ConstructionPro Week, Volume: Construction Advisor Today - Issue: 9 - 06/25/2009

Building Information Modeling (BIM): Multiple Models, Multiple Players

On the same day that the Boston Globe published an article on the benefits of "Building Image  Modeling," subscribers in the know listened to the third iteration of WPL Publishing's BIM Roadmap 2009 Series:  Multiple Models, Multiple Players: The Model Exchange Challenge. The dichotomy between the well-intentioned (but incorrect) article is germane because the first few years of BIM implementation focused on improved visualization. Now, in 2009, dubbed the "Year of the Contractor" by McGraw-Hill's SmartMarket BIM Report, BIM has moved beyond improved visuals from design offices and has made in-roads into permitting documents, constructability reviews, value engineering, means and methods, and much more.

This session gave us two primary benefits from both the design and construction perspectives:

  1. Design: We learned about how to structure our BIMs according to the Model Progression Specification and avoid risk through the accompanying AIA IPDE202 contract documents. This discussion came straight from the MPS and IPD Godfather, Jim Bedrick of Webcor.
  2. Contractor: We learned how Chris Allen and Bruce Cousins of The Weitz Company used the AGC Contractor's Guide to BIM and the AGC ConsensusDocs 301 series to transform their design-build process. Specifically, they demonstrated they used Weitz's innovative application of BIM to fabricate both "bar bend schedules" and panelize a subsidized housing project in Phoenix.

Kudos to WPL Publishing for providing a series that helps move the industry forward. To transform your operations and improve facility delivery, start listening to the 2009 BIM Roadmap Series.

By Maj. Patrick C. Suermann

Editor's note: You may purchase recordings of individual webinar presentations or a CD set of the entire series at, or click here.

Participants in the third of five webinar presentations by WPL Publishing, BIM RoadMap 2009, were treated to a side-by-side look at the benefits of BIM implementation from the perspectives of a designer and two contractors. Maj. Patrick Suermann's review of the presentation by Jim Bedrick, Chris Allen and Bruce Cousins highlights how BIM has found success in the design shop and is making in-roads in general contracting.  For more in-depth analysis and insight on BIM, visit Construction Project Controls and BIM Report at or Click here.


Maj. Patrick C. Suermann is a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy with a B.S. in civil engineering. After serving as a combat and stateside engineer, he earned his M.S. in Construction Management from Texas A&M University and subsequently taught computer courses for engineers in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the U.S. Air Force Academy. Recently, he successfully defended his dissertation and received his Ph.D. in design, construction, and planning at the University of Florida as the first ever Rinker Scholar at the M.E. Rinker, Sr. School of Building Construction.




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