S’pore Sports Hub a pioneer in using BIM

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Singapore Sports Hub Image: dragages.com.sg

Singapore Sports Hub has become one of leading case studies for implementing Building Information Modelling (BIM) in stadium design. The futuristic BIM design technology was implemented through Tekla software to create the world’s largest free spanning dome structure in the Singapore Sports Hub.

Arup Architects and the structural engineering team collaborated to design the curved roof of the stadium, which spans 312m and rises 85m from the ground. The design posed a challenge for the fabricators, which was overcome by the use of BIM and Tekla/Trimble by the team.

The use of Tekla by the design team at Arup enabled them to optimize the fixed and movable roof design, coming up with a very efficient, lightweight and stylish roof structure.

One of the main challenges in the design of the Sports Hub was not only to keep the steel structure lightweight and economical but also to reduce the carbon-embedding for sustainability and environmental issues. BIM played a big role in minimizing the geometry of the roof structure enabling for a more sleek design and less use of steel making it lighter.

“BIM is applicable whenever you have an environment that is open to collaboration. The appropriate IT infrastructure, tools accessibility and understanding of common BIM targets allow a project’s teams to apply BIM correctly,” Magdalena Pyszkowska, global head of BIM development at Bouygues, was quoted as saying by khl.com.

“3D modelling helped us react swiftly to changes requested by architects and the client, and it enhanced the flow of dialogue,” Pyszkowska said.

Andy Dickey, business development manager at Trimble – owner of software company Tekla – added that up-to-date machine-readable information can be used throughout the process. “Information does not die in one stage of the project but rather lives on to the subsequent stages,” he said.

“BIM’s greatest weakness is in the ability of applications throughout the process to utilise BIM data,” Dickey added.

According to the Principal at Arup’s Singapore office and Structural Leader of the Sports Hub Project, Mike King, BIM has reduced the time needed to build a structure of this scale tremendously as compared in the past. The benefits of this technology are that it makes the building more resource efficient by collaboration between the designers to the steel fabricators down to the end users.

The 55,000 seat national stadium has an innovative moving tier design and a movable ultra-thin dome, which can convert from one mode to another for a wide range of sports and leisure events like track and field, football, rugby, cricket etc. It has an energy-efficient air-cooling system.

The Singapore Sports Hub was the first project in Singapore to use BIM from start till finish. The stadium was awarded the Platinum award at the BCA BIM Awards 2014 and ‘Best Steel Project’ at the Tekla Global BIM Awards 2014.

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