Although the use of BIM is increasing there is still a long way to go before its full adoption in the AEC sector. Various surveys put BIM awareness and usage as high as 70% in the UK, although that’s certainly not what we are finding as a software company providing solutions to the industry.
Survey information on the type of BIM being used is less easy to find. Our experience is that a high proportion of projects are using architectural BIM models, but no MEP. Maybe we are talking to the wrong clients, but the market feedback we are getting is federated multi-discipline BIMs account for roughly 40% of the total.
At eRDS we are focused on providing building asset databases, so the type of BIM being used has a significant impact on what assets can be populated into our database.
In our experience we estimate that architectural-only BIMs contain less than 10% of the total assets that will be in a building. The situation is improved with federated models but is still somewhere between 40% – 50% of the total. Of course there are always exceptions, and some projects are producing ‘exemplar’ BIMs with an asset count as high as 80% of the total.
BUILDING ASSET DATABASES
The BIM software industry would say they have provided all the tools and workflows necessary to make it possible to model 100% of building assets. But in practice few projects have the time, resources or budget to make this happen. Over time this will surely change, and we really will see ‘digital twins’ being the norm, but who is to say when or if this will happen?
WHAT TO DO ABOUT THE MISSING ASSETS?
The BIM software industry would say they have provided all the tools and workflows necessary to make it possible to model 100% of building assets. But in practice few projects have the time, resources or budget to make this happen. Over time this will surely change, and we really will see ‘digital twins’ being the norm, but who is to say if this will happen within the next decade?
The question therefore is what to do about the 50% – 90% of building assets that are currently not being defined in BIM?
The eRDS solution is to have all assets defined in an on-line SQL database that consists of assets from Revit where they exist, and to define the assets that are missing from the models as information. Depending on the type of BIM being used, the database is auto-populated with somewhere between 5% and 50% of the total assets required for the building.
The remaining assets are defined as information in the eRDS library before being allocated to the relevant rooms using batch processes and room types. Doing this in the eRDS COBie compliant database is much faster and less error prone than attempting to do it in the models.
The result is that 100% of the building contents can be accounted for to drive various other construction and operations processes, and integration with stakeholder IT systems.