Sunday, November 29, 2009

AIA Releases Multi-Party Agreement for IPD

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) today announced the release of the new C191™-2009, Standard Form Multi-Party Agreement for Integrated Project Delivery (IPD), which provides for a collaborative working relationship among parties involved in a design and construction project and utilizing the IPD delivery model. With this new agreement the parties execute one coordinated and integrated agreement that clearly sets forth the parties’ roles and responsibilities in delivering a project consistent with the principles of IPD. Unlike the C195™-2008, the parties do not form an LLC under the C191-2009 framework.
In addition, the AIA released B108™-2009, Standard Form of Agreement Between Owner and Architect for a Federally Funded or Federally Insured Project, and a new document, B202™-2009, Standard Form of Architect’s Services: Programming. Collectively called the “4.2 Release,” these three documents expand the extensive library of AIA Contract Documents and build on more than 100 years of experience in defining the contractual relationships in the design and construction industry.
“The design and construction industries are evolving, and AIA Contract Documents continue to guide the way by creating documents and resources that are necessary to lead the industry in new practices and project delivery approaches,” said Michael B. Bomba, Esq., Associate Counsel, AIA Contract Documents. “The AIA’s new Multi-Party Agreement for Integrated Project Delivery reflects the shift away from working in silos and supports new collaborative methods being employed among architects, owners and contractors.”
Paradigm Shifting Approach
With the new C191-2009 Standard Form Multi-Party Agreement for Integrated Project Delivery individual success of each party is directly tied to a project’s overall success. The architect and the contractor, as well as any other non-owner parties, earn profit through the achievement of the owner’s specified goals. This method of compensation promotes “good for the project” behavior and encourages all parties to work through disputes as they arise rather than assigning blame. In addition, the agreement establishes a collaborative management structure that involves all of the primary project stakeholders and is designed to minimize disputes while increasing project efficiency and quality.
Simplifying Government Projects
The AIA Contract Documents team worked with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to develop an owner-architect agreement that more effectively addresses the needs of these agencies. The result is B108-2009, Standard Form of Agreement Between Owner and Architect for a Federally Funded or Federally Insured Project. This document is an update to AIA Document B181™-1994, Standard Form of Agreement Between Owner and Architect for Housing Services, which has been used for years by participants on many federally funded or insured projects.
B108-2009 includes specific provisions related to cost estimating, compensation and other issues, tailored to these types of projects. B108-2009 is a document that will be useful to owners and architects working on federally funded and federally insured construction projects, including those funded by the recent stimulus package.
In addition, AIA Contract Documents has developed the new B202-2009, Standard Form of Architect’s Services: Programming, which is an architect’s scope of services document for programming services in a standard form that the owner and architect can modify to suit the needs of the project. B202 is not a stand-alone document, and to become effective it must be incorporated into an owner-architect agreement. This is a new scope of services document and not an update of an existing document.
“As federal stimulus funds are being distributed for design and construction projects, standard contracts such as the B108-2009 and other AIA documents can be used to help agencies and other project participants move the project along more easily and efficiently,” said Kenneth Cobleigh, Managing Director and Counsel, AIA Contract Documents. “AIA Contract Documents will continue to be most stakeholders’ first choice for standard contract documents because they are the most widely accepted across the industry, have been written to be fair and balanced and provide an ease-of-use that is unparalleled by other standard form documents.”
The new AIA IPD Multi-Party Agreement, as well as B108-2009 and B202-2009, will be available beginning November 3, 2009. Existing AIA Contract Documents software customers will obtain these new documents at no additional cost when they download the latest software update at
More information about AIA Contract Documents can be found at AIA Contract Documents software can be purchased at Documents in paper form are available through the AIA’s full service distributors. For a listing of full service distributors and pricing information, please visit


The Big 5 Show - Dubai 2009

I am not a Tekla executive or any sort of associate with the company but this news is interesting as this mentions one of the important platforms for AEC techs to show their talent and do some business obviously. It looks like a platform similar to Autodesk annual event in Vegas, but a different market.

