An investment for BIM for infrastructure could save costs worldwide
Reaching a consensus between all the project stakeholders remains a challenge somehow
General contractors always see this friction of construction planning for immensely large infrastructure development projects and adhere to agreed cost plans. Usually what happens with large construction projects is that they are planned in advance and by the time actual construction work begins, the costs have risen, political influence has changed, local construction approval bodies have updated the policies and a number of other standards.
Although provisions are made for all of these during planning; reaching a consensus between all the project stakeholders remains a challenge somehow. Ultimately it all results in cost overruns. ‘Herald net’ quotes Elaine Chao, Secretary of Transportation, who emphasizes on the method of optimum investment in infrastructure which can directly be dealt with by BIM. She says,
The BIM position in the AEC industry
Particularly for the transportation industry, infrastructure development means connecting federal government bodies, state transportation department, local transit authorities and agencies, and the professionals at the construction firm’s end. To optimize the spending budgets, BIM gives insights to the stakeholders with virtual design and construction [VDC] approach to abide by the cost budgets.
BIM, in fact, goes beyond that. It provides a proper coherent and coordinated plan to schedule the construction that includes logistics for critical operations onsite. Efficient spending and cost saving is what taxpayers and project investors would want for smooth approvals from the government during bidding and tender approval stages. BIM manages these aspects through digital medium of a federal BIM model that is capable of generating accurate RFIs, construction documentation, coordinating and issuing work orders for interdisciplinary activities and much more.
The money factor of BIM
General contractors across the globe are implementing and exploring BIM services, owing to several areas of assistance that BIM offers. If we just look at the statistics for BIM implementation in the UK, their government is actively introducing policies that aim at saving up to 15% to 20% on all public construction projects. It is estimated that since 2009, when BIM was implemented for the first time, through 2015, they have saved approximately £900 million or a little around $1 Billion. (Source)
Going by aforementioned statistics, if developed economies such as the USA starts using BIM to the level at which their counterparts in the UK do, a $1 trillion dollar projects would bring the taxpayers a saving of $200 billion. This great gear shift to BIM will in fact not only bring monetary benefits but also better consultation and quality development of infrastructure that lasts for ages.
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Are we ready for BIM in infrastructure? The answer is yes. Nowadays we have more information regarding how this methodology is affecting the way we build roads, bridges or tunnels. There is a program that allows the professional to become experts in the use of BIM in civil engineering.