HS2 Ltd has revealed it has identified £250m worth of savings through use of BIM on the project, as it begins a big push to ensure the construction supply chain is ready to use the technology.
The organisation held a procurement conference in London this week, setting out further details of how it will procure the £17bn first phase of the project – and promised BIM would take centre stage. There will be a second event in Manchester on Thursday.
“BIM is really central to delivering the railway and it would be crazy not to use it,” HS2 Ltd strategy director Alastair Kirk told Infrastructure Intelligence magazine. “There are £250m worth of savings tagged to the use of BIM on the project.”
Beth West, commercial director for HS2 Ltd, explained to the conference that BIM capability would be part of the organisation’s “balanced scorecard for procurement”.
Discussing HS2’s “strategic themes”, she identified use of BIM as a critical factor in the selection of firms to deliver the project.
“Key project enablers will include integrated teams, the use of a common BIM framework, and offsite construction and prefabrication,” said West.
BIM offers a unique opportunity for our whole supply chain to work collaboratively and to share crucial information on design data, stakeholder interactions and asset information before, during and after construction.– Jon Kerbey, HS2 Ltd
“We don’t want to see redesign, reworking, man-marking. We want to see efficiencies from methods and materials used in other countries and other industries,” she added.
HS2 Ltd has promised it will drive the upskilling of BIM capability among suppliers where there is a knowledge and skills gap.
The organisation commissioned research to establish the supply chain’s BIM Level 2 “maturity” and found that while Tier 1 supply chain organisations were the most evolved, Tiers 2 and 3 were still constrained within Levels 0‐1.
HS2 Ltd said it believes “it is essential that HS2 drives upskilling to meet its programme and projected capacity, especially with regards to Tier 2 and 3 [supply chain] organisations who may not reach Level 2 without the support of HS2 Ltd and the Tier 1 community.”
Jon Kerbey, HS2 Ltd head of management systems, said: “In order to maximise efficiency and ensure that HS2 is delivered on time and on budget, HS2 Ltd has made a serious commitment to use BIM to an unprecedented scale.
“BIM offers a unique opportunity for our whole supply chain to work collaboratively and to share crucial information on design data, stakeholder interactions and asset information before, during and after construction.
“To unlock these and other benefits it is essential that HS2 Ltd creates the right environment to put Level 2 BIM into practice and help the supply chain upskill where required.”
HS2 carried out the BIM supply chain research through an online self‐assessment questionnaire, together with workshops and interviews with a selection of capacity.
It revealed that: 94% of the supply chain already use BIM; 60% have a BIM strategy with defined goals; 71% make financial provision for BIM; and 60% work to a BIM standard as part of their QA process.
Over 50% of supply chain members surveyed had some degree of experience of Level 2 BIM, although this applied chiefly to major projects as opposed to an overall organisational position.