Event information follows:

The largest trade show for the construction industry in the Arabian Gulf.
One of the most commercially successful trade fairs in Dubai, The Big 5 features National Pavilions from all the major exporting of the world, alongside important local developers, contractors, importers, manufacturers and distributors

The Big 5 is held at the Dubai World Trade Centre a state of the art venue in the business district on the Sheikh Zayed Road.
Disability access has been considered throughout the venue.

Dubai International Convention & Exhibition Centre
Sheikh Zayed Road
PO Box 9292
United Arab Emirates

Muneer Abdel


Mon 23 November 2009 - Thu 26 November 2009
11:00 AM - 8:00 PM

Product(s) in the event:

Tekla Structures

For more information visit Tekla

Friday, November 27, 2009

Sketchup 7.1 bug fixes and lifelike facades

To go along with the nice imagery update yesterday, Google has done a few things to help improve the 3D models found in Google Earth

Update to SketchUp 7.1: This update consists entirely of bug fixes, with no new features present. It fixes some measurement and precision errors, among other things. Here are the full release notes if you're interested. SketchUp 7.1 added a lot of great features, so this update should make modelers very happy.

3D models with detailed facades: Using StreetView imagery, in a way similar to what you can do in SketchUp 7.1, Google has added high-res facades to buildings in five California cities: Los Angeles, San Diego, San Franciso, Berkeley and Stockton. By using StreetView imagery to detail the 3D models, zoomed in areas of the downtown streets look stunning. Here's a quick video showing some of these new buildings:.

I'd expect we'll see this technology find its way over to Building Maker eventually. Having that kind of imagery available in Building Maker would allow them to expand the available area for it much more rapidly.

In the meantime, enjoy the sharp looking cities in California. They're quite stunning and becoming more realistic all the time.


Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Solar Shingle

The Dow Chemical Co. has developed a new roof shingle that doubles as a solar panel. The shingles, which can be incorporated into rooftops alongside traditional asphalt shingles, use low-cost thin-film cells of copper indium gallium diselenide. While Dow expects to profit greatly from the Powerhouse Solar Shingle — the company predicts it will bring in as much as $10 billion in revenue by 2020 — there will be significant benefits for consumers too. The innovative shingle is expected to cost 10% to 15% less than traditional solar panels and will be cheaper and quicker to install.

Read more here at TIME

Monday, November 2, 2009

Rachel Armstrong: Architecture that repairs itself?

Venice, Italy is sinking. To save it, Rachel Armstrong says we need to outgrow architecture made of inert materials and, well, make architecture that grows itself. She proposes a not-quite-alive material that does its own repairs and sequesters carbon, too.

Monday, October 12, 2009

BIM of a Multi-story Commercial Building

For the class "Special Topics in BIM" that I am taking this semester, I designed the BIM of a commercial building using Revit 2010.
Designing a building in 3D was not that easy ever. Getting 3D views, sections, plans and elevations were the matter of seconds using Revit Architecture 2010. Revit's parametric modeling capabilities helped me improve my design very early in the project.

I am planning to use Revit's parametric capabilities to map the operations phase of the project. For this I will be using export and import of Revit data and project operations data respectively. The idea is to make planning and scheduling more predictable by mapping very minute details of the operations phase and using it to make the system more effective and efficient. This project is a pilot for future developments on this idea. I will be updating the progress as I move ahead with the project.

Following are some renderings of the current model.



William McDonough on Eco-Friendly Design

William McDonough, founder of design firm William McDonough + Partners and author of Cradle to Cradle, discusses environmentally friendly design.

