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Framework for Creating a BIM Environment

Framework for Creating a Building Information Modelling Environment in Architectural, Engineering and Construction Firms and Projects

FEATURED PAPER

By Oluseye Olugboyega

Obafemi Awolowo University

Ile-Ife, Nigeria

 


SUMMARY

The processes of BIM call for a collaborative environment with tools with which a project team can develop, share, and exchange project data digitally throughout the project lifecycle. An environment for BIM processes is a technology hosting services that provide the atmosphere for interoperability, information model development, communication, integration and collaboration as required in BIM. This study aims to develop a framework for creating a BIM environment for projects and in an organization. A theoretical framework was developed to guide the review of literature for the process of creating a BIM environment. To frame the research, five concepts relating to both soft and hard BIM infrastructure were outlined to describe the process of creating a BIM environment in an organization and for a project. The findings in the theoretical framework were summarized and used to develop a conceptual framework for creating a BIM environment. It was found that a BIM environment can only be created when BIM has been adopted or implemented and that the framework to create a BIM environment include: acquiring BIM authoring software technologies and BIM hardware, developing BIM contents library, adapting or developing a BIM standard, and setting up a BIM platform. The study concluded that the types of BIM authoring software technologies to be acquired should be based on the goals of a project or firm and the types of BIM hardware to be procured; and also that BIM platform should be set up based on the types of BIM authoring software technologies and BIM hardware selected for the project or for the organization’s work processes.

KEYWORDS: BIM Environment, BIM authoring software technologies, BIM platform

  1. INTRODUCTION

An environment within an organization or for a project that incorporates software tools and platforms to provide building information modelling (BIM) services is referred to as a BIM environment (Eastman et al., 2011). It includes the creation, storage and management of building information models and the standards for enforcing the protocols, processes and practices of BIM. Building and Construction Authority of Singapore (2013) describes BIM environment as the hardware, software, protocol, and coordination workspace required within an organization or on a project in order to deliver a BIM-based project.

The processes of BIM call for a collaborative environment with tools with which a project team can develop, share, and exchange project data digitally throughout the project lifecycle. An environment for BIM processes is a technology hosting services that provide the atmosphere for interoperability, information model development, communication, integration and collaboration as required in BIM. Knowing how to put together a BIM environment will prepare firms and professionals in the architectural, engineering and construction (AEC) industries for a trouble-free BIM adoption. Information on creating a BIM environment will enable AEC firms and professionals to effortlessly plan and develop BIM in their organizations and for projects. Even so, many AEC firms and professionals are using BIM or are involve in BIM-based projects without realising it. This is mostly due to the lack of understanding of BIM terminologies, processes and protocols; and it is hampering the widespread adoption of BIM.

A large number of studies have been done on the framework for BIM implementation in an organization and for projects (Jung and Jo, 2011; Mom et al., 2011; CICRP, 2012; Ahmad, 2013); nevertheless, the framework for creating a BIM environment in an organization and for projects has not been well investigated. For this reason, this study aims to develop a framework for creating a BIM environment for projects and in an organization with a view to supporting the identification of BIM-specific requirements and preparations of a BIM implementation plan by a project team or organization that has adopted BIM.

2. THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK FOR CREATING A BIM ENVIRONMENT

A theoretical framework was developed to guide the review of literature for the process of creating a BIM environment. To frame the research, five concepts relating to both soft and hard BIM infrastructure were outlined to describe the process of creating a BIM environment in an organization and for a project. The structure of the theoretical framework include: BIM authoring software technologies, BIM hardware, BIM contents library, BIM standards, and BIM platform.

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About the Author


Oluseye OLUGBOYEGA

Ile-Ife, Nigeria

 

 


Mr. Oluseye OLUGBOYEGA is a first class graduate of the Department of Building at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-ife, Nigeria. He obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Building and Master of Science degree in Construction Management. He is currently a lecturer in the Department of Building, Obafemi Awolowo University and a member of the Nigerian Institute of Building. He can be contacted at oolugboyega@yahoo.com.