Building Information Modelling

and its Application in Building Construction Projects



By *1Benedict Amade, 2Ulari Sylvia Onwuka, 3Joy Okwuchi Chizitere Oguzie, 4Effiong David Umoh and 5Prince Nathan Uduma

*1,2,3,Department of Project Management Technology
Federal University of Technology, P.M.B. 1526 Owerri, Nigeria

4,5, Graduate Student, Department of Project Management Technology
Federal University of Technology, P.M.B. 1526 Owerri, Nigeria

*Corresponding author email: [email protected]



Building Information Modelling (BIM), an emerging tool for collaboration within the Architectural Engineering and Construction industry, has been adjudged as one of the models for containing information within the nooks and crannies as well as the lifecycle of a building construction project.BIM has been proven to have contributed to the optimization of the construction process via, the collaboration and integration of all building information management processes necessary for ensuring that all project variables are delivered via a range of digital approaches. This study looked at the application of BIM in planning and controlling of building construction projects, BIM tools deployed by practitioners within Port Harcourt, Rivers State. Survey research design using structured questionnaires was deployed as means of data collection from construction professionals in some selected construction firms. A sample of 95 respondents was determined using Yamane’s formula. Data for the study were presented using frequency table, percentage, charts. Key variables were analysed using Relative Importance Index (RII). The result from the study shows a general awareness of BIM with 97% of the respondents indicating a good knowledge and use of BIM. On enquiry about BIM tools used by respondents, AutoCAD Architecture was adjudged one of the most used BIM tool with 68% usage, followed by Revit Architecture and ArchiCAD with 46% and 45% respectively. Other tools had usage rate below 30%. The result of BIM application to construction processes revealed that BIM is mostly applied in design, visualisation and creation of digital mock-up as these processes had a RII of 0.85 and 0.79 respectively. Quantity take-off and estimation, and engineering analysis showed fair usage with RII of 0.55 and 0.50 respectively. Other construction processes tested all showed low usage with RII below 0.44.

Keywords: Building Information Modelling, Planning and Control, Building Construction Projects,


Construction projects are aimed at realizing predefined goals and objectives that are laced with risks, these risks are further compounded by the existence of some project constraints viz; time, cost, scope and the project delivery methods deployed (Foster, 2008). To maximize the twenty first century digitalized problem-solving opportunities of combating inefficiencies and reducing errors, omissions and wastages caused by the application of traditional methods of constructing, the construction industry must not be left out in the digitization crusade.  As opined by Kiprotich (2014), the contributions of wider use of technology, digital processes and automation to our economic, social and environmental future cannot be overemphasized. BIM radically changes the way building designs are made, communicated and constructed (Isikdag, 2015). BIM is a technological advancement that has improved how building projects are planned, designed, communicated and constructed by integrating Architectural, Engineering and Construction (AEC) related practices that are traditionally fragmented (Cramer, 2010). Over the years, the use of paperwork has been the method of communication between key players in the built industry.

Building projects are designed as single units such that conflict, errors of omission that leads to alteration of a parameter automatically leads to alteration of related parameters and objects, including drawings, renderings, specifications and schedules. If such adjustment is made during the execution phase, the resulting effect could range from extension of project duration to incurring of extra costs. This therefore highlights the need for an integrated system that can foster collaboration of different stakeholders, giving them access to every information pertaining to the project as the need arises.

According to ASHREA (2009), a building information model, is a digital depiction of the physical and functional features of a facility which is accessible to all stakeholders and forms a reliable base for decision making throughout the life cycle of the facility. The notion of BIM emerged and was developed at the Georgia Institute of Technology in the late 1970s and it grew rapidly thereafter. BIM evolved from being a shared information resource to an information management strategy and further into becoming a construction management method (Isikdag, 2015).

According to Hassan and Yolles (2009), BIM follows a seven-dimensional process which can be portrayed thus: 3D – Modelling; 4D – Scheduling; 5D – Cost Estimating; 6D – Sustainable Design (Green Design); and 7D – Facility Management. This lends credence to the argument against the misconception that limits BIM to being a 3D Modelling tool and associate computer aided design (CAD) with 2D drawing. CAD technology also offers 3D renderings, the difference being that in CAD, building elements are represented by lines and geometric shapes, while in BIM, the elements hold specifications such as height, width, interior or exterior, fire rating, etc (Dastbaz, Gorse &Moncaster, 2017). BIM offers parametric integrity which relates to the connection and relation between elements which are maintained consistently even when the model is being manipulated (Succar, 2009). In the application of BIM, each party carries out its own responsibility while actively cooperating with other parties to ensure a smooth flow of work. (António& António 2014;Yanran, Guogang&Jingru, 2015). Yanran et al.(2015) further asserted that since BIM presents the physical and functional features of a construction work in a digital format, conflicts encountered while applying the traditional decentralized construction approach are easily observed and corrected while the project is yet in its planning phase.


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How to cite this paper: Amade, B.; Onwuka, U.S.; Oguzie, J.O.C.; Umoh, E.D.; Uduma, P.N. (2018). Building Information Modelling and its Application in Building Construction Projects; PM World Journal, Vol. VII, Issue XII (December).; Available online at https://pmworldjournal.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/pmwj77-Dec2018-Amade-et-al-bim-and-its-application-in-building-construction-projects.pdf

About the Authors

Benedict Amade, PhD

Federal University of Technology
Owerri, Nigeria




Dr. Benedict Amade is a Project Manager by Profession. He read and obtained a PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) Degree in Project Management Technology from the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria. He is a member of the Project Management Institute (PMI) U.S.A. and presently lectures in the Department of Project Management Technology of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria for the past 9 years. His areas of research interest include construction project management, computer-based project management and construction supply chain management. He has authored over 20 scientific publications in international refereed journals and is actively involved in other consultancy works. He can be reached on [email protected] or [email protected]


Ulari Sylvia Onwuka

Owerri, Nigeria




Mrs. Ulari Sylvia Onwuka received her B.Sc. in Building from Abia State University, Uturu, Nigeria. She was awarded an M.Sc. degree in Project Management Technology from the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria. She is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Construction Project Management. She joined Federal University of Technology, Owerri as an Assitant Lecturer in 2014, where she currently serves as a Lecturer. Her research interests are in the areas of building construction projects. She is a registered builder and is married with children. She can be reached on [email protected]


Joy Okwuchi Chizitere Oguzie

Owerri, Nigeria



 Mrs. Joy Okwuchi Chizitere Oguzie is a Lecturer II in the Project Management Technology Department of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria. She received her B.Tech. in Project Management Technology from Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria and immediately went on to pursue her Master’s and currently her Ph.D. Her research proficiency is in the area of project management, tendering and cost estimation. She can be reached on [email protected].

Mr. Effiong David Umoh and Prince Nathan Uduma, are graduates of the Department of Project Management Technology, Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria. They obtained their Bachelor of Technology degrees in the same discipline.