BIM for Traffic
Building Information Modelling (BIM) can be used within the Highways and Transport sector.
What are the challenges facing the highways and transport sector?
The UK Government has mandated that all centrally funded construction projects must be BIM level 2 compliant.
The biggest concern seems to be confusion over the extent to which BIM will be needed, which projects will require it and how much involvement and investment will be required.
Other challenges include:
- Security - ensuring data remains both available and secure
- Training - is any training needed?
- Software - are there any speciﬁc hardware or software requirements?
- Skills Shortage - are the skills required to deliver BIM compliance available within the Highways sector?
- Investment - is BIM aﬀordable?
- Compliance - what are the minimum requirements for compliance?
Everyone in the Highways sector is at very diﬀerent stages of the BIM journey, those working on large infrastructure projects are likely to be further along than smaller organisations. If you are at the start of the journey, it is important to know that most highways and transport engineers already work at BIM level 1, so with a few changes and a little expenditure level 2 can be achieved.
What is level 2 about?
Level 2 is simply about sharing information better during the project modelling stages and ironing out the glitches in a virtual world before starting on site.
Start at the end
Work out if, and why as an organisation you need to do BIM and what you want to achieve in by working in this way.
Talk to your clients
Find out whether you need to be BIM Level 2 compliant in order to work with your clients.
Don't panic buy software
The solution to achieving BIM does not lie in buying expensive new software and hardware. BIM is a process, and one piece of software does not make you BIM compliant.
Ask more questions
Every project is diﬀerent so ask each client what they mean by BIM and ﬁnd out what information you need to provide and in what format. You can never ask too many questions.
There are secure storage services which are free, such as Dropbox but depending on the project and sensitivity of the data you may have no choice but to invest in more secure systems.
Assess your skills
Assess the BIM requirements against the skills of your own team and see if it can be delivered. If not, can you oursource or train? The industry skills shortage does not have to be a barrier.
The level of investment is up to you to decide based on possible returns and future opportunities
BIM requirements can be delivered with very little change.
Depending on the project, highways engineers may be able to deliver the BIM requirements with little change. The most important piece of advice in overcoming the BIM challenge is to talk to your clients and ﬁnd out what they require, and how you’ll need to provide it.