience gained on industrial placement. This again reflects the case study research of Adamu & Thorpe (2016) who observed that in final year the acquiring of knowledge on the strategic delivery of BIM as well as its place within modern organisations gained prominence. The mixed approach at Ulster of having a standalone BIM module in first year with BIM integrated into the learning outcomes of existing modules in subsequent years is endorsed in the research of Clevenger et al. (2010) cited in Abdirad & Dossick (2016) who recommended combining these two strategies as students can learn about general BIM concepts and skills in a standalone module which then prepares them for more advanced BIM concepts and skills in updated modules. The final year content and delivery also acknowledges that it is very important to find a balance between theory and practice and also technology and process (Puolitaival & Forsythe, 2016). The commitment of the staff to further embedding and enhancing BIM learning on the undergraduate programme is evidenced by three lecturers and authors of this paper currently undertaking doctoral studies on BIM related areas. It is also important to note that all of the authors are working with the RICS and industry in Northern Ireland to produce research on BIM implementation and capabilities.

V FUTURE CHALLENGES TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF BIM WITHIN THE CURRICULUM The necessity of remaining current with a constantly evolving BIM environment is a major challenge to the implementation of educational BIM generally (Puolitaival & Forsythe, 2016). Therefore, academics need to constantly reappraise their BIM learning outcomes to ensure relevance to professional practices and to meet industry needs (Adamu & Thorpe, 2016). This necessitates active investigations of BIM curriculum developments internationally and the necessity of building close relationships to the local industry (Puolitaival & Forsythe, 2016). This continuous evolvement of BIM obviously creates challenges such as that identified by Puolitaival & Forsythe (2016) with regard to the time required to create course resources which become quickly outdated. This was further developed in the research of Woo (2007) and Sacks & Pikas (2013) cited in Puolitaival & Forsythe, (2016) who reported that the challenge

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd -24th 2017 with resources was not their availability, but finding those most appropriate to the students’ level of experience and intended learning outcomes.

VI CONCLUSION The future of BIM incorporation on the BSc(Hons) Quantity Surveying & Commercial Management programme at Ulster University requires research to investigate how BIM resources for educational purposes could be enhanced through collaboration in resource development with other institutes (Puolitaival & Forsythe, 2016).. However, greater impact could be made if academia, industry and government worked together on BIM in order to achieve mutually beneficial goals (Adamu & Thorpe, 2016). This can be facilitated by the university in the role of a “transferrer” of knowledge in a more inclusive model of knowledge exchange (Hope, 2016). There is also consensus amongst academia and industry on the need for financial, technological, and educational support from the industry to overcome the conservative and slow adoption of BIM education (Abdirad & Dossier, 2016).

REFERENCES 1) Abdirad H, Dossick C S (2016). BIM curriculum design in architecture, engineering, and construction education: a systematic review, ITcon Vol. 21, pg. 250-271. 2) Adamu, Z. A. Thorpe, T. (2016). How universities are teaching BIM: a review and case study from the UK. Journal of Information Technology in Construction (ITcon), Special issue: 9th AiC BIM Academic Symposium & Job Task Analysis Review Conference, Vol. 21, pg. 119-139.

5) Crowley, C. (2013) “Identifying Opportunities for Quantity Surveyors to Enhance and Expand the Traditional Quantity Surveying Role by Adopting Building Information Modelling”. CITA BIM Gathering. 6) Hope, A. (2016) "Creating sustainable cities through knowledge exchange: A case study of knowledge transfer partnerships", International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 17 Issue: 6, pp.796-811. 7) Kymmel. W. (2008). Building Information Modelling: Planning and Managing Construction. New York: McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. 8) Pittard, S. & Sell, P. (2016) “BIM and Quantity Surveying”l Routledge. 9) Puolitaival, T. Forsythe, P. (2016) "Practical challenges of BIM education", Structural Survey, Vol. 34 Issue: 4/5, pp.351-366 10) Rooney, K. (2014). BIM Education – Global Summary Report-2013. NATSPEC Construction Information. 11) Sacks, R. and Pikas, E. (2013). Building Information Modelling Education for Construction Engineering and Management: Industry Requirements, State of the Art, and Gap Analysis. Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, 139 (11). 12) Wong, K. Fan, Q. (2013) "Building information modelling (BIM) for sustainable building design", Facilities, Vol. 31 Issue: 3/4, pp.138-157

3) Arayici, Y. Coates, P. Koskela, L. Kagioglou, M. Usher, C. O'Reilly, K. (2011) "BIM adoption and implementation for architectural practices", Structural Survey, Vol. 29 Issue: 1, pp.7-25 4) Coulson‐Thomas, C. (1989) "Higher and Further Education and the Professions", International Journal of Educational Management, Vol. 3 Issue: 3.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Barriers to Benefit from Integration of Building Information with Live Data from IOT Devices during the Facility Management Phase

Zohreh Pourzolfaghar1, Peter McDonnell2 and Markus Helfert3 1,3School

of Computing Dublin City University, Dublin 2

DCU Estates Office, Dublin


2 E-mail: 3

Abstract Ěś The building information is invaluable in the facility management industry in order to provide and deliver a timely and professional analysis and consulting support for more effective management services, (e.g. energy management). Nowadays, buildings are equipped with immense number of Internet of Things (IoT) and smart devices. These devices are producing a vast amount of live data about the building. Typically, the captured information from different information sources are stored in heterogeneous repositories. Various information resources together with the live data can be used by the facility management industry to speed up the maintenance processes and improve efficiency of services. To provide more added-value services, they can also benefit from integration of the building information with the live data. There is no doubt that integrating the information can provide value; nonetheless, there are some barriers and considerations when combining the building information with the live data. This prevents many industries like the facility management industry to fully benefit from this integration. In this paper, we introduce the existing barriers to integrate information and live data from the academia and industry perspectives. Subsequently, a potential approach is proposed to make the integration of the building information with the live data possible. The approach is in the form of a three-phase process and its usability is demonstrated by a few use-cases. The output of the process will be beneficial for diverse ranges of users, e.g. the facility management industry. Keywords Ěś Building Information, Live data, IoT Devices, Sensors, BIM.

I INTRODUCTION The facility management industry is responsible for providing and delivering a timely and professional analysis and consulting support services for customers (Rondeau et al., 2012). These companies start to play their role in the operation phase of the buildings life cycle. The facility management (FM) companies utilise the building information to speed up the maintenance processes, as well as improving the efficiency of their services. To provide their services, they use various sources of the building information and the live captured data. The first source of the building information is the handed-over documents from the previous phases of the buildings life cycle, (i.e. through plans in the paper version or the digital drawing format (AutoCAD files, reports, the table, etc.). With the emergence of the BIM technology, the building

information has been also available through the developed Building Information Models (BIM). The second source of providing the building information is the smart and the IoT devices installed in the buildings spaces. These devices produce priceless live data about the status of the spaces and devices. As mentioned earlier, the FM companies can take advantage of the live data along with the buildings space information to provide and deliver more added-value services. However, there are some barriers to fully benefit from combination of the buildings information from the two abovementioned sources. The main barrier is due to the fact that the building information and live data are scattered across heterogeneous storages. As such, because of the fragmented systems (i.e. separate systems for space planning, the maintenance helpdesk, the building management system, etc.), the FM staff are unable to link the building information. These barriers result in the duplication of efforts, inaccurate data and in some cases where the access

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 to data is restricted, inaccessible data. Indeed, a variety of systems and silos leads to staff’s inefficient work. This is in part caused by nonstandardisation of the data input and the lack of standard processes and procedures for capturing and recording the building information. When the data is captured and there are no standard methods or procedures for the data capture and input into a system, the FM staff will develop their own methods and procedures for undertaking these tasks, resulting in the necessity of controlling the data version as well as data duplication issues. Because of the aforementioned barriers, combinations of the building spaces information and the live data is not available for the FM companies. In this relation, many surveys have been conducted to explore the origins and impacts of these barriers on the efficiency of the services. Lavy and Jawadekar (2014) underscored that the facility management activities depend on the accuracy and accessibility of the data created in the design and construction phases. As such, referring to the GSA (2011), the lack of appropriate and sufficient information can result in cost overruns, inefficient building operations, and untimely resolution of the client requests. There are many potential benefits involved in eradicating the explored barriers. Improvements can be made to the overall efficiency of the staff activities, minimizing the time spent on the individual tasks. This can also enhance the staff’s performance as less time is spent in an effort to establish the accuracy of the available building information. Indeed, this time can be spent on the task at hand such as monitoring the energy usage. In principle, an overall improvement of the lifecycle management can lead to reductions in the operational costs. The origins of the barriers from both the academic and practice perspectives have been scrutinized and elaborated on through the rest of the current paper. Then, the proposed solution by this study to remove the barriers is presented. Later, the benefits of the proposed solution are described in the form of practical use-cases.

II The ORIGINS OF THE BARRIERS In this section, the origins of the barriers are explained from two various academic and industry perspectives. In the first sub-section, the barriers are related to the heterogeneity of the building information produced during different phases of the buildings life cycle. In the second sub-section, the origins of the barriers associated with the practical and organisational aspects are introduced. a) The Origins of the Barriers-the Academia Perspective

Consistent with the studied literature, the recognised barriers are associated with either the information produced during the design and construction phase (i.e. specifications of the spaces and devices), or the live captured data during the operations phase. The former is related to the availability of the building information in the digital format. Normally, the building information is handed-over to the operation phase in the form of plans (e.g. architectural/electrical/mechanical plan), tables and reports. This type of information is the only available version of the information for the majority of the existing buildings. In this way, the FM industry as one of the potential users of this information would not be able to combine nondigital buildings information with the digital live captured data from the IoT devices and sensors. During the last decade, the BIM (Building Information Modelling) technology has been introduced to make the digital version of the buildings information available. Notwithstanding the proven capabilities of this technology, still the industry users, (e.g. facility management companies) cannot benefit from the building information through the BIM models. This is due to the fact that the BIM technology confronts a large number of challenges, e.g. updated data for the as-built BIM models (Gu et al., 2008), the pertinent semantic format for the maintenance stage (Shen et al., 2010), the unsystematic use of the building information on the virtual models (Nummelin et al., 2011), and the computerised facility management system integration (Becerik-Gerber et al., 2011). Therefore, both the reliability and accuracy of the BIM models are considered as a principal challenge for the FM industry. Moreover, Pärn et al. (2017) reported a challenge related to the usability of the information from the BIM models for the maintenance stage. The latter group of the origins of the barriers, take advantage from the building information, is associated with the heterogeneity of the live data produced by the IoT devices and sensors. In this regard, Shen et al. (2010) and Winch (2010) identified challenges related to the interoperability, the interfaces with the other systems and the integration of the wired and wireless sensor networks to enhance the live data collection. According to Pärn et al. (2016), these challenges stem from the differences in the data syntax, the schema, or the semantics. With regard to the reviewed literature, the integration of the information and data has been also recognized as a challenge. As Ajam et al. (2010) proclaimed, these issues contribute to some other key challenges in terms of the manual driven process to utilise the building information, the lack of proper quality control procedures, as well as the obsoleteness of the information.

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Facility management staffs encounter several issues in terms of the inability to collect and share the structured building information such as the buildings fabric, the spaces and the mechanical/electrical systems. Some of the reasons for the unavailability of such information are discussed in the succeeding section. One of the reasons behind the emergence of this issue is the incomplete handover of the building information through the building project’s life cycle, from the design to the construction and occupancy. As an example, many changes arise during the construction phase which should be incorporated with the ‘as design’ plans to provide update plans (as-built plans). Nevertheless, for the majority of the buildings only the ‘as design’ plans are handed over to the further steps. This happens because of the unwillingness to invest time and budget to update the building projects plans. A further example is related to the need to refurbish or reconfigure the building spaces and the mechanical/electrical systems happening during the occupancy phase. These changes are required to be incorporated with the existing building information as well. All of the above mentioned problems negatively impact the efficiency of the decision making processes for the facility management companies. There are also some further issues related to the fragmented systems due to the facility management staff’s tendency to work on their own initiatives. This problem is firstly arising from the lack of proper understanding of the values of the availability of the structured and shareable data. The second group of the reasons for the fragmented systems is related to the lack of standard methods and procedures for the data collection or proper systems to support data sharing. In such a condition, the FM staff relying on their creativity select their own methods which leads to creating more difficulties in effectively managing the building asset.

