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The use of BIM in estates management

Watch the video to discover how Coventry University uses BIM in estate management.
HADEEL: So, my name is Hadeel Saadoon. I’m the BIM Manager for Coventry University Estates. BIM is very beneficial for estates management and facilities management. Instead of getting data in physical printed drawings and manuals at the handover stage, you can get data rich BIM models. You can use those to integrate with your facilities management system and get the data as an input for your BMS, the building management systems. That way you are able to manage the data more efficiently. It helps to manage buildings more efficiently and it helps in the planned preventive maintenance and also the reactive maintenance. So, it’s very, very beneficial to get better data with BIM.
BIM also helps to visualise the projects from the very beginning of the project. It helps us to understand the layout, the spaces, to analyse the architectural design and how it can fit with our students’ needs, with our staff needs, the faculty, and also how we can give better services to our students. So, BIM is a great way to design, construct, and also eventually, manage the buildings to benefit our students.
I think the major issue with BIM implementation is the lack of good skills. We need to focus more and more on upskilling the workforce and teaching students from very early stages about BIM, getting them to have modelling skills, management skills, a wider understanding of the application of BIM, not only for design and construction, but also the impact of that process on the facilities management and the end of life cycle of the project, the handover phase. So, it’s really important to teach, give more awareness about BIM to the students who are the future project managers, BIM leaders, designers, architects, contractors, and that’s why we need to have a lot of effort and put it into the upskilling process of our workforce.
I believe that the lack of good skills is the main barrier to BIM implementation in the UK.
We use BIM because it’s a better way of getting data, of obtaining information, of understanding the design process, of understanding and analysing the construction process. BIM also allows us to do clash detection very early in the construction, in the design process so that we’ll have much less clashes on site. So, it’s really an efficient tool of designing, constructing better buildings and also later, getting correct data to manage the facilities. New mixed reality technologies are great developments of BIM applications. We can now use models in virtual reality environment and also augmented reality environment.
For augmented reality, you can view the models or part of objects in your building and you can understand some assets and how you can find that location accurately. And you can find the data connecting to that asset by projecting it into the augmented reality via the augmented reality app and to your real space. You can understand data assets, you can get the data connected to that asset and that way you can manage it or rectify any issues related to that asset. So, I see a lot of potential for augmented reality applications to be developed more and more and have more benefits with BIM implementation. Virtual reality is a really, really great visualisation tool.
It helps designers, architects to view the space that they’ve designed and get the client engaged and to getting that early engagement will allow everyone in the team to understand the layout, to understand the spaces, to understand even the finishes, the colours of the space and it really allows to get better informed decisions made at early stages. And it also allows client satisfaction, of course, by allowing them to see a virtual model and getting them a sense of how the space will look like at the end. So virtual reality is a really, really great tool.

In this video, Hadeel Saadoon, BIM manager for Coventry University Estates and Facility Management, explains how BIM consolidates data in estates and facilities management.

BIM aims to address post-construction data management with Construction Operations Building Information Exchange (COBie), it’s an international process, and also a British Standard (BS 1192-4:2014) a UK government process of presenting non-graphical BIM data.

BIM facilitates easy access to data which traditionally was obtained in printed form but can now be handed over electronically once the construction process is over.

It also enhances efficiency in building maintenance as the information about the building and all alterations made are in one model.

BIM also helps with identification and location of buildings using the data embedded in the model.

Since the client is engaged from the earliest phase of the building process, they are able to visualise and plan many aspects needed for later estates management such as space management for students and staff.

Your task

What effect do you think the use of virtual reality will have on the design and maintenance of construction projects?
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