Contractors Look to BIM to Streamline Construction
The building industry is moving inevitably away from 2D paper drawings and toward 3D virtual modeling. When a new technology offers people a better way of doing something, they will eventually use it, even if it means overcoming old habits and facing a sometimes steep learning curve.
The use of Building Information Modeling (BIM) has increased dramatically over the past few years, not just in architecture firms, but industry-wide. Construction firms that were early adopters of BIM now have the hard data to justify their choice: projects are taking less time and costing less money, and demonstrated mastery of state-of-the-art technology is winning these firms more jobs.
Peter Campot, president of Suffolk Construction (one of the country’s largest privately held construction firms), likes to explain his decision to use BIM by quoting Thomas Edison: “There is a way to do it better… find it.”
In a world where productivity has increased in almost every sector, Campot explains that productivity has actually decreased in the field of construction.
“The reason why is that every building is now a prototype.” Many contemporary structures push the envelope of building design, exploring space and the limits of modern engineering, sometimes through amorphous volumes and organic forms. Given the new level of complexity, Campot asks, “How do we go from a design-as-you-go process to a building manufacturing process?” Campot is a firm believer that the answer is virtual building, and Suffolk Construction has seen positive results from using BIM on several major projects.
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