As the $100 million Mercedes-Benz flagship, AutoHaus, takes shape in inner-Brisbane, the development and construction team have used Building Information Modelling (BIM) to keep construction on schedule.
Designed by Brisbane-based architecture firm Cottee Parker Architects, AutoHaus is set to become Australia’s largest automotive dealership – with a full-service dealership, a Mercedes-Benz Museum, an AMG Performance Centre, unique dining options and several function areas.
The flagship facility is set to rival its European counterparts as an exciting and iconic piece of urban renewal on a previously under-utilised site within the Breakfast Creek Wharf precinct.
Cottee Parker Architects director Kim Vojacek believes the overall success of the project comes down to the team’s innovative use of Building Information Modelling (BIM), as well as ensuring a collaborative design and construction process that included all project consultants.
“The project is still in construction, but the project team have recognised that using BIM in the design process has been a real success in mitigating any potential extensions to the project’s program,” Vojacek said.
Construction is being led by John Holland, who worked with Cottee Parker Architects to harness the power of BIM to take advantage of the benefits the technology could offer the overall project.
“The benefits that John Holland saw were being able to effectively program the construction of the building and be able to program and design associated works such as scaffolding and crane locations.
“We tried to build everything in the virtual environment with the whole project team collaborating to assess the model. Everyone’s expertise was taken into account to solve problems and to provide better design outcomes and value for the client.”
As the project progressed, the designs and Building Information Models continued to become more refined – with the final BIM being a complete 3D representation of the entire project.
“The model includes all the different elements of the building – the floor slabs, the columns, the windows, doors etc. – all in 3D, which brings the entire building together in a virtual environment,” Vojacek said.
By prioritising BIM in the design and construction phases the project team worked collaboratively in order to address any design clashes and to keep the project moving on schedule without any unnecessary on-site construction issues.
“We were able to create one model that brought together the electrical, fire and hydraulic models into one federated 3D model. We then ran a number of clash detection reports in the federated model to identify and address any potential issues before construction began,” Vojacek said.
“Having a 3D model available to clearly refer back to ensured that everyone was clear on what the desired outcomes were and the entire team saw where changes needed to be made to keep the project moving forward.”
Using a collaborative design process utilising the power of BIM technology is becoming more popular in the construction and development industry – especially as it becomes an efficient and accurate way to plan the construction process and keep the project on schedule and on budget.
“More people are beginning to understand the value that BIM delivers. As more people begin to acknowledge the benefits of 3D modelling, and how it facilitates better project outcomes, we’ll see more people that are willing to take it on and even mandate it for their projects,” Vojacek said.
With a BIM-delivered project, one of the biggest considerations is how much effort is required in the early stages of the project.
If everything is done effectively in the early stages, then the input required from the consultant team is minimal in the construction phases.
Contrary to the more traditional processes – where 2D drawings and interpretations are used to establish an understanding of a site – BIM processes don’t require heavy engagement from the consulting teams during the construction process.
“The processes of documentation and collaboration very much rely on everyone taking ownership of the process, which requires a high degree of accuracy in terms of the modelling undertaken by all parties. Having a proactive attitude to collaboration is important,” Vojacek said.
Due for completion at the end of 2018, the Mercedes-Benz AutoHaus will be the equivalent of a 10-storey multi-residential building and will become a landmark presence in the sought after Newstead, Ascot and Hamilton areas in inner-Brisbane.
For more information on the Mercedes-Benz AutoHaus Project, see the website.
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