If you’re an owner undergoing a building project, there’s no shortage of concerns, from helping your internal teams understand the project process to hoping it runs smoothly, is finished on time, and comes in on budget. With today’s rapid advancements in technology, construction firms have a multitude of tools available to address your needs, add value to your project, and keep it moving forward. The following are just some of the tools Meyer Najem uses on construction projects.
Long before any dirt is moved on the job site, Building Information Modeling (BIM) technology builds the project virtually with a 3D model.
“We’re able to answer a lot of the hard questions for the client and coordinate big decisions from the start,” said Nick DiRenzo, virtual design and construction manager of Meyer Najem Construction.
BIM results in a host of benefits. The entire project team accesses the model, allowing each discipline to share information, identify potential issues, collaborate on design adjustments, and review constructability. For example, clash detection is a BIM feature that identifies where elements of the building’s design—like a pipe and a beam—interfere with each other. Revealing those issues during design allows for problem solving before construction starts, saving you time and money.
In addition, information embedded in the BIM model allows construction estimators to quickly quantify the amount of materials your project needs, providing you with a more realistic and accurate idea of costs, in less time.
“In this era, we are able to leverage technology more efficiently in estimating,” said Patrick Davis, preconstruction manager at Meyer Najem. “From obtaining models directly from the architect, to creating models ourselves, it helps us spend more time working on pricing and how we can create solutions, rather than the time it used to take us to quantify those materials.”
Reality capture involves collecting images of existing conditions using 3D laser scanners and high-definition 360-degree cameras. This provides teams with helpful information that can be used during design, construction, and operations.
For example, one of Meyer Najem’s clients had purchased a building and wanted to renovate it. As-built drawings are critical to the design team of a renovation project, but there were no drawings of the existing structure. With reality capture, Meyer Najem could scan the building and create the as-built needed for the team to start design.
On the job site, laser scanning tools capture field conditions—quickly and accurately—and compare them to what is represented in the design. This helps optimize schedules, increase predictability in the field, enhance quality, and reduce change orders (modifications to work agreed upon in the contract).
Drone technology has a variety of applications and is particularly helpful in construction. Drones allow construction teams to efficiently capture aerial views of project sites, helping track progress, monitor site safety, and perform inspections in hard-to-reach areas. In addition, drones add value for the project owner by creating video footage that helps tell the project’s story and keeps stakeholders informed and up to date.
When paired with a quality team, technology reduces costs, provides helpful details, and speeds up the construction process, improving both your experience and your resulting new environment.
“If technology allows us to serve our clients at a higher level and bring more value to them, we will absolutely implement it,” said Ryan Soots, Meyer Najem’s Southeast executive vice president. “Aligning our technologies with proven construction processes and experience has resulted in success time and time again.”