As the co-sponsor for the Belgian Construction Awards, our Autodesk Construction Cloud team were lucky enough to judge not one, not two but three of the BIM award categories. I was delighted to see the huge momentum gained and the progress we’re making towards digitalising the construction industry in Belgium.
The virtual event celebrated people and organisations who played an innovative and leading role in the construction sector in Belgium during 2020. The calibre of excellence amongst the award nominations was extremely high and I really enjoyed hearing about the diverse range of projects technology has supported throughout 2020.
Being a year like no other with the arrival of a global pandemic, it acted as a catalyst in our industry and prompted companies to look at their own digital transformation plans much more closely. For the categories I had the pleasure of judging, it was fascinating to see the pivotal role technology played in not only delivering successful outcomes for customers and end users, but in fostering collaboration between teams and in the face of uncertainty.
Autodesk Construction Cloud judged the nominees in the three BIM categories. We received nearly 40 entries showing how far the industry is advancing when it comes to implementing BIM on their projects. Working with a range of experts in our industry, our judging panel brought together a broad range of insights. Judges included:
Filip Van Der Linden, Construction Journalist at Bouwkroniek
- Christophe Hautier, managing director Organisation of Consultancy and Engineering firms
- Herve Camerlynck, Managing Director Federation of the Belgian Cement Industry
- Pascal Hardy, from the Belgian Concrete Grouping
- Stijn Mostmans, Consultant Expert WTCB and Belgian Construction Certification Association
- Lars de Laet, Associate Professor at the Department of Architectural Engineering at the Free University of Brussels.
The judging panel worked together to evaluate the BIM content in each award submission and how BIM was applied, as well as the innovative and sustainable aspects for each project. The nominations were fiercely competitive, and it was fantastic to see such levels of innovation amongst projects in Belgium. Let’s look a little closer at the standout stars in each category.
BIM award for Industry, tertiary and residential project
Winner: Networks Gent project, Algemene Bouw Maes
The project to build two office buildings compromising of seven floors. The project team worked intensely with their client from the early stages of the project providing an as-built BIM model for subsequent maintenance. This BIM model also included technical data sheets linked to the elements in the model resulting in meaningful data being shared with the project owner from the outset. With a clear BIM strategy from the beginning, the team worked out the project in a digital environment first – before getting their construction teams on site meaning a reduction in costs, execution errors and waste for the project overall. As well as this, the entire project was built in line with the project’s four sustainability concepts; sustainable use of space, sustainable use of materials, sustainable use of energy and sustainable use of water.
BIM award for infrastructure
Winner: fiets- en voetgangersbrug over de Leopold III-laan, Sweco
Sweco’s bicycle and pedestrian bridge, one of the longest steel bicycle bridges in Belgium at 510 meters, scooped this award. The project team tackled a mean feat with the complex navigation that needed to take place due to utility pipes surrounding the construction site. Clash detections were performed using the project’s BIM model. The team also used generative design geometry of the piers and the bridge deck. The project team also adhered to ISO 19650 guidelines to streamline the design process and optimise the information flow between all parties involved.
BIM award for public
Winner: Sportoasis Groot Schijn, Groep van Roey
A standout winner in this category, the Sportoase Groot Schijn project delivered a multifunctional swimming and sports complex with an ice rink and car park. The project team’s objective was to deliver a clash-free virtual model first and to make the BIM data centrally available throughout the entire building process throughout the project lifecycle.
The team delivered a virtual walkthrough of the project in the design phase using virtual reality. This helped to make early adjustments to any design aspects early on and the team also implemented using a common data environment from the start of the project allowing their client to access any data they wanted. As well as this, the project was linked to a planning tool using 4D insight which helped with preconstruction activities. The BIM models were central to this complex project helping collaboration with the owner to be a focal theme of the project’s ways of working. If this wasn’t enough, the team also used 3D printing to make the difficult shapes in the swimming pool meaning the manual labour on site needed was reduced and less waste was produced.
Congratulations to the nominees and winners from the night who are pioneering the use of digital technology in the Belgian construction industry. Working differently and embracing the use of innovation helps to improve customer and client outcomes for the better.
Nogmaals van harte gefeliciteerd aan alle kandidaten en aan de winnaars!