Webinar Review: Morrison Construction – Capital investment improved by digital construction

Context

The Government aspire to deliver ‘better, faster and greener’ public projects. This has sparked a change in capital investment, driven by multiple factors including operational costs and ambitious targets to achieve Net Zero. Employing digital software and principles subsequently contribute to how projects are assessed, procured and managed. This webinar assessed numerous components within Building Information Modelling (BIM) technology. It should be noted that BIM is not just a 3D model-based tool, it is an information management resource which is utilised across a project’s lifespan. This stems from the planning and design process to the construction phase to post-occupancy evaluation and is used by architects, engineers and construction professionals.

Generating Project Objectives

BIM can be complex and complicated for those who are unfamiliar with this software. It is therefore vital to ensure that an information manager is appointed in the initial stages of a project. Having a well-informed information manager helps to support the project as a whole, as well as those involved. Public bodies and organisations, such as the Scottish Futures Trust and the UK BIM Alliance, currently offer guidance and support for utilising BIM software through the development of handbooks, which communicate standards and frameworks to follow. These ensure that required information can be easily sourced and distributed at the correct time to the appropriate people. There is now a requirement to include greater information about the project’s objectives prior to the design and development stages. The capital investment project manager plays a significant role in defining these objectives and requirements. To do so, they may ask some of the following questions: what do we want; who is going to provide it; how are they going to achieve this; when are they going to deliver this; and where are the outputs going to be stored, recorded and used? Defining these requirements better informs the project lifespan and its outcomes, particularly for post-occupancy review.

Software Examples

Advances in digital construction tools can be used to support, or replace, existing paper-based processes. This makes information easier and quicker to access, compare and understand. This presentation showcased multiple tools which can be utilised to achieve this. For instance, Collaboration Software provides various development functions within a collaborative space, generating permanent records of the project’s journey. 2D and 3D images can be integrated in order to review and refine the design, ultimately assisting in maximising the benefits generated. 360º Photo Records are another software which offer tools for maintenance, planning and quality assurance. This is best utilised throughout the construction phase and at post-occupancy. Throughout the project, images can be compared of the same environment but at different time points and is important for assessing the quality of the installation.

Digital construction tools enhance accessibility for all users to verify, monitor and record project outputs. Utilising BIM software unlocks the opportunity for a project to reach its full potential meeting all of its proposed standards and outcomes.

Written by Holly Passmore, Thought Leadership Consultant, Step Connect2

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