Insightful thoughts on sustainability and design.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Texas Adopts Building Information Modeling (BIM) capability for State Design and Construction Projects

Austin - 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, today announces its adoption of Building Information Modeling (BIM) for state design and construction projects. For over a year, the Facilities Design and Construction (FDC) division within TFC has diligently worked to standardize the use of BIM for its future projects. FDC is responsible for overseeing the design and construction of state facilities throughout Texas. Currently, FDC manages 125 projects valued over $500 million, in addition to maintaining the Facilities Master Plan. In an effort to promote workflow efficiency, streamline productivity and increase the return on investment for the State of Texas, FDC has adopted and encourages the use of BIM’s digital design technology.more

Saturday, September 19, 2009

TED talk by architect Bjarke Ingels- Good examples of Sustainable and GreenConstruction

"Danish architect Bjarke Ingels rockets through photo/video-mingled stories of his eco-flashy designs. His buildings not only look like nature -- they act like nature: blocking the wind, collecting solar energy -- and creating stunning views."-TED

Friday, July 31, 2009

BD + C's 2009 Giant 300 Survey

Building Design + Construction published 2009 Giant 300 Survey. List includes:

• Top 50 Architects
• Top 50 Architect/Engineers
• Top 50 Engineers
• Top 50 Engineer/Architects
• Top 80 Contractors
• Top 20 Construction Managers

Access it here

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Reed Construction Data Launches SmartBIM



ATLANTA -- Reed Construction Data, a leading provider of construction information, has launched SmartBIM solutions for the architecture, engineering and construction communities. This first phase of SmartBIM will include SmartBIM Library™, SmartBIM Objects™ and RSMeans™ Quick Cost Estimator.

With the launch of SmartBIM, Reed Construction Data seeks to further enhance the Autodesk™ Revit™ user experience through its comprehensive object-organization solution (SmartBIM Library) while providing high-quality, parametric BIM objects (SmartBIM Objects) and enhanced ability to value a project (RSMeans Quick Cost Estimator).

"We are taking 3D design to the next level by combining high-quality objects and powerful software tools with RSMeans Cost Data," said Iain Melville, CEO, Reed Construction Data. "The movement into 3D design has led to a number of advancements, including greater design and change-order flexibility, enhanced project delivery through better collaboration, and more cost-efficient and safer designs. SmartBIM addresses the challenges and opportunities that this new technology presents."

Reed Construction Data's SmartBIM Library is a companion product to Autodesk Revit that enhances content management by allowing design firms to organize, manage and locate BIM content more easily and intuitively. It also allows users to generate libraries from data and objects that they currently use, and drag and drop objects directly into Revit models. In addition, SmartBIM objects will be able to link directly to RSMeans data for costing and other analyses.

Reed Construction Data is also offering SmartBIM Objects for Building Product Manufacturers (BPMs). SmartBIM Objects are high-quality objects designed to simulate the actual product and embed critical product data and specifications in the Revit model.

"Building Product Manufacturers can leverage BIM to showcase their products in a building in the design phase if they have high-quality objects in the hands of the architect," said Richard Remington, vice president, product development, Reed Construction Data. "The SmartBIM object-creation program provides BPMs with high-quality BIM objects that can be distributed through many channels to end users, which increases the opportunity to be specified into the building."
Reed Construction Data is also offering the RSMeans Quick Cost Estimator within Revit to instantly calculate the estimated value of a project specific to its location. RSMeans data will be integrated with all SmartBIM applications and will offer unique data for its users' models.

Sage Advances BIM Capabilities With First Autodesk Quantity Takeoff Plug-In


BEAVERTON, OR - With advancements in Building Information Modeling (BIM) creating new opportunities for architects, engineers, contractors and owners (A/E/C/O) to significantly improve efficiency, integration with related systems is vital to realizing the potential gains. Sage today announced the market's first integration with Autodesk Quantity Takeoff 2010, providing a critical link with Sage Timberline Office Estimating. The new integration will enable users to automatically export quantity information from Autodesk Quantity Takeoff 2010 to Sage Timberline Office Estimating and generate a cost estimate with one click, resulting in faster and more accurate cost estimating for BIM users.

"The beauty of BIM is that it gives designers and contractors the ability to quickly identify and resolve issues in the model, helping them avoid issues in the field where they're more expensive and time consuming to resolve. We're adding another layer of efficiency by automating cost estimating from the BIM model with absolute precision using the Sage Timberline Office Estimating plug-in to Autodesk Quantity Takeoff 2010. This will save real dollars on every job," said John Geffel, Senior Vice President and General Manager Sage Construction and Real Estate Solutions.

