Faster, better, safer: the old vs. the new construction process
The construction industry is in essence no different than other economical trades: the best business decisions prove to be the ones based on a rigorous risk analysis that aims to increase efficiency and reduce failure. Usually, the question we ask ourselves is:
“How can we realize our work faster without sacrificing quality for cost and time reduction?”
In construction, it seems to be rather the norm than the exception that a completed building presents significant variations from the initial design. But why does this happen? It could be due to differences in the ways of working of the contractors, unrealistic expectations or the lack of a stable communication platform
between the modeller and the structural engineer or architect. These are just a few reasons why buildings have been designed one way and executed another. Want to know how to avoid these in the future? Read on.
What about failure costs?
Misunderstandings can be caused by the lack of available information or by a partial understanding of the designed model because of poor collaboration between the parties.
A single coordination error can take three times more time and resources as initially planned, if not more.
In any case, without complete information, getting it right is like trying to catch a fly in a dark room.
MEP Openings in BIM
Misunderstandings about MEP openings can be especially costly. Openings in large buildings can become very wide in dimensions, which makes measuring them on site very difficult if not impossible.
In buildings with complex installations and heavy structures, it is therefore essential to specify the exact location and properties of the openings that need to be made in walls, floors, ceilings and all other structural elements to allow MEP elements to intersect them.
That’s why it is so important for openings to be included in the initial design of the building. By knowing the exact place where voids need to be created, all of the elements will fit perfectly at the time of the execution. Modelling the installation and collaborating at a high level early on in the project becomes crucial for avoiding failure costs. A good communication between all involved parties (MEP designer, architect, structural engineers, etc.) is the key to a successful project.
So, what can you do about it?
As a MEP engineer, you can build up your tool kit of Revit plugins and use exactly those that help you most. The Stabiplan Openings for MEP
for instance is a great plugin that allows you to communicate about openings with the structural engineer in real time. That way, the structural engineer will be informed of the voids they need to take into account and the construction party will have the right information at the time of the execution.
The plugin works in a few easy steps: Step 1:
Model your system in Revit and identify those MEP elements (pipes, ducts, cable trays, etc.) that intersect with structural elements (walls, floors, roofs, etc.). Step 2:
Create the openings in your project on the places where MEP elements intersect with structural elements. You can fill in all relevant information about the opening such as shape, orientation, depth, etc. Step 3:
Select the openings which you would like to include in the opening request and send it to the structural engineer. In the "Openings Monitor" window from within the App, you will be able to see the status of your request: is it approved, pending or disapproved? Step 4:
Once the structural engineer processes your request and decides whether they approve or dissaprove the request, they can create a void in the structural element that corresponds to your measurements input. Structural engineers can process the openings requests using the free Openings Manager App for Revit
. Step 5:
You can now continue your work, with the satisfaction that you have just contributed to avoiding a whole lot of unnecessary work that may have been caused by an execution failure.
Keeping up with BIM is essential
Communication is key in successful projects and that’s exactly what this new App
and BIM are all about. This is also why more and more professionals are rapidly adopting the BIM methodology and why BIM regulations are being imposed in countries all around the world. Are you going to ride this high speed wagon? Start by downloading the Stabiplan Openings for MEP plugin for Revit
here to manage your openings with maximum efficiency and reduce failure costs.