III THE PROPOSED PROCESS TO INTEGRATE INFORMATION AND LIVE DATA Data integration was defined by Cruz and Xiao (2009) as “the combination of data from different sources with unified access to the data for its users”. Many researchers have proposed methods and models to integrate the building information with the live data to facilitate the buildings maintenance. Yet, inadequate data integration is a current challenge faced by the building information management technologies (e.g. BIM). With the aim of tackling this challenge, this research intends to propose a process model to collect, analyse, and integrate the building information with the live data captured

from various IoT and smart devices and sensors. The proposed process includes three phases explained as follows: a) Phase 1: Structuring an Open Storage The first phase of the proposed process model is to structure an open storage in which the integrated and qualified building information and live data are stored. The open storages structure should comply with the construction industry standards, i.e. ISO 16739, ISO 12006, ISO 29481. To develop such an open storage, the first step is to explore the abovementioned standards, (i.e. the European standards for the construction industry). Based on these standards, some structural and semantical requirements are specified. Regarding these requirements, an initial version of the open storage structure can be defined. Structuring the open storage will be completed after accomplishing the second and third phases. This is due to the fact that some additional fields to preserve the information and live data are specified through the next two steps. b) Phase 2: Capturing the Multi-source Building Information and the Live Data In this phase, two various sub-processes are proposed to capture the building information and the live data from various sources (e.g. building plans, reports, IOT devices, sensors, etc.). The first subprocess is to digitalise the building information from the architectural/mechanical/electrical plans as well as the project reports. The building plans contain essential information about the buildings spaces and devices’ specifications. Likewise, the project reports comprise useful information about the mechanical/electrical/structural systems, the building energy consumption and a lot more. As the first subprocess for this phase, all this information is required to be digitalised. Later, there will be a need to provide a link between the digitalised building information from the plans and from the project reports. The second sub-process for this phase involves detecting all the IOT devices and sensors installed in the building spaces. This process is to update the information about the new installed devices in the building spaces. To do so, all these devices are detected using laser scans, captured images and video records. The outcome of this phase is a list of detected devices in the form of point cloud data and they need to be converted into the objects. In addition, more additional information like coordination and location is utilised to link this information to the stored building information (through the previous sub-process). During this

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 phase, some new fields are provided to be added to the structure of the data storage explained in phase 1. The iterative phase of feeding the live data into the storage is explained in the next section (Phase 3). c) Phase 3: Feeding the Live Data into the Open Storage The last phase of the proposed process model is to transfer the qualified live data to the storage. The captured data from the IoT and smart devices are stored in the databases associated with their software. In this condition, there is a need to define an interface to obtain and transfer this data to the storage. Referring to the second phase, some fields have been defined to store the live data for the installed devices in the building spaces. Therefore, the capture data can be transferred to their corresponding fields in the storage. However, before transferring the data, there is a need to ensure the quality of the captured data. In case of passing the quality control test, the data is ready to be transferred to the open storage.

IV VALUE CONTRIBUTION By implementing the process model proposed by this study, a combination of the building information integrated with the live data will be available for the facility management industry. Using this integrated information and regarding the priorities for the FM industry, useful reports can be provided. For instance, the energy consumption control and energy saving are of high priority for the FM offices. The received alarms/messages, (from data from IoT devices) about the absence of the people in the booked meeting rooms (i.e. building spaces information) is a direct result of the combination of the information about the building space with the live data captured from the IoT devices, cameras and sensors. In this way, the FM office receives warnings to automatically switch off the heating/cooling system, in case of the absence of the people in the booked room. As such, providing real time warning messages about the faulty devices is another merit associated with the integrated building information and live data. With this information, the facility management office can provide an estimation of the costs for the faulty devices for various buildings. Similarly, by having the information about the faulty devices and sensors, the unsecured areas are recognised. Another example for the energy management can be related to the ‘open windows and working radiators’. A message from the facility management team can aware the space users to turn off the heating system. By this, the facility management office can promote the energy saving behaviour as well.

The availability of reliable and accurate building information supports the daily FM tasks such as space planning, space usage and timetabling as well as more complex undertakings such as monitoring and maintenance of the building service, building management systems, energy conservation, building performance/analysis exercises and preventative maintenance, etc. One potentially interesting use for combining the accurate building information with the live data is to break down the traditional data silos. In this way, all the collected data will be available to all the stakeholders and can be used for real-life learning (live lab) environments for the staff and students. By having the capability to access the reliable, accurate and building information integrated with the live data, a better understanding of the built environment can be provided to the potential users. This also leads to the continuously support of improvements in lifecycle management.

V CONCLUSION The buildings information integrated with the live data is a valuable asset which can be beneficial to many smart industries. Although diverse technologies like the BIM have been developed to manage the building information, the industry users, e.g. the facility management industry is not still able to take advantage from the combination of this information with the live data. To overcome this challenge, this research presented a process model including three various phases to collect, integrate and store the integrated building information with the live data in an open storage. The expected outcome of the proposed solution by this research is to provide an open access to the integrated building information and the live data for diverse ranges of users, e.g. for the facility management industry. The presented process model by this paper has been prepared to be applied in a real project in collaboration with the facility management industry. By going through the future steps to implement this process model, more details will be provided to the readers.

REFERENCES [1] M Ajam, M Alshawi and T Mezher. “Augmented process model for e-tendering: Towards integrating object models with document management systems”. Autom. Constr. 19:762-778, 2010. [2] B Becerik-Gerber, F Jazizadeh, N Li and G Calis. “Application areas and data requirements for BIM-enabled facilities management”. J. Constr. Eng. Manag. 138:431–442, 2011.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 [3] N Gu, V Singh, K London, L Brankovic and C Taylor. ”Adopting building information modelling (BIM) as collaboration platform in the design industry, CAADRIA 2008: beyond computer-aided design”. Proc. of the 13th Conference on Computer Aided Architectural Design Research in Asia, The Association for Computer Aided Architectural Design Research in Asia (CAADRIA), 2008. [4] I F Cruz and H Xiao. Ontology Driven Data Integration in Heterogeneous Networks, Complex Systems in Knowledge-based Environments: Theory, Models and Applications, Springer, Heidelberg, 2013. [5] J Nummelin, K Sulankivi, M Kiviniemi and T Koppinen. “Managing Building Information and client requirements in construction supply chain — contractor's view”. In Proceedings of the CIB W078-W102 joint conference, Sophia Antipolis, France, Oct. 2011. [6] E A Pärn, D J Edwards and M C P Sing. “The building information modelling trajectory in facilities management: A review”. Automation in Construction, 75:45-55, 2017. [7] W Shen, Q Hao, H Mak, J Neelamkavil, H Xie, J Dickinson, R Thomas, A Pardasani and H Xue. “Systems integration and collaboration in architecture, engineering, construction, and facilities management: A review”. Advanced Engineering Informatics, 24(2): 196–207, 2010. [8] G M Winch, Managing Construction Projects: and information processing approach, WileyBlackwell, 2010.

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Building Manager Requirement Specifications for Efficient Building Operation Sergio V. Pinheiro1, Paul Kenny2 and James O’Donnell3 1,3

School of Mechanical and Material Engineering and UCD Energy Institute 2

UCD Architecture

University College Dublin (UCD), Dublin, Ireland 2 E-mail: 3

Abstract ̶ Building management plays a significant role in an organisation aiming to achieve an energy efficient status. In this context, there is growing pressure on building managers to provide not only high quality building services, but to run and manage buildings as economically and efficiently as possible. As such, management activities require a comprehensive data management system to capture, retrieve and put to optimal use, information related to building performance. In this scenario, Building Information Modelling (BIM) can play the role of data repository and provide easy access to information pertaining to precise equipment locations, equipment affected by a system failure, maintenance history information, etc. Therefore, this paper uses building manager’s business processes and associated information identified throughout the paper to propose a BIMbased building management framework that enables accumulation and management of lifecycle data based on Industry Foundations Classes (IFC). Keywords ̶ IFC, BIM, MVD, Building management, requirement specification, efficient operation.

I INTRODUCTION Building management activities involve multiple stakeholders over the life-cycle of the building. As such, these activities require a comprehensive data management system to capture, retrieve and put to optimal use, information related to building performance [1], [2]. Information has the power to reduce energy consumption as well as improve energy efficiency in buildings [3]. However, most of this gathered information is typically transferred to building operations through 2D formats, either on paper or non-machine readable electronic files, and subsequently requires ad-hoc data extraction methods to support maintenance and operational tasks. This process can be time-consuming, prone to error, costly and remains a significant barrier for efficient building operation [4]–[6]. A key objective of efficient building operation is to minimise energy consumption and maintain comfortable occupant conditions, while complying with legislative requirements. In order to achieve such performance levels, the building manager requires the necessary information regarding various

energy related aspects of the building to ensure the building performs as expected. The speed and accuracy with which decisions can be made by building managers in such dynamic environments can be the difference between success and failure [7]. Therefore, increasing the appropriateness and timeliness of relevant, correct and high-quality information during operation, is of paramount importance and can significantly assist informed decision making. Overall, building managers find themselves required to master, operate and gather information from multiple systems on a daily basis [8]. These interrelated data issues make it cumbersome to evaluate and improve the performance of a building. In this scenario, Building Information Modelling (BIM) can play the role of data repository and provide easy access to information pertaining to precise equipment locations, equipment affected by a system failure, maintenance history information, etc. With readily available and sufficient information, building managers can focus on operating their building more effectively. The work presented in this paper identifies and categorises the business processes performed by

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 building managers during operation, and the associated information needed by them when conducting such processes. This set of information serves as the starting point for a definition of a Model View Definition (MVD) specifically for efficient building operation. The paper is structure as follows. Section 2 defines the organisational hierarchy within the building environment. Section 3 identifies the business processes performed by building managers during operation, while Section 4 presents the methodology adopted in this paper. Section 5 demonstrates the approach in the context of a case-study. Finally, Section 6 concludes the presented work.

II ORGANISATIONAL HIERARCHY WITHIN THE BUILDING ENVIRONMENT Building management plays a significant role in an organisation aiming to achieve an energy efficient status. According to Langston and Kristensen [9], within the building environment it is possible to define three levels of management that are responsible for building performance: • The strategic level which deals with activities that guide the organisation toward meeting its objectives; • The tactical level which deals with activities such as adding value to organisation planning, support services, and management of processes; and • The operational level which deals with activities such as short-term management of maintenance and repairs. O’Donnell [10] has defined three effective roles that have the potential to support management within organisations: • The facility manager who is responsible for assisting the organisation to meet its strategic business goals and objectives, with a focus on the facility as a process for coordinating the physical workplace with the people and the work of the organisation [11]. • The building manager who performs a subset of the facility manager’s tasks, typically for an individual building. This person is responsible for overseeing daily operations regarding overall building performance. • The building operator who is responsible for the day-to-day maintenance and operation of an individual building with complex and interdependent systems. Fig. 1 shows the relationship between the levels of management within the building together with the associated management role. This paper concentrates on the tactical level and the role of the building manager to define the required information needed for managing and optimising building performance during operations.

Fig. 1: Levels of management within the building environment with related management role.

III BUILDING MANAGER BUSINESS PROCESSES With the current emphasis on improving building efficiency, building design has become more innovative. However, the closer design gets to optimal performance, the more crucial it becomes that building managers operate the whole system correctly [12]. Not only have buildings become more complex, but also regulation is adding to the pressure to ensure buildings perform as intended. In this scenario, building managers adopt the role of "Jack of all trades" and are responsible for all aspects of management in the building [13]. Besides all activities carried out during operation, building managers must ensure that the best management strategies are in place, hence, achieving far closer matches between the predictions of the design team and the actual operation of the building. In order to manage a building effectively, building managers base their analysis on prescriptive code compliance, energy performance guidelines, results from building performance simulations, operation and maintenance manuals, and from rules of thumb or conventional wisdom [14], [15]. These methods enable building managers to set initial performance targets, assess existing systems, define desired performance and evaluation standards, and develop a performance improvement plan that meets the organisation's goals. Therefore, to achieve and maintain higher levels of performance a continual improvement approach must be used. The Deming’s Cycle (also known as the PlanDo-Check-Act (PDCA) cycle) is an iterative fourstep management method used in many disciplines for the continual improvement of processes. For instance, the ISO 50001 is an example of wellstablished practice in the energy management that implemented the PDCA cycle [17]. The adoption of the PDCA cycle during building operation allows building managers to consistently and systematically align their business processes with the strategic

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 objectives (Fig. 2). The four phases of the cycle are as follows: 1. Plan phase is where the building manager decides the metrics, goals, targets and initiatives for the performance improvement strategy, and also establishes the standards against which the performance of the building will be compared to; 2. Do phase is where the building manager applies a set of measures that aligns with the strategy in place, ensuring that the building operates inside of the limits established; 3. Check phase is where the building manager checks all the measures previously applied against the objectives and goals defined in the plan phase; and 4. Act phase is where the building manager communicates the achievements to the upper management with a list of deficiencies and potential improvements.

During the process of benchmarking, the building manager identifies the relevant benchmark standard (e.g. CIBSE Guide F, TM46, Econ19, BSRIA, etc.) and compares the performance outcome of those target buildings to their own performance (Table 1). The results from this comparison can help building managers determine how well the building is performing and also identify the worst and best energy users in the building. Additionally, the building manager can reveal which parts of the building has the greatest opportunities for energy savings when implementing energy conservation measures. For the targeting process, the building manager defines a set of performance targets that allows an assessment of building performance over time (Table 1). Then, the building manager can use the targets as a reference to identify and reduce variations in operational levels, and as a consequence improve overall energy efficiency by 5-10% [18]. A critical feature of targeting is to find out what drives building performance, and by knowing this, building managers can start create relationships between building components and relevant driving factors (e.g. weather, available daylight, occupancy, etc.). Table 1: Requirement specifications identified for the plan phase. PDCA Cycle




Source Category Function Energy Benchmark Environmental Bench. Metric Weather Occupancy Separable Energy Uses


Targeting Method Creation Time Objective Target Driving Factor

Fig. 2: Plan-Do-Check-Act methodology based on the Deming Cycle to establish building manager's processes and improve energy efficiency.

This management model is a simple, yet powerful way to resolve new and recurring issues that affect building performance. Its iterative approach allows building managers to test solutions and assess results in a waste-reducing cycle. Having this strategy in place allows building managers to systematically address each of their business processes and the information associated with each phase of the cycle, thus providing building managers with a reliable and consistent model that can support timely informed decisions in order to improve building performance.


a) Plan Phase

b) Do Phase

When starting the plan phase, all relevant areas of environmental and energy performance should be reviewed. This systematic review and analysis of the building performance identifies the current status of the building and forms the basis for the development of the action plan which contains detailed information about objectives and goals used to assess future changes in the building. This phase includes benchmarking and targeting.

