Developers need to turn to technology

Panelists at Build Smart 2009 say developers should look to BIM

The Build Smart 2009 conference is also running today at Yas Hotel, Abu Dhabi.
The Build Smart 2009 conference is also running today at Yas Hotel, Abu Dhabi.

During a discussion on the challenges facing owners and developers at the Build Smart 2009 Better Construction Through Interoperability conference yesterday, experts said that the challenges owners and developers were now facing made it essential that they turned to construction technology such as Building Information Modelling (BIM).

“The biggest challenge we face is actually people,” said Nakheel head of sustainability and environment, Brendan Jack.

“People are a double-sided sword when it comes to efficiency – people inherently want to do bigger and better things, for example.

“For Nakheel and doubtless other large developers, unless you do things right from the beginning, there can be so much inertia that you can get a long way down the route to completion without being able to correct errors quickly enough. For us, that's where BIM helps us make informed decissions early.”

Burt Hill design director Ivar Krasinski was even more succinct in his response.

“Due to the pressure developers are under, there is less room for error than before. Simply, that means using BIM.”

Atkins head of MEP David Crowder said that the same principles applied to civil projects too. “If we're doing a railway, there's a lot to fit in – power supplies, MEP – a lot needs to go into a small space.

“That's almost impossible to do manually, and you certainly don't want to finish a project to find there are hundreds or thousands of projects leading to waste and delay. That's why we've turned to BIM.”

Al Rashid Investment CEO Ramesh Tolami was another BIM convert. “As we all know, cost is certainly a massive challenge for developers; even more important now than previously. The cost of procurement, design, operating, maintaining...”

“The BIM process is a collaboartive, open approac that leads to more creative designs, with changes incorporated along process.

“Cost certainty is what all clients and developers are looking for.”

And Nakheel's Jack said that developers would be forced to turn to these technologies through market demands.

“Clients make developers aware of problems. We're just as frustrated by the availability of the right tools, the efficiency of the right systems, like everybody else. Developers are aware that there are shortfalls – but no-one's perfect.”

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