Architects working in the capital of the United Arab Emirates will be required to upgrade their skills, shifting from two-dimensional to three-dimensional business information modelling (BIM) technology, as the city authority has mandated the use of BIM for all major construction projects from 2019.

3D design technology

Countries with nation-wide BIM mandates currently benefit from reduced design errors and omissions, improved construction productivity, and reduced construction costs and project delivery timelines, according to Louay Dahmash, head of the Middle East subsidiary of US-based Autodesk.

“The same benefits will be evident as the BIM mandate is implemented in Abu Dhabi,” Mr Dahmash said.

He added that new technologies, such as BIM, have come at a fortuitous time, when construction projects are becoming increasingly expensive and complicated, forcing managers “to explore innovative solutions that improve costs, timelines and overall efficiency”.

“Digitising the construction process and connecting teams with a common data environment improve collaboration and facilitate efficient decision-making,” Mr Dahmash said.

The use of BIM, however, will not come without challenges, he added: “The adoption of technologies such as BIM requires a culture change, as shifting from a 2D to a collaborative 3D environment requires a new skillset and mindset.”

Abu Dhabi architects

Architects in the Middle East use BIM on 30 per cent or fewer of their projects, according to a 2018 survey by Autodesk and Dodge Data & Analytics, also based in the US.

The poll also found that 79 per cent of respondents that currently use BIM, expect to use the software on more than 30 per cent of their projects within two years.

Driving the Abu Dhabi Municipality’s decision to mandate BIM technology on the island capital is its vision to be at the forefront of the global technological revolution, Mr Dahmash said.

“When such initiatives are mandated from the government, implementation and adoption take less time, as you already have a foundation wherein government entities envision technology-led change,” he concluded.

This article is sourced from Power Technology sister publication, a leading source of high-value business intelligence and economic analysis about the Middle East and North Africa. To access more MEED content register for the 30-day Free Guest User Programme.