Last edited 08 Jul 2016

BIM volume

Building Information Modelling (BIM) is a very broad term that describes the process of creating and managing digital information about a built asset.

In the UK, the Government Construction Strategy published in May 2011, stated that the '...Government will require fully collaborative 3D BIM (with all project and asset information, documentation and data being electronic) as a minimum by 2016'. This represents a minimum requirement for Level 2 BIM on centrally-procured public projects, that is, building information will be managed in a 3D environment with data attached, but may be created in separate models.

PAS 1192-2:2013 Specification for information management for the capital/delivery phase of construction projects using building information modelling, defines a 'volume' as:

'Manageable spatial subdivision of a project, defined by the “project team” as a subdivision of the overall project that allows more than one person to work on the project models simultaneously and consistent with the analysis and design process.'

Each volume is represented by a separate reference file, but when viewed together the full or partial project can be represented.

PAS 1192-2 suggests that this is analogous to the subdivision of a project into volumes by the lead designer in order that different disciplines can develop system models (such as; walls, cores, cladding, HVAC systems, structure, pipework, ductwork, electrical systems and so on). This subdivision can also allow individual files to be kept to a manageable size.

BIM volumes should be agreed and published at the beginning of the project, and this should be reviewed and revised as required as the project progresses.

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