USGNN Original StoryTexas Adopts BIM for State Design and Construction Projects
August 18, 2009

The Texas Facilities Commission (TFC), the agency within the State of Texas that oversees the state's real estate development as owners and operators of state facilities, has adopted Building Information Modeling (BIM) for state design and construction projects. By making BIM the standard for all new buildings, TFC says it can begin to gauge energy usage, as well as forecast energy consumption based on model simulations; model multiple high-performance building scenarios based on minimal design time, simulate or identify security issues related to building type, and connect the model to existing databases or control systems for bi-directional, real-time data exchange.

The FDC has also developed a set of standards and guidelines as well as an interoperable BIM template that all private sector partners will have access to prior to any involvement in a state project.

The BIM process is designed to help architects, engineers, constructors, subcontractors and vendors collaborate with an intelligent model, allowing them to visualize and simulate using precise data before any building material is purchased, brought to the site or erected. According to Denise Beneke, an architect with the San Antonio-based MarmonMok Architecture, BIM can help architects and subcontractors, including contract glaziers, better model the building.

"You find problems and are able to solve them early in the design instead of having the building half built and realizing there's a conflict and trying to find a solution," Beneke says. "There are actually software programs that many contractors use that allow them to find these problem areas by importing the architectural, structural, and MEP models. More specifically, [BIM] if used to its fullest potential and all the correct information is input by the architects and engineers, the program can do material take offs and give a more accurate material quantity, which can also be helpful to subcontractors. Also, if the model is made available to the contractors and subcontractors for viewing they can better understand the building and bid it more accurately."

CLICK HERE to watch a video describing TFC's adoption of BIM.

Need more info and analysis about the issues?
CLICK HERE to subscribe to USGlass magazine.