AEC Tech News #201

20 Jun, 2007 By: Heather Livingston

BIM and Sustainable Design, Part 1

A look at how the two are coming together
(or not) in practice.

As building information modeling (BIM) matures into the promise of its potential of easing interoperability, saving time, and reducing mistakes, so, too, does sustainable design grow in popularity, sophistication, and importance. To get a feel for how the two are coming together in practice, I asked Renee Cheng, AIA, head of the School of Architecture at the University of Minnesota to elaborate on the issue. Cheng recently served as a juror for the AIA 2006 BIM Technology in Architectural Practice (TAP) Awards and is currently serving on the AIA Board Knowledge Committee. Next month, I’ll explore the practical differences between sustainable design platforms as offered by Bentley, Autodesk, and Graphisoft.

HL: How are BIM and sustainable design working together?

RC: Well, there are things that they could be doing and things they are doing, and there’s a big difference right now. It’s probably one of the most frustrating gaps in the potential for what BIM can do. I think that many of us are looking to sustainable design as a natural fit because of the possibility of inventorying data using measurable outcomes for lifecycle costs or building energy performance. There are people working really hard to get good work out there, but it’s been slow.

HL: Do you think that BIM and sustainability currently is a complementary relationship?

RC: I think that it’s a natural fit that the two would go together. [There have been] a lot of issues with BIM such as interoperability, regulation and compliance, and software that’s been slow to respond to user needs. A lot of the same problems with general BIM issues are being experienced by people trying to do sustainability within the BIM environment. So, yes, they’re a natural fit together and are in theory highly complementary. In practice, they’re running up against the same problems everyone else is having. Read more>>

AEC in Focus (Column) -- How Are Architects Using Digital Design Tools?

By H. Edward Goldberg, AIA

With all the talk about the building information model, you'd think that everyone in the business of designing architecture is using BIM software. Yet, according to the main BIM vendors, Autodesk and Bentley, there is still more growth to come in BIM. According to Autodesk's numbers, AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT -- Autodesk's primarily 2D CAD programs -- are their best sellers. Given that both AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT are also used in other professions, it's hard to get a grasp on the number of professionals designing architecture in 2D with AutoCAD Architecture or the new 3D BIM systems. Read more>>

Mark Your Calendar: AEC Events

Autodesk University
November 27-30, 2007
Las Vegas, Nevada
Autodesk University offers more than 500 learning opportunities including advanced classes, hands-on labs, business-management solutions and strategies, and more. An Exhibit Hall features cutting-edge tools and services from leading application developers and strategic partners; briefings by Autodesk executives and product managers on key business trends, product futures and company direction; and social events. Read more

Online Course Series: Revit 201
Every Tuesday
11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. PT
Ideate, an Autodesk Value-Added Reseller in Northern California, is presenting a new series of 90-minute, live, online courses designed to help Revit users maximize the power of BIM technology. Each interactive class targets a specific Revit topic. The courses are designed for experienced Revit users, and topics reportedly address all Revit disciplines. Read more

For Cadalyst's full calendar of events, click here.