Question Of The Week: Benefits Of BIM

Posted by Anne Cosgrove

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Traditional building design is largely reliant upon two-dimensional drawings. Building information modeling (BIM) technology extends this realm to 3D (width, height, and depth). Meanwhile, time can be the fourth dimension (4D) and cost, the fifth (5D). BIM covers spatial relationships, light analysis, geographic information, and quantities and properties of building components (for example, manufacturers’ details). While BIM is primarily used during construction, the technology is increasingly expanding its reach to facility management—extending throughout a building’s life cycle.

The U.S. National Building Information Model Standard Project Committee uses the following definition: Building Information Modeling (BIM) is a digital representation of physical and functional characteristics of a facility. A BIM is a shared knowledge resource for information about a facility forming a reliable basis for decisions during its life cycle; defined as existing from earliest conception to demolition. A basic premise of BIM is collaboration by different stakeholders at different phases of the life cycle of a facility to insert, extract, update or modify information in the BIM to support and reflect the roles of that stakeholder.

Have you been involved in a construction project for which BIM was used? Once the project was complete, did you receive relevant facility management data? If so, how has having the data at your disposal benefitted your department?

If you have not had experience with BIM for your facilities yet, are you pursuing this avenue?

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