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BIM'S Green World

BIM'S Green World
We probably can't call BIM and Sustainability the future of building design and construction. By all accounts yesterday, they're herenow. At a McGraw Hill Construction conference in the Back Bay, architects, contractors, and developers prepared attendees for the day when 2D blueprints will be as outdated as phone books.
McGraw Hill Construction moderator Stephen Jones, J.C. Cannistraro?s John Cannistraro and Zahner?s Bill Zahner
We snapped McGraw Hill Construction moderator Stephen Jones, J.C. Cannistraro?s John Cannistraro, and Zahner?s Bill Zahner, who discussed using BIM to pre-fabricate components for green building projects from offices to labs, museums, and private houses. John said BIM will replace blueprints in five years, 10 tops. ?It isthe design tool.? His construction firm has a prefabrication plant where it manufactures building parts—from mechanical systems to flooring—that have been designed with BIM software. Producing more precise parts reduced the expense of change orders on 408 projects in the past six years, from 18% of the total cost to about 3%. For the builder, that saves millions of dollars, lots of time, materials, and worker injuries.
Burt Hill?s Jim Summers and KieranTimberlake?s Roderick Bates
Burt Hill?s Jim Summers and KieranTimberlake?s Roderick Bates discussed using BIM to boost efficiency. Jim says 3D models give architects and engineers data in visual form so they can make decisions and work faster. Two people can do a job in two hours that once took eight staffers two weeks. Sure, there's an investment and learning curve, but, Jim says more info can result in smarter decisions. ?The payback is huge.? Rod thinks using BIM to model projects isn't enough. He monitors building performance and uses the info to improve future designs. Also, with stricter local green requirements, he says some clients are already moving away from LEED.
BIM'S Green World
As the group broke for lunch, we snapped Peter Campot, of Suffolk's Berry unit, who calls BIM the ?Golden Egg? that's here is stay.After doing at least $3B in health care and research construction projects, he says if used from the start, BIM enhances collaboration resulting in better performing buildings. They're also more likely to meet the expectations of all stakeholders: developer, designer, engineer, and contractor. Having a 3D model let?s everyone see what they're getting. ?It's like a truth serum.? Project managers can catch coordination problems early, and the ability to make precise pre-fabricated elements can lead to huge cost savings, he says.