Flexibility throughout design In a design concept phase, architects develop a series of possible build- ing designs using a number of sketches and models. This stage can be time-consuming with multiple iterations and countless steps. Custom developed scripts simulate manual, repetitive tasks like placing walls, doors, and windows, and generating floor plans, elevations, 3D views, and renderings quickly and accurately. The Kahler Slater team uses these tools over and over again, throughout the progression of the de- sign. Scripts and workflows can be adjusted and improved as needed to support the integration of different requirements and iterations. The technology also streamlines documentation work, with instant revi- sions to plans, elevations, schedules, and sections as projects change. Designs are able to grow with a project and be continually enhanced. Data-driven quality Improving the quality of design models is another valuable behind- the-scenes benefit Dynamo scripts provide. “The technology helps us evaluate how models are actually functioning, capturing holes and quality issues, flagging small details within our models, and improv - ing the workflow,” explained Jess Gardner, Project Architect at Kahler Slater. “Our model health checker acts as a database, aggregating data about projects across the firm, so we can track improvement over time. We have tangible data to create benchmarks and quality control for models. It’s a big win across the organization.” There was a time in the not too distant past when data was a very scarce commodity for the professionals that oversee large-scale construc- tion projects. It was a data desert, and that made life very difficult for program managers who oversee engineering and construction of these mega-projects. Things are quite different today, but in one critical way nothing has changed. Today, the data drought is over. There are literally Data, Data, Everywhere: Using Data-Driven Insights from Location Intelligence to Develop a Holistic View of Capital Projects By Mike Housby
It also promotes consistent and reliable data across models used at Kahler Slater, which help teams become more agile, as they move onto different projects, and support each other’s work. Igniting passion from top to bottom The technology and drive for automation and efficiency is working its way through all levels of the organization, from the grassroots, design - ers in the trenches to top leadership. “We are planting the seeds for the passion to grow all through team members, inspiring and retaining employees, and creating value throughout the firm,” said Parent. “This passion and drive to do more and move beyond the ‘weeds’ of exacting design work translates to our clients and fulfilling their needs.” Working together The ongoing partnership between Kahler Slater and Microdesk is vital for the successful use of the technology, which continues to grow as more team members are trained and realize the benefits. “Microdesk helps bring life to our ideas. It allows us to be strategic and keep push- ing the envelope,” said Kitchen. As Kahler Slater continues to advance innovative design solutions for its clients, they depend on the best people and latest technologies to help deliver powerful results. For more information, visit Microdesk and Kahler Slater . terabytes of data being generated about these projects. It’s an ocean of data that was unthinkable a generation ago in our industry. But despite all that data, program managers are still in a data desert because so few usable insights are being generated from that raw information. Data, data, everywhere, but not a drop to drink. That untapped ocean of data contains information and insights that engineering teams need to make better, faster decisions. It could be used to avoid costly rework and budget overruns. It could be used to orchestrate more efficient workflows and avoid delays in delivery time - lines. And much more. But the data is too often trapped in places that prevent it from being harnessed for effective decision making. This happens because large projects bring together many companies, ven- dors, teams, specialists, and consultants – each focused on key aspects of the project. Each of those participants in the project produces and uses vital information for their specific tasks, but that data remains trapped in their systems rather than shared across organizations. This siloed data includes information about a wide range of critical areas, including schedule data, operational data, supply chain information, financial information, and more.
March 2023 csengineermag.com
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