2019 CSCE Annual Conference - Laval (Greater Montreal)

2019 CSCE Annual Conference - Laval (Greater Montreal) Conference

BIM and Lean for project planning and control

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Dr. Ivanka Iordanova, ETS - Pomerleau (Presenter)
Mr. Fernando Valdivieso, ETS
Ms. Carolyne Filion, Pomerleau

The productivity in the AECO industry is known to lag behind in growth compared to the other industries during the last several decades. Often featured as a conservative environment resistant to change, construction had not taken advantage from digital technology till very recently. This is about to change thanks to the adoption of BIM which seems to serve as an enabler. Literature suggests that improved preconstruction planning and scheduling are one of the ways to improve productivity.

This case study demonstrates that combining two powerful strategies (Lean and BIM) and working in collaboration with all project stakeholders leads to an efficient integrated construction process at a large Canadian GC company. The synergy between Lean Construction and BIM results in improved communication and better productivity of teams.

Three years ago, the company performed a comparative study on Lean Construction-based planning software (vPlanner, TouchPlan, BIM360 Plan, LeanKit) and the conclusion was that they either do not fit the construction project needs, or are not user-friendly enough to be implemented in a real job-site context.

The Innovation team, together with leading superintendents from the company, joined experience and forces towards an in-house developed solution. Based on Lean strategies and tools, it automates the links between widely used planning software, BIM models and job-site data, to create a platform with user-friendly access for all participant stakeholders. Using three loops of planning, scheduling and control, it connects relevant data between the Master Schedule, CPM, Takt Plan, the BIM model, and the visual communication documents (2D sheets, Virtual Reality).

The platform is used on a pilot project, which will be presented as a case study. Results from surveys with the project stakeholders will be discussed. They demonstrate that LEAN techniques combined with BIM models catalyse each other and that engaging the subtrades in the process is crucial. 

The study will present: 

  • LEAN techniques combined with BIM models
  • Tools enabling BIM use
  • Project communication and progress monitoring
  • Parametric Modelling
  • Predictable programming and material sequencing
  • Optimization of work process

Limitations of the platform, as well as future developments will be discussed.