After identification and selection of operational benchmarks and targets, the next step is to implement them during the do phase. Here, the building manager applies a set of measures that align with the strategy in place, ensuring that the building operates inside of the limits established. This phase includes procurement, commissioning and scheduling.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 The procurement process starts with the building manager recognising the need to purchase equipment, which can be either a brand-new item or one that is being re-ordered. When looking for a replacement, the building manager requires information about the performance level of damaged equipment in order to make an informed decision (Table 2). The commissioning process involves an extensive set of functional tests and system diagnostics to determine how well building services are working together (Table 2). It also helps determine whether the equipment meets operational goals or needs to be adjusted to increase efficiency and effectiveness [19].The outputs from this process provides the foundation for building managers to establish the baseline energy consumption of the building. Table 2: Requirement specifications identified for the do phase. PDCA Cycle




Label Criteria Energy Performance Rate Environmental Performance Rate Operational Efficiency Operational Cost Life-Cycle Cost Standby Performance


Commissioning Type Commissioning Authority Commissioning Team Testing Procedure Operational Levels Acceptance Commissioning Report Commissioning Date


Scheduling Technique Schedule Control Strategy Diving Factor


Schedules are often developed as part of the commissioning process based on predicted occupancy and usage patterns defined by typical building types [20]. Building managers apply scheduling techniques to Heating Ventilation and Air-Conditioning (HVAC) systems to achieve energy efficient and cost effective operations (Table 2). When implemented correctly, HVAC scheduling

strategies can save up to 25% in energy consumption and 28% in cost savings [21]. c) Check Phase The check phase is where the building manager observes the actions taken in the previous phases, and systematically records the success of measures and activities. This process makes easier for energy objectives and targets to be checked and cost benefit analysis of the implemented measures to be conducted. By comparing the new situation with the old, it is possible to identify performance gaps that can be addressed on the next iteration of the continuous cycle. This phase includes metering, maintenance, and monitoring. The metering process is a comprehensive strategy used by building managers to help manage building performance (Table 3). Outputs from this process provide valuable information about how much energy is being used, and where it is being used. Thus, building managers can use this information to observe building operation and correlate actual operation to the energy readings, and consequently make operational adjustments to improve performance. Energy monitoring is crucial to ascertain the efficiency of energy use in buildings and is the basis to make any decision for enhancing energy efficiency [22]. One of the key points of the monitoring process is the availability of reliable energy performance data for the main components of the building. To maximise the effect of monitoring building managers can take advantage of the information generated from previous processes and carry out the necessary assessment. A comparison of current consumption with historical data, benchmarks and targets is one of the available options. Building maintenance and repair is vital for continuous performance of buildings [23]. The maintenance process encompasses a broad spectrum of services required to ensure that the built environment will perform the functions for which the building was designed and constructed. In order to meet and maintain the planned operational performance demand of buildings, building managers are required to guarantee an up-to-date maintenance status of the HVAC equipment, which is dependent on the continuous feedback from management information systems during the operational phase. The purpose of regular maintenance is to sustain their operating efficiency and to prolong their operational life. Therefore, detailed, comprehensive and wellpresented information covering the design operating parameters and maintenance instruction must be

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 available to building managers (Table 3), if the requirements of the building user are to be satisfied. Table 3: Requirement specifications identified for the check phase. PDCA Cycle




Meter Location Meter Type Meter Reading Frequency of Readings Energy User Output Signal Calibration Date Data Location


Spare Parts Maintenance Frequency Maintenance Type Maintenance Technique Maintenance Priority Maintenance Cost Operation Mode Date of Defected Inspection Repair Time Date of Defect Clearance Date of Re-Inspection Serial Number Warranty Status Previous Malfunctions Previous Replacement Manufacturer Maintenance Actions BEMS ID CMMS ID


d) Act Phase The act phase is where the building manager communicates the achievements to the upper management with a list of deficiencies and potential improvements. The implementation of this phase creates a more comprehensive action plan that addresses the results achieved in the previous phases. At this point, the building manager has effectively implemented management processes; energy use data were collected, statistically analysed and benchmarked; and causes of process variation were identified. Based on this, the next step is to establish new energy performance goals; continually improve management processes where possible; and start a new cycle with the objective of achieving higher levels of performance. This phase includes Continuous Commissioning (CC) and reporting. The CC is an ongoing process that building managers can use to resolve operating problems,

improve comfort, optimise energy use, and identify retrofits for buildings and central plant facilities [24]. The process focuses on current building conditions and requirements while accounting for the fact that buildings are in constant evolution. Implementation of the CC process results in an average energy reduction of over 20% with simple paybacks typically less than two years [25], [26]. Reporting is the last process of the PDCA cycle and is the integral part of the general management structure. Reporting to be effective should include appropriate and realistic energy management results together with sustainable performance improvements. Reports provide relevant and timely information about building performance which in turn enables building managers to gather feedback on performance objectives and evolve energy strategies as needed. Effective management reporting provides a greater depth of information to empower the upper management to make highquality business decisions and increase operating efficiency. Effective and timely feedback from the upper management is a critical component for a successful performance management strategy. If effective feedback is given to building managers, they can use it to develop tangible targets for the next iteration of the PDCA cycle. However, it is important that the building manager receives all the support and agreement of all stakeholders involved because without their commitment the energy strategy is unlikely to succeed.

IV METHODOLOGY The approach taken in this paper uses the identified business processes and associated information to develop a BIM-based building management framework that enables accumulation and management of life-cycle data based on Industry Foundations Classes (IFC) (Fig. 3). The IFC-BIM framework allows stakeholders to work with different sets of information across all stages of the Building Life-Cycle (BLC). The goal is to provide building managers with the necessary data they need for the task they have to perform at any given moment. The framework is divided into three stages: information collection, information representation and information generation. The first stage is responsible for collecting information from different data sources (e.g. design intent, as-built drawings, Building Management Systems (BMS), Computerized Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS), Computer Aided Facilities Management (CAFM), etc.). Gathering useful and valuable information is a critical part of the framework. Therefore, the business processes and associated requirements

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 serve as a basis for the identification of key parameters that will assist building managers to make informed decisions to improve building efficiency.

V DEMONSTRATION SCENARIO To demonstrate the approach, a simple case study model is used to generate the IFC file and illustrate the decision-making process. The model consists of a test cell modelled using Graphisoft ArchiCAD 21 (Fig. 4). ArchiCAD is one of the established BIM applications for architecture design, and recently, has further strengthened its interactions with IFC providing bidirectional data exchange. The parameters of the model were set using available templates on ArchiCAD for illustration purposes.

Fig. 4: Test cell used to illustrate the generation of IFC files containing the requirement specifications.

The following scenario is considered: a building manager is asked to comply with the Part L of the Building Regulations 2008 – Buildings other than Dwellings (S.I. No. 259 of 2008) [27] and needs to propose retrofit measures to the existing building. One of the key requirements of the regulation is that building elements should not exceed an average thermal transmittance value (Uvalue). Fig. 3: BIM-based building management for continuous performance improvement during operation.

The second stage offers a consolidated interface for information representation capable of displaying data in a meaningful way. Building elements are represented as entities with attributes and properties in BIM. At this point, BIM provides convenient storage and retrieval of performance specifications. To ensure the correct information is exported from BIM, an IFC Model View Definition (MVD) is defined. This approach reduces the time that building managers spend trying to find and extract the necessary information. It also helps building managers focus on improving building performance instead of spending time looking for appropriate information. Finally, the last stage is where building managers will use the information extracted from BIM to perform informed decisions. Using the PDCA cycle a continuous improvement process can be realised and an efficient and effective strategy implemented.

Table 4: Maximum average elemental U-value (W/m2K) [27] Fabric elements

Flat roof Walls Ground Floor Door, Windows and Rooflights

New buildings & extensions to existing buildings

Material alterations to, or material changes of use of, existing buildings





0.22 0.27

0.35 0.60

The first step in the process is to assess the building and collect relevant information about building elements. This process can be cumbersome and present real challenges. However, considering that the architect created a BIM during the design stage and populated it accordingly, the building manager could use the proposed IFC MVD to extract the relevant information. Then, using an IFC viewer

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CITA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 the building manager can display attributes and properties of selected objects. Additionally, the IFC viewer shows the hierarchical structures of building elements, which facilitates the assessment and inspection of detailed properties (Fig. 5).

identification of business processes performed by building managers during operation, and the associated information required when conducting such processes contribute to the assessment of building performance. In this scenario, BIM plays the role of data repository and provides easy access to key information in an integrated environment. However, it is important to make clear that a performance specification may not apply to all scenarios and that variations may occur depending on the owner's requirements or for specific cases. For this reason, it is paramount that building managers are involved in the earlier phases of the BLC so they can request the correct information from all the disciplines, thus be able to operate the building efficiently. Additionally, in an ideal scenario, building managers should also be involved when deciding on the specific attribute data which need to be included in the management system (e.g. BEMS, CMMS, CAFM, etc.). In summary, IFCbased information exchange has the potential to provide significant information for building managers, which contributes to the reduction of time, cost and effort associated with gathering information from different sources.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT This work was supported by a Marie Curie FP7 Integration Grant within the 7th European Union Framework Programme, project title SuPerB, project number 631617 and Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq) under the program Science Without Borders. Fig. 5: Visualization of exterior wall materials and properties using an IFC Viewer (Xbim Xplorer).

With accurate information available, the building manager can propose retrofit measures in order to comply with the regulations. During the act phase of the PDCA, the building manager could suggest to the upper management the addition of an extra layer of insulation on the wall, thus reducing the U-value of the wall, and consequently achieving the objective of compliance with the regulations. It is important to point out that this framework can be applied to different hierarchical levels, such as: building as a whole, building services, components of building services, and office and computer equipment.

VI CONCLUSION Through the organisation management structure described in this paper, a Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle for the continuous improvement of building performance can be realised. The goal with this approach is to implement an efficient and effective strategy that analyse current building performance and highlights potential improvements. The

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[6] W. Lu and T. Olofsson, “Building information modeling and discrete event simulation: Towards an integrated framework,” Autom. Constr., vol. 44, pp. 73– 83, Aug. 2014. [7] I. Javier, G. Masoud, W. Graceline, and R. Kathy, “Ambient intelligence environments for accessing building information,” Facilties, vol. 32, no. 3/4, pp. 120–138, 2014. [8] D. Pietruschka, A. Biesinger, A. Trinkle, and U. Eicker, “Energy Efficient Operation of Existing Buildings Through Simulation Based Control Optimisation,” in IEECB, 2010. [9] C. Langston and R. Lauge-Kristensen, Strategic management of built facilities, 1st editio. Routledge, 2013. [10] J. T. O’Donnell, “Specification of optimum holistic building environmental and energy performance information to support informed decision making,” University College Cork, 2009. [11] M. A. Mohammed and M. Hassanain, “Towards Improvement in Facilities Operation and Maintenance through Feedback to the Design Team,” Built Hum. Environ. Rev., vol. 3, no. 1990, pp. 72–87, 2010. [12] M. Way and B. Bordass, “Making feedback and post-occupancy evaluation routine 2: Soft landings – involving design and building teams in improving performance,” Build. Res. Inf., vol. 33, no. 4, pp. 353–360, Jul. 2005.

[15] E. D. Morrissey, “Building effectiveness communication ratios (BECs): an integrated ‘life-cycle’ methodology for mitigating energy-use in buildings,” University College Cork, 2006. [16] J. Ignacio Torrens, M. Keane, A. Costa, and J. O’Donnell, “Multi-Criteria optimisation using past, real time and predictive

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Fawaz Alshehri1, Paul Kenny2, Sergio Pinheiro1, Usman Ali1 and James O'Donnell1 1

School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, UCD Energy Institute, University College Dublin, Ireland.


School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy, University College Dublin, Ireland. E-mail:

Abstract Ěś Buildings are major consumers of global energy resources. Approximately 80% of the energy used in commercial office spaces, is typically used for maintaining optimal comfort levels through delivery of heating, cooling, ventilating, and lighting. Building Information Modelling (BIM) has seen a significant uptake by designers in pursuit of sustainable building designs. Furthermore, general BIM systems already contain much of the information that can be further reused for additional project tasks such as thermal comfort analysis. Integration and improvement of information flows between BIM and Building Energy Performance Simulation (BEPS) tools has the capacity to help designers assess building performance under various design conditions. In doing so, assessments of building performance and thermal comfort requires additional representative data about indoor environmental conditions and energy consumption. The process of connecting BIM to energy simulation tools, for the explicit purpose of thermal comfort analysis, requires a well-defined Model View Definition (MVD). MVDs define a subset of the Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) schema, which is needed to support a particular business process. This paper develops a MVD for thermal comfort that represents the data needed by building designers or operators to deliver a satisfactory level of thermal comfort in a typical small, single occupant office. The use case consists of a single thermal zone with a HVAC system. The detailed specification for these requirements is based on the IFC data representation. The IfcDoc application tool is used to improve the consistency and define computer-interpretable definition of the MVD. The outputs of this work will allow a standardised exchange of the necessary requirements from BIM to BEPS tools (e.g. EnergyPlus) for thermal comfort analysis. Keywords Ěś BIM, MVD, BEPS, Thermal comfort, IFC.