Autodesk Quantity Takeoff 2010 is the highly anticipated design-to-cost tool that enables cost estimators to collect and quantify multi-format design data and high-quality images seamlessly with the Autodesk Revit platform for BIM. The new link to Sage Timberline Office Estimating is already in use at selected customer sites and is the first plug-in with Autodesk Quantity Takeoff on the market. It will be made broadly available in Summer 2009.

"Since the BIM process is built on the use of coordinated, reliable design information, Autodesk feels that providing an accurate link from design to cost estimation is a critical step in the process," said Timothy Douglas, Industry Segment Manager, Autodesk Construction. "Our customers can now pull data from the model directly into Sage Timberline Office Estimating and use that quantity and cost information throughout the design and construction process."

John Tocci, chairman of the Associated General Contractors BIM Forum and an ENR Top 25 industry newsmaker in 2008, sees this type of innovation as vital to progressing BIM.

"We were pleased to play a role in bringing together two of the construction industry's most important software firms," said Tocci. "The smooth exchange of vital cost and quantity information between the industry's leading BIM application and estimating software is a major advancement toward our goal of a fully integrated virtual construction tool. This collaboration will measurably advance the promise of BIM and Integrated Project Delivery to eradicate waste, propel productivity and restore relationships."

The plug-in is the latest in a series of new developments from Sage over the past six months designed to deliver improved customer experience through usability and performance enhancements in Sage Timberline Office, including 64-Bit compatibility, estimating with multicurrency functionality, and an innovative integration between Estimating and Project Management.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

O3D as an interior design visualiztion tool

This seems a powerful 3D visualization and user friendly tool.

O3D Plugin by google

Google launched O3D browser plug-in on April 21st 2009. This would enable useres use javascript to design 3D objects in a browser only.

Monday, April 27, 2009

BIM+IPD+LEAN (Reinventing the Design and Construction of Buildings)

This article by George, that discussed very much the same buzz words in which everyone from AEC industry is interested today, is a good explanation of all the terms together. All these tools, practices and methodologies of construction (BIM, LEAN and IPD) are often being discussed in the industry now a days. But the only eye to see all these together is seeing future. LEAN, BIM, GREEN and IPD are going hand in hand in US building construction industry. In one way or another they are associated to each other and successful AEC professionals are practicing it right now on actual projects. George in his article discussed all these inter-relationships and brought a worth reading article.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Integrated Practice and Lean Construction

Recently I read the article "Project teams find integrated project delivery very helpful" by Kate Moser here

This article defines close relationship between integrated practices and lean construction objectives. It has also been mentioned that BIM process lies in heart of Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) system.

“It’s not perfect here, but people are working together.”
— Gregory A. Howell, co-founder, Lean Construction Institute

“In normal project execution, innovation gets pushed out by the question of who pays and who gains.”
— Glenn Ballard, co-founder, Lean Construction Institute;
and director, UC Berkeley Project Production Systems Laboratory

“There’s a humbleness that comes with integrated project delivery. There’s no sense of bravado that this is easy.”
— Will Lichtig, construction attorney and shareholder, McDonough Holland & Allen PC

Green Collar Jobs

USGBC promoting Green Building Movement.

Friday, April 17, 2009


All this has to be done in coming years. It looks like the future of AEC industry.

BIM+LEAN "A New Breed of Construction" (From DPR Newsletter Spring 2006)

Groundbreaking work on 250,000-sq.-ft. outpatient medical facility for Camino Medical Group showcases benefits of LEAN construction, paves way for new form of project delivery

Rising from the debris of an abandoned department store is a new 250,000-sq.-ft. medical office building that will not only provide progressive outpatient healthcare services but also, according to DPR's Dean Reed, set new standards in the design and construction of facilities.

