Skanska’s platform that integrates two data sets that are not natively interoperable, GIS and BIM, won the Digital Excellence in a Construction Business category, sponsored by Autodesk Construction Cloud, at the Digital Construction Awards last night (12 July).
Skanska faces three key challenges to the effective introduction of digital twins in transport infrastructure:
- interoperability – how to collate and analyse different data from different disciplines;
- location-enabling – the linear characteristics of infrastructure require geospatial intelligence to predict clashes and manage interfaces; and
- connecting data, disciplines and organisations that enable holistic and integrated decision-making throughout the project lifecycle.
As a result, Skanska created GeoBIM, a format- and software-agnostic, novel, geospatial solution that integrates GIS and BIM to enable the geospatial digital twin for infrastructure projects.
It focuses on the integration at a data and process level, enabling a bi-directional connection of the BIM and GEO common data environments (CDE). It is based on the Extract-Transform-Load process and Python. The solution is capable of consuming a variety of file formats (.ifc, .rvt, .dwg, .dgn, .idgn, .skp, .las, .pod) directly from their native CDE (ProjectWise, BIM360), and manipulates the geometry, semantics and topology and loads the information to the GeoCDE.
“Excellent recognition of the reality that data needs to flow and not be constrained by system boundaries or type. This is going to help drive efficiency in the way projects are planned and visibility of information.”
This is an automated process split in three parts: geometric conversion, semantic mapping and topological validation. The information is then shared to Skanska’s enterprise GIS ecosystem to support the project teams.
It is now a fully deployed solution across road and rail mega-projects within Skanska Infrastructure and has reduced the time spent finding the single source of truth by 99%.
Among other benefits, it has also generated a cost saving of approximately £100,000 per year based on 12-plus file formats that Skanska GeoBIM brings together agnostically.
George Floros, the GIS lead for Skanska UK – Infrastructure, said: "This is the beginning for us. We had a fantastic team and this award is testament to our innovation. It was bringing it all together and putting innovation into practice. It was about all the different disciplines coming together and embracing innovation."
Digital Excellence in a Construction Business shortlist:
- AKT II software ecosystem ‘Re.AKT’ | AKT II
- BIM360 Escape the hospital | Hoare Lea
- Digital Driven by Desire | Vinci Construction UK
- SCS Innovation – Leaving a Legacy | Skanska Costain Strabag JV working with HS2
- Working Smart | Ardmac