How has BIM changed the Façade Modeling in Construction projects?

How has BIM changed the Façade Modeling in Construction projects?


According to the construction industry, façade fabrication has roots in the manufacturing industry and is cross-disciplinary in the AEC Industry. In design, the architect’s artistic pursuit and the emergence of urban infrastructure and high-rise building give façade design technology and the advent of BIM Architectural Services; it has brought good opportunities for the development of façade design.

Changes brought By BIM in Façade BIM Modeling          

Inducement of IT and Façade Design:- Architect’s core responsibility is to meet the requirement of energy-efficient, sustainable buildings, resolve cost estimation issues and look into shortage of contractors while constructing building or structure this are the criteria to be kept in mind. 

CAD and VR

The use of manual drawings has been transformed into electronic drawings after the emergence of CAD technology. This has shifted conventional design methods and revolved the façade design engineering field. Managing CAD information is not that easy. It is an integrated mode that provides collaboration for façade design in common data environment for sharing the information so that the designers can access the same model that eliminates unnecessary transfers and implies to fully sharing information database.

Since the development of 3D BIM Modeling Services and Virtual Reality technology, it has aided in improving communication among professionals working on façade design. 3D based model has helped the architects to exchange ideas and focus on shape, volume façade and exterior space in façade. It lays a major drawback of not holding information data for construction and installation.


Virtual Design and Construction is another evolving concept other than BIM technology, VR technology that provides design, construction, operation and maintenance teams in project construction of parametric model along with the integration of building facility information and construction processes to ensure general management objective for the project are attained.

Due to VDC implementation, data can be reused and captured from conceptual design to pre-fabrication and apply the data to the entire construction process from ideation design to modular construction. BIM technology is a foundation for implementation of VDC. BIM is correlated with the façade design field. With it, visual design, multidisciplinary coordination, panel analysis and quantity estimation is possible.

BIM-Based changes brought to façade design features

BIM has become an essential technology for the Architectural design industry. It has changed in façade design modules in the following ways:-

Parametric Design

BIM parametric design changes all the façade algorithms and drives to the façade panel shape to change; thus it helps to create different building design schemes. All the elements in façade fabrication components are linked to parametric calculation, data statistics and stimulation. A façade design model lays the components that impose the properties of 3D geometry and also has other attributes like material, thermal performance and more.

Though different design parameters are there in a façade design component, it can conduct quick calculations and analyses on modeling, layout, evacuation, etc. and give priority to projects that are vital. Due to geometric modeling feature in BIM parametric design, it is different than other parametric design.

Parameterization concept differs from parametric design concept. Parameterization refers to modeling capabilities of BIM software that is essential for the generation of parametric design. BIM software applicable to parametric design must create accurate BIM capability to ensure accuracy of BIM components. Level of detail (LOD) is used to define the efficiency of building components in BIM Model that lays the design detail and accuracy. It ranges from LOD100 to LOD500 that works within the entire construction projects. For the façade design model, LOD400 is required to ensure the design delivery model applied in the fabrication process.

Knowledge of Visual Design

3D BIM Model aids in transfer design information and shares the information to construction professionals so that communication is effective and efficient and eliminates economic losses caused by a redesign in the project. Visualization through 3D BIM Model can be used for different façade design structures such as panel edge, hole, junction and trim. Any conflicts can be identified and resolved among various disciplines and help in improving design quality.

BIM Model has multi-view of sectional drawings and technical drawing of a curtain wall model that creates information to other disciplines. All the views in the components are easily automatically updated while the designer modifies the components.

Automatic Professional correction

After the completion of the main structure, the façade designer can start working in collaboration with electromechanical engineers. BIM can change the working mode between construction engineers and integrate the BIM Model of different disciplines to detect model based clashes and resolve it automatically.

Modification brought by BIM design in processes

Model design delivery

Model design delivery is an important aspect of the architectural industry. Façade panel units are customized that makes the production faster in a project. BIM-based design delivery aids in avoid information loss from a shift of 2D to 3D fabrication model and accurately transfer the design data to control machine tools used for façade fabrication.

Accurate transfer of data and digital fabrication helps to improve building quality reduces huge waste from design to different fabrication steps, which can be a future trend for architects.

Virtual assembly

Centralized façade panels that are fabricated and assembled at the factory site, the builders working in the construction site have a good flair of façade panels for different facades design, floor heights and types. After the BIM façade design model is completed, the material components that are fabricated and assembled such as unit panels, keel frames, etc. are given a unique numeric code to data planning, then the façade model is assembled, and data is extracted to material list. The material list has a unique number given to components.

Fabrication and placement of material in design panels are according to numbers and units assembled in the unit template.


With the evolution in BIM technology, façade designers are successfully implementing a 3D model which assists them in showcasing building data, components, material fabrication process, cost of materials and improves the communication flow among other disciplines.

  • Divya Dave
    Divya Dave

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