A facility that enables stakeholders to physically walk through life-size digital floor plans has opened in Ballyfermot, west Dublin.
Developed in Australia, Lifesize Plans is expanding globally on a franchise basis. Ireland is one of the first countries to embrace the technology.
Lifesize Plans Leinster is run by owner and director John Foley (whose background includes stints at Laing O’Rourke and Purcell Construction) and his wife, Emma. They discovered the technology when scoping design variations for their own domestic extension plans.
Foley told BIMplus: “Lifesize Plans provides the world’s first patented 1:1 scale walk-through technology. It enables you to view the plans of your design at life size prior to the commencement of your project.
“We are an Irish family-run business, established in December 2022. We brought the technology to Ireland with exclusivity as part of a global franchise rollout. This has enabled us to leverage global expertise while personalising the service to address the very specific needs of the Irish market. Meanwhile, the franchisor can focus on research and development.”
How it works
Ceiling-suspended projectors are synced together and project the digital plan on to the showroom floor as the photo above shows.
The showroom provides a physical reality for people to walk through their design and get the fundamentals of their design right before progressing to virtual or augmented reality options should they be required.
Foley revealed: “The walk-through includes the use of moveable walls and furniture. These provide clients with spatial awareness of their design. This helps clients to gain a better understanding of the flow and function of their design.
“The showroom provides an upper-level observation deck to give clients the ideal view of their plan. The showroom includes meeting room technology and collaborative breakout spaces for project teams to use after their walk-through.”
The facility has been used by a broad spectrum of construction clients, Foley said. “We have facilitated walk-throughs of various project types, including residential (internal and external), a hospital, a restaurant and commercial kitchen, office fit-outs and garden design.
“The application of our technology is quite broad. Our client base varies from architects and interior designers, to main contractors, estate agents, planning authorities, landscape architects, developers, project managers, property investors and event organisers.”
Best time for a life-size walk-through
He added: “For residential clients, the most advantageous time to use our services is pre-submission for planning permission. Most of our residential clients come to us following multiple reviews and revisions of their plans. We see on average 8-10 fundamental design changes per residential walk-through and many more for commercial clients.
“We minimise the number of design changes encountered on site and reduce the requirement for rework by 11%, contributing to a project waste reduction of 2.5%.”
Typical costs to use the showroom and its technology range from €497 plus VAT for one hour for a residential client with an extension of less than 40 sq m, to €700 plus VAT per hour for a commercial client.
As well as Ireland and Australia, Lifesize Plans has appointed franchisees in France and the UAE. Germany, Canada, the US, South Africa, Mexico and Oman are set to follow.
Don’t miss out on BIM and digital construction news: sign up to receive the BIMplus newsletter.