Government Soft Landings #GSL, #BIM and Integrated Project Delivery #IPD

 

This post will discuss how Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) could support the notion of Building Information Modelling (BIM) to power Government Soft Landings (GSL) and the Building Services Research and Information Association (BSRIA) Soft Landings approach in the UK, identifying additional benefits that the adoption of its collaborative principles could engender.

It has been described that Soft Landings is a set of processes that assist clients and project teams to achieve better operational outcomes throughout the life cycle of the building (Ukgbc.org, 2015, p. 1).   There are two Soft Landings approaches which exist for the construction industry to use; BSRIA Soft Landings and GSL.  A driver for Soft Landings in the UK generally in non-domestic, as well as investment property, is the zero carbon targets set for 2019 (Heriot Watt University, 2015, p. 4) this will accommodate the BSRIA approach mainly.  There are differences between the two approaches and a client should understand the differences particularly if there are government client and are seeking to achieve a government mandated BIM Level 2.  Evans (2015) discussed in his lecture that the differences between the two focused around how BSRIA examines predominantly building performance more than the GSL approach, which looks at data management and transfer at the end of a project as well.  It was the view of Evans that the GSL format allows the government to gain more benefits than purely performance and low energy performance from the process.

There are set of core principles that BSRIA have developed for their Soft Landings approach these are numerous but include;

  • Adopt the entire process
  • Leadership
  • Set roles and responsibilities
  • Ensure continuity
  • Commit to after-care
  • Share risk and responsibility
  • Use feedback to inform design
  • Focus on operational outcomes
  • Involve the building managers
  • Involve the end users
  • Set performance objectives
  • Communicate and inform

(BSRIA,2014, P.13-14)

In contrast to this GSL seeks to embed itself within the design construction process as a core element of the BIM Level 2 strategy and is described as the “golden thread” that runs through to the delivery and operation stages.  In addition to this, during the early engagement stages the use of a GSL champion on behalf of the government as a client is recommended.  Also the after-care post construction must be committed to and a post-occupancy evaluation is required and should be standard practice.  A final element of this policy is that BIM should provide data to feed into the Computer Aided Facilities Management (CAFM) system and will be used throughout the building life-cycle (Cabinet Office, 2013, p.2).  It would appear that a client will need to decide which system is the most advantageous to their project and objectives at the earliest project planning stage, this can then be embedded into the project contract for clarity and objectives required.

IPD is an approach to that “Integrates people, systems, business structures and practices into a process that collaboratively harnesses the talents and insights of all participants to optimize project results, increase value to the owner, reduce waste, and maximize efficiency through all phases of design, fabrication, and construction” (The American Institute of Architects, 2007, p.2).  The main source for IPD at present is the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Integrated Project Delivery: A Guide which defines a construct of client, design team, lawyers, insurance company, contractor, subcontractors and supply chain, and facilities management working together under one multi party agreement.  At the core of this is the production of an integrated project team that works collaboratively, with teams comprised of integrated and productive teams, ideally collocated at some times, working on the AIA basis of “trust, transparent processes, effective collaboration, open information sharing, team success tied to project success, shared risk and reward, value-based decision making, and utilization of full technological capabilities and support” (The American Institute of Architects, 2007, p.2).  This approach of integration appears to align with the Soft Landings approach by combining it within a wider program of consultants and team objectives.

With the differences in the two Soft Landings approaches it would appear that if a client is considering using Soft Landings on a project, they should establish their priorities and which one aligns for their needs, although their own system could be developed depending on the client. As the primary project participants are bound by a single contract that defines roles, rights, obligations and liabilities (The American Institute of Architects, 2007, p.32) this means that Soft Landings could be an element of this which confirms how this will be implemented, the benefits of doing so and confirming the roles and responsibilities throughout the project life-cycle.

It has been proposed that Soft Landings can be used with any procurement process (Ukgbc.org, 2015)  and therefore the opportunity to use IPD and a particular construction contract is available and there should be benefits to this. One of the main principles of Soft Landings is that it brings clients or customers design team closer together, and this aligns with the IPD approach whereby a project structure is put in place that integrates the client design team and the cities management amongst others (Ukgbc.org, 2015).  Some other benefits that have been found with Soft Landings is the ability to reduce performance gaps and energy performance and other projects expectations particularly from the client side (Ukgbc.org, 2015).  Another interesting point is that project teams should recognise that future work could be won if they have a satisfied client (Ukgbc.org, 2015).  If this is linked to IPD, multiple projects could be prepared under this agreement, then the ability to retain the clients trust and confidence in the final project is a strong benefit.  Many of the benefits of Soft Landings focus around energy-saving and targets such as Building Research Establishment Assessment Method (BREEAM) and the Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) targets, and it has been discussed that Soft Landings provides a framework to agree these environmental targets and also confirms the methodology to meet these agreed outcomes; this could also be attached to targets such as Passivhaus (Ukgbc.org, 2015).

