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Major UK retailers to work together under new BIM forum

Some of the biggest retailers in the UK will establish a BIM forum as they seek to share best practice and drive engagement with the industry.

Asda’s head of construction model and specification James Brown told the Autodesk BIM 2011 conference that the company will join retailers including Waitrose and John Lewis in the new forum, with architects HOK and consulting engineers Ramboll acting as facilitators.

“We will look at the conversion of existing models into BIM and creating that consistency will give us a great opportunity to size our approach to COBie and BIM. We hope that in 12 months time we will be able to talk more about what we are doing.”

Meanwhile contractors can expect to see their first tender documents mandating BIM by March 2012 as the Cabinet Office gears up to set out 18 work packages trialling new BIM demands.

A contract from the Ministry of Justice is expected to be the first from government to come to the market with BIM as part of the tender document.

Cabinet Office head of BIM implementation David Philp said: “We want to see the right procurement and set the right rules but we also want them to get down to the industry supply chains as well.

“We are also working with different departments like the Highways Agency to make sure this is not just about buildings. We want it to be a cross-section and to look at using complementary technologies like laser scanning as well.”

The goverment is looking to mandate BIM level 2 on all construction projects by 2016. Government representatives have stressed that the moves will not rule out any members of supply chains and will start with Excel demands.

Click here for more BIM news and a live Twitter stream detailing speeches from the Autodesk BIM 2011 conference.

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