I INTRODUCTION Thermal performance of commercial buildings stock significantly influences comfort and indoor environmental conditions. Improving the thermal performance of the overall building is one of the most effective ways to prevent excessive building energy consumption and to maintain optimal comfortable temperature for occupants. In 2015, the total number of commercial buildings in Ireland was estimated to be around 109,000, and 89% of these buildings were categorised as offices [1]. The energy fraction in Irish office spaces is very high due to maintaining optimal comfort levels through heated buildings, as well as high lighting and equipment consumption and, in some buildings, demand for cooling [1]. Building a complex parametric model for energy simulation can be very challenging for the design team [2]. This is due to the complexity of building geometric designs, as well as their mechanical systems.

A slight design alteration in one building component can have a meaningful impact on the value on the building as a whole. Thus, in practice, value analyses based on new design information need to be performed continually. Therefore, using manual methods of analysing the value of a complex building including their several properties would become; labour-intensive, time-consuming, errorprone and costly [3]. With BIM, a change made to the model automatically updates the drawings, the bill of materials, and the building data. A BIM is a digital representation and repository of the building data and information. BIM simplifies automated exchange of information in digital format between diverse stakeholders and significantly reduces paper-based document delivery. BIM technology enables a number of automated or semiautomated facility related services such as cost estimates, scheduling, and energy simulation analysis [4]. Improvements to energy efficiency and sustainability, by way of linking the BIM model to Building Energy Performance Simulation (BEPS) tools, allows calculation of energy use during the early design stages [5].

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Although BIM provides the ability to simultaneously share multi-disciplinary information within the Architecture, Engineer, Construction, Owner Operator (AECOO) industry, BIM can make simulation models more complex and challenging to the design team, due to the large amount of data contained with the model. This can result in missing essential information, misplaced or distorted building elements during data exchange process between BIM and BEPS tools, which affects the accuracy of analysis results and decisions. Currently, most integration work between BIM and BEPS has focused on extracting data of building geometry, with a little focused on HVAC system [3]. Moreover, none of the research efforts have particularly focused on extracting BIM data specific to thermal comfort analysis i.e., building objects and its properties. To address the need and bridge the gaps, the ultimate aim of this paper is to develop a Model View Definition (MVD) for thermal comfort. This MVD represents the data needed by building designers or operators to evaluate and enhance the thermal comfort levels in buildings through simulation tools (e.g. Energy Plus). The role of the MVD defines a subset of the IFC schema, which is needed to perform a simulation.

II STATE-OF-THE- ART The most significant design decisions regarding building sustainability are generally made in the preliminary design stages by the architect or the design team [6]. Energy simulation tools are powerful when predicting the energy performance of a given building and the indoor thermal comfort for its occupants [7]. Such tools support the understanding of how a given building should perform under certain conditions and provide the opportunity for the design team to compare it with alternative scenarios. The accuracy of building energy simulations mainly relies on the user input data, for instance, orientation, weather conditions, building geometry, construction properties, space usage, internal loads, mechanical and HVAC system etc. [8], Fig 1.

Fig.1 The basic parameters of input data for energy simulation.

There are differences in creating model using the two domains, BIM and energy simulation model. For instance, one of the key variances is the use of the ‘Space’ entity by BIM and the use of the space entity boundary in energy simulation models. Architectural spaces in BIM such as, rooms, are divided by walls, while in energy simulation models, spaces are referred to as thermal zones and are defined by space boundaries. An integration between these two domains, BIM and energy simulation models can result in a significant saving in energy and cost [8]. BIM technology is mainly centered around interoperability tasks in a common design environment, which supports re-use of information and decreases data duplication between disciplines [9]. However, performing automated or semiautomated energy and indoor environment analysis requires all information relevant to the specific tasks to be clearly defined with the model. This includes a building’s objects and its thermal properties, such as the thermal transmittance of the external walls and the number of occupants in a space [10]. Therefore, understanding the level of detail needed for a simulation model is essential for successful integration. Of the available BIM formats, Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) is the only open life-cycle data model for buildings that is an international standard. Because the IFC data model is so large, only carefully defined subsets of the model are required to support specific business processes. These subsets are called Model View Definitions (MVD), whereby the primary objective of is to ensure standardised import and export of specific requirements for IFC compliant software. To support this, buildingSMART has developed the IDM/MVD methodology, which is used to define a subset of exchange requirements of the IFC schema. Based on this methodology, buildingSMART released limited types of MVDs, for instance; Coordination View, Reference View and Design Transfer View. However, these MVDs are suitable for variety of workflow, such as Coordination planning, Clash detection and Quantity take-off [11]. Additionally, the mentioned above MVDs are based on a large, complex data structure, but only a small part is needed for specific use cases, in this instance, for analysis of Thermal Comfort performance. Concept Design BIM (CDB) developed an MVD based on the IFC schema [12]. The scope of this project focused on generating an MVD of energy analysis to support the coordination of energy analysis requirements. In 2013, Holistic Energy Efficiency Simulation and Management of Public Use Facilities (HESMOS) defined exchange requirements for energy analysis. This project did not produce an MVD but rather requirements needed

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 to develop an MVD [13]. However, CDB and HESMOS didn’t support thermal comfort analysis requirements. Thus, there is an absence of extraction information to support thermal comfort analysis in commercial buildings. This work focuses on the development of an MVD for thermal comfort using the IfcDoc application tool. Once BIM software has already implemented this MVD, the output of IFC file will include only the exchange requirements defined for that specific analysis, thus filtering unrelated information. a) Thermal Comfort Thermal comfort is a term used to describe occupant satisfaction with their thermal environment [14]. This subject is complex and includes a number of influential factors such as physical, physiological, and psychological factors. In 1970, Fanger introduced the first thermal comfort model. This model is still in use today, with slight modifications, as defined in ASHRAE Standard 55 [14]. Fanger’s model considers five environmental and personal input variables, Fig 2.

buildings’ life-cycle to inform decisions can be very effective in improving the thermal comfort levels.


The process approach is divided into two phases, Fig3. Phase 1 deals with definitions of the exchange requirements in order to support automated data exchange from BIM to BEPS for thermal comfort analysis using IFC. This phase is based on IDM/MVD integration and comprises key steps as follows; A. Business use case (BIM creation) B. Process Map C. Exchange requirements D. Data extraction (MVD). The next section, provides an overall description for the business use case as well as discusses the data extraction (MVD) in detail. The business use case, process map and the technical specification of the exchange requirements have been detailed in previous work [18]. Phase 2 deals with simulation file generation and thermal comfort analysis that will be presented in the extended future work.

Fig.2 Thermal comfort variables in Fanger’s model

Based on Fanger’s variables, two metrics commonly used to evaluate comfort performance through simulation are, Predicted Mean Vote (PMV) and Percentage People Dissatisfied (PPD). Presently ‘adaptive thermal comfort’ is the most popular model in use as it is not based on steady state human comfort votes in laboratory conditions [15]. Adaptive models try to account for responsive and behavioural measures, such as opening windows, turning on a fan or adjusting clothing. However, there are still limitations in using the adaptive model [16]. Basically, it can only be used in buildings that adopt passive cooling systems. Also, occupants’ metabolic rate should be in the range of 1.0-1.3 met, whilst clothing be within 0.5 to 1.0 Clo. Both the PMV and adaptive models use the top-down approach of statistical analysis, which focuses on average group data. Thermal comfort is dependent on multiple factors such as indoor environmental conditions, user behaviour, properties of building materials and HVAC systems [17]. Hence, accurate and complete models are needed by the building designer to predict and evaluate thermal comfort levels. Using BIM as the central data repository for extraction into analysis tools at any time during a

Fig.3 The proposed method for BIM-based thermal comfort analysis.

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 a) BIM creation

b) Specify the exchange requirements using IFC

GRAPHISOFT ARCHICAD offers computer aided solutions for manging all common aspects of architectures and engineering during the whole design process of the built environment. ARCHICAD can import and export DWG, DXF and IFC and bcfXML files, among others. In the recent release ARCHICAD 21 there are a variety of useful new features and capabilities ranging from small productivity enhancements to collision detection. ARCHICAD 21 is among the first BIM applications to fully support the IFC 4 open-source standard [19]. Therefore, it is used to model the use case, Fig 4. The use case was conducted to define the proposed exchange requirements between BIM and BEPS to support thermal comfort analysis. For the initial validation, an existing single thermal zone with HVAC system office and floor area totalling 7m² was modelled. This office is one of the typical offices located in the School of Mechanical & Materials Engineering, University College Dublin.

This step includes two primary steps: Firstly, identifying entities and property sets in the existing IFC4 schema, that support thermal comfort analysis based on a holistic review of the variables needed for thermal comfort analysis. Secondly, identifying any missing entities or property from the IFC schema. The primary IFC element hierarchy is based on the accessing structure, Project > Sites > Buildings > Stories > Spaces> Elements. That is, a project at the top-level contains one or more sites. A site is a container of one or more buildings. A building contains one or more stories and a storey is made up of one or more spaces and spaces are defined of one or more elements. If there are building elements directly related to the IfcBuilding (like a wall or curtain wall spanning multiple stories), they are linked with the IfcBuilding by using the objectified relationship IfcRelContainedInSpatialStructure, Fig.5. In this example, both the IfcBuilding and IfcBuildingStorey can have several products contained within structure.

Fig 4: BIM for the use case, a single thermal zone.

The construction details of the model, includes uninsulated concrete and masonry elements, with a single-glazed aluminium frame. The building envelope components consists of concrete block wall, curtain wall, concrete floor and roof, the same as the original office. Within the use case, additional factors that can influence occupancy comfort were carefully assigned, such as HVAC systems, artificial lights loads, occupant’s loads, office equipment’s loads and furniture. Based on the technical specification of exchange requirements that was defined in previous work [18]. The next step focuses specifying all objects and their properties using IFC4 schema in order to develop the MVD thermal comfort simulation.

the the on the for

Fig. 5: IfcRelContainedInSpatialStructure, is used to assign elements to a certain level of the spatial project structure.

In order to classify the target information of an existing IFC4 schema, number of sub-steps are required: (1) Specify IFC entities based on the categories and subcategories to which the elements are appropriate for the business case. The use case for this work has defined 13 objects directly relevant for thermal comfort analysis including: IfcColumn, IfcCurtainwall, IfcDoor, IfcRoof, IfcFurniture, IfcSpaceheater, IfcSpaceBoundary, IfcSlab, IfcSpace, IfcLightFixture, IfcMaterial, IfcWall, and IfcWindow.

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 This work has also defined another 14 sub-elements which are necessary for establishing the relationships between elements and systems that define levels of decomposition, for example IfcProject, IfcRoot and IfcElement etc. (2) Identify the attributes associated with each entity’s IfcProperty instances, for instance property names and property values. (3) In an IFC model, building objects (IfcObject) and their properties (IfcProperty) are linked directly by IfcRelDefinesByProperties. In IFC4 IfcRelDefinesByProperties defines the relationships between property set definitions and objects [11]. For instance, a specific property of IfcPropertySet can be related to a specific object of IfcWall through IfcRelDefinesByProperties, Fig 6. This allows for the assignment of one type of property or more for each object. This work has defined over 109 properties relevant for thermal comfort analysis.

Fig. 6: The relation between (IfcObject) and their properties (IfcProperty).

The recent released IFC schema (IFC4) covers most of necessary information on building objects and their properties needed to fully support thermal comfort analysis. However, the result of identifying the exchange requirements shows that, there is a need to extend the current IFC4 schema to include additional properties. For example, material SolarReflaction and other properties of an IfcMaterial are missing and need to be added, Fig.7. Similarly in IfcLightFixture the properties for Sensible Load and Sensible Load to Radiant need to be added.

Fig. 7: Proposed properties to add in the IFC4 schema.

It is important to add the missing property sets and properties to the IFC4 of each of the building objects to support more comprehensive analysis. For instance, the property set of Material thermal needs to be added in IfcMaterial to calculate the solar absorption and refraction of building materials. Table 1 summarises a subset proposed to be added properties for IfcMaterial. Table 1: Proposed a subset to add in IfcMaterial Name SolarRefraction CoefficientOfHeatTra nsfer AbsorptionCoefficient


Property type Singlevalue Singlevalue Singlevalue

Data type IfcReal IfcCoefficientOf HeatTransfer IfcAbsorptionCoe fficient

Data extraction (MVD).

In the use case, two main entities related to thermal comfort performance through simulation have been defined to model physical information in the IFC standard, Fig 8, namely:  “IfcElement”.  “IfcSpatialStructureElement” The “IfcElement” is the upper classification for concepts describing all property sets for the major functional parts of a building. Examples are Building structure elements (foundation, floor, roof, wall etc. and its materials), Distribution elements (including heating, ventilation, air conditioning, electrical and equipment elements) and Furnishing elements (desk, chair etc.), Fig 9. The “IfcSpatialStructureElement” is the upper classification for concepts that define the spatial structure of an IFC standard file, including “IfcSpace”. The “IfcSpace” describes the all property sets for a space (e.g. volume, number of person, activity assigned within space, dry bulb temperature, relative humidity, etc.).

Fig 8: The main entities have been defined which are related to thermal comfort performance through simulation.

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 After defining all requirements related to thermal comfort performance, the data is stored in the proposed IFC model, such as data for geometry, HVAC system and materials properties etc. In this use case, a total of 27 objects items and over 109 properties relevant for thermal comfort analysis were defined.

of concepts, the IfcDoc tool is used to generate MVD documentation, Fig 10. The role of the proposed MVD defines a subset of the IFC schema, which is required to perform thermal comfort performance through simulation for commercial office spaces. d) IFC Documentation Generator (IfcDoc) The IFC Documentation Generator (IfcDoc) tool is a free tool developed by buildingSMART International. The main objective of this tool is to enable documentation of the IFC MVD by generating diagrams, schema definition, indices and contents of the user specification [20]. Furthermore, the IfcDoc tool can also provide limited validation of MVDs and ensure consistent and computer interpretable definitions, via mvdXML export functionality.

