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DigiPLACE, the European BIM platform for digital construction

DigiPLACE, the European BIM platform for digital construction

The DigiPLACE project aims at creating a European BIM oriented platform for digital construction

A European digital platform conceived as a “warehouse” where to store an infinite number of materials and construction products. This is the aim of DigiPLACE, the EU-commissioned research project assessing the feasibility of a European Platform for Digital Construction.

What is DigiPLACE

The DigiPLACE project is the result of a collaboration between:

  • the Polytechnic University of Milan
  • 3 European Ministries (Italian Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport, Ministere de l’ecologie du developpement durable des transports et du Logement – France, Bundesministerium für Verkehr und Digitale Infrastruktur – Germany)
  • representatives of the national and European construction industry;
  • European institutes and competence centres.

DigiPLACE, the European BIM platform for digital construction

From data sharing environment to platform for digital construction

One of the key elements shaping the fourth industrial revolution (industry 4.0) is data management and interconnection between machines-objects-people and processes. Key words of the ongoing revolution are:

  • information in real environments: AR (augmented reality)
  • data management: Big Data and A.I (Artificial Intelligent)
  • digital collaboration
  • intelligent objects: IoT (internet of things)
  • addittive manufactoring: 3D printing.
DigiPLACE, the European BIM platform for digital construction

The European platform DigiPLACE

Compared to previous industrial revolutions, the AEC (construction) sector is now fully involved alongside the industrial and service sector. The new approach to production and use of products thus involves objects, actors and processes, integrated by the generation of common information in continuous evolution.

International standards

Information needs to be collected (in a structured way), treated and redistributed. The international standards (PAS, BS 1192, UNI 11337) together with the CDE (Common Data Environment) already provide for the adoption of specific data sharing environments, through which each subject can actually be involved (owner, designer, manufacturer and builder, operation manager, user) in each phase of the construction process.

However, in the new age of data management (Big Data and Smart Cities), a process sharing tool that ends up within a single commission or in relation to a single asset (building or infrastructure), such as the CDE, appears to be a limiting tool of the potentials introduced by BIM methodologies and tools if not integrated in a system of further superior coordination.

Data management platforms

For this reason, it is fundamental to operate through “data management platforms” as places for collection, management and systemization of all the information coming from objects, models and various CDEs.

Large and small properties (public or private), managers, contracting authorities can thus systemize not only the single asset or the single intervention, but the integrated management of their entire real estate portfolio. At the same time, credit, insurance, investors, production can use information from a platform to establish strategies, optimizations and reallocations.

Extending this concept we understand how useful a European supranational platform can become, supporting the interaction between operators and the flow of information even beyond state borders.

It goes without saying that, the development and competitiveness of internal markets and opening up to international markets (systemization of information and knowledge for community operators) can be delegated to a European digital construction platform.