Building information modeling: how it can benefit a modern construction project in a university setting

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University of Alabama Libraries

The benefits offered by Building Information Modeling, when implemented during a modern construction project, were analyzed. Common inefficiencies of current construction industry practices were observed through evaluation of historical data, and used to demonstrate the need for an improved project approach. Several surveys were presented to reveal the most popular uses of BIM while also displaying the value participating construction companies placed on each use. A case study of the North Engineering Research Complex located on the University of Alabama campus was presented, and observed benefits were evaluated up through the current progress. Potential benefits were explained for the remaining project phases. The research revealed that a wide variety of benefits can be enjoyed by all project parties when utilizing Building Information Modeling. The most valuable benefit is that of overall increased collaboration during the project. The ability of the entire project team to share the BIM models helped in identifying problems prior to construction, reducing the project cost by avoiding these problems, improving the project schedule and increasing the overall quality of the end product. Viewing the three-dimensional BIM model also helped project members attain a better understanding of the project as a whole. Because Building Information Modeling is a relatively new concept, the owner, architect and general contractor also learned valuable lessons for future projects.

Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
Civil engineering