Building information modelling: what does it really mean?

By David-John Gibbs

The UK government has mandated a minimum of ‘Level 2’ building information modelling (BIM) on all centrally procured projects, but what does this mean for the construction industry?

BIM can be described as the collaborative process of sharing electronic information throughout the lifecycle of a built asset. This process of working ensures that the right information is delivered to the right people at the right time. As a concept, this is nothing new, but where BIM differs from ‘traditional’ methods is the way in which information is generated and shared.

The UK government has developed a BIM maturity model to benchmark BIM capabilities. Level 2 BIM requires information management and exchange processes to be specified and followed along with the creation of a 3D model using smart objects. Within Level 2, each project team member works on their own team to produce information and a 3D model. An information manager and BIM co-ordinator will then collate the outputs from each project team member to provide a single source of project information…

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