The construction trades are pushing BIM as a solution to coordination issues but, for smaller projects, this has task has been taken out of the foremen’s hands and delegated to the CAD community. Unfortunately this is a mistake, as the tradesmen who actually install the product and make it work have a far better knowledge about coordinating the layout than a designer ever will. BIM is supposed to be complete before the project is started. This involves periodic war room meetings to federate models that are built and worked on separately. It also brings all tradesmen and designers together to discuss issues periodically. This may work on well planned large projects but, small projects mostly lack the up-font planning and investment to complete this task before ground is broken on the project.
The Layout Module is an attempt to get all trade foremen to coordinate over-the-web in a tool that is as easy to use a Roller Coaster Tycoon. It is not BIM but it shortcuts, the process to give old school coordination some of the benefits of BIM. The Layout Module gives material lists, hanger locations, project planning, work sign-off, trade communications and collision detections.
The project is not complete and we are looking for funding. Please watch the following video for an overview of the project.