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April 28, 2009
by Jacqueline Pezzillo Assoc. AIA LEED AP

Event: Change Is Not Optional: Sustainability, BIM and Integrated Project Delivery
Location: Center for Architecture, 04.14.09
Speakers: Markku Allison, AIA — Resource Architect, American Institute of Architects
Organizers: AIANY Technology Committee
Sponsors: ABC Imaging

“We’ve never seen anything like this in the history of the profession,” said Markku Allison, AIA, resource architect at the American Institute of Architects, referring to the growing popularity of Building Information Modeling (BIM) and Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) among architects, owners, and most notably, contractors. According to a McGraw Hill Construction Smart Market Report survey, 35% of firms using BIM described themselves as very heavy users in 2008; that percentile is projected to rise to 45% in 2009. The benefit of the new technology is clear. Allison cited case studies in which a two-week-long BIM constructability analysis saved $800,000 in change-order costs and resolved a $250,000 miscellaneous metals discrepancy.

A force driving change, BIM introduces an integrated world to the A/E/C profession in which all players are involved from the beginning of the design process. BIM facilitates synergy among a project team as well as the ability to drastically reduce change orders, budget creep, and construction waste. E202-2008, a BIM Protocol Exhibit, is a roadmap from the AIA detailing responsibilities and transitions of BIM projects to avoid gaps and oversights throughout the design process, and to clarify authorship and ownership of the model during each project phase.

IPD allows owners, designers, and builders to leverage knowledge and identify opportunities early on through unified models, enhancing certainty and the potential of the project from design through operation. Progressively, the AIA released two new agreements for IPD in May 2008 to respond to the emerging procurement process — one providing transitional owner/contractor and owner/architect contracts, while the other offers a single purpose entity agreement among all parties with mutual goals and target costs.

An effective response to evidence of increasing sustainability standards within the AIA and among the profession, BIM offers the capacity to analyze building performance and expedite key design decisions about the life cycle of a building. Tools for strategy, BIM, and IPD yield an eight-in-ten chance of completing a project on schedule and within budget, a notable improvement from design-bid-build project statistics.

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