Building design used to be a dreary, tedious process. Bespectacled architects and earnest planners would troop into an office, unfolding sheet after sheet of lifeless, black and white technical drawings along with measurements only a mathematician could fathom.
Then, suddenly, something happened that brought the images to life and made the buildings, the streets, and the very cityscapes of tomorrow leap off the page in glorious 3D technicolour. It was like opening a window into the future.
The name Building Information Modelling (BIM) might not sound terribly exciting but the technology certainly is, at least for those in the construction industry. In recent years, it has become widely used by architects, engineers, and construction companies in Europe to plan, design, and manage projects, as well as facilitate working team communication and briefing.
CLP was one of the first companies in Hong Kong to see the potential and embrace the technology in 2014, five years before the territory’s government made its use mandatory for projects with estimated capital works costs of more than HK$30 million.
It’s easy to see why BIM has become so popular so quickly. It offers high versatility to meet the ever-increasing demands of the industry – from animation to image synthesis and walkthroughs.
In the video below, the technology is used to create a 3D simulation of an escape route for the Kai Tak Cable Tunnel, which employees can watch to visualise the fire route and find out about potential safety risks.