Changing the Game with 3D Immersive Technology: BCA Opens Lean & Virtual Construction Centre
If you’re an avid gamer, you might find that the facilities at the Building and Construction Authority’s (BCA) newly-opened Centre for Lean & Virtual Construction resemble your favourite gaming hideouts.
One room is filled with clusters of high-spec computers, a giant screen in another replicates first-person-shooter games, and in another room users can put on 3D goggles to navigate virtual reality buildings.
However, instead of being used for games these immersive and experiential technologies will help to improve collaboration and productivity in the built environment sector. Creators of building projects can now fully immerse themselves in walk-through simulations of virtual 3D life-size models before the buildings themselves have been physically built — a huge step forward from the conventional approach of viewing drawings and models on paper and screen.
Officially opened on 21 December 2015, the one-stop centre allows industry players and academics to test-drive new technologies that could lead to huge productivity improvements. Developed by the Building & Construction Authority, the Centre is the first of its kind in Singapore and is the first large-scale learning facility for Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) in Southeast Asia.
The Centre is located at BCA Academy’s Zero Energy Building at Braddell Road, and contains seven different experiential zones. Each zone offers opportunities for immersive experience based around different focus areas. Users will be able to experiment with the tools provided and appreciate firsthand how they can enhance coordination and collaboration with different stakeholders in building projects, including owners, developers, architects, engineers, and so on.
Overall floor plan of the Centre for Lean & Virtual Construction, showing the
seven different zones of facilities that are open for booking.
With VDC, there will no longer be any need to fuss with multiple drawings on paper and different interpretations of 2D diagrams. Instead, all the stakeholders involved in a project will be able to view a simulation of the construction process together, in a 3D immersive virtual environment, before buildings are constructed on site. This provides a full-dress rehearsal for construction: potential problems can be spotted and resolved in a virtual environment before any building works are physically carried out. One of the highly valuable applications in VDC is Construction 4D Timeliner where a local Registered Grade A2 Contractor, CMC Construction Pte Ltd has demonstrated a 4D construction sequencing with Fuzor by DiHub Singapore.
Senior Minister of State for National Development Mr Desmond Lee, who opened the Centre, sees this as a potential mindset changer that could attract the younger generation to join the built environment sector. He said: “Technology and innovation will drive transformative change in the built environment sector… We are changing the way we build and this presents exciting opportunities for young talented Singaporeans. I hope that more young Singaporeans will take a closer look at exciting courses and careers in the built environment sector.”
Senior Minister of State for National Development Mr Desmond Lee tries out a
Virtual Reality tool at the Centre’s AR/VR zone.
With Strong Government Support, BCA Opens Lean & Virtual Construction Centre
The Centre is now open to industry firms and academic institutions for booking. To understand the Future of Work in the AEC Industry, you can also find out more from Autodesk’s Preview on how these processes can be Connected.