It's clear from my travels, meetings and calls to architects that BIM (Building Information Modeling) is beginning a critical upswing within the profession. Clients, both public and private, are asking for BIM models or for teams to work within a BIM process. Contractors are starting to ask architects if they have a BIM model available and even peer pressure from fellow architects (you doing BIM yet?) is taking hold. And with all that we can start to see a future where there are the BIM have's and have not's-and projects will go to those that can provide the services clients are requesting. So in these times of reduced workload it's time to start thinking about becoming a BIM have.
Ramping up your skills now will have a big payback as projects begin to come back on board through either stimulus money or the opening up of credit markets. You'll be competing against a few BIM early adopters but by being able to show your firm has the skills in place and can meet the clients needs you're much more likely to be shortlisted. And many of the public projects receiving stimulus money will require BIM-both GSA and state government funded. In the private sector the ability to provide BIM service, at even a basic level, will set you apart from much of the competition in your marketing and business development efforts. So get BIM'ing!
Those will provide you with more then enough ability to talk the talk while inducing minimal naps.
-Learn another new tool:
Now that you have yourself a fancy little Building Information Model gussy it up with Artlantis Render. A good rendering tools can help you sell yourself and your projects. And really, do you think the client just wants a big old data filled model? They want the pretty pictures too!
-If the entry price of BIM software is holding you back consider a few options:
Objects are good, objects make the model and don't they say "whoever dies with the most objects wins". Not sure about that last one...
But one of the great strengths of ArchiCAD is it's intelligent parametric BIM objects. And although the ArchiCAD library contains a large amount of library objects to cover a wide range of uses you often need to make custom objects for specific design elements of a project. There are essentially 2 ways to do this:
Which essentially means creating an objects in ArchiCAD's modeling tools. And this is not only easy but what most of us do when we need a special window or lighting fixture. You can also create objects in other modeling tools and import as ArchiCAD objects.
This is what you do when you need a higher level object with intelligent parameters. It might be something that you need to intelligently change the size of without distortion, materials of different components or select from an array of options.
That's my term for those that start out as being modeled in ArchiCAD or another program and then have parameters added through GDL scripting.
For those looking to create Graphical or Hybrid GDL objects there is a great tutorial on "Building Objects Creation" on the Graphisoft website.
For you hardcore types there is the new GDL Handbook HERE.
$90 get's you over 500 pages of information on creating GDL objects using scripting that you won't find anywhere else. Amaze friends and family with your ability to do GDL gymnastics. Better yet, impress your co-workers and your boss-maybe there is a raise in the works for you this year!
So cruise on down to the CADgarage and get your GDL tuned up now. And buy $10 more of stuff and you get free shipping!
designLAB architects, an ArchiCAD firm from Boston just keeps hitting home runs. Their first ArchiCAD project, the world headquarters for the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) just won an AIA Cote award for Top Ten Green Projects. From the AIA article on the project ArchiCAD played a strong role in the projects success:
"Using the latest BIM technology helped to accelerate the schedule and ensure accuracy with early estimates."
Photo Credit: Peter Vanderwarker
More importantly they were able to achieve LEED Gold status after further analysis of the project, working as a team with the owners and contractor, showed that a few additional efforts would get the project to that level.
Congrats to Robert Miklos and his team-awesome project for an organization that supports a great cause!