Atkins & Skanska Balfour Beatty Joint Venture are using Building Information Modeling (BIM) to meet the demands of widening the M25 highway circling London. Since 2009, the design-build team has relied on Autodesk® BIM solutions to help them collaborate on the project and resolve construction issues before they happen.
With this award, Autodesk recognizes Atkins & Skanska Balfour Beatty Joint Venture for the use of BIM to help:
|Listen to Hugh Woods, senior group engineer with Atkins, describe how BIM is helping the team optimize its design, and build the project safely, on time, and on budget.|
Skanska is one of the world’s largest project development and construction groups, with expertise in construction, development of commercial and residential projects, and public-private partnerships.
Balfour Beatty is a world-class infrastructure services business operating across the infrastructure lifecycle with strong positions in major world markets.
Atkins is the UK’s largest engineering and design consultancy and the world’s 11th largest design firm. Whether it’s the concept for a new skyscraper, the upgrade of a rail network, the modeling of a flood defense system or the improvement of a management process, Atkins plans, designs and enables solutions.
These companies, along with Egis Road Operation UK, make up the Connect Plus consortium, which has been awarded a design, build, finance and operate (DBFO) contract for the M25 project.
Project team members from the Atkins & Skanska Balfour Beatty Joint Venture use Autodesk BIM solutions for collaboration, design coordination, and construction planning on the M25 Widening project. The models produced in both the design and construction phases are facilitating a more complete and coordinated project.
Atkins designers use Autodesk® Navisworks® Manage software to aggregate their multidiscipline design information, which is developed with third-party and AutoCAD® software. This Navisworks model gives the team a better appreciation of the overall design and helps them identify and resolve inter-disciplinary design clashes. The Skanska Balfour Beatty Joint Venture team then uses AutoCAD® and AutoCAD® Civil 3D® software to enhance the Navisworks model for construction purposes, adding greater realism and context to the design components for a more accurate engineering representation of the highway and a deeper understanding of the project during construction.
Atkins & Skanska Balfour Beatty Joint Venture use these Autodesk products:
The M25 motorway that circles London is one of Europe's busiest highways. In 2009, England’s Highways Agency awarded a US$10 billion contract to the Connect Plus consortium for future development, operation and maintenance of the M25 motorway.
Part of that contract includes widening over 23 miles of the motorway’s northwestern quadrant and 17 miles in the northeast from 3 lanes to 4. Construction commenced in the spring of 2009 and must be completed before the London 2012 Summer Olympics. This requires finishing construction in approximately half the time it typically takes for a project of this scope.
In addition to the fast-track schedule, the Atkins & Skanska Balfour Beatty Joint Venture project team faces several critical challenges. The widening of the motorway is constrained by the boundaries of the current road. The design also incorporates a central reserve barrier, additional gantries, and new roadside lighting. All of these features must fit into the existing boundaries of the M25, requiring exacting design and construction coordination. Furthermore, 3 lanes of traffic in each direction must be continued at all times during construction of the new roadway, necessitating careful construction planning.
To help meet the aggressive design-build schedule, the project team relies on a coordinated, accurate design model. The Navisworks integrated design model helps the team visualize the whole project, including all above ground and underground components, and non-physical aspects of the design, such as safety and access zones. The designers use Navisworks software to help identify and correct clashes that would be very difficult to detect using 2D documentation.
Following release of the design to site, the project team adapts the Autodesk Navisworks design model to create a construction model. Using AutoCAD Civil 3D software, the team enhances the design intent model to create a virtual construction model that incorporates additional elements such as a more realistic version of the new retaining walls (for visualization), point clouds from laser scans, and temporary works. When necessary, the designer’s site representative team updates the construction model to better reflect on-site design changes.
The extended project team, including onsite construction personnel, can view the construction model from their temporary offices using Navisworks Freedom software. The use of a consolidated, more accurate construction model means everyone can access the same up-to-date, more realistic project information when assessing how best to perform construction tasks.
For more information, see the Atkins & Skanska Balfour Beatty Joint Venture customer story.
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