Fig 9: Objects of “IfcElement�, includes the elements of building, distribution and furnishing.

To improve the consistent and computerinterpretable definition of the MVD as true subsets of the IFC specification with enhanced definition

The starting point when creating the MVD that underlies IFC schema specification is to load a baseline file containing multiple Exchange Definitions. In this case IFC4 Addendum 2 has been loaded. Usually, this baseline includes MVD definitions of Reference View and Design Transfer View.

Material Properites Material Definition Body Geometry Reference Geometry FootPrint Geometry Box Geometry CoG Geometry Product Geometric Representation Product Gride Placment Product Local Placement Preduct Placment Space Boundaries Spatial Containment Spatial Structure Product Assignment Object Assignment Type Element Aggregation Nesting Spatial Decomposition Spatial Composition Element Decomposition Element Composition Material Constituent Set Material Profile Set Material Layer Set Object Type Attributes Window Attribtes Door Attributes Object Predefined Type Object User Identity Object Attributes Quantity Sets Property Sets for Types Property Sets for object Property Sets Object Typing

Project Document Information

Project Classification Information

Project Representation Context Project Units

IfcBuilding IfcBuildingElement ifcBuildingStory IfcColumn IfcCurtainWall IfcDistributionElement IfcDistributionElementType IfcDistributionFlowElement IfcDoor IfcElement IfcElementType IfcFurniture IfcLightFixture IfcMaterial IfcObject IfcProduct IfcProject IfcRoof IfcRoot IfcSite IfcSlab IfcSpace IfcSpaceHeater IfcSpatialStructureElement IfcWall IfcWindow IfcZone Incompatible

Within scope but not defined

Set as mandatory for export function

Not relevant but has been defined

Set as optional for export function

Fig 10: Subset of the exchange requirements for thermal comfort performance analysis

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CitA BIM Gathering 2017, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Once the schema has been loaded, the hierarchy is displayed and populated with the IFC schema definitions for the specific IFC release. All information defined previously in the IDM can be linked to the MVD definition. Fig 10 illustrates two types of rules on the IfcDoc interface; 1. A structure and 2. A constraint. The first rule is used to valued relationships and references, while the second is used for validating properties and specific values. For instance, users can specify that IfcWall must have attributes for Name, ObjectType and MaterialsConstituents, in order to make the full connection enclosure.

VI RESULTS AND DISCUSSION The presented MVD provides a reproducible transformation between BIM and thermal comfort evaluation models, as contained within the EnergyPlus simulation engine. The outcome of this process is a formal representation of the data and information required to be in BIM in order to support such modelling and analysis activities (Fig.10). The case study demonstrates how different requirements can be adopted consistently to produce a design model customised for each analysis. However, the presented MVD only addresses thermal comfort issues and is limited to the current IFC release, IFC4. The IFC schema intentionally contains definitions across all disciplines and life-cycle phases. For a reliable data exchange, however, the current IFC release still needs to be expanded to provide additional data related to building materials and their thermal properties. For automated interactions between these tools to occur, the information transmission must be categorised in a standard manner to avoid disjunction between architectural and thermal engineering data and to enhance workflow. This is only possible through standardised information property sets for information exchange between the two domains, which ensures consistency.

VII CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE WORK The paper contributes to the development of a MVD for thermal comfort analysis. The role of the MVD is to define building design information from an IFC based BIM in order to support automated information exchange between BIM and BEPS tools. MVD compliant output of IFC files from BIM-based CAD tools includes only the exchange requirements defined for that specific analysis, thus filtering unrelated information. Using BIM as a data source for establishing a thermal simulation model can be complex and challenging for a design team due to the large amount of data it contains. The results of this work will assist in resolving these complexities and improving automated or semi-automated information flow. To date, research efforts have failed to focus on automated extraction of BIM information specifically for support of thermal comfort performance analysis. The MVD developed in this study is the first step in enabling rich and comprehensive data exchange for building objects and their properties. The MVD enhances the quality of BIM data, which will reduce the loss of information when exchanging BIM files, particularly when evaluating thermal comfort performance through simulation. Consequently, thermal comfort analysis is conducted with high accuracy and efficiency. The present MVD contributes to environmental and energy building efficiency studies. It can assist the AECOO industry on a global scale by advancing traditional workflows for thermal comfort analysis. The next phase of this research will focus on extension of the MVD to account for CFD based simulations of thermal comfort. After completion, the proposed MVD will be submitted to BuildingSMART international group for acceptance and publication as an official Model View Definition (MVD) for thermal comfort analysis.



J. Scheer, “Extensive survey of the commercial buildings stock in the Republic of Ireland,” Dublin, 2015. R. Volk, J. Stengel, and F. Schultmann, “Building Information Modeling (BIM) for existing buildings - Literature review and future needs,” Autom. Constr., vol. 38, pp. 109–127, 2014. R. Wimmer, T. Maile, J. O. Donnell, J. Cao, and C. Van Treeck, “Data-Requirements Specification to Support BIM-Based HVAC-Definitions in


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Environmental Conditions for Human Occupancy,” Am. Soc. Heating, Refrig. Air Cond. Eng., vol. ASHRAE Sta, p. 58, 2013. J. F. Nicol, S. Roaf, and J. F. Nicol, “Rethinking thermal comfort,” Build. Res. Inf., vol. 0, no. 0, pp. 1–6, 2017. K. Fabbri, “Thermal comfort evaluation in kindergarten: PMV and PPD measurement through datalogger and questionnaire,” Build. Environ., vol. 68, pp. 202–214, 2013. A. Beizaee and S. K. Firth, “A Comparison of Calculated and Subjective Thermal Comfort Sensation in Home and Office Environment,” Prooceedings Conf. People Build., no. September, pp. 1–6, 2011. F. Alshehri, S. Pinheiro, P. Kenny, and J. O’Donnell, “Model View Definition (MVD) for Thermal Comfort Simulation in Conventional BEPS tools,” in Passive Low Energy Architecture (PLEA), 2017, no. I, pp. 6–7. GRAPHISOFT, “What’s new in ARCHICAD 20,” GRAPHISOFT SE, 2017. [Online]. Available: es/archicad-20-a-fresh-look-at-bim.html. [Accessed: 20-Jul-2017]. T. Liebich, “IFC4 – the new buildingSMART Standard,” BuildingSMART, 2013. [Online]. Available:

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The Life Cycle Engineer Joseph Mady School of Multidisciplinary Technologies Dublin Institute of Technology, Dublin, Ireland E-mail: Abstract ̶

At present within the AEC industry each stakeholder has a role to play and integrate into the current virtual design and construction workflow. The project manager, quantity surveyor, design consultants, specialist sub-contractors, main contractors and facility management team. With the transition from the traditional workflow to the digital workflow gaps have appeared in the transfer of information, engagement of stakeholders at the correct project stages and also a knowledge gap has appeared. Fragmentation has arisen between project stakeholders who request the information, those collating the handover information and those responsible for utilising the handover information to maintain the assets. Will the industry wait for each project stakeholder to mature and develop on their BIM journey or create a whole new position which in essence demands a part of each? The paper also presents the findings from interviews conducted with some of industries leading BIM experts, BIM software developer, BIM leads, VDC Managers, FM Company CEO and BIM Managers. Following the evaluation of the results it was found that 72% of the member’s engaged felt a new role needs to be created to fill the gaps. The results demonstrate the business case for the creation of a new role. This paper aims to answer some of the questions raised and give a current state analysis of what industry feels should occur to resolve the gaps during this transitional period. Keywords ̶ BIM, collaboration, facility management, Life Cycle engineer, change management.

I INTRODUCTION Building information management (BIM) is currently optimising the way in which buildings are designed and constructed. The technology is often referred to as a 7D practice of virtual design and construction, throughout its Life Cycle. It is an environment to share knowledge and communicate between project stakeholders. It is also about the gathering of information through the design and construction stages which will optimise the building life cycle, supporting processes which include cost management, construction management, project management and facility operation for the owner. It has been claimed that 90% of the costs of a building occur after construction. “Ninety (90%) of the costs of a building occur after construction” (Schley, 2013) If you consider this statement, then as an owner at the beginning of a BIM process the operation of a building should be the priority during the design and construction stages. Questions should be asked by the owner; what system is currently in place to ensure that all the information is gathered? who is empowered to ensure that this occurs at each stage of a full BIM constructed building? who is tasked with verifying the information and once the building is

constructed? who is in place to maintain the information for the facility operation? The UK BSI standard BS 8536, Briefing for design and construction, Part 1: Code of practice for facilities management (Buildings infrastructure) states: “The owner should appoint a person whose principal task is to ensure that design and construction is planned and controlled to enable a smooth transition into operation and for the defined periods of aftercare.” (BSI, 2015) Furthermore, it states;” This person might be referred to as the “soft landings champion”, the “owner’s representative” or by some other term at the owner’s discretion. The term “owner’s representative” has been adopted in this standard. (BSI, 2015) What is this role? Who would be capable of fore filling it and also what would their exact remit on a project include? In the traditional process, we would class this as the facility management of a building carried out by a facility manager, but is this adequate for the BIM process; does this meet the needs of a BIM project or fit into the BIM process?

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A major selling point of the BIM process is the reduction in waste, due to clash detection and the financial implications of this. (Reddy, 2012) (Volk et al. 2014) also recognised that there are significant additional benefits for using BIM in FM that include energy and space management, valuable record documentation, maintenance of warranty and service information, quality control, assessment and monitoring, and using structured up-to date building information to reduce errors. A survey conducted by the BIM4FM group, supported by the Cabinet Office Government Property Unit in the UK. Found that (61.7%) believed that BIM will support the delivery of facilities management, with (35.3%) unsure. Facilities managers, owners and occupiers acknowledged that BIM did in fact add value which includes lifecycle management (74.5%); with other specific comments noting that early FM involvement in design and performance for facilities would support this. Other opportunities highlighted were improved efficiencies (68.1%), and better reporting data (62.0%). (BIM4FM, 2013) a. Objectives The author aims to show how the LCE would improve the current BIM workflow by demonstrating the existing processes and current grey areas than are still occurring within BIM projects. Furthermore, demonstrate how the LCE would improve the quality of data on a project across the total Life Cycle, producing a better built building with an energy efficient installation of mechanical and electrical equipment, quality assurance of the BIM model as it develops and quality information at handover stage to the client. b. Methodology The methodology will involve developing a research model based on mixed research methodologies. This will consist of a full literature review with the aim of ensuring that all research objectives outlined have been accomplished. Following the literature review a targeted set of semi-structured interviews will be conducted with leading members of the BIM and FM construction industry currently in industry, which will consist of a pre-determined set of open questions. Once completed coding of the data will occur identifying and interpreting the common, recurrent and emergent themes. The aim will be to analyse patterns amongst the given themes. A complete

evaluation will then be presented of the findings following the coding of the data collected.

II BIM PROCESS BIM moves the industry forward from the current task automation of project and papercentric processes (3D CAD, animation, linked databases, spread-sheets, and 2D CAD drawings) toward an integrated and interoperable work-flow where these tasks are collapsed into a coordinated and collaborative process that maximizes computing capabilities, Web communication, and data aggregation into information and knowledge capture. (Eastman, 2011) With the emerging technology and BIM project process, it has led to the development of new processes and new roles. A grey area that currently exists within the BIM life cycle is at the operation stage which consists of FM or facility management stage. (RIBA, 2015) At each of the given work stages presented within the plan of work information management is at the centre which is conducted with the aid of PAS 1192: Part 2 and the NBS Digital Toolkit (NBS, 2015). The system is designed to ensure that the digital information is consistent across each stage of the design, construction and operation. (RIBA, 2013) PAS 1192: Part 2 and Part 3 are also additional tools utilised in industry for guidance through the given work stages. They inform about the requirement of the Common Data Environment which consists of data, documents and models are retained in a file and data store supported by a structured format of managing information with folders such as work in progress, shared, published, and archived. PAS 1192 Part 3 generally addresses the importance of identifying the information that an organisation needs to run effectively and how that information is derived from multiple pieces of information about individual assets. BS 8536, Briefing for design and construction, Part 1: Code of practice for facilities management presents guidance to the client/builder owner in relation to roadmap when dealing with BIM through the different project stages. In addition, the standard elaborates further on the need for a “soft landings champion”, the “owner’s representative” with the following; “The appointed person should be expected to have first-hand working Knowledge of the owner’s organization and an understanding of the asset’s/facility’s future. Where an existing asset/facility is to be Page 235

