ArcGIS GeoBIM applied to Esri’s Building E

GIS and BIM integration – An Imperative for Transforming Infrastructure Development | Esri India

The infrastructure sector has become the biggest focus area for the Government of India in its vision for a $5 trillion economy by 2025. In Union Budget 2021, the government has given a massive push to the infrastructure sector by expanding the ‘National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP)’ and invested budget of $1.4 Tn on infrastructure – 24% on renewable energy, 19% on roads & highways, 16% on urban infrastructure, and 13% on railways.

However, the sectors still struggle with multiple challenges across the entire project lifecycle including technology challenges such as disparate data on multiple platforms, silos and lack of collaboration which inhibit a single authoritative view of project data and consistent communication. The Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MOSPI) 2019 report finds that only in housing projects at least 355 projects witnessed a cost overrun of Rs 3.88 lakh crore and about 552 projects have faced time overrun.

Building Information Modelling (BIM) and Geographic Information System (GIS) today are the must-have technologies that are transforming infrastructure development.

ArcGIS GeoBIM applied to Esri’s Building E

ArcGIS GeoBIM applied to Esri’s Building E; Source: Esri India

BIM provides detailed information about buildings and infrastructure assets, helping create an integrated database(s) of assets including a 3D digital representation of their physical and functional characteristics and extensive alphanumeric data about associated components/objects.

Location is intrinsic to any infrastructure project. GIS provides information about these assets in the context of the natural and built environments and other vital factors, such as demographic, socioeconomic, and environmental considerations. It is a framework for gathering, integrating, managing, analyzing, and visualizing geospatial data using maps and 3D scenes. This helps users make better-informed decisions about the operation and maintenance of those assets.

GIS and BIM have evolved as technologies serving distinctly separate parts of the life cycle of organizations that operate and build infrastructure. However, there is a significant need to effectively integrate those tools at the workflow level, so project participants and stakeholders can capitalize on their capabilities and benefits. With an integrated workflow, infrastructure assets can be better viewed in relation to how that asset fits and interacts with the surrounding ecosystem.

As we look up to a massive digital transformation, the adoption of BIM globally has increased over the last few years. In India, the adoption is still at a nascent stage and is slowly and steadily finding its way into the sector. Nagpur Metro construction is one of the first few projects in India to adopt the 5D BIM technology & one of the very few in the world to have integrated 3D, 4D, and 5D by the way of integrating ERP with BIM.

In addition, technology advancements are driving ease-of-use, higher accessibility, and a deeper integration of these technologies. Esri – Autodesk partnership has helped further build a robust BIM-GIS offerings. Use of drones has seen a significant uptake in past few years for various applications like construction monitoring. The Site Scan for ArcGIS, the end-to-end drone mapping solution, provides a direct integration with Autodesk BIM 360 where drone mapping where drone site surveys can be used for construction monitoring, change detection as well identifying any deviations with respect to planned designs.

With ArcGIS for AutoCAD, CAD drawings can be enriched with ArcGIS hosted maps, imagery, and geographic features. The geographic features can be edited within AutoCAD and can be used for navigating the drawing through location. Recently launched Esri ArcGIS GeoBIM is yet another example. It empowers project teams, by connecting ArcGIS with the Autodesk Construction Cloud and BIM 360, to explore and collaborate on BIM projects and issues using data from multiple systems in a geospatial context. GeoBIM enables secure access to project information, including BIM content, reality capture, documentation, and issues so that project teams can see active information for better decision making and collaboration.

These innovations will boost productivity, streamline project management and procedures, reduce costs, and enhance quality and safety of infrastructure development. In India, the transition towards adopting BIM and GIS has begun as the Government of India’s focuses on improving development through using geospatial and BIM technologies to deliver more sustainable and resilient infrastructure. Integrated geospatial and BIM technologies are at the forefront of this digital transformation.