UWE Hillside Gardens Sports Complex shortlisted for Best BIM Project award
UWE believe Hillside Gardens Sports Complex is a winning project; not because it’s a pinnacle for huge multi-storey developments with unlimited budget, but because it proves that the BIM agenda can be applied successfully to smaller projects that do not make the headlines – which in theory accounts for a vast amount of industry projects.
The project fee was under £5m so when procured it was questioned if BIM was necessary; however the UWE digital strategy ensured it was. With this, the Contractor took the bold decision not to novate the design team and employ a team that could handle the digital delivery. It’s worth noting; the Contractor had no previous experience in BIM. This raised concerns; however due to high levels of engagement and eagerness to deliver a Building Information Model that was fit for purpose meant it was a huge success and is being used in Facilities Management today.
The number of stakeholders which were involved in the process of design, construction and maintenance was significantly increased; simply because the accessibility to the model and data is much easier through our model management software (Revizto). Manufacturers and installers could use the model to review issues before attending site; maintenance contractors are now using the model to track changes, perform inspections during the operation of the building, and report changes back to the internal UWE team to ensure there is one single source of truth.
Another measurement against this project that proves the benefit of the digital approach is the savings the Contractor has experienced in both cost and time. Before this project, the contractor had no prior experience to working digitally. One of the biggest cost savings came as a result of the CDM walkthrough exercise where the contractor found a soft clash between one of the flood-lights and an up and over door. Whilst normally this can be easily resolved by moving the flood-light; it was not the case in this instance. The flood-lights are specially configured for the correct throw of lighting and all lights on the pitch would need reconfiguration by their American manufacturer. This issue was found 2 weeks prior to fabrication; just enough time to amend the order without any cost or time implications.
It is also possible for UWE to measure against the seamless handover process compared to that of a non-digital project. It has taken UWE minimal time to adopt the model in our practices and start the maintenance programmes and processes to the building and facilities using the model directly. This is because the review of asset quantities could begin long before handover as a direct result of reviewing the model when the site was inaccessible. This includes all services on the site/building including underground. This is usually something that takes UWE over a month to complete at high risk however has taken far less time in this scenario. Overall this has improved end-user engagement and usage of the facility.
The award application was submitted by the client for a truly exceptional BIM project where we initially thought we were going to have a very difficult time. We want to demonstrate that the BIM deliverables are not only possible for unfamiliar teams but how it also results in vast improvements over traditional methods on small projects. We should celebrate the achievements of this team, their “can do” attitude proves it can be done!