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refurbished, the owner’s representative should have an understanding of its history.” (BSI, 2015) “There is the chance that the owner’s representative might be seen as a project manager. For clarity, a project manager is responsible for delivering the asset/facility to an agreed scope, schedule and cost/budget and, normally, has no involvement or interest once the project has been delivered and the asset/facility is operational.” (BSI, 2015) “Similarly, a facility manager would likely have little expertise and limited interest in the project’s delivery, other than to ensure that the asset/facility, once delivered, performed as required. There is, therefore, the need for a person who possesses a broader, more integrated understanding of the combined project delivery and asset/facilities management process than either of the aforementioned.” (BSI, 2015) The BS 8536 standard clearly states within the document who the role should not be as shown above but does not clearly state who it should be. Only stating that the person needs a broad understanding of both project delivery and asset/facilities management. Additional guides which have been developed include the AIA developed the Level of Development definitions in AIA Document E202™ -2008 Building Information Modelling Protocol. Due to the dramatic use of BIM, the AIA updated the AIA E202–2008, including the LOD definitions. The result is the updated and reconfigured Digital Practice documents, AIA E203™–2013, Building Information Modelling and Digital Data Exhibit, AIA G201™–2013, Project Digital Data Protocol Form, and AIA G202™–2013, Project Building Information Modelling Protocol Form. (BIMFORUM, 2013) c. Designer A traditional building design team work towards the production of information sets more often than not using 2D technologies which consist of a paper or digital paper output. From a design point of view the use of the digital 3D model has allowed an earlier and more accurate visualisation of a design. This brings numerous benefits to the table over the traditional 2D views. (Eastman, 2011) d. Contractor The contractor when transitioning from the traditional process to utilise the BIM technology should be aware that there is a significant

learning curve. The transition from shop drawings to a building information model is not an easy one because each individual process and business relationship will need to develop in some shape or manner to utilise the added value that BIM has to offer. (Reddy, 2012) e. Facility management The traditional process that occurs for Facility management is after the certification has been completed and the building is handed over to the owner with the O&M information. This is an inefficient process which leads to poor data storage, availability of information and lack of interoperability of information between the information systems used during the design, construction and facility management. (Kelly G et al, 2013) In a recent survey, it was found that 79% of companies still use paper based or a digital copy on a CD or DVD to provide O&M information. (McAuley, 2013)

III ASSET & FACILITY MANAGEMENT Facilities management has gained momentum as a critical phase in a project life cycle. Clients and designers are now focusing on the full life cycle costs of a building rather than the project cost itself and consequentially are trying to utilise the advantages of BIM for Facilities operation. “More often than not, owners and project stakeholders are focused on the initial construction costs of a project. However, the subsequent operation and maintenance costs of a building over the life of the building could amount to many times more than its initial construction cost”. (Burcin et al., 2012) The current tool in industry utilised to extract information from the model is COBie. This section will review the processes and softwares available. f. EIR & BEP This Employer’s Information Requirements (EIR) document is designed to be included in the appointment and tender documents for the procurement of both a Design Team and the Contractor. The EIR outlines project-specific requirements for each of the sections. The EIR is a significant element of Project BIM Implementation as it will be utilised to inform the bidder what models are required and what the purposes of the models will be. These requirements will be written into the BIM Protocol and implemented through the BIM Execution Plan (BEP). (BSI, 2013)

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A compliant BEP will demonstrate how the requirements outlined in the EIRs will be met. When implementing Assets Management, it is imperative to develop an Employers Information Requirements (EIR) document which informs and enables the project team to develop a fully detailed BIM Execution Plan (BEP) in response as outlined in the PAS 1192-2. The BIM organisational and Asset Information Requirements should be developed in detail and inputted into the EIR at the outset of the project, this should ensure a seamless transfer of data on completion of the project (BSI, 2014). The interoperability for asset capture within the BIM must be reviewed at the outset. “it is costly and inefficient if we do not use one single data model and on model file development for interoperability of model geometry and information because we must rely on different proprietors and their file formats should share information in a bidirectional way” (O'Keeffee, 2015). One of the key goals for the owner/client of a building should be to ensure that the asset information developed in the design and build of the model can be incorporated into the facilities management system or CAFM (BSI, 2014).

IV BIM LEGAL As BIM develops and becomes the general standard within the country, it will bring a change to the way in which contracts are constructed. Collaboration is essential to the need for superior productivity and efficiency. In the right legal framework, collaboration can be facilitated by BIM and standardisation. (NBS, 2013) BIM in a legal context is the importance of intellectual property, risk sharing and insurance issues depending on the level of maturity of BIM utilised on a project. This section will look at the BIM legal issues, standards and guide contracts that are currently available (G. Lea et al, 2015) clearly indicates that the construction industry is still trying to find its feet with standardising processes and documentation to garner the inherent benefits of BIM, which has led to the utilisation and referencing of both UK and US standards which can be confusing, so will be reviewed here. g. Standards In Ireland, Public contracts are now procured under the Public Works Contracts (PWCs) suite

introduced in 2007. The suite of standard contracts does provide for electronic communications and the use of software, but is primarily designed to assist traditional contractual relationships. (Fraser, 2014) A number of different guides and contracts which provide information for BIM such as: ➢ ➢

CIC BIM Protocol PAS 1192-2:2013 Specification for information management for the capital/delivery phase of construction projects using Building Information Modelling

Currently in Ireland, the CIC BIM Protocol is mainly adopted due to the lack of Irish documents currently available and also it is the main document that the UK government is utilising at present. (Construction Industry Council, 2013) The principal intention of the Protocol is to facilitate the production of Building Information Models at defined stages of a project. The Protocol is associated with UK Government BIM Strategy, and allows for the deliverables associated with the data drop stages, in addition to the appointment of an Information Manager. Furthermore, the Protocol is utilised to support the adoption of a valuable collaborative working environment in Project Teams. National Standards Authority of Ireland Services (NSAI); Given that currently within Ireland no mandated BIM document or standards exist; the European Committee for Standardization (CEN) have recently adopted three international standards for building information, with the aim to build a more competitive and sustainable construction industry in Europe. The ISO standards deal with the process for structuring electronic or digital building information, using Building Information Modeling (BIM). (NSAI, 2017) The NSAI has backed these documents and noted “that once CEN adopts a standard at European Level, member states are preluded from developing or maintaining separate or conflicting national standards”. (NSAI, 2017)

h. Conclusion One area of note within the documents reviewed is the position of the Information manager. The CIC BIM protocol states “The protocol requires the employer to appoint a party to undertake the information management role. This is expected

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to form part of a wider set of duties under an existing appointment and is likely to be performed either by the design lead or the project lead, which could be a consultant or contractor at different stages of the project. In some circumstances the employer may appoint a standalone information manager. The information manager has no design related duties.” (CIC, 2013) If we consider this statement against that set out within the BS 8536 Part 1: Code of practice for facilities management presents guidance to the client/builder owner in relation to a roadmap it states, “The owner should appoint a person whose principal task is to ensure that design and construction is planned and controlled to enable a smooth transition into operation and for the defined periods of aftercare.” (BSI, 2015) The BS 8536 standard provides further details which state that: “The role should include regular reference to the schedules or equivalent documentation that identify the work activities of the design and construction team with their associated information requirements and deliverables. (BSI, 2015) But is the in direct conflict with the CIC BIM protocol which summarises the Information Managers role to include the managing of processes and procedures for information exchange on projects, and also initiating and implementing the Project Information Plan and Asset Information Plan? From the client/owner’s point of view and ensuring that he is receiving value for money, as well as ensuring accountability on a project, a new role may need to be created. This would ensure that the information produced meets the needs of the contract at each stage of a BIM project. In some cases, early engagement with the project stakeholders to ensure they understand the BIM contractual language as early as possible in the BIM process, ideally prior to the appointment of the various team members, to allow sufficient time to address any legal issues that may arise during the project life cycle.


With the passing of the deadline presented by the UK Government which has brought about the introduction of the Government’s Soft Landings (GSL) approach. GSL provides a method to guarantee BIM is implanted and adopted into present and future development in a way that enables the facilities managers, which has now been mandated beside BIM level 2 in 2016. (BIM Task Group, 2013)

i. Present Roles & Responsibilities With the embrace of the BIM era, balancing technology and professionals has brought a different demand and new workflow of performance to their daily given tasks. The abundance of BIM positions which have been created and others which has evolved over the last number of years. Roles are often given different names depending on their geographical location i.e. US or the UK. For instance, BIM Coordinator could entail the engagement at a given stage design/construction, working in any domain, and disciple within that domain. (Mathews, 2015)At present PAS 1192 Part 2 sets out a team task based structure which defines roles as follows; Information manager – Task Team Delivery Manager – (Project Directors/Leader) ➢ Task Information Manager – (Project Manager) ➢ Interface Managers – (BIM Coordinators) ➢ Main Originators – (BIM Technician) (BSI, 2013) The CIC BIM protocol explains the role and responsibilities of an Information manager and the remit that every BIM project must have one overseeing the project. (CIC, 2013) At design stage, the COBie information will be set up by the design teams, then this information is past to the construction company which in turn commissions the site and passes the information on to the facility management team, but where is the link between the given stages? The Client who would generally have a team due to the BIM process being new, with new terminology and processes to include more advisors who can provide specific value to the design, construction and in-use process to help guarantee a successful BIM project. A team may comprise of the following: • Client Representative • Technical Advisors • Delivery Manager If we review the given Data Drops and stages from concept to as-built model, who is responsible for all the information once the model has been completed and who is tasked with ensuring the information is correct at each stage for the client? According to the International Facility Management Association (IFMA), facility management (FM) is defined as “a profession that encompasses multiple disciplines to ensure functionality of the built environment by ➢ ➢

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integrating people, place, processes and technology” In 2012, within the UK facilities management profession has so far had very little input into the evolution of BIM. (BIFM, 2012) The British Industry of Facility Management have just released the new Good Practice Guide on the Role of FM in BIM Projects to enable the facilities management professionals understand Building Information Modelling (BIM) and help them in their role as productive members of any project or design team that is using BIM. Additionally, the guide will help FMs understand how they can use BIM data to aid their long-term role in relation to managing assets and services. (BIFM, 2017) But is this good practice guide enough to change the tide and engagement of the FM Industry with BIM? j. Life Cycle Engineer role BIM has mainly been engaged by the design consultants, sub and main contractors within the virtual built environment. The FM and property firms have not engaged, which tends to create a language gap or barrier between the different project stakeholders. What this really emphasises is a gap in the perceived value that facilities management brings to the wider built environment. (BIFM, 2012) In a recent paper constructed (Lavy s., 2014) to investagate the use of BIM & COBie in facility Management; it was found that a large quantity of information had to be recreated by a consultant once the building had been handed over to the client. This lead to inconsistencies and inaccuracies which had to be rectified by the maintenance team on-site. Within the same report (Lavy s., 2014) their findings concluded; “There are two types of capabilities and knowledge facility personnel should have to efficiently apply BIM and COBie for FM: (1) Knowledge of the concepts of BIM and relevant standards and formats; and (2) Knowledge of inventory information, which is required to perform preventive maintenance, emergency work orders, renovations, etc. All three projects did not have personnel with specific experience or knowledge in handling this effort, which resulted in hiring a consultant having the appropriate expertise. Our recommendation would, therefore, be that FM departments should not only have personnel with this knowledge but also make them a part of the planning process in database formulation.” (Zadeh1 et al., 2015) produced a comprehensive BIM quality assessment approach for FM where

they detailed three vital areas that must be represented in the model from a FM perspective, in order to avoid significant quality issues, including inaccurate, incomplete, or unnecessary information. The three detailed areas of FM include asset information, MEP systems and spaces. The role that is detailed within the report covers these three key areas, in which the Life Cycle Engineer would play on a project to fill the gaps. This demonstrates how there is currently a gap within the present BIM process, which the LCE would be empowered to fill. k. Life Cycle Management Facility management is generally thought of as the asset management of a building and ensuring the optimal operation of a building; in a safe and sound manner. The development of the proposed LCE role would entail more than just facility management; it would demand the interaction at the beginning of the project right through to the handover, to the client and operation of the building. This could be termed as the evolution of the facility manager from the traditional format, to the Life Cycle Engineer for the BIM process. The LCE can provide the following functions within the current BIM process structure. Role and responsibilities would include the following; • Aiding the Client with information to input into the necessary contracts • At pre-design stage of the process, the specification of information at briefing is well prepared • Engaging with Parties following the tender stage to ensure nominated parties understand their BIM deliverables. • Ensure COBie data is correct throughout the BIM process at each given stage, engaging with design, construction, commissioning and FM teams • To ensure the key Mechanical and Electrical equipment installed in the building is the most cost effective over the lifetime of that given item • Integrating the model to ensure essential MEP items are installed in the most maintenance friendly manner, managing space requirements. • LCE would from the beginning of the project be actively engaging with the FM team to ensure the information is interoperable at the handover stage. Ensuring the correct information is gathered and in the correct format

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Ensure the building is energy efficient and interact with the concept team to maximise building performance and building fabric The present facility manager does not hold the skills mentioned above but also the Industry must get away from the traditional way in which FM is viewed. BIM is as much a virtual FM as it is digital construction. But the LCE responsibilities could also include the asset management and financial information in relation asset management during the building operation only, providing a holistic approach covering all the needs of the client. The cost and energy consumption of the building in operation should be known during the design stage, with the cost in use a major factor in all design decisions, lowering the risk factor. (Eastman, 2011) The LCE should have the knowledge to investigate the different MEP services within the model and ensure that key maintainable items are the most financially viable for the task over the lifetime of the product within the building. When reviewing the model ensuring that MEP items are installed in accessible areas, cable tray is installed to allow for future expansion, shut off values are in the correct location and plant items have ample access. In addition, throughout the project they would be gathering the necessary data from the BIM process for use during the operation of the building. On completion this data could be fed into a bespoke piece of life cycle management software or a software package already designed. •


The author conducted interviews with 14 key members currently involved in BIM fields that are in relation to the position that is proposed. The positions include the following: • BIM Managers • BIM Directors • BIM Coordinators • BIM lecturer • VDC Managers • BIM software developer • FM software company CEO • FM Database manager The following are the questions put forward and the results: Q1. Please give a brief introduction about yourself and your experience in industry? The members engaged had a total combined time conducted in the construction industry of over 200 years with academic levels ranged from Bachelor of Science (BSc) to Doctor of Science (DSc).

