ConstructionPro Week, Volume: Construction Advisor Today - Issue: 16 - 08/13/2009

Mortenson Construction Wins Autodesk Award for BIM Implementation on More Than 100 Projects

 Autodesk Inc. has awarded its Autodesk BIM Experience Award to Minnesota-based Mortenson Construction for its use of Building Information Modeling (BIM) on more than 100 projects since 1998 at a total construction value exceeding $6 billion. Mortenson Construction is also being recognized for its use of Autodesk software for BIM, including Revit Architecture, Revit Structure and NavisWorks, on projects ranging from resort hotels to the Harley-Davidson Museum.

"BIM and Autodesk's portfolio of BIM software are a mainstay at Mortenson and are used in every aspect of our construction practices," said Derek Cunz, director of project development, Mortenson Construction. "In fact, we're one of only two pure contractors to be included in Building Design & Construction magazine's Top 50 BIM Adopters ranking from their 2009 Giants 300 Report."

BIM processes helped solve a design challenge at the Harley-Davidson Museum in Milwaukee, Wis., which opened a year ago. The design scheme for the exterior of the 130,000-square-foot museum called for exposed components to thematically echo the exposed elements of the historic motorcycles housed in the facility. The key challenge was to balance the scheme for the exterior with the need to minimize visual interference from the complex mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) systems required. To help accomplish the task, the team used Revit Architecture, Revit Structure and AutoCAD MEP software as well as a single Autodesk NavisWorks 3D model to assist in consolidating and hiding internal structural and MEP elements. The Autodesk NavisWorks model (running on a computer in a job-site trailer) was used by foremen, superintendents and subcontractors to plan, communicate and review locations in order to help them fit everything correctly.


BIM technology allowed the contractor to fast track the $130 million Tulalip Resort Hotel project in Marysville, Wash., which opened in the summer of 2008. For the 12-story, 387-room hotel, spa and conference center, the use of a BIM process resulted in a higher level of collaboration with the owner, architect, subcontractors and even onsite craft and trades people. The project team used NavisWorks software and traditional documentation to create integrated work plans (IWPs). These IWPs were layout drawings given to the field crews that consolidated the construction information for a specific task, combining standard 2D plans and elevations with 3D views from NavisWorks software into one delivery source. By using a BIM process, IWPs and a single 3D model, the team was able to realize a 30 percent reduction in RFIs and a 26 percent increase in production of shear walls. As a result, the team was able to implement a fast-track approach by beginning construction using design documents only 60 percent complete and deliver the project in just 22 months, three months ahead of schedule.


"A 10-year plus track record implementing and promoting a BIM process makes Mortenson Construction a pioneer in the field of advanced AEC practice," said Jay Bhatt, senior vice president, Autodesk AEC Solutions. "It's no surprise that they received a Technology in Architectural Practice BIM award from the American Institute of Architects in 2003 and 2006, and a honorable mention in 2009."


The Autodesk BIM Experience Award celebrates professionals and educators around the world who are helping to drive industry transformation through building information modeling. Autodesk honors organizations for their innovation, leadership and excellence in implementing BIM with the help of core BIM products, including one or more of the Autodesk Revit products based on the Revit platform and other Autodesk products that complement the BIM process.




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