Posted by Bhushan Avsatthi on May 6th, 2016
Qatar, member of the Gulf Cooperation Council, benefits from common market with other Gulf States. It is a peninsula with a meager area of 4,416 square miles, but preparing to welcome an influx of around 400,000 fans during the FIFA World Cup in 2022, enhancing government’s focus on infrastructure and residential construction – making the outlook for building construction industry really favorable.
Despite all the juicy investments and announcements, Qatar lags behind in BIM implementation across Construction Industry. The challenge is to make the most of the investments in least possible time. Integrating BIM is one way of romanticizing the challenge.
The root lies in shortage of skilled BIM professionals as well as a complete knowledge of BIM process. According to International Conference on Structural Engineering and Construction Management Dec 2015, approx. 65.7% understood BIM well, however; only 31.4% of the quantity surveyors agreed that BIM is practiced in their current organization. This may be a positive side to see that they do practice BIM within their scope of organization, but the gap between knowing and implementation is huge. The apprehension in implementing BIM is all due to constraints such as client demand, lack of standards and lack of expertise in BIM.
Speaking of lack of standards, multiple international standards are available all-inclusive, and are used by different countries. In the Middle East, on the other hand, at present, there are no fixed BIM standards being followed. Architects, contractors and other in the AEC industry are using international standards as a guideline, or borrowing bits and pieces from those to customize what suits them the best. That said, if one wants to draw a comparison, Qatar’s BIM standards are in line with UniFormat, a commonly used BIM process in the United States (US) and Canada; or the level 3 that is followed in the United Kingdom (UK). With Qatar endorsing its continuing construction boom, the country has to adopt a domestic approach, headed for developing BIM standards.
Looking at the nature and size of these building and infrastructure projects, there are no doubts that Qatar will have to partner with expert Building Information Modelling – BIM service providers to facilitate these ambitious projects. Speaking of BIM consulting services, Qatar needs to pair up with BIM experts who have worked across UK, USA, Europe, Australia and Middle-East as well, adhering to BIM standards and Codes and are well-versed with it.
BIM Outsourcing service providers can consider their experience of working on huge and complex infrastructural projects like Road, Rail, Bridges, Dams, Ports, and Tunnels etc. as an added advantage. These infrastructure projects, and in fact building construction projects for airports, hotels & resorts, hospital building, residential & commercial property, institutional buildings etc. often encounter on-site design clashes, or last minute changes during construction. Several such instances turn out to be fatal as well as severe costly for land surveyors, MEP contractors, general contractors, sub-contractors, architectural design firms, manufacturers and architects.
Experienced BIM modeling service providers use BIM MEP coordination, MEP clash Detection to aid clash detections and resolutions prior to construction, thereby putting dollars in right places. Advanced BIM tools and upgraded software’s like Autodesk Revit, Naviswork assist these BIM professionals across the BIM coordination process, making it more precise and smooth.
Qatar needs to gear up to digitize the construction process by adapting and implementing BIM ASAP by partnering with BIM architectural service providers. Qatarian Government now carries a huge responsibility on its shoulder to not just finish the project but finish it on time and in given budget.
Infrastructure being the center of the investments, needs to be not just lavish but sustainable too. On one hand where Dubai is going gaga over its effort towards first 3D printed building, Qatar needs to take the baby step towards integrating BIM at least in Government Projects.
I wouldn’t deny the fact that Qatar has realized the PPP opportunities across both traditional, hard infrastructure and critical social infrastructure it seems. They know that with rapidly growing population, both these areas will need significant investments. Entering into partnerships with private sector will provide an ideal solution to complement government spending, bolster capacity and drive growth.
To uphold the momentum, Future BIM Implementation 2016, will be hosted at the annual Project Qatar exhibition in Doha. With associate partners like hitech solutions – one of the leading BIM service providers from Asia, project Qatar will certainly benefit construction professionals and government officials in Qatar.
3D models collaborate and support buildings across project life-cycles, so that they are delivered as per required specifications within budgets and on schedule. From metro rails to sporting stadiums, from design and documentations to as built buildings and field support, Building information Modeling (BIM) is expected to empower architects, engineers, building and infrastructure owners and construction firms.
About Author: Bhushan Avsatthi is a BIM expert, a certified Sustainable Building advisor, and an associate director with more than 15 years of industry experience. He leads a team of architects, Structural & MEP engineers, LEED consultants and energy modelers. Bhushan strives to make his organization a cohesive resource for sustainable building design. He regularly participates in green initiatives like tree plantations, and promotes using bicycles for everyday commute.