Why BIM Is a Concrete Contractor’s Golden Opportunity

construction-site

Building information modeling (BIM) is rewriting the book on how buildings are designed and built, adding unprecedented levels of digital precision and visual understanding. The construction trades, including concrete contractors, stand to reap huge business benefits from BIM enablement. Leica Geosystems, a global provider of BIM construction solutions, has emerged as the go-to resource for the concrete construction industry’s BIM migration.

Analysis

The digital revolution has transformed nearly every industry, from manufacturing and communications to information technology and finance.

The construction industry has largely escaped the disruptive effects of digital transformation—until now. An historic sea change of process transformation is underway across the construction trades. Recent studies report an overwhelming majority of contractors have integrated BIM technologies into their workflow. For concrete contractors and other construction trades, BIM is re-inventing 2D processes with 3D digital precision, speed and economy.

Why is BIM becoming increasingly critical for growth-minded concrete contractors? Can a concrete contractor really profit from BIM processes in the field? A brief examination:

Competitive Differentiator. It’s no secret owners and general contractors are driving BIM field adoption. One example is Holder Construction, a general contractor based in Atlanta, GA, that self-performs some concrete work. They use Leica total stations to lay out every aspect of the concrete work in multistory office buildings. They also use scanners to perform some QC work by comparing the point cloud image with the model. The back-check identifies as-built deviations quickly, saving modification time and expense. No plumb bob or tape measure can match scanning speed and precision. General contractors like Holder increasingly expect BIM compliance from their subcontractors. Industry studies confirm project team selection often turns on BIM capability. Net: To compete, adopt BIM.

Jobsite Excellence. The quickening pace of BIM-generated success stories provide ample proof BIM’s role in the field will only escalate. At One World Trade Center, project teams placed every single piece of the building structure utilizing highly coordinated BIM data in combination with Leica construction layout solutions. As-built conditions were quickly identified and evaluated as needed. T.U. Parks, a large Chattanooga, TN-based contractor, used Leica Geosystems construction layout and QC solutions to build a complex curved hospital addition entryway with a 700 foot radius. You can’t use a tape measure to lay out large radius curves of that magnitude—it’s just not possible. Using BIM data from the project’s architects and engineers combined with a Leica iCON robotic total station, Parks made a once-impossible task a breeze. Net: BIM expands concrete contractor field capability, services and project engagement opportunities.

Conclusion

Few today dispute BIM’s operational value. What started as a design creation solution has swiftly evolved into an entire ecosystem for the construction industry. For the construction trades—especially concrete contractors—the promise of BIM is golden with business-building opportunity.

Leica Geosystems has extensive experience helping concrete contractor gradually evolve to BIM compliance. BIM construction specialists at Leica Geosystems are uniquely qualified to tailor BIM solutions to the contractor’s needs and budget.

Leica Geosystems experts make it surprisingly easy to gradually integrate BIM into the contractor’s workflow, offering a wide array of entry ramps and scalable solutions, ranging from paper and 2D to 2.5D and full BIM.

Learn more about our BIM solutions here.

Cathi Hayes is an architect, building information modeling (BIM) pioneer and strategy leader with more than 20 years of experience developing and implementing workflow improvements in various facets of the building design and construction industry. Early on her career, she established Revit as an industry changing model-based design technology in the architectural design industry. She later served as strategic BIM manager for Autodesk, establishing the company as a primary resource in the US residential, commercial and government markets for design, engineering and construction collaboration to help improve workflows and reduce costs. As BIM strategy and business development director for Leica Geosystems, Cathi focuses on helping building contractors achieve greater success in BIM through the adoption of leading-edge hardware and software solutions that make it easy to move from 2D to 3D workflows and extending the value of BIM into the field. Cathi is a trusted BIM advisor and a leading voice on BIM throughout the North American construction industry. She holds degrees from North Carolina State (BEDA Architecture) and the University of Kansas (PBA). She can be reached at cathi.hayes@leicaus.com.

2 comments

  1. Andy Harrison   •  

    I totally agree with you that the digital revolution has transformed this industry. I’m sure that in the future, there will be technologies being used that we can only dream of now. I know that with concrete, you should always go with someone who knows what they are doing.

  2. Nate   •  

    There is no question about it techonlogy like BIM has made all of our jobs in the asphalt industry much easier. The job can already be problematic but these types of tools really has streamlined the way we do business in our industry.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Current ye@r *