Nowe Oblicze BIM

OpenBIM and Digital transformation. 

Couple of weeks ago, we were lucky to be invited to present in the biggest and hottest event of the BIM panorama in Poland: Nowe Oblicze BIM.

Poland is an amazing country where the construction industry is booming now and has been for the last decade. Many companies are embracing BIM as a better way to do projects, even is there’s not a regulation or a clear roadmap in place.

This year was the third edition of what is the biggest BIM conference in Poland. It’s hosted by WSC, Archicad and Rhinoceros distributor and partner of Graphisoft in Poland. This year the event was mainly focused in communicating the importance of the OpenBIM approach. The event had both conferences and workshops happening simultaneously. 

Among the speakers, we had a mix of some of the most interesting companies doing BIM projects internationally as Skanska or ProjectBIM. OpenBIM advocates as Rob Roef, BIM captain from Graphisoft and Fred Mills from The B1M; Government representatives and great case studies from projects in Poland.

Even if organised by a Graphisoft partner, the conference was focused on OpenBIM, so we could see plenty of case studies of projects where the collaboration between software was crucial. Sometimes even without Archicad! 

I personally love this strategic approach from Graphisoft and its partners towards the OpenBIM putting the wider vision for the industry in the first place. Feels pretty honest.

Now, going back to the event, the first thing that surprised me was the venue. WSC managed to arrange the auditorium of the Jewish museum of Warsaw, which is a spectacular piece of architecture! 

Images courtesy of Archdaily

The auditorium had space for almost 500 people and was full. According to the organisation the 100 tickets available for the workshops were sold in 20 minutes! You could feel, that the AEC community in Poland is craving for knowledge! That feeling was extremely inspiring.

The first sessions were showing the state of the BIM industry in Poland with the participation of Wiktor Piwkowski, the creator of BIM education project and the BIM standards PL. Fully committed with the implementation process in the Polish AEC industry, Wiktor complained about the lack of urgency that the government were putting on the task of regulating and facilitating the digital transformation of the industry. This is a plague that many countries are suffering, including Hong Kong.

Aleksander Szerner from the Skanska BIM Knowledge hub, showed some amazing application of the latest technologies on very large infrastructure construction projects where BIM is only a small piece of a bigger puzzle.

Later on, Edyta Andrejczyk, showed the example of the Copernicus Science Centre in Warsaw. Another example fo great architecture and impeccable OpenBIM process. 

So after knowing a bit more about how BIM is being used in Poland came the question of why?

Why OpenBIM works? Was the title of our BIM Captain Rob Roef, coming from Graphisoft HQ to bring us back to the question of Why OpenBIM is important and why works.

You can’t build a house only with a screwdriver, you need a collection of tools”

Nathan Hildebrandt

So Rob showed on the stage a couple of great case-studies. The Center for Rhythmic Gymnastics from Pride in Russia and Amersfoort Buyten project from the Netherlands. Both incredible examples of why consultants and contractor find value on working with OpenBIM and Archicad.

We heard also that OpenBIM doesn’t’ mean to export an IFC of the model for somebody to open. It means planning, understanding of the project framework, of who does what and when… The different project data must be carefully stored and shared. Not everyone needs all the project data, and sharing too much, sometimes can be counterproductive. Too much data will kill you

Changing the angle of the conversation, Linn Areno, Digital Coach from Skanska Sweden, reminded us the importance of the people on this digital transformation processes as well as the deliverables over the software. 

Everything that can be automated will be automated”

Linn Areno

Skanska is committing a lot of resources to push this digital transformation within the company. Engaging consultants on their BIM processes and creating an ecosystem of applications that serve their purposes whether on the project development or the construction site, operating on an open environment that allows all those interactions between software, hardware and the people!

BIM is dead”

BIM again was displayed as a very small piece on a big puzzle of opportunities. After the conference, having a quiet drink with Linn and Rob we got to the conclusion that BIM is already dying. BIM has to die as a buzzword to become just the normality of a smarter process that integrates all this digital innovation as a reality among the industry. 

It has never been a question of “If” but of “When?”

We had the luck as well of sharing the stage with Fred Mills from The B1M, who stressed the importance of educating the industry and sharing the advances that happen worldwide, to understand that we’re not alone, that things are moving rapidly even if the whole industry moves slow.

In their youtube channel they have managed to reach more than 5 Million visits monthly! That gives us a scale of how’s interesting is for the general public about what we’re doing! 

Enzyme was there, discussing the OpenBIM approach from the design point of view. How the wider understanding of BIM lets us use plenty of tools, integrating them almost seamlessly thanks to the huge capacity of Archicad to inter-operate with dozens of software.

We showed a few examples of different scales and scopes. Displaying the role of different software as Rhino, Grasshopper (with its infinite set of plugins), Twinmotion, Solibri…

One of this examples was a small parametric pavilion where we had to use this hybrid workflow in order to optimise the form, generate documentation that will allow a digital fabrication process, generate general drawings and diagrams and a set of renders and a short animation in only a few days. 

Another example, the Yilong Linear Loop City, where the massive scale of the site and the importance of the landscape and road optimisation made us look into the Rhino-grasshopper to optimise and resolve the site formation; Later on moving to Archicad to compile all the information and create the set of drawings and documentation using its powerful graphic-capabilities.!

Last but not least, our latest project in Dubai, in collaboration with AMA Design,  now on site, where the OpenBIM approach made possible to deliver a 42.000 sqm development from concept design stage to tender in only 3 months by an extremely compact team of 4 people.

We showed also how all these processes are carefully documented and crafted within our office and later shared here in this blog or in the multiple conferences where we have been participating! We believe that sharing all this experience, the industry will benefit and ultimately all of us will! 

Apart from us, Marcin Świerz from Project BIM discussed his ideas about BIM and the Agile Mind. An ode to the importance of the appropriate mindset to embrace this new wave of technologies that are leading the change in our industry.

Martin talked about the different strategies that he has mastered in during his job as technical coordinator in mega-airport projects in UAE and all throughout the middle east.

Open communication, minimal hierarchy and rational application of technology are the keys for him to succeed in the implementation.

I have to say, that being my first time in Poland, I’ve been positively surprised by the beauty of the city, the warmth of its people, the food and the fun that I’ve shared with the team of speakers and WSC.

I’m also happy to see the interest that the topic of OpenBIM and the digital transformation of our industry, in general, generates on the architectural and engineering community! It feels that the market is reaching a level of maturity that will enable the change in the bigger scale soon. 

It has been a great experience overall and I really hope to participate again!

Dziękuję za Polska, do zobaczenia wkrótce!