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Design, Procure, Assemble, Operate - Tackling the Big-Picture Issues of BIM

Thursday, October 21, 2010  
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When it comes to accomplishing an assignment as large as developing a building information modeling (BIM) standard for the United States¸ it helps to define the scope of the project. The National Building Information Modeling Standard-United StatesTM (NBIMS) Executive Committee has come up with an easy graphic, called the BIM Tetragram, which breaks the challenging concept of BIM down into four simple categories: design, procure, assemble and operate. This visual depiction represents all of the components that go into the NBIMS development process.

Establishing this "big picture” of the issues is especially helpful for the committee tasked with developing the NBIMS-Version 2. The NBIMS Planning Committee is responsible for distributing the workload for this multi-faceted effort to various sub-committees and task forces. The BIM Tetragram focuses the priorities into top-level categories and creates the hierarchy for tackling this monumental standards task.

"By defining the scope of BIM, we make it easier for people to get involved in the standard development process, as well as funding of the project itself,” said David Morris, Chair of the NBIMS Project Committee. "The BIM Tetragram helps stakeholders understand how their piece of the BIM puzzle fits into the whole.”

The NBIMS Executive Committee developed the concept during a two-day brainstorming session. The resulting Tetralogy of BIM, or "ToBIM,” takes the Greek word "tetra,” meaning four, to focus on the priorities of the NBIMS effort. The concept also provides for cross-linking of relationships and the ability to have high levels of detail in a three-dimensional format. View the graphic.

A council of the National Institute of Building Sciences, the buildingSMART alliance serves as the North American chapter of buildingSMART International. The Alliance is the developer of both the National Building Information Modeling Standard-United StatesTM and the United States National CAD Standard®Learn more about getting involved in the NBIMS effort.

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