BIM Conference 2016 – A ‘real nuts and bolts’ event

BIM Conference 2016 took place on 29th September at the majestic Coombe Abbey in Warwickshire and proved, once again, to be a popular event, hailed a success by delegates. Returning for the fifth successive year, the day aimed to offer clear, accurate and unbiased guidance on how to use BIM in projects – and delegates were not disappointed.

The annual event organised by Applecore Designs, followed the tried and tested format of previous years. The morning’s presentations were held in the comfortable surroundings of The Cloisters, with its high ceiling and impressive fireplace. Then in the afternoon, delegates could select four of the twelve informative workshops on offer.

BIM Conference 2016

Prof Mervyn Richards OBE started the day with his “no theories, just the facts” keynote presentation, which gave us an update on the alignment of the BIM Level 2 documentation.  This was followed by a talk by David Emery of Virtechs Ltd about the company’s involvement in the new £430m ‘West Midlands Virtual Hospital’ (WMVH) and how this 3D digital model has acted as a BIM learning guide for the local supply chain.

“Really interesting and enjoyable event, very well organised and excellent set of speakers.”

The mid-morning break offered a chance for delegates to stretch their legs and network.  Following the short break, Duncan Reed of Trimble Solutions (UK) Ltd, reviewed Level of Definition (graphic and non-graphic information) and what it means for organisations working on projects with digital deliverables. Steve Owen of FM180 Ltd completed the morning’s proceedings with a look at how the involvement of FM at the earliest stages of a project ensures that the requirements of the FM environment are included from the outset.

A hot buffet lunch was held in The Abbeygate. Originally built for the stables and servants’ quarters in the 19th Century, The Abbeygate’s stone flagged floors and corridors decorated with tapestries and armour made it a most agreeable venue.

“It was good to meet and mingle, the afternoon sessions were especially very useful – real nuts and bolts”

From 2.00pm, The Cloisters hosted demonstrations on BIM authoring and validation software, with topics such as Working as a Team, Federated Data, Model with IFC and BIM Model Verification and Communication via BCF – all delivered by the team at Applecore Designs.

The smaller Walnut and Stuart rooms were used for the afternoon workshops, providing a more intimate environment for delegates.

The Walnut Room at the BIM Conference 2016

In The Walnut room, Maber Architects presented their use of BIM in practice. They illustrated their experiences with case study projects and demonstrated what the real benefits in the workflow process are to the client.  The BIM on the Move session showed, with graphical representation, how designers can communicate design intent on iOS and Android devices. This included 2D documents and 3D models and any non-geometric data incorporated into a BIM workflow. The final workshop discussed changes to the leadership playing field with the advent of BIM Level 2 and data driving the industry’s future.

Afternoon workshops in The Stuart room were provided by Cirrus Consulting and Trowers & Hamlins Solicitors. BIM for Clients was a very popular topic, asking how a client should proceed if they want to benefit from BIM, especially if they don’t have BIM expertise. Completing the afternoon was a discussion about the potential risks implicit in the BIM process, the current construction documentation available for managing those risks and the pitfalls to avoid.

Feedback from the BIM Conference 2016

The post conference questionnaire allowed delegates to provide feedback on every aspect of the BIM Conference 2016, with 97% finding the morning’s content ‘satisfying’ or ‘very satisfying’ and 96% recommending next year’s conference to others. Comments about the afternoon sessions included, “it was good to meet and mingle, the afternoon sessions were especially very useful – real nuts and bolts” and “an eye opener to the BIM process – clarified many issues I had”.

For more information on Applecore Design’s BIM Conference, follow the event on Twitter or browse the official website. Details of next year’s event will be posted in due course.