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Stay up to date on the latest in BIM, Revit, and Architecture.

World's Seventh-Tallest Building Showcases Impact of BIM Workflows

Dylan Kleintop

ARCHITECTURE 9/10/2020

The benefits of a fully-integrated BIM workflow are now officially on display with the recently-completed Tianjin Chow Tai Fook Financial Centre in China.

Skidmore, Owings, and Merril (SOM), Ronald Lu & Partners, and East China Institute of Architectural Design and Research (ECADI) recently finished the 1,738-foot skyscraper in China, making impressive use of BIM (Building Information Modeling) processes for the project's design and implementation.  Upon completion, it became the seventh tallest building in the world and the third tallest in China.  

The parties involved in the design and construction of the tower have spoken openly about the impressive efficiencies that they attribute to their BIM workflows, demonstrating how BIM significantly reduced the time and cost of the tower's construction and played a vital role in optimizing its striking, crystal-clear winding glass curtain wall.  

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Image © New World China

"At the start of the construction process for the Tianjin Chow Tai Fook Financial Centre, experts estimated that at least 1,308 pieces of independent asymmetric insulating glass units (IGUs) would be required for its unique curtain wall structure, formed by the intersection of eight irregular curved surfaces," said RLP in a press release.   "However, after performing BIM analysis and using repeated data modeling, the number of independent IGUs needed for the Centre's curtain wall was reduced to 476 - a decrease of over 60%." 

As a result of this complex BIM analysis, the project was completed a full four months ahead of schedule.  

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Image courtesy of Coxgomyl

The tallest building north of the Yangtze River in China, the Centre is made up of four basement levels and five podium levels, topped by a 103-story tower.  The Centre includes the K11 shopping mall, the K11 Atelier office, and five-star hotel and serviced apartments.  The Centre has been recognized as one of the most complicated skyscraper designs and structural systems ever designed in the country, combining both flexibility and rigidity to counter the effect of winds and seismic activity.  

"Traditional building design still largely relies on two-dimensional technical drawings; BIM extends these designs into three-dimensional geometry," stated RLP.  " As the technology has evolved, BIM's multiple advantages in terms of construction schedule coordination, clash detection, spatial relationships, geospatial information, quantities and properties of building components, and many other factors have become more apparent and increasingly indispensable."

“As the technology has evolved, BIM's multiple advantages in terms of construction schedule coordination, clash detection, spatial relationships, geospatial information, quantities and properties of building components, and many other factors have become more apparent and increasingly indispensable.” 

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Image © New World China

The Tianjin Fook Financial Centre has already won several awards, including the highest honor recognized by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors' China Awards 2020, as well as other international awards including the China BIM Certification Alliance's Platinum Award and the Steel Structure Gold Award at the China Construction Metal Structure Association's Annual Outstanding Engineering Awards. 

 

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Dylan Kleintop

 

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