AGC BIMForum Dallas

The theme of this conference was BIM Value Today and Tomorrow.  How can we better calculate the investment we make in BIM today with the results we achieve from project coordination today, the impact on the building at completion, and the savings we'll see in thirty years?  Have we accurately documented the full value that BIM brings to the table?

 

According to John Moebes, AIA, director of construction at Crate and Barrel, the answer was a resounding, "Not yet."  From the Owner's perspective, he challenged us to stop jumping up and down every time we discovered a clash.  To paraphrase, "I'm not paying for less bad."  As far as he is concerned, he has paid for a coordinated building and wants to see the ROI come out of schedule improvements.

 

As explained in McGraw-Hill's BIM SmartMarket Report, the AEC industry is starting to document the ROI around BIM, which turns out to be so much more than the low-hanging fruit of clash detection.  As Steve Jones reported in the Fridays with Vico webinar on the topic, the more you measure - the more ROI you discover.

 

One of the most important contributions that BIM brings to the table is the number of components which can be properly fabricated off-site as a result of the accuracy of the models.  This was the case at The Mission Hospital, part of the St. Joseph Health System.  This project involved a virtual mock-up to help the team resolve a complicated intersection of glass, steel, water-proofing, and fire-proofing.  Working together we were able to save time, money, and effort to the tune of $1.8M on the pre-fabrication of metal panels.

 

Day One ROI: the project was halted immediately when the problem was found and all parties got to work to fix it.

 

Day Thirty ROI: even with the work-stoppage, the hospital was opened only five days later than planned because of this cooperation.

 

Year Thirty ROI: no mold from the design flaw; no litigation between project stakeholders from the flaw.

 

At St. Jude Hospital Medical Plaza in Fullerton, CA, the project team recently engaged in pure Value Engineering and Design Review.  Working directly with the Owner, the Architect, electrical sub, Stryker (the Operating Room lighting boom and monitor provider), as well as nurses, surgeons, and other hospital staff, the GC Team modeled Operating Rooms, X-ray rooms, nurses stations, offices, waiting rooms, etc.  The GC Team did this in real-time with all the participants offering their suggestions. 

 

Just like an assembly line of systems and processes, they modeled the rooms to best represent the optimal flow of personnel, supplies, and patients.  The GC called these User Meetings and they are different from Coordination Meetings, but they helped the builders and subs see WHY certain elements/equipment needed to go in certain locations.  The subcontractors were able to accurately locate king studs and supports. This helped expedite the process of wall lay out and helped the team avoid costly change orders after the rooms were ready to be occupied. This process can even model if there are enough power outlets or data ports for computers, printers, etc.  With this realtime modeling even things as simple as making sure the casework doesn't cover an outlet gets solved.

 

Day One ROI: the doctors and nurses feel they are contributing to the efficiency of the hospital and "lean operations" are being practiced in their wing.

 

Day Thirty ROI: there's no need for field re-work, or pulling wires, or moving casework.  The trades move smoothly through the rooms understanding why/where/how they're installing certain pieces of equipment.

 

Year Thirty ROI: an efficiently organized hospital which has treated as many patients as possible.

 

St. Joseph Health System was recently lauded by Constructech Manager as a Vision Award Winner in the category of Healthcare Owners.  As BIM extends beyond clash detection and model-based schedules and model-based estimating becomes de rigueur, we look forward to sharing more examples of schedule ROI with the BIM Forum.

 

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