Topos Architecten sail through new BIM waters on Dutch rowing club project

Credit: Topos Architecten
Credit: Topos Architecten

Renowned Dutch architecture practice Topos Architecten have shared the BIM journey of their recently completed rowing club project. Thankfully the team did not sink, they swam!

Duurzaam Gebouwd Magazine (translates to Sustainable Build) have reported on The Breakdown boating complex, looking at how Topos handled BIM implementation and drone usage, practices described as “difficult” and “a challenge” for some members of the project team.

Topos Architecten’s Director, Ronald de Rooij told the magazine: “You build all of the building virtually, therefore, part of the technical development is already in the process and you can solve problems in the computer rather than during construction. This reduces the costs of failure. Additionally, it offers the client a better understanding of the design.”

Major lessons were also learned on the project. Van den Pol Electrical also were a part of the team, and their Director Wim van den Pol admitted that “BIM is still in its infancy within the company”. He explained: “Modelling of things that are not there yet, it is difficult for us. The same is true for working with UAV-gc.”

Furthermore, de Rooij elaborated (in both the article and on Topos’ website) on what his company learned as a result of the nautical learning curve: “We must still involve all parties to BIM earlier in the process. The model offers all parties good insight and information about the project to build.

“Wim van der Pol indicates that modelling in BIM for an installer is still far from profitable because many components must be modelled themselves. Now this takes too much time. The required stability is enshrined in the UAV-gc, but could probably be made in consultation with the implementing parties to an even higher level.

“The installation [of the heating] was designed outside of the model and introduced later in the 3D model. Practice has shown that BIM provides no added value in this way. To reap the full benefits of BIM, it is important also to design the installation in the model. Only then can it be resolved in a good way without conflicts in the model so the costs of failure can be prevented in construction.”

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