Tuesday, January 31, 2017

BIM Planning and LoD

For members not familiar with BIM planning, it is the process of developing and documenting the various responsibilities of the stakeholders involved in a BIM project.

As defined in the Penn State guide, the stages of BIM planning are:

  • Identify BIM Goals and Uses
  • Design the BIM Project Execution Process
  • Develop Information Exchanges
  • Define the Supporting Infrastructure for BIM Implementation

Level of Detail vs. Level of Development

The LoD concept was developed by VICO Software for construction cost estimation. Faced with the problem of determining how accurate, or how definitive, were the model elements to which they wished to assign costs, they developed the concept they called "Level of Detail".

  • LOD 100 meant not very definitive (an area or volume rate is accurate enough)
  • LOD 200 assume the number of items in the model is correct, but use an estimate for each,
  • LOD 300 items are identified and actual cost can be used,
  • LOD 400 is a measure what has actually been supplied so can be used to assess payments.

In developing E203, the AIA decided to apply this system to all uses of a BIM model, from energy analysis to 5D programming. They renamed it "Level of Development" as an indication of the decisiveness of the information, because "Level of Detail" could get confused with the amount of information.

The LoD challenge

The purpose of an LoD table is to tell stakeholders what information they CAN USE. It is a measure of the certainty, or confidence, of that information. LoD typically varies according to project stage - but not always. LoD requirements may also vary among different BIM uses, to be recorded in the BIM plan, and appended to consultant and owner agreements, so that all project participants understand their responsibilities.

In the templates provided by Penn State, the Model Definition (MOD) table provides a breakdown of model elements against project stages. The author of each model element is recorded here, with attention given to when certain elements are handed off to others.

The Information Exchange (IE) table lists the same model element breakdown against the various BIM Uses that have been previously defined in the plan.

The first time I encountered this task, I admit to having the same incredulous reaction as BIM blogger Antony McPhee:
"Are they serious when they say every model element type has to be listed with it's own author and LOD? And use Uniformat or Omniclass or Masterformat? It is not just the massive amount of work to do it, who will ever refer to it? Do they really think the mechanical engineer is going refer to it to find out if he has to model duct work because some-one else might be going to do it?"

When I noticed the announcement of LOD Planner, I was intrigued. Clive Jordan was with VICO when the LoD concept was developed. His recent work with "a large real estate owner" provided the inspiration for a tool that would simplify this arduous task. In his case study:

  • 53% fewer clashes compared to the control project
  • 98% of constructability issues solved vs only 31% on the control project
  • 2 month saving on project duration with a higher quality output.

Sometime in our near future our BIMs (models and data) will become the primary deliverable for building and development projects. Owners will insist on receiving their data in a form that is useful and reusable.

The South Coast Revit Users Group will convene on Thursday, February 2nd, featuring a presentation of LOD Planner by BIM pioneer Clive Jordan.

To RSVP go to scrug.anyvite.com

Monday, January 16, 2017

SCRUG LinkedIn Contact Settings

We use LinkedIn Groups as the primary database for SCRUG membership because members are responsible for keeping their own info updated, and are likely to do so whenever changing jobs (and email addresses).

To assure that you will be notified about meetings and other events, please check your Group Contact Settings:

Go to https://www.linkedin.com/groups/my-groups

  • Click on the "gear" icon and select 'Group Settings'.
  • Make sure your email address is current.
  • Select the 'Announcements' check box to receive email notifications.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

February SCRUG Meeting


The South Coast Revit Users Group will reconvene on Thursday, February 2nd, featuring a presentation by BIM pioneer Clive Jordan, Founder and CEO of LOD Planner.

In 2004 Vico Software (then a division of Graphisoft) began work on a Model Progression Specification (MPS). Webcor Builders teamed with Vico to further develop the concept, and then brought it to the technology subcommittee of the AIA California Council’s Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) Task Force. The AIA National Documents Committee adopted the approach, provided further development, and incorporated it into E202, published in 2008. (See The Paths to BIM Nirvana)

The core of the MPS is the LOD definitions – descriptions of the steps through which a BIM element can logically progress from the lowest level of conceptual approximation to the highest level of representational precision. As explained by favorite BIM blogger Antony McPhee, “LOD, as in "Level of Development", is a measure of how seriously you take the information represented by a BIM element. It is not necessarily a measure of the amount of information.”

The significance of LOD to SCRUG members may follow market sector involvement and other local conventions, including the surprising lack of emphasis on formal BIM planning, as revealed in last fall’s (admittedly small sampling) survey of the group’s BIM maturity.

“LOD Planner is a cloud-based web application dedicated to easily planning the required geometry, accuracy and information for BIM projects. LOD Planner combines this approach with traditional classification structures, rich BIM images and a Lean project delivery approach.”

Previously, Clive served as BIM and Process Integration Leader at The Irvine Company and was with Vico Software (now part of Trimble) during the time when the groundwork for intelligent BIM was being laid.

To RSVP go to scrug.anyvite.com

~Allen Jay Holland

Download a copy of the 2016 LOD Specification

References and additional info: