Building Information Modeling (BIM) and Digital Tools in Architecture

The future of design and construction now relies heavily on Building Information Modeling (BIM) and digital tools. These technologies aren’t just making projects more efficient – they’re changing how professionals collaborate with one another.

BIM technology lets users create intelligent 3D models that give more data than just visual representations of buildings. Revit, for example, is one of the software I have extensively worked with. These models include critical data about a building that can be used at different points in the project.

Whether you need that data for planning and design or construction management, this data encourages unprecedented levels of collaboration between professionals at all stages of the process, increasing diversity in mindset on any project. By having more players involved during each stage of the process, issues from miscommunication are minimized. From more detailed planning to speedier execution, the entire process behind a construction project becomes more efficient.

During my tenure at SMEC Private Limited in India, for example, I was part of the production of Revit models that were used as a central source of critical information. Iraqi-British architect Zaha Hadid was a top role model for me, as her future thinking and early use of computer modeling for building design were so essential in making the architectural scene what it is today. Her boldness and creativity inspire me to tackle new challenges, including technology like Revit models. Parametric design tools like Grasshopper also allowed us to build complex structures that were otherwise impossible to create with traditional CAD software, helping us improve architectural workflows.

During my postgraduate studies at the Zigurat Global Institute of Technology, I explored the capabilities of Grasshopper with Python scripting, using this tool to create adaptive design models that respond to environmental and social data automatically. This technology speeds up the design process and also gives users the ability to better customize and adapt their projects. For example, one of my interests and specialties as an immigrant from Europe is in airport planning and design – I’ve experienced how parametric tools have helped simulate scenarios like passenger flow and environmental impact to look at sustainability, something other tools don’t always take into consideration.

Looking forward, the concept of digital twins is thrilling. A digital twin is a virtual replica of a physical building, able to give real-time updates about the state of the building. This technology can predict how buildings will react to certain environmental changes, which helps engineers make data-based operational decisions in both architectural design and construction management. Working with this technology can reduce the lifecycle costs of buildings and increase the sustainability of existing constructions. This real-time mirror of the physical world helped our team make informed decisions to keep buildings resilient and efficient.

As these advanced technologies become the new norm in modern architecture and engineering, it becomes clearer that my role as an architect is incredibly complex. These individuals are crucial in the early stages of construction, and my journey through the world of BIM has proven that these technologies can have a powerful impact on building smarter and more sustainable structures.

It’s an exciting time to be at the crossroads of technology and infrastructure. As a woman in architecture exploring these advancements, I am on the path to getting New York Architecture License, PMP certification, and wish to start an MBA in the near future. I look forward to contributing more to this vibrant, innovative field.

About the Author

Dorota Gocal is an experienced architect specializing in BIM and digital tools in architectural design. Her expansive career has landed her in several countries and prestigious firms, where her leadership has shown the power of integrated design solutions.


Tags: architecture, Building Information Modeling, modelin

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