I never really got BIM. I said to Charlie that Building Information Modelling didn’t really float my boat. I thought it was about heating and ventilation, turning the lights on or off, that sort of thing. A visit to Ryders Architects in Newcastle showed me how wrong I could be. We were there as one of the regular monthly DynamoNet meetings which follow the Dynamo North East board.
Before I go a bit more into BIM however, I really need to tell you about the building in which Ryders was accommodated. With these meetings we get to visit some interesting sites and this building has to be one of the most interesting. Cooper’s Motor Yard is on Westgate Road in Newcastle, to the East of the Central Station and towards the castle. It is opposite the railway arches.
It was once a multi storey horse park, yes you read that right, one of the very few remaining in the country. Horses and carriages were stacked on three floors just as we do with cars these days. Space for parking was just as much of a problem as it is now. The ramps to allow the horses to go up the floors are still in place. The building was also built on top of the Roman Wall. Architecture and history were mashed up.
Why then have I change my mind about BIM? By the way , it is a process involving the generation and management of digital representations of physical and functional characteristics of places.
Our hosts gave us an overview of some of the projects that they are working on and they opened my eyes to the possibilities of three dimensional modelling. It allows those involved with buildings to test, plan and make decisions in a safe and low cost environment. It allows structure to be defined and walked through before a brick is even laid. (Do they still use bricks?)
They are working on some world-class projects on buildings we would all recognise. It is a cutting edge technology that makes architecture and business design a high tech art. They also did some stuff with trains.
I am a BIM convert.