Building Information Modelling: an explorative study

Patterson, Melanie (2015) Building Information Modelling: an explorative study. [USQ Project]


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This research was driven by a desire to understand the use of 4D and 5D Building Information Modelling (BIM) tools in medium scale Design and Build (D&B) organisations in Australia.

The utilisation of BIM tools in Australia is still in its infancy despite the reported advantages on the use of BIM methodologies for managing large scale projects. However, there is little information on the value of such methodologies for the management of D&B projects particularly with respect to medium scale construction companies. Furthermore, it was found that there lacked a consensus in the literature on the use of specific BIM tools, and which tools provided the most benefit to an organisation. Accordingly, the aim of this this research project is to examine the feasibility of utilising 4D and 5D BIM tools in managing and resolving key issues faced by medium scale D&B contractors.

In order to pursue the above aim, semi-structured interviews and a multiple case study approach was adopted. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken as a means to validate the findings from the literature review. Interviews undertaken with the Construction Manager, Project Manager and CAD Manager of a medium scale D&B organisation demonstrated that the D&B method of contracting improves both budget and timeframe performance on projects. The constructability of designs however, is integral to the level of success achieved.

The first case study for the project utilised a historical project in order to provide a first-hand understanding of the key issues and problems faced by medium scale D&B contractors. The results of the case study identified co-ordination between the design and construction teams are paramount to the D&B contractors’ performance. Revised designs on the project due to constructability concerns after the commencement of construction works was both costly and disruptive to the project. The ability to identify constructability concerns prior to commencing construction works ensures project success. Identifying the specific key concern on the project demonstrated the need for research into the use of 4D and 5D BIM for managing and resolving these issues.

The use of a second case study enabled 4D and 5D BIM tools to be retrospectively implemented on the same historical project, enabling a comparative analysis of the performance of the project to be undertaken. The results of the case study demonstrated that the use of 4D BIM tools enables the identification of constructability concerns prior to the commencement of construction works onsite. Identifying these concerns improved the project schedules predicted performance with the use of 4D BIM tools by one week and one day. 5D BIM tools utilised the 3D BIM model to price the alternative designs on the project. Whilst the use of 5D BIM proved advantageous in pricing the design change in a reduced timeframe, the outcome of the case study indicated that the use of 5D BIM in managing and resolving key issues is feasible, when used in collaboration with a 4D BIM tool.

Recommendations are provided to undertake further research on the use of 4D and 5D BIM tools on multiple medium sized D&B projects. The use of multiple projects would be used as a means to provide a consensus in the results, prior to recommending the implementation of 4D and 5D BIM tools in medium scale D&B organisations.

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Item Type: USQ Project
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Bachelor of Construction Hons (Management) project
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Civil Engineering and Surveying (1 Jul 2013 - 31 Dec 2021)
Supervisors: Abeysekera, Vasantha
Date Deposited: 07 Jun 2016 04:09
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2016 04:09
Uncontrolled Keywords: building information modelling, BIM, historical project, constructability
Fields of Research (2008): 09 Engineering > 0905 Civil Engineering > 090502 Construction Engineering
Fields of Research (2020): 40 ENGINEERING > 4005 Civil engineering > 400504 Construction engineering

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