Why BIM Implementation is Increasing Worldwide

In recent years, many AECO firms have adopted Building Information Modeling in construction projects due to government mandates. For instance, more than a decade ago, the UK government calculated that BIM technology could save 10-20% on construction costs. France launched a three-year, €20 million “Digital Transition Plan” in 2014, focusing on convincing stakeholders that BIM promotes efficiency. And Spain has established a BIM implementation calendar, which includes a requirement that all public infrastructure and/or construction projects with a budget of €2 million or more use BIM; they hope that all public projects utilize BIM for construction and maintenance by 2020.

Chile has also taken steps to incorporate BIM in public projects. This past June, Carolina Soto, Director of CORFO (translated to English, the Production Development Corporation of Chile) attended the “BIM in Government” event in Lima, Peru. Microdesk’s own George Broadbent, Director of Asset Management, was also in attendance. Costos, a Peruvian construction magazine, interviewed the two on how BIM is changing the AECO landscape.

Currently, CORFO is analyzing which kinds of projects could benefit most from BIM. Investment goals for public projects are being determined, and the hope is that investments will decrease over time. Though the Chilean government is supportive of implementing BIM, seasoned AECO workers are more skeptical of changing their design and construction methods of 20+ years, Soto says.

But the benefits of BIM are clear; during his interview, Broadbent emphasizes that BIM generates significant savings for building operations and maintenance. Broadbent says that enterprises could save up to 5% in annual costs by implementing BIM. Additionally, BIM provides maintenance workers access to much more information than they would have via traditional 2D methods. Broadbent also recommends that projects incorporate IBM Maximo – the software allows you to monitor costs, and the 3D platform permits workers to view the building model in real time and recognize when equipment is in need of repair.

Broadbent explains that there are four types of maintenance: preventative, corrective, emergency, and regulatory. IBM Maximo accommodates each type, and provides AECO workers with access to the building’s entire infrastructure via 3D model. The BIM model displays where work is in progress in the building, and can transfer data from the system to facilities management. Maximo can also integrate with artificial intelligence software, and therefore can collect climate data, pick up weather patterns, and predict weather changes and how they would affect the buildings.

As more and more governments become aware of the advantages of BIM, AECO firms will be incentivized to use it. And as more projects incorporate BIM, firms will save time, money, and resources. Though BIM implementation requires initial costs and training, the increases in productivity and savings are considerable in the long term.