Q2. What is your current understanding of Building Information Modelling including positives/negatives? A range of different answers where received from the different interviewees who provided positive and negative response in relation to their engagement with BIM including: • • • • • •

They felt a lot of benefits are obtainable from BIM Reduce waste and rework Information captured once and digitalised within a CDE Negatives included lack of supply chain involvement Client passive BIM approach CAD managers transformed to BIM Managers

Q3. How do you feel the FM industry have engaged BIM? Slowly

No 7%

93% Figure 1 - How do you feel the FM industry have engaged BIM? The majority of respondents felt that they had seen very little interaction with the FM sector from their experiences relating to BIM. "There is a disconnect between those stipulating information requirements (i.e. Client), those collating the handover information (i.e. Main Contractor) and those responsible for using the handover information to manage the asset (i.e. Facility Manager)." (Gillian, 2017) Q4. What in your opinion, do you believe needs to occur to engage BIM fully within the FM industry? The main elements that the respondents raised include the following: • • • • • •

Education Full early engagement Client driven Government mandated Demonstrate benefits to FM industry Creation of a new role

Q5. Do you think a responsibility lies with the FM industry or academia to progress the utilisation of BIM technologies?

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From the results displayed in figure 8, a mixed outcome was achieved with some feeling both FM and academia has a responsibility with 37%, other felt all project members had a part to play in progressing BIM. 13%

Both Academia



All project members


Not sure

Figure 2 - Do you think a responsibility lies with the FM industry or academia to progress the utilisation of BIM technologies? Q6. Do you think some FM companies will be left behind if they do not continually develop and engage BIM technologies? Yes 21%


72% Figure 3 - Do you think some FM companies will be left behind if they do not continually develop and engage BIM technologies? The majority (72%) felt that if FM do not embrace the technology they will be left behind. Some felt that the main contractor may consume this role. The No (21%) felt that this is not the case and the benefits of BIM still need to be demonstrated to the FM industry and simple work a round are available to simplify the process. Q7. Have you seen a greater demand for the use of the BIM model from the client over recent years? No

Q8. Do you believe that new roles need to be created to fill the gap? Yes

Industry progression


21% 7% 72% Figure 4 - Have you seen a greater demand for the use of the BIM model from the client over recent years?

Current roles ample

7% 21% 72%




From Figure 4, it can be seen that the majority have found an increase in BIM over the last number of years. “As part of my studies I am required to understand if there has been an increased requirement for BIM. There is a significant demand from BIM and Clients are becoming aware of its benefits. The fear is that they are requesting BIM because they think it should be done. BIM is a alternative to traditional construction processes and the client needs to understand what this involves.� (McAuley B. , 2017)

Figure 5 - Do you believe that new roles need to be created to fill the gap? The majority felt that new roles need to be developed to meet the need been created within the current BIM environment. But others were of the opinion that there is no need for a new role, but to wait for all the current project stakeholders to develop the BIM knowledge. Q9. From the description provided of a Life cycle engineer could they help to ease the transition from construction to the facility management stage of a building life cycle? Yes

Not sure



Figure 6 - From the description provided of a Life cycle engineer could they help to ease the transition from construction to the facility management stage of a building life cycle? Figure 6 displays that the majority (82%) of those interviewed felt that the roles and responsibilities presented to them relating to the Life cycle engineer could help ease the transition from construction into the building operation stage.

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“A Life Cycle Engineer is needed for multiple reasons, but the reality is that this position has existed in non formal structures. Currently in many buildings a person has been appointed by the client (building owner / occupier) from the build team. This person is usually taken on in a managerial role to over view maintenance or FM, especially as they have superior knowledge of the layout and mechanical operation of the building” (Kearney, 2017) Q10. Do you believe that the role/responsibilities of the LCE are ample?


Too many

Not sure



Further development needed



Figure 7 - Do you believe that the role/responsibilities of the LCE are ample? Within figure 13 it can be seen that the majority (50% ) felt that the role and responsibilities of the LCE are ample. Others felt that it would depend on the size and complexity of the job which could lead to multiple LCEs or a Life cycle team. “There is a vast amount information and knowledge required to carry out the role of a Life Cycle Engineer. In a perfect world it would be great to have a dedicated person for the entire Life Cycle but unfortunately people come and people go. It would be much better to focus on smooth and complete information collation, transfer and storage that can subsequently be accessed efficiently and effectively at a later date.” (Gillian, 2017) Q11. What do you see as the biggest change that will occur over the next year within the FM industry? The main points raised by the respondents are as follows: • • •

Construction Industry to develop into digital industry Greater engagement from the FM industry Increased Interoperability

• • •

Up skilling Greater client demand Strain on FM industry due to EU regulations regarding NZEB

VII CONCLUSION This paper has investigated the connection or rather the disconnection between Design, Construction and Building operation. The paper has identified a gap in the market and a conflict between standards in relation to information management on a BIM project. The author has proposed a role which aligns to that stated within BS 8536 but adds to their remit on a project. The Life Cycle Engineer can bridge the design, contractor process and connect it into the building operation phase. As stated in the report, the operation and maintenance phase costs of a building could amount to many times more than its initial construction cost. It is in the author’s opinion that the concept role provided backed up by the results of the industry experts is definitely a position to be created within the BIM process that will offer an alternative from a building operation perspective to a client with a total life cycle mentality. The BIM for FM field is an extremely active research area and there are still a number of gaps in it that would be filled with the creation of the LCE. The LCE could be termed as the evolution of the facility manager from the traditional format, to the Life Cycle Engineer for the new BIM format. The role & responsibilities presented are more than those traditionally placed on facility managers or facility management companies currently operating buildings. However, this is the direction that facility management needs to take over the coming years to fully realise the benefits of BIM for FM. Legally, there are a number of unanswered questions in regard to the LCE and how liability would concern the role. The importance of structured data that the client can rely on at the handover stage is what has been raised among those interviewees on a number of occasions. On a BIM project there is no point having the right elements together on completion of a Project Information Model (PIM) to begin the Asset Information Model (AIM) in a COBie format. This could be all a waste of time because the data is wrong, incomplete and not reliable at handover.

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2. 3.

4. 5. 6. 7.


9. 10.


12. 13.



VIII Bibliography

AEC Magazine. (2014, February 18). The problem with COBie. Retrieved May 23, 2015, from AEC Magazine: AIA, T. A. (2007). A Guide to Integrated Project Delivery. The American Institute of Architects. BIFM. (2012). BIM and FM: Bridging the gap for success. Hertfordshire: British Institute of Facility Management . BIM Task Group. (2013). Government Soft Landings Executive Summary. London. BIM4FM. (2013). Overview of survey results. London: BIMtaskgroup. BIMFORUM. (2013). Level of Development Specification. BIMForum. BSI. (2013). PAS 1192-2:2013 Specification for information management for the capital/delivery phase of construction projects using building information modelling. BSI Standards Limited. BSI Standards Limited. (2013, February). PAS 1192-2. Specification for information management for the capital/delivery phase of construction projects using building information modelling . BSI Standards Limited. CIC. (2013). CIC Building Information Model. London: Beale and Company. CitA, Enterprise Ireland. (2015). BIMireland - Digital Design Construction - Operation. Dublin: CitA. Eastman, C. ,. (2011). BIM Handbook, A Guide to Building Information Modeling for Owners, Managers, Architects, Engineers, Contractors, and Fabricators. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons. Eastwood, B. (2013). The COBie Guide. Fraser, S. (2014). BIM IN CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTS IN IRELAND. Dublin: HusseyFraser Solicitors. G. Lea, A. G. (2015). Identification and analysis of UK and US . Lancashire: WIT Transactions on The Built Environment. Gillian, T. (2017, February 14). Personal communication.

16. Hore, A., McAuley, B., & West, R. (2017). Global BIM Study - Lessons for Ireland BIM Programme. CitA. 17. IFMA. (2013). BIM for Facility Managers. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons. 18. ISO. (2016). Information management using building information modelling Part 1: Concepts and Principles. ISO. 19. ISO. (2016). Information management using building information modelling Part 2: Delivery phase of the assets. ISO. 20. Kearney, A. (2017, February 19). personal communication. 21. Khaddaj, M., & Srour, I. (2016). Using BIM to Retrofit Existing Buildings. Procedia Engineering (145). 22. Lavy s., J. S. (2014, December 21). A Case Study of Using BIM and COBie for Facility Management. Retrieved July 1, 2015, from The BIM hub: 23. Mathews, M. (2015). Defning Job Titles and Career Paths in BIM. CITA BIM Gathering 2015 (pp. 4-5). Dublin: Dublin Institute of Technology. 24. McAuley, B. (2017, March 9). Personal communication. 25. O'Keefe, D. S. (2017, February 15). Personal communication. 26. O'Keeffee, S. D. (2015). Interoperability: The Critical Element in the BIM Process. Dublin: Dublin Institute of Technology.

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The Virtual Interactive Relationship between BIM Project Teams: Effective Communication to aid Collaboration in the Design Process

Emma Hayes1 and Noha Saleeb2 Design Engineering and Mathematics Department, School of Science and Technology Middlesex University, Middlesex, London, UK E-mail:


Abstract  Building Information Modelling (BIM) provides a shared source of information about a built asset, which creates a collaborative virtual environment for project teams. Literature suggests that to collaborate efficiently, the relationship between the project team is based on sympathy, obligation, trust and rapport. Communication increases in importance when working collaboratively but effective communication can only be achieved when the stakeholders are willing to act, react, listen and share information. Case study research and interviews with Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry experts suggest that synchronous face-to-face communication is project teams’ preferred method, allowing teams to socialise and build rapport, accelerating the creation of trust between the stakeholders. However, virtual unified communication platforms are a close second-preferred option for communication between the teams. Effective methods for virtual communication in professional practice, such as virtual collaboration environments (CVE), that build trust and achieve similar spontaneous responses as face-to-face communication, are necessary to face the global challenges and can be achieved with the right people, processes and technology. This research paper investigates current industry methods for virtual communication within BIM projects and explores the suitability of avatar interaction in a collaborative virtual environment as an alternative to face-to-face communication to enhance collaboration between design teams’ professional practice on a project. Hence, this paper presents comparisons between the effectiveness of these communication methods within construction design teams with results of further experiments conducted to test recommendations for more efficient methods for virtual communication to add value in the workplace between design teams. Keywords  building information modelling, collaborative virtual environments.

I INTRODUCTION As the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry competes in a global economy Multi Office Execution (MOE) of projects is necessary to achieve quality services at competitive costs. With MOE, there is a requirement for geographically dispersed teams to collaborate and communicate (Larsson, 2003) using virtual communication methods. Effective methods for virtual communication in professional practice, that build trust and achieve similar spontaneous responses as face-to-face communication, are necessary to face

the global challenges and can be achieved with the right people, processes and technology. To understand how effective virtual communication methods are it is necessary to understand the difference between communication and collaboration. The Oxford Dictionary (2015) definition of collaboration is ‘The action of working with someone to produce something’ and communication is ‘the imparting or exchanging of information by speaking, writing, or using some other medium’. The commonality between all definitions of Building Information Modelling (BIM) is that it is a shared source of information about a facility forming a reliable basis for decisions

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 during its life-cycle (Eastman et al, 2012). This shared information is the result of the various project stakeholders input into a single source of data through individuals or organisations working together or collaborating to address problems and deliver outcomes not effectively achieved by working separately or alone. According to Ward (2013), collaborating in a BIM environment requires a profound change to project team configuration, project infrastructure along with roles and responsibilities at both interorganisational and intra-organisational levels. Communication increases in importance when working collaboratively but effective communication can only be achieved when the stakeholders are willing to act, react, listen and share information (Emmitt et al, 2013). Ward (2013) also suggests that to collaborate efficiently the relationship between the project team is based on sympathy/obligation, trust and rapport, which he defines as ‘Social Capitol’. This obligation encourages teams to openly share and communicate throughout the design process. The premise of this study is that the current virtual interactive relationship between the project team in the BIM environment does not encourage open communication or information sharing resulting in poor collaboration between the design team members. The research will investigate methods for effective communication to aid collaboration throughout the design process. The investigation will consider what the virtual relationship between the project team is, how the team collaborate/ communicate, what are the challenges to virtual communication between the BIM design team players and methods to improve their interaction.

