Welcome to the world of BIM – The first of our monthly inserts in RCI Magazine

Wecome to what we hope will be enjoyed as a regular monthly dose of Building Information Modelling (BIM) news and views, brought to you by industry leaders BIM Technologies and bimstore.co.uk, both of wchich are part of national technology and design business _space group.

As one of the leading UK BIM consultancy practices, BIM Technologies has led on several major project in the UK, details of which can be found at www.bimtechnologies.co.uk. In 2011 BIM Technologies recognised the need for a website that offered UK industry specific, manufactured BIM downloads. Hence sister company bimstore.co.uk was born – the leading designers and hosts of BIM components in the UK today.

Bimstore.co.uk was the first UK website to offer guaranteed high quality manufactured BIM content, available as free downloads to the BIM community and, as such, its reputation for the creating intelligent. Parametric models and systems is unrivalled in the UK.

Over the course of the following months we will look to dispel myths, create debate and address key industry issues, all against the backdrop of BIM.


Where does BIM start?

On considering what to include in a “beginner’s guide”. I initially struggled with where to start. Does BIM begin with the software, training or the design process? Or is it construction? The answer is that it can in fact start with any of them. Dependant on your sector and role within the construction market. BIM will mean different things to different people. For those of you approaching BIM as a beginner. I hope this article will provide some clarity on the “what and why’s” of BIM and leave you inspired enough to get involved!

Firstly – what is BIM? Best to begin with what it’s not; BIM is not software. There is software that enables BIM and you will probably have heard of names ssuch as Revit, Navisworks, Bentley, Archicad mentioned across the industry. These are all design and construction software platforms, which enable BIM. You may also have file sharing formats, the principal function of which is to enable data to be transferred from one software format to another.

BIM simply refers to a Building Information Model, consisting of 3D digital geometry plus digital data, rich information about the building and products specified. Without focusing too much on the 3d or geometry benefits, there are those in the industry that would rather refer to BIM as Building Information Management, and see BIM as more of a collaboration process, forcing industry sectors to move out of their individual silos and collaborate on the design process.

All sectors can befit from adopting BIM with the main advantage being; reducing waste, cost savings, better visibility and intelligent facilities management data, all resulting in a better building.

BIM is nothing new; there are many design practices in the UK that have been using software architecture, part of Space Group, which has been designing 3D software for nearly 15 years now, and in doing so have benefited by producing quicker, better more cost effective designs.

Why BIM? We’ve already established that BIM has been implemented by design practices for many years, so why the sudden interest now? In 2011 the UK Government mandated BIM as part of The Government Construction Strategy. The Government has recognised the huge benefits and advantages of implementing BIM as a way of increasing productivity and saving on waste and cost.

The BIM element of this strategy requires that by 2016, all Government projects need to be delivered as Level 2 BIM. This consists of a digital 3D model of the building, together with product data (COBie) that can then be imported into Facilities Management software.


“There are those in the industry that would rather refer to BIM as Building Information Management, and see BIM as more of a collaboration process, forcing industry sectors to move out of their individual silos and collaborate on the design process”


BIM’s added value

Although the initial interest in BIM has undoubtedly been driven by the Government Mandate, other sectors of the industry have also recognised the added value that BIM brings. Main contractors have wholeheartedly embraced the move towards BIM, encouraging their supply chains to also recognise the benefits.

As partnership manager at Bimstore, my focus is on advising manufacturers with their BIM implementation plans. Bimstore offers a creation service and then we host the content as free downloads to ensure maximum exposure. When creating BIM components or systems, the result is products that are 3D, intelligent, parametric and data rich. It’s all about the ‘I’ in BIM “information”. The BIM component is embedded with all of the technical properties of the product. This clever technology enhances both the design and construction process.

Whatever your role within the construction Industry, there will undoubtedly be a benefit to be gained by embracing the BIM process. Whether you offer a design service, you are a specialist subcontractor or a manufacturer, BIM is bringing construction into the 21st century. It’s not a fad, it’s here and now. Early implementers are benefiting already, so consider the benefits of embracing this game changer of a construction process and don’t get left behind.


Article source: Roofing Cladding & Insulation magazine, issue: October 2013


Or view it from here.


For further information contact:

Gillian Smith, Partnership Manager