“Building on the success of the BIM Level 2 programme, Digital Built Britain was launched last year and will enable the interconnected digital design of different elements in a built environment, and will extend BIM into the operation of assets over their lifetimes – where the lion’s share of cost arises.
“It will support the accelerated delivery of smart cities, services and grids. Owners and operators will be able to better manage assets and services as they track their real-time efficiency, maximising utilisation and minimising energy use.”
So says Mark Bew, Chair of the HM Government BIM Task Group - Digital Built Britain, in the latest National BIM Report from NBS, an arm of the Royal Institute of British Architects that offers specialist knowledge and tools to construction industry professionals.1
Even so, the Report concedes that a lack of take-up by clients and a failure of government to enforce it are holding back BIM from reaping its full rewards,
This mixed picture is echoed by Anne Kemp of the UK BIM alliance on page 54 of this issue, who points to a shortage of skills and people, coupled with differences in technical speak, in software, and in standards, as major challenges.
At the technical level, new automated modelling tools such as those described by Mark Senior on page 52 are already helping users achieve BIM compliance and avoid costly design clashes. “When contractors see savings, efficiencies and the reduced risk during the build, technology such as this becomes an integral part of the construction process,” he says, but adds a sensible rider. “It is imperative to start small, maybe on one trade or part of the build, as there is nothing like success to promote adoption.”