That’s not exactly how the headline reads … but close enough.  The actual title is BIM Promotes Sustainability: Practitioners are Finding Paths to Green through Interoperable Software.  As reported by McGraw Hill Construction, this article demonstrates the practical utility of Building Information Modeling (BIM) on a construction project … a green one!  MH reports about the restoration of the historic Grant School in Washington, D.C.: "The contractor had nearly finished the time-consuming coordination of mechanical, electrical, and plumbing trades. Then work ground to a halt. Local legislation had just passed requiring all public buildings to achieve LEED certification."

Although the project was exempt from the change in the law, the School wanted to demonstrate their commitment to green by seeking LEED certification.  Using BIM, modifications to the design (including the mechanical systems and the acoustics) were relatively straightforward.   Without BIM, the work would would have been prohibitive given the increased costs and delays associated with the re-design.

Two cool things …

First, the Grant School project featured by MH typifies the benefits of technology in the industry.  According to Dwayne Sellars, BIM manager for Turner Construction, his company is using BIM even in situations where the architect does not because the model reveals conflicts between systems that are often discovered only in the field

Second, not only does the Grant School project illustrate the effective use of BIM technology, the format of article itself is exciting.  The article is presented in a case-study format as part of McGraw Hill’s Continuing Education Center.  You can review the information and take a test for 1.00 credit for HSW/SD.  According to CEC, after reading the full article you will be able to: 

  • Describe building-information modeling (BIM).
  • Explain strategies for applying BIM to promote sustainability.
  • Discuss uses of BIM at different phases of a building’s life cycle.
  • Understand how BIM relates to green "best practices" within your own discipline.

The real import of the article–and particularly the convergence of BIM and LEED–is realized upon reading the concluding paragraph:

Architects are receiving better, earlier energy-related analysis; engineers are providing more focused expertise during design; builders are reducing waste in construction; and facility managers are increasing the efficiency of their operations. And many of those experiencing the benefits of technology and teamwork have visions of still more capabilities and benefits in the future.

No time for the test, McGraw Hill … but thanks for the good information.