II REVIEW OF LITERATURE The literature reviewed for this paper considers team collaboration, traditional and virtual communication methods and the types of team players.

to a tradition of fractured adversarial relationships between project teams where a lack of trust between the teams does not encourage open sharing of information to aid collaboration (Macdonald, 2012). To understand where the roadblocks in this process are, the next section explains the current methods for communication in a BIM project. b) Communication Traditionally design teams have used Computer Aided Design (CAD) technology to automate hand drafting (Kouider et al, 2007) using traditional communication methods to collaborate throughout the project. The adoption of BIM has advanced this process to provide a new method of communicating digital documentation about a building, its performance, planning, construction and operation (Eastman et al, 2012). Stempfle et al. (2002) proposed that communication allows for the thinking and problemsolving process of the design team through two methods, synchronous and asynchronous. Synchronous communication is when individuals or groups such as design teams communicate face to face through interactive dialogue by telephone, in meetings or with video conferencing. This method is cited as being essential for problem-solving, developing trust and exploring values amongst the design team stakeholders (Emmitt et al, 2013). Asynchronous is a communication method where the interaction between parties is not instant or where they do not interface concurrently; correspondence media include mail, text messaging, post etc. Since synchronous communication is not always possible due to working hours, design team locations etc., additional methods of communication are required. Asynchronous communication is used when an instant response is not necessary or when the respondent is required to assimilate information before responding (Emmitt et al, 2013).

a) BIM Team Collaboration Project Design Team Collaboration is achieved through a coalition of multi-disciplined, multiskilled individuals with varying values, attitudes and goals to deliver a project (Emmitt et al, 2013). Teams of individuals or organisations working together can address problems and deliver outcomes not effectively achieved by working alone or in silos. Since Building Information Modelling (BIM) is a shared source of information about a building (Ward, 2013) it encourages the design team to collaborate. This alliance between design team stakeholders to work collaboratively is not currently experienced by many organisations adopting BIM. This is likely due

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 Table 1: Synchronous & Asynchronous Communication (Adapted Groupware Time/Space Matrix) Location Same Place Colocated

Different Place Remote


Synchronous (Same Time) Face-to-face Interactions Meetings, Shared table, over the shoulder discussion

Remote Interactions Videoconferencing, instant messaging, shared screens, Unified Communications System, dynamically linked models

Asynchronous (Different Time) Continuous Task Team Rooms, Public displays Communication & Coordinate Email, information issues/ model sharing (data drop), Document Management Systems

multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPG). World of Warcraft, one of the most popular MMORPG’s (Tassi, 2014) in recent years, allows the players to select and customise a character (avatar) to work collaboratively with other characters in guilds (teams) to complete tasks and defeat opponents. This collaborative working is supported by internal chat systems where the players can communicate through private chat (players can chat privately with each other) or guild chat where they can communicate as a group. Gamers also utilise communications systems or Voice over IP (VoIP) software to communicate with other gamers online. Technology advancements such as brain-computer interfaces will make this interaction more spontaneous. This is in addition to the presence of immersion using Virtual Reality, superimposition of virtual objects in real environments using Augmented Reality and Mixed reality using a combination of both (Cohen et al., 2015).

Virtual Communication d) Digital Natives and Immigrants

Synchronous communication or meeting face to face is an effective way to interact with the design team, to make decisions and agree actions but in this evolving industry, this is not always possible with the design team working in difference locations and often in different countries. One way for the design team to meet and communicate is virtually or to communicate from remote locations using information technology methods such as instant messaging (IM), videoconference, computer screen sharing etc. According to Leenders et al. (2003), communication technology is more effective when it is used to supplement rather than replace face-toface interaction since this does not provide the same spontaneous interaction between the team that faceto-face can. Science Fiction and the film industry have been depicting virtual environments where people can plug in and interact with each other virtually (The Matrix, 1999). The people in these environments take on humanoid features and synchronously communicate with each other (Avatar, 2009). This type of environment and humanlike interaction is not solely used in science fiction; a collaborative virtual environment (CVE) enables groups of people to collaborate and communicate together in a virtual environment (Schroeder et al, 2006). This is achieved through avatars, graphical representations of human characters, that converse with each other in a CVE or a virtual world such as Second Life or Open SIM (Ward, 2015). CVE’s were first used in the 1980’s for military simulations such as pilot and combat training (Peiva, 2007). The computer gaming industry has been using avatars as first person representations since Maze War in 1973 and more recently with massively

A barrier to interactive communication and open collaboration with Building Information Modelling (BIM) projects may be the lack of engagement by the design team with the tools and processes. For the design team to interrogate and interact with a project’s digital information they must be familiar with the digital tools such as BIM authoring software, review software etc. Yet design teams can comprise of different dynamics, work cultures and levels of experience (Levi, 2016). The senior team members could be more mature and experienced; the less experienced team members could be less mature, newly graduated, however, more technically savvy. This dynamic may have an impact on how the team engages with the digital tools in a BIM project. The junior team members’ generation has grown up in a digital era using mobile phones, computers etc. as an integral part of their life and are known as Digital Natives. According to Prensky (2001) they prefer graphics to text and expect to receive/exchange information rapidly. Digital Natives are suited to BIM process, which entails handling project information contained in a virtual environment accessed at any time as a graphic representation of the building. The opposite of this may be said of the more mature team member who has not grown up immersed in digital technology. Prensky (2001) describes them as Digital Immigrants who learnt a new language to engage and communicate with Digital Natives and their technology. The mature team members may feel uncomfortable with new technologies as described by Kouider et al. (2007), and as Prensky (2001) notes they retain habits from a non-digital past such as printing documents to read rather than reading on

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 screen, requesting prints of drawings to review rather than utilising digital review tools etc. To encourage interactive communication and open collaboration with BIM projects the team needs to engage virtually rather than in a traditional synchronous or asynchronous form, which involves changing a mindset for the digital immigrants. Fig. 1: Image of Clash Review Meeting over UC



The objective of the research was to explore the following:

Thirteen (13) individual in-depth qualitative interviews were used for the case study research to collect data from the live BIM Project. The interviews were carried out with a selection of team members from different disciplines (as per Figure 2) in each of the co-located offices and were either face-to-face or via VoIP.

• The current virtual relationship between the BIM design team • The difference communication




Semi-structured interviews

• The challenges to virtual communication between a BIM team • Project team interaction between different generations (digital natives and immigrants) • Alternative more efficient methods of virtual communication can add value in the workplace between design teams This was carried out with case study data collection through observation and semi-structured interviews with project teams along with industry expert interviews and finally experimentation of a proposed solution. a)

Case Study

A Qualitative Case study research methodology was employed to investigate the current interaction and communication methods used by a project team during the design process of a live construction project, which was procured using BIM processes. This particular case study was selected for research as it involved a multi-disciplinary team co-located in three geographic locations where the team members interacted and communicated virtually throughout the project lifecycle. Team meetings were observed and project artefacts such as action lists were collected to study the effectiveness of the team interaction. Figure 1 is an example of a clash resolution meeting observed by the author, which was carried out virtually with a unified communication (UC) platform with Voice over IP (VoIP) and desktop sharing.








interviewees Also, four (4) semi-structured interviews were carried out with a purposive sample of industry experts from the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) sector to collect data on current industry experience of virtual communication with Building Information Modelling projects. These interviews also sought the respondent’s opinion on virtual interactive solutions for BIM projects. The interviews were carried out via VoIP and the interviewer took notes and recorded the audio for later data analysis. Experiments The purpose of the experiments was to test the premise that more efficient methods for virtual communication can add value in the workplace between design teams. There were eight (8) experiment participants comprising of digital natives and immigrants from the case study project team. Two experiments were carried out in the work environment of one of the case study project offices at the same time over two days. The first was the control experiment where a face-to-face meeting communication method was used to carry out a series of design coordination review tasks. The

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 second used a Collaborative Virtual Environment (CVE) solution to carry out the same series of tasks. Hence, the only variable altered between the two experiments was the method of communication; face-to-face versus CVE avatars and medium. The same defined tasks were carried out for a particular area of the case study project and a federated review model was interrogated in both scenarios. An example of one of these tasks was the coordination of a congested ceiling void with multiple services (Figure 3).

meeting room using audio and screen sharing. Training was provided in advance as none of the volunteers had experience using a CVE prior to the experiment. An evaluation questionnaire was completed by each participant to compare the control and the virtual environments under the following topics: • Project Team Collaboration on BIM projects • Project Team Communication on BIM projects • BIM Collaboration and Communication • Digital Natives and Immigrants • Collaborative Virtual Environment

IV DISCUSSION OF RESULTS The results discussed below are based on qualitative data collected from the semi-structured interviews with team members from the case study project and purposive industry experts along with quantitative data collected from experiment evaluations. Table 2: Number of Respondents Data Source Case Study Interviews


Purposive Interviews






a) Difference Between Communication

Fig. 3: Images of Physical Control (Top) and Virtual (Bottom) Experiments The following software tools were used to carry out the experiments: • Review Model: A review model compiled from exports from the BIM authoring software federated in Autodesk Navisworks was used from the Case Study project. Navisworks Freedom was used to review the model. All the participants were experienced Navisworks users not requiring additional training. • Collaborative Virtual Environment (CVE): AvayaLive Engage is the virtual reality immersive collaboration space used. The participants communicated and interacted using personalized avatars within a customized pre-prepared virtual




The respondents were asked a series of questions to determine their understanding of collaboration and communication in a BIM project context. Regarding team collaboration, 14 out of 17 of both the case study and purposive interview respondents described it as working together, while only 3 referred to it as delivering or achieving a common goal. Communication was described by 12 out of 17 of the interviewees as a method to exchange information while 5 interviewees defined it as a method of collaboration. Results show indecisiveness and non-clarity in defining differences between collaboration and communication, hence indicating possible ineffectiveness in choosing the best methods to enhance them due to the vagueness of objectives for each term.

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CITA BIM Gathering 2015, November 23rd-24th November 2017 b) Virtual Relationship / Challenges Between The BIM Team The data collected from both the case study and purposive interviews determined that the three main methods of virtual communication currently being used, often in tandem, in the construction industry are Unified Communication systems (Microsoft Lync / GoToMeeting – used by 11 out of 17 interviewees), BIM (Navisworks/ Revit Server used by 10 interviewees) and Email (used by only 3 interviewees). When asked to discuss BIM team collaboration and virtual interaction 12 out of 17 of both the case study and the purposive respondents agreed that they experienced better collaboration, 5 respondents agreed that there was better coordination between disciplines and more understanding of the project. The cons experienced by the two groups of respondents were that more time was required as more coordination was possible with the virtual environment. Regarding challenges, 11of 13 of the case study and 3 of 4 of purposive respondents noted that virtual communication is not as effective as face-toface communication, as body language cannot be used to aid communication. This is a challenge to current virtual communication tools as Mehrabian’s (1981) 7%-38%-55% Rule explains that only 7% of communication is verbal with 38% being tone and 55% being gesture. Therefore, the respondents’ view is that 55% of the communication between the team is being lost through virtual communication methods. Technology problems such as slow Internet connections or problems sharing data were identified as challenges to virtual communication by the case study interviewees. c) Project Team Interaction Between Different Generations (Digital Natives And Immigrants) The interviewee dynamics for both the case study and purposive interviews were mostly digital immigrants (Table 3). This may be a reflection of typical project team dynamics where the more experienced team members such as discipline leads and project managers are older digital immigrants. This may also be said of the purposive group who by their selection for interview are experts with industry experience from BIM projects. Table 3: Number of Respondents

Data Source Case Study Interviews Purposive Interviews

Digital Natives

Digital Immigrants








The dynamics had an influence on some of the respondent’s answers to interview questions. This is most obvious in the responses to questions regarding the effectiveness of Virtual Communication and Collaborative Virtual Environments (CVE’s). The digital natives thought that a CVE built the same trust between the team as a face-to-face meeting, whereas 11 out of 13 digital immigrants believed face-to-face communication is required to build trust between the BIM team. In contrast to the above views by the respondents, 15 out of 17 of both digital immigrants and natives believed that a CVE will improve communication and engagement between the team and is as effective as face-to-face communication in agreeing better design solutions for coordination, clash resolution and discipline interfaces. These results would suggest that a CVE may have the potential to be a suitable solution for effective communication to aid collaboration throughout the design process. Further investigation through experiments of the CVE solution with avatars is discussed in the next section. d) More Efficient Methods For Virtual Communication Can Add Value In The Workplace Between Design Teams Results from the experiment respondents (Table 4 using both real-life and the AvayaLive environments) demonstrate opinions similar to the interview results showing appetite for more effective virtual communication methods; 4 out of 6 of the digital immigrants disagreed that the Virtual Environment aided the collaboration process and strongly agreed that the control environment aided it, whilst the remaining 2 immigrants and the 2 digital natives believed the virtual environment aided collaboration. When asked if the virtual environment built trust between the team, 50% of all respondents agreed it built trust in comparison to 50% who strongly agreed that the control environment built trust. Digital natives gave higher impact weighting for the CVE on both collaboration and trust. Table 4: Number of Digital Native and Immigrant Experiment Respondents

Data Source Experiment Respondents

Digital Natives 2

Digital Immigrants




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Oxford Dictionaries, Definitions, Oxford University Press, n.d. Web. < (Accessed 16 August 2015)


C.M.Eastman, C.Eastman, P.Teicholz and R.Sacks, BIM handbook: A guide to building information modeling for owners, managers, designers, engineers and contractors, Hoboken, New Jersey, John Wiley & Sons, , 2011.

V CONCLUSION Comparisons between the analysed data collected from three main sources (case study observations and interviews, purposive interviews with industry experts and field experiments) were triangulated. This provided initial direction on the current virtual relationship between the BIM design teams. The data collected also provided a sample of the AEC industries understanding of the difference between collaboration and communication along with the challenges to virtual communication such as technology issues and non-visual communication. Data was also collected from the interviewees and experiment volunteers to determine whether they were digital natives or immigrants. Comparing the results theorised how each demographic responded to different communication/collaboration methods. The field experiments tested whether a virtual environment with avatars for interaction could result in better communication and collaboration through an improved virtual communication environment. Findings from the evaluations showed a discrepancy between opinions of the more senior members of the team (digital immigrants) as opposed to the younger members (digital natives) who favoured Collaborative Virtual Environments (CVE’s) for collaboration and trust. There were various reasons for the unfavourable results cited by the digital immigrants such as the technology was not responsive enough or it was difficult to view a model on a screen in the virtual environment, or lack of experience in the medium. However, the respondents supported this type of technology for future use for being closer to replicating face-to-face interaction then current virtual solutions. Further research into CVE’s is necessary to resolve the issues cited by the respondents with the goal of having a virtual site meeting in a Building Information Model with avatars of the team members walking down the site and interacting spontaneously to resolve the building design before it is built.


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