Building information modeling (BIM) is a
design, coordination, construction, and building
management process in which a virtual building
model physically and functionally replicates
the actual building. BIM provides a complete
management system for building projects from
design through construction and operation.
BIM involves a different approach to design
and construction in comparison to traditional
practices. Constructing a building as a 3D model
allows designers to visualize the building and
analyze its performance before construction
begins. When used properly and accurately, the
tools of a BIM system can produce increased
effi ciencies throughout design and construction.
While BIM has been used more extensively
in commercial construction, the benefi ts of BIM
apply to both commercial and residential archi-
tecture. This chapter focuses on the technological
aspects of BIM and the ways in which it is
impacting the world of architectural design.
Introduction to BIM
Architectural design professionals work in
a highly competitive, rapidly evolving industry.
The challenges faced by an architectural fi rm
are similar to those in other businesses. In order
to succeed, a fi rm must be able to earn jobs and
produce work that meets expectations. The fi rm
must be able to complete design projects on
schedule and coordinate work with engineers
and contractors. In addition, the fi rm must be
able to stay current with changes in the fi eld and
adapt to the use of new technologies and con-
struction processes. Because the construction
After completing this chapter, you will be able to:
• Explain the principles of building
information modeling (BIM).
• Describe the characteristics of a BIM model.
• Explain applications for BIM in commercial
and residential architecture.
• List and describe major BIM processes used
in a building project.
• Explain the common tools and processes
used in parametric modeling.
• Describe common processes used to
coordinate models between different
• Explain applications for a BIM model in
fi le interoperability
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