The more than two-year project for Camino Medical Group (CMG), a division of the not-for-profit Palo Alto Medical Foundation, which is an affiliate of Sutter Health, is currently past the mid-way point and being delivered using LEAN construction techniques designed to maximize overall production value and reduce waste while maintaining the highest quality. Months before construction began in late February 2005, with the demolition of the vacant Emporium building on the 9.9 acre site in Mountain View, CA, the CMG project team, including the owner, architect, DPR and all major subcontractors, worked closely together to design the delivery process in conjunction with the facility—a key step in LEAN construction management.
"As a team, we broke down every step of the construction delivery process and examined ways to promote a more fluid transition, creating a better, more reliable work flow between various trades as work was handed off from one party to another," said Reed.

Virtual design and construction technologies, such as three-dimensional (3-D) and four-dimensional (4-D) models, also are being used throughout the project, along with LEAN construction practices. Early on, the virtual building models, which incorporate the element of time into 3-D computer-aided design drawings, helped communicate sequencing issues during design coordination, allowing the project team to best understand and take advantage of potential time and space conflicts. More recently, the virtual building models developed for the project have enabled subcontractors to prefabricate most of the MEP materials for a just-in-time delivery.

"Our use of virtual building technology, coupled with a LEAN approach, is resulting in a more efficient installation of MEP systems," said Reed. "The first section was completed in early February without any field issues, and based on conversations with many of our key subcontractors, the process has improved productivity by as much as 20 percent on this portion of the job."

The team anticipates that productivity will only increase.

"Usually the time estimated for MEP installations is based on people's previous experience, and we expect a small learning curve at the beginning that puts us slightly behind schedule," said DPR Superintendent Ralph Eslick. "The idea is that once we work out the initial 'kinks' in the process, productivity improves and the time is made up. In the case of CMG, we have the learning curve behind us, and we finished that portion ahead of schedule. It should only get better."

The project also includes simultaneous construction of a 400,000-sq.-ft. parking garage adjacent to the facility. The two structures take up 8.5 acres of the 9.9 acre lot, making for a very constricted construction site and creating an additional challenge for the project team.

"The accelerated schedule and tight site required a sophisticated, phased logistics plan," said Eslick. "We used the five months of the demolition and mass excavation phase of the project to plan every future step."

The team broke the parking garage into three phases, with the middle section finishing up last. As a result, the parking structure can be completed on time without impacting the critical path to the office building and limiting access to the site.

Once complete in February 2007, the new three-story medical office building will house offices, exam rooms, urgent care center, outpatient surgery center, pharmacy, laboratory and diagnostic radiology services, and according to CMG's CEO Richard Slavin, M.D., the new space will bring together nine of CMG's 15 clinics for "greater ease of access by nearly 200,000 patients."

Team Players
Client: Camino Medical Group
Architect: Hawley Peterson & Snyder Architects

Monday, April 13, 2009

Sometime in near Future

Excellent Video portraying the future of BIM+Green

Saturday, April 11, 2009


It seems that recession is bringing new opportunities to test and practice emerging technologies in AEC industry. Having lesser projects in hands, AEC professionals and owners are looking towards experts and academicians to come up with innovative solutions to effectively implement new technologies and management philosophies to increase efficiency, increase labor productivity, reduce waste  and decrease environmental impact in the overall life cycle of a project. In order to achieve this milestones contribution of BIM, LEAN and GREEN movements appears appreciable. 
Building Information modeling (BIM) is helping project participants collaborate and at the same time it is helping to reduce waste (by conflict detection), increase performance (by energy analyses) and visualize the project. BIM is emerging as a tool that is  helping integration of overall project delivery.
Lean production system introduced first time by Onho in Toyota car manufacturing unit is emerging as a management philosophy applicable to wider range of industries. AEC industry being one of them is  coming forward to embrace lean thinking and increase profits to their organizations.
Green movement is an initiative to decrease impact of human activities on the environment. US Green Building Council (USGBC) introduced LEED rating system to measure the greenness of buildings. Although LEED doesn't address all the issues of sustainable construction and is not perfect but it is a good initiative towards a sustainable future.

Apart from very ideal portray of any of BIM, Lean or Green in building construction, increased productivity, energy efficiency and increased building performance will surely affect the bottom line in a positive manner.