Edificius User eXperience: a new series in which Edificius users talk about their experiences with the software providing expert advice and design tips. In this first episode, we’ll be going behind the scenes in an interesting interview with the architect that designed a multi-family residential complex in Sicily.
Edificius User eXperience is the new series of BibLus insights in which Edificius BIM software users tell their stories starting from the architectural concept of their projects leading on to how certain design challenges were addressed together with their expert advice and tips.
We’ll be exploring how the architecture industry can learn from these experiences with in-depth interviews discovering high-end architectural design solutions and operating methods.
Architect Giovanni Di Stefano of PROG.E.CO, speaks to our BibLus editorial staff and presents his residential complex located in Bagheria, Sicily.
A Multi-family residential complex
The Architectural concept
The “Domus Alba” project features two building volumes united by a seismic joint for a total of 7 residential units.
From a design perspective, the building appears as an isolated multi-family residential complex consisting of 2 structures in addition to stair towers and a basement floor level.
The Ground and first floors housing units accomodate a total of 7 dwellings that are divided into a group of 4 in block “A” and a group of 3 in block “B”.
The garage or basement level, is a common usage area as well as the technical services systems compartment with plant systems.
Despite the building’s simple geometry, a distinct articulation of facades, alternating full and empty spaces, emphasizes a “strategic breakage”.
The use of colors with strong chromatic contrast, from pale ivory-white to a strong concrete grey, generates a complex colour tone relationship with harmonic areas of light and shadow that characterize the elevation views.
The front is arranged with tall sloping partition walls which, from a compositional perspective, play an important role in making the building unique and easily recognizable in the urban and landscape context.
From an energy point of view, photovoltaic and solar thermal panels provide electricity and Domestic Hot Water while home automation deals with optimizing consumptions and the comforts of modern living.
Edificius 3D BIM modeling
The Edificius architectural BIM design solution developed and distributed by ACCA software, had a very important role in the whole project in terms of importing land plot survey data and for modelling the earthworks aspects for the structure’s foundations.
The entire development was based on a research project with data collecting tasks that lasted about 12 months. At an initial stage, 2D DWG CAD files were prepared and then converted to 3D entities using the advanced auto-detect tool (called the “Magic Wand”) available among the Edificius objects menu.
Designing both horizontal and vertical building envelopes was very easy and straight-forward. Inserting fixtures, railings and other 3D architecture related objects, available directly in the software and from the online BIM Objects Library was just as simple too.
Special help from ACCA’s Technical Support team
Online sessions with the ACCA software Technical Support were particularly relevant and effective during the planning phase too. Various issues such as modelling the sloping partition walls were solved by the Edificius support team remotely in just a few minutes.
The advantages of software… with the user in mind
Edificius allowed Giovanni to address all design aspects from concept to detailed 3D modelling, cross-sections, elevation views and other construction drawings in a dynamic workflow also thanks to the seamless integration with other ACCA software solutions too. In fact, the whole project was completed in 10 working days!
Direct connection with SketchUp brought that extra designer capability to import external 3D objects producing outstanding results in such a short amount of time.
Real Time rendering also made a big contribution to creating stunning photorealistic visuals and immersive experiences.
Interior rendering produced with Edificius
Documents and drawings production
Output production included various floor plans, elevations and cross-sections. Giovanni could generate isometric cut-aways and perspective views to obtain superb architectural renderings.
All the drawing models could easily be exported for printing by simply setting up resolution and presentation quality.
The living room area
These renderings were produced using the Edificius RTBIM environment.
The “Domus Alba” project also became a video presentation. Giovanni produced two videos: one with a dynamic daylight simulation and the other with a night time appearance so as to highlight the building’s external lighting system. Thanks to the Real Time Rendering and BIM video studio tools, these video clips were produced in a matter of minutes at HD quality video.
Dealing with settings
The strong point about using Edificius is that the whole software is designed and developed with the user in mind. Architects and Engineers simply need to get on with their work and create, innovate, build and enjoy their work and Edificius takes away the tedious tasks of having to find the right settings for each scene. The settings below were used to generate these scenes:
- Exposure: -14
- Direct Light: 6.8
- Spot Camera: 0.04
- IBL backgrounds: 3.2
- Image res.: 3840 x 2160
- Number of passes: 1290
Full interview with architect Giovanni Di Stefano
Personal feedback regarding Edificius.