Jeff, I disagree. It's not that the technology is delivering what CAD once promised, it's that people are using technology to deliver a better product. CAD just promised faster drafting. BIM promises better design and construction efficiencies.
It's still all about the people. BIM is doomed to failure if the industry doesn't figure out how to use it and actually share their information with others during design and downstream.
March 2012 » Features » SPECIAL REPORT
Technology delivers what CAD once promised.
|The Maricopa County Court Tower in downtown Phoenix, Ariz., made extensive use of BIM, resulting in significant time savings and on-budget completion. Photo by Patti Reznik|
A survey of 284 design professionals on their use of building information modeling (BIM) revealed that more than half have used 3D design software on at least one project in their firms and more than half have realized benefits that the respondents defined as, "Improved coordination with other disciplines and the contractor, which leads to reduced construction management issues, especially a decrease in the contractor's request-for-information (RFI) submittals."
Earlier editions of the survey had put BIM proliferation lower for the A/E/P and environmental consulting industries. Many respondents said they have come around to BIM after initially being reticent of the process and technology because of cost or a perceived tendency of software to overpromise on its benefits.
"I think the building industry is in Day 2 of BIM genesis," said Dwayne Miller, CEO, JBA Consulting Engineers in Las Vegas, Nev., a consulting engineering firm offering a host of engineering consulting services, and recognized as industry leaders in the primary service area in which it began — MEP.
Miller feels many owners and clients are just now getting over the disappointment caused when BIM failed to deliver the enormous and unrealistic savings the unsubstantiated hype of the early '90s promised.
"We're now finally realizing the tremendous benefits. BIM truly is a complete paradigm shift in active building system engineering and design. The positive results are a reflection of the change in the process, with how BIM is now being applied to solving overall project challenges, particularly in the areas of collision detection and coordination with structural," Miller said. "By using BIM from start to finish, instead of the old days when BIM was applied too late to affect any material savings or influence design strategy, we're now seeing BIM paying the dividends originally promised."
|Please explain the benefits of BIM. (see pdf)|
|Source: Structural Engineer BIM Survey.|
"We are really just scratching the surface with the potential with respect to leveraging model information analysis across all active building systems. At JBA, we're passionate advocates of applying our proprietary BIM approach early and comprehensively across our projects," Miller said.
The Structural Engineer BIM Survey, held online last October through December, found that 35 percent of respondents said that they came around to using BIM as an internal decision. Twenty one percent said they first started using BIM as an external requirement by a client. Sixteen percent said BIM has allowed them to offer third-party integration consulting in addition to their regular engineering services and construction services. A similar number said using BIM software allowed them to offer shop drawing production and construction management services; 31 percent said they believe half of the AEC industry will be using BIM within 10 years.
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