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Facilities Managers Examine whether BIM and GIS Can Coexist

The Next Evolution of Smarter Building Practices Is Addressed at the Spatial Roundtable

October 19, 2010

Shelli Stockton

Redlands, California—As facilities owners and operators look to create buildings that are safe, secure, energy efficient, and optimally operated, they are embracing geographic information system (GIS) technology. This is leading many who have invested in building information modeling (BIM) to question whether BIM and GIS can be used together. Shelli Stockton, facilities management industry manager for Esri, addresses this question at the online Spatial Roundtable.

"One of the first questions I am often asked when I talk to FM and real property managers is whether or not GIS is a solution that is redundant to or even competitive with their BIM technology," says Stockton.

Building owners use BIM to manage data particular to individual buildings. When querying information in multiple buildings, such as across a campus, or performing geographic analyses, like a best path analysis from one building to another, the building owner faces challenges. Stockton states that these can be overcome by integrating BIM data with GIS. When BIM and GIS are integrated, a suite of new analysis options for facility planners, owners, and operators is available. The results of these analyses can be reported and visualized at all geographic scales or levels of detail.

"Can BIM be used for ongoing facility management?" asks Stockton. "Yes, it can. Can GIS be used for design and construction? Of course, but the real power of these technologies lies in utilizing each for what it does best—BIM for design and construction and GIS for ongoing building and facility management."

Participants can join the discussion about whether BIM and GIS are complementary technologies at the Esri-sponsored Spatial Roundtable at spatialroundtable.com.

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