BIM? Just jump right in!

Who is the main driver for Building Information Modeling (BIM) at Implenia in Sweden? Impact has a chat with our Country Head BIM Sweden, David Santos, who started the implementation of BIM in Sweden. He tells us all about its advantages, taking our Varberg project as a good example.

When engineer David Santos joined our Swedish project Kvarnholmsförbindelsen in 2015 as an intern, he knew he had come to the right place. After the six-month internship was over, he was asked to stay until the end of the project. This was a no- brainer for David, he stayed, and his decision ended up being a life-changer. Alongside his studies for a BIM Management Master’s degree in London, he was made responsible for the development of BIM at Implenia in Sweden. Back then, he was the only one there with BIM expertise, but as a result of his committed work, there are now seven BIM coordinators working on different projects and several more people working with BIM part-time.

David Santos’ BIM words of wisdom
For David Santos, there are three important things about BIM: 1. BIM needs to be involved in everything we do in the projects. 2. BIM cannot be treated separately – everyone needs to work with it. 3. And even more clearly: BIM cannot be successful only through the work of the coordinators. It needs to flow through the whole organisation of a project.

BIM from day one at Varberg

“The Varberg project has been a first for us in many ways. It is the first two-phase Early Contractor Involvement (ECI) project for which we won the second execution phase because of well-prepared work in the first planning phase. It is also one of our first paperless projects in which we have focused on digital workflows and BIM. All of the construction work is based on digital models,” says David.

David started working on the Varberg project in January 2018, during the tender phase. There was no hesitation about already using BIM in phase one: “On the contrary: BIM was part of the contract and the client was very interested in our ideas and how to get the best out of the project using BIM. This support from the client allowed us to push the boundaries, and I think now we can call it a flagship BIM project. We have had the opportunity to create a good platform for the project, and now it’s important that everyone makes use of these tools and takes the benefit from them.” Three people now work full time with BIM at Varberg.

This project was one of the first for which Implenia in Sweden could create a BIM master model, picking and choosing its definitions and rules at a very early stage. Thanks to BIM, our colleagues in Sweden are not limited to delivering only what the client wants. It gives them the opportunity to deliver even more. David Santos summarises: “Through BIM, we are living up to our values of excellence and collaboration. The natural result is an extremely collaborative spirit and a strong exchange of knowledge. Implenia’s BIM expertise, also applied to Civil Engineering projects, will allow the company to extend its leadership position. In this way, we can actively shape the construction industry’s future. We need to be part of this BIM movement, so let’s just jump right in and embrace it!”

Make data more manageable

To make the data more manageable and easier for people to find and access in the BIM model, David Santos’ team defined additional property sets (information fields) for all objects: “IMP” (specific to Implenia), “VRBG” (specific to the Varberg project) and “QTO” (for Quantities-take-offs).

Check out our Varberg video!

David Santos is definitely not alone in his enthusiasm for BIM. Watch our Varberg video to see how excited our colleagues Carolin Haueis, George Moir and many more are about the digital management of this complex construction site.