The Benefits of Cloud Collaboration & BIM
Using Revit software to explore the world of 3D
Architecture, in a fundamental sense, began as a basic human need; a means for survival and function. In the present day, it has evolved into an artistic representation of cultural values or societal rhythms. As design evolves, so do the tools we use. When ARFAi was founded, we still drew buildings by hand, turning sketches to elaborate renders on large wooden tables, surrounded by a selection of instruments and paper.
In the late 90’s, Charles River Software launched Revit, a building informational software that allowed designers and architects to finally create in 3D. This software transformed our firm, as we adopted it immediately and began training our team in the math and technical skills required to use it successfully.
In 2002, Revit was purchased by Autodesk, and in the months following this acquisition, the program became Autodesk Revit. From our perspective, the acquisition introduced a measure of error into the programming. Fortunately, we already owned and utilized the original software, and we continued to use the original Revit as our primary tool from concept to construction. To this day, Autodesk Revit, alongside other software like AutoCAD, are widely utilized by architects and designers in classrooms and firms. As they simplify and adjust the software for wider use, we continue to believe in the original brilliance of Revit.
By using this technology, we create 3D drawings to create real world models, also known as Building Information Modeling (BIM). This 3D drafting center allows us to draw on the same models as the engineers, working together in real time.
Doing so enables us to introduce all structural, mechanical, and electrical elements simultaneously, working through details to determine the overall design. For example, when we are working with consultants in another province or country, we can work collaboratively on the big picture, changing and adjusting as we go within the same software. Higher clash detection results in less revisions, which means staying on budget and on track with the timeline of a project. This collaborative workflow has optimized efficiency for all of our teams over the past 20+ years.
As we travel and visit other firms and classrooms, we’ve found most architects are still using AutoCAD and 2D models. Why isn’t everyone using BIM 3D modeling? The challenge here is that it’s difficult to unlearn AutoCAD once it has been adopted. Going from 2D to 3D is a mindset leap that requires time.
At ARFAi, we believe in Revit and the subsequent results we’ve seen through utilizing this software. For us, once you’ve seen the world fleshed out in 3D, there’s no going back to flat plains and perspectives.