The Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA) has released what is believed to be the first published guide that outlines how building information modeling (BIM) tools specifically facilitate the design-build project delivery process using virtual design and construction (VDC).
"BIM and Design-Build Project Delivery" is the latest addition to the Design-Build Manual of Practice (MOP). Developed by DBIA’s BIM Committee, a group of practitioners representing various design and construction disciplines, the new MOP chapter details how design-build teams can "make the greatest use of a technology that is transforming the A/E/C industry," according to the organization.
"At its core, BIM is a visualization tool, a detailed database, and a communication aid to enhance collaboration of the project team," DBIA stated. "These attributes have particular significance for design-build projects because they augment and support a project delivery method that is already fundamentally collaborative. Because design-build is an integrated approach that delivers design and construction services under one contract with a single point of responsibility, design-build team members as well as owners are able to leverage BIM capabilities more completely and throughout the entire design and construction process.
"The chapter illustrates how BIM can be used to add value to a project from the very beginning. As early as the pre-proposal phase, owners can take advantage of BIM as a cost-effective means of visualizing what they want to build. There are many dimensions and uses of BIM that can further the design-build process, including integral cost comparison, energy analysis, and even 4D scheduling."
“BIM and Design-Build Project Delivery” also includes a BIM Checklist and Guide for Design-Build that owners and design-build team members can use. The MOP contains basic definitions, narrative instructions, procedural guidance, sample formats, and best-practices recommendations as well as risk management guidelines, licensure data, and regulatory and legal information.
DBIA Officials Provide Additional Details for CPC/BIM
In an email interview with Construction Project Controls and BIM Report, BIM Committee Chairperson Patrick Burns and DBIA spokesperson Susan Hines provided the following additional details:
CPC/BIM: What estimates, if any, can you provide regarding the number of professionals who are expected to use the "BIM and Design-Build Project Delivery" document and/or the approximate number of projects the document will be used for and by when?
Hines: The MOP is a benefit of membership in DBIA. Those 4,000 professionals can download the BIM & Design-Build chapter at any time. It is also sold as a downloadable document to non-members. We do not track how many members download the MOP, and it would be impossible to know how many people will use all or parts of it to guide the application of BIM on a project. It has generated tremendous interest.
CPC/BIM: How will the availability of the document be promoted to non-members?
Hines: We announced the pending release of the chapter in ENR, and we also posted a notice about its availability to the DBIA LinkedIn group, which is open to everyone in the A/E/C community and currently has over 3,000 members. Also of note: an article about BIM and the new chapter, by Omar Rodea and Patrick Burns (the 2011 and 2010 BIM committee chairs) appeared in the Summer Edition of Construction Superintendent.
DBIA’s conferences always attract members and non-members alike. Sessions highlighting the chapter have been accepted by the education committees of both the 2011 Design-Build Conference and Expo, which will be held in Orlando Oct. 19-21 and the 2011 Federal Project Delivery Symposium, which is just around the corner, Aug. 9-11 in Washington, D.C. That meeting is cosponsored by the Society of American Military Engineers, further broadening the exposure.
CPC/BIM: What information is contained in this publication that isn't already available elsewhere? What is unique about any of the content in this publication?
Burns: The DBIA BIM Chapter is the first published guide that outlines how BIM tools specifically facilitate the design-build project delivery process using VDC. Numerous publications have been written/presented on BIM technology and varied project design and construction case studies. The same goes for the design-build process and example projects. This publication links the two using the three core attributes of BIM as a visualization tool, detailed data base, and communication aid to enhance collaboration using VDC in design-build.
CPC/BIM: To what extent, if any, does the publication offer reviews of individual BIM software programs? Is there a comparison of features for individual programs? If not, why not?
Burns: The guide assumes that readers already have a basic understanding of BIM technology in project design and construction. The guide purposely avoided discussing software technology or capability comparisons. Instead, the approach was on explaining what BIM benefits project owners and design-build professionals could achieve to best enable them to plan for BIM/VDC use on their design-build projects.
CPC/BIM: When may the document eventually be updated?
Burns: The BIM Chapter is planned for annual review by the DBIA BIM Committee. The first priority after this initial publication is the inclusion of additional sample case study projects to help illustrate the tenants that are discussed.
CPC/BIM: Other comments?
Burns: New BIM technologies and ideas are being developed every month. Each of those will spur others to follow. And, design-build professionals are challenged to provide better services to clients. Thus, the bottom-line premise of the new DBIA design-build chapter is that BIM/VDC is an innovative and evolving process that has become a vital part of successful design-build collaboration.