The UK Government has published a British Standard for the facilities management integration related to Soft Landings; BS8536-1:2015 Briefing for Design and Construction – part one: code of practice for facilities management (buildings infrastructure) (British Standards Institute, 2015).  Within this document  it specifically says that the “owner should appoint an integrated design and construction team to ensure there is an emphasis on collaborative working based on shared responsibilities and goals that are aligned with those of the owner and the operator” (British Standards Institute, 2015, p. 15). This statement clearly aligns with the concept of IPD and integrating Soft Landings.  The challenge therefore is for more clients and consortiums to use IPD and Soft Landings within their projects – this is a new approach for the UK and will take some time to implement and learn from.

A further interesting area for IPD development is the 2050 Report (Construction Industry Council, 2015) which proposes that relational contracts in the future will be more prevalent and in particular will focus on shared value and profit using innovative collaborative methods, and it would appear that Soft Landings would be part of this future contractual arrangement (Construction Industry Council, 2015, p. 23).  The ambition here to look ahead and understand that traditional ways of delivering a project may not be suitable in the future and therefore a new contract type with new roles and responsibilities, for example shared responsibilities and duties under the contract that support the production of an asset that performs as designed, should be considered.

In conclusion, this post has discussed how Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) could support the notion of BIM to empower Government Soft Landings (GSL) and the (BSRIA) Soft Landings in the UK.  There appears to be benefits for the client to meet their requirements, as well as for design teams and contractors who will be working together to produce a product that will perform to the clients expectations.  Future uses of new contract types will be required to integrate these with a soft landings approach.

References

British Standards Institute, (2015). BS8536-1:2015 Briefing for design and construction part one: code of practice for facilities management (buildings infrastructure). London: BSI.

BSRIA, (2014). The landings framework for better briefing design, handover and building performance in use. [online] London: BSRIA. Available at: https://www.bsria.co.uk/download/product/?file=sxwAdQJfsNs%3D  [Accessed 24 Dec. 2015].

Cabinet Office, (2013). Government Soft Landings section 1 introduction. London: Cabinet Office.

Construction Industry Council, (2015). Built Environment 2050 A Report on Our Digital Future. [online] London: Construction industry Council. Available at: http://cic.org.uk/download.php?f=be2050-cic-bim2050-2014-1.pdf  [Accessed 24 Dec. 2015].

Evans, R. (2015). Government soft landings. (lecture to Middlesex University BIMM MSc)

Heriot Watt University, (2015). Soft landings delivering better sustainable buildings. [online] Available at: https://sites.eca.ed.ac.uk/ekep/files/2012/06/Clark-3D.pdf  [Accessed 24 Dec. 2015].

The American Institute of Architects, (2007). Integrated Project Delivery: a guide. [online] San Francisco: AIA. Available at: http://www.aia.org/groups/aia/documents/pdf/aiab083423.pdf  [Accessed 24 Dec. 2015].

Ukgbc.org, (2015). Pinpointing Discussion: Soft Landings | UK Green Building Council. [online] Available at: http://www.ukgbc.org/resources/additional/pinpointing-discussion-soft-landings  [Accessed 24 Dec. 2015]. References

British Standards Institute, (2015). BS8536-1:2015 Briefing for design and construction part one: code of practice for facilities management (buildings infrastructure). London: BSI.

BSRIA, (2014). The landings framework for better briefing design, handover and building performance in use. [online] London: BSRIA. Available at: https://www.bsria.co.uk/download/product/?file=sxwAdQJfsNs%3D  [Accessed 24 Dec. 2015].

Cabinet Office, (2013). Government Soft Landings section 1 introduction. London: Cabinet Office.

Construction Industry Council, (2015). Built Environment 2050 A Report on Our Digital Future. [online] London: Construction industry Council. Available at: http://cic.org.uk/download.php?f=be2050-cic-bim2050-2014-1.pdf  [Accessed 24 Dec. 2015].

 

Heriot Watt University, (2015). Soft landings delivering better sustainable buildings. [online] Available at: https://sites.eca.ed.ac.uk/ekep/files/2012/06/Clark-3D.pdf  [Accessed 24 Dec. 2015].

The American Institute of Architects, (2007). Integrated Project Delivery: a guide. [online] San Francisco: AIA. Available at: http://www.aia.org/groups/aia/documents/pdf/aiab083423.pdf  [Accessed 24 Dec. 2015].

Ukgbc.org, (2015). Pinpointing Discussion: Soft Landings | UK Green Building Council. [online] Available at: http://www.ukgbc.org/resources/additional/pinpointing-discussion-soft-landings  [Accessed 24 Dec. 2015].

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s