Building Information Modeling (BIM) is a digital model of a building. Different software or application can be used to create models in 3D. The models can be shared by the architects with developers, builders and others in the core team as described in Activity 2 Involve People of the architecture process.
BIM is generally used in the create and construction phase of a project but can be of value throughout. BIM can be used on different platforms such as mobile, tablets or laptops. Most advanced 3D-drawing programmes used by architects to model can be exported as a BIM file. BIM enables team communication e.g. the architect can take their tablet to the site and show the construction team potential solutions in 3D.
- BIM is useful in bringing together different expert perspectives. This can contribute to a shared understanding of the project ideas and visions
- When a model is opened using BIM, and VR mode is then enabled, it can help to define needs, identify barriers and challenges, create walkthroughs
- A BIM file on a smartphone can enable a VR experience even when using a cardboard headset. This is very easy, inexpensive and informative
- Provides great flexibility, making it a useful tool in the studio, at user forums and at the construction site. It can enhance creativity
- Can be used as a decisionmaking or discussion tool for the professionals on the project, resulting in better understanding of issues and more innovative solutions
- Sub-contractors can merge different BIM models to see potential conflicts and convergences
- BIM does not give the same experience as on-site inspection, and some information can be missed
- Does not give a full experience of a space or an environment. An overview can be difficult to acquire
- Wayfinding might be difficult to experience in its entirety so would need to be physically tested to ensure suitability
- BIM is at scale, so one-to-one experiences need to be created to fully test the experience
- BIM does not give a physical experience so this needs to be factored in