Designing a manufacturing floor plan that is both effective and economical is not an easy task. Fortunately, there are technological advancements that help you perform your job as a facilities layout designer more easily than ever before. We know that your aim is to create an efficient, productive and safe environment for workers who will be there on a daily basis. 3D building design will make your life easier – from digital prototyping which will show how buildings behave under real life conditions before the first brick is even laid, to Building Information Modeling (BIM) which will enable collaboration from all role players right from the get-go…

Making the move to BIM services

Joe Porostosky, Senior Manager of Facilities Information and Technology Services at Ohio State University and Brian Skripac, Director of BIM at DesignGroup in Columbus, Ohio, detailed their move to BIM in a blog about building the Wexner Medical Centre at the Ohio State University. The Wexner Medical Center is a project covering 53 buildings and more than six million square feet. Porostosky says that the reason he and Lead Facilities Space analyst Dave Pifher began considering a move from AutoCAD documentation was because of its limitations for representing space and associated data. This was underscored by a general move towards BIM by the architecture industry, the improvement that it would bring to the visual representation of facility plans, and the benefits of being able to perform energy modeling. Using 3D building design, facilities layout designers are able to build their own digital facility, and evaluate its full functionality before they even begin to build the infrastructure of the building. This makes facilities layout designing faster and cheaper.

Making good use of the BIM philosophy and the factory suite

Skripac adds that one of the biggest benefits of the process was to see how clients use documentation that architects and designers provide, gaining insight into which information is most useful for daily activities, and applying it to operations, maintenance and lifecycle planning. This information gained from using 3D building designs and building information models can be used to inform deliverables for longstanding customers, and of course other clients could benefit from this too. With the BIM philosophy, the use of the factory suite ensures that there is a collaborative effort which allows all parties involved to be aware of every facet at every stage of the project’s development.

Complete layout projects on time and within budget

Some of the other strengths of using BIM services, according to Porostosky, are that customers who previously might not have been able to visualise what a space will look like when looking at 2D floor plans, can easily understand and make informed decisions. This has an impact on the speed and efficiency at which the project is completed and reduces expenses. Accuracy is greatly enhanced since 3D building design includes information such floors, exteriors, ceilings, roofs, windows, doors, etc.

Watch the Autodesk Factory Design Suite 2016 video here.