P. Agnes has always been a leader in utilizing technology to improve processes and productivity in building construction. Building Information Modeling (BIM) is a cutting edge process that features three-dimensional geometric and functional representations of building components. The resulting 3D models become shared resources to support decision-making about a facility from the earliest conceptual stages, through design and construction, and finally for building maintenance and operations. Models are dynamic, since the real properties for each building component are present within the model. These properties provide us with spatial relationships to adjacent work which allows coordination of a complete system within the available space- but they will also allow our team to use real data to generate more accurate cost plans and project schedules. P. Agnes operates several key software applications in order to leverage the valuable information contained within these building models. The software packages we use include the industry-standard AutoDesk products Revit and NavisWorks for design coordination and analysis, along with Vico Office for the management of cost and schedule based on the data extracted from BIM models.
P. Agnes currently has eight team members who have been trained and certified to operate BIM software. Glenn Manning, Vice President of Estimating, has recently utilized BIM technology to develop cost plans on the West Chester University Dormitories, Virtua Health Ambulatory Care Center in Moorestown, NJ and the Lankenau Hospital Master Plan. P. Agnes is currently using BIM processes in the field at the Virtua Moorestown Ambulatory Care project, as well as at Cooper Cancer Institute in Camden, NJ. For both current projects, we were able to use the data from the design teams’ BIM files to recognize and correct clashes between structural elements and other systems, well before they were discovered in the field. Model data on both the Virtua and Cooper projects has also been used to optimize the construction schedules, and the result is that both projects are currently ahead of schedule. Our project management team has also successfully utilized the BIM process to coordinate MEP Systems on the PACU Renovation project at the AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center in Atlantic City. Since that work was being performed as part of a renovation to an existing building, our BIM process utilized the Structural and Architectural designs provided by the architect and engineer, as the baseline for our work.
The advantages of using BIM processes can be realized throughout the entire construction lifecycle. Throughout the process any member of the project team can view BIM information through free software provided by Autodesk. The BIM model is an invaluable project deliverable as well, since at project completion facilities management can use the model as both a planning tool and for scheduling maintenance.