The Importance of 3D Animation & Visualization in Construction

Last Updated October 24th, 2019
3D Visualization in Construction

The accurate three-dimensional perspective on building projects offered by 3D BIM animation and visualization to designers, contractors and investors brings in greater project clarity. This enhances operational efficiencies due to lesser clashes in construction.

Visualizing, simulating and rendering graphic designs by creating an excellent illustration of any item or shape gives 3D BIM a winning edge over 2D. Stakeholders can experience what the structure will actually look like way before the actual construction. 3D BIM is a powerful marketing tool that not just generates pre construction images using software, but also allows early detection and resolution of clashes. It further ensures minimal information loss and maximum collaboration between disciplines.

BIM 360, a value add-on to the 3D BIM portfolio, is a collaborative tool operating via cloud and connects multiple stakeholders across locations and time zones in real-time, from the initial design through the final construction. It provides enhanced data transparency, supports informed decision-making and leads to more predictable and profitable outcomes.

3D BIM Coordinated Architectural Model (with shadow diagram)
3D BIM Coordinated Architectural Model

A leading architectural firm, specializing in planning & designing of iconic projects across Australia was challenged with creating a detailed coordinated Revit architectural residential model, with wall finishes, door and window families, kitchen equipment and bathroom fittings as per client company specifications. The client needed a shadow diagram as per his project location and sun path, three times of the day.

Hitech CADD Services used Revit to create a shadow diagram, did inter disciplinary clash detection and highlighted the same to client via RFI and FYI. This resulted in a smooth and hassle free documentation of model, with full sheet setup which was cost and resource effective.


Benefits of 3D Animation and Visualization

3D BIM shows a rich three-dimensional world, eliminating the boundaries between reality and imagination. It ensures that all project errors and clashes are identified and remedied in advance with suitable alternatives.

1Realistic Visualization

2D image vs. 3D image 2D image vs. 3D image

A major challenge faced by the construction business is keeping all stakeholders on the same page by depicting a mental picture of what kind of a structure is to be created. By turning 2D drawings into reality, 3D animation and visualization enables clients to get a three dimensional view with real effects which the 2D effect failed to offer.

Realistic 3D visualizations, graphic and animation help design a comprehensive recreation of the building or structure in a manner as it would appear in real-time. Clients can experience and take a virtual tour of the structure before its actual construction while architects and developers can get a better understanding of every floor, critical areas, landscape, textures, elevations etc.

A US based Environmental consultancy firm approached Hitech CADD Services to develop a comprehensive architectural 3D model of a wall with detailed information from a hand sketch. Hitech created a 3D Visual Model where the client could get a 3D visual of the entire structure before it was actually constructed. To read more about how this was achieved.

2Reduced Clashes, Easy Re-modeling and Corrections

Easy Re-modeling and Corrections Modifying light in an area as per client specifications before buying the actual material.

3D visualizations enable easy identification of loopholes and errors in design from the initial phase of design, which are fixed immediately or a suitable alternative is provided. Further, modifying errors in the 3D model is easier before finalizing the design, ensuring minimal post-construction costly changes.

The smallest of details like adding landscaping or choosing the color and texture of the floor, modifying lighting in a specified room or making furniture and décor choices before buying the actual material allows the client to explore all options.

3Accurate Measurements

3D Interior Visualization Three-dimensional view with accurate measurements.

Precise input of dimensions make designs vivid and accurate, saving time, which was earlier utilized to draw accurate lines. Views from various angles can be experienced even before laying a single brick of the foundation with the new 3D interior visualization tools.

Customers can view and modify arrangement of objects based on their size, available space etc. A 3D design layout clearly depicts the physical measurements of the items and their distance in relation with other items.

4Saves Cost and Improves Equipped Efficiency

3D visualization technology identifies errors and loopholes in design during the initial process of design. A lesser amount of money is spent in fixing errors, thereby saving costs. In addition, it accelerates operational efficiency as developers, contractors, investors etc. have better coordination as they are on the same page having viewed a 3D image of the project.

5Powerful Marketing / Interactive Tool

3D BIM Model 3D BIM allows client to check if a plan is viable.

Compared to 2D drawings, viewing 3D models is more interactive, fascinating and satisfying to potential clients. Chances of winning over customers increase as visuals and graphics in a 3D model create deeper impact on the client’s mind. In addition to being a powerful marketing tool, it is easier to check whether a new plan is viable or how small design changes would look.

6Easier Government Approvals

Often the local management may reject structures due to the ‘uncertainty’ element in the appearance of buildings and developments. 3D animation and visualization provides an accurate and realistic model, reducing the uncertainty and increases the chances of getting government approval.

7Minimal Information Loss and Maximum Coordination

3D designs are practically instruction-less minus any language barriers, as compared to 2D designs, which need clear and precise instructions on how to obtain design information. There is minimal information loss in 3D models and the visuals and graphics provide clarity to all stakeholders involved in the construction process. This increases the coordination and collaboration between the various disciplines involved in the construction process.

Popular 3D Animation and Visualization Tools

Various tools are used for a clash-free, enhanced 3D model of BIM. Each one has its own pros and cons.

Popular 3D Animation and Visualization Tools

What’s the future for 3D visualization?

The future of 3D visualization includes integration of 3D with VR (Virtual Reality) and AR (Augmented Reality) that will allow design projects to be experienced in real time. It will take the process of creating architectural designs and projects to a completely new level of quality and speed.

With the help of Smart glasses or a headset, all angles of the structure, building or product will be easily viewed, sensed, enjoyed and altered as per specifications in a VR environment. Customer satisfaction will be enhanced with three Dimensional images and visualizations, which may enhance the possibilities of increased sales.

Future of 3D Visualization Developers can quicken the designing process by using high-tech CGI tools like Insite.

Conclusion

Considering the various benefits of 3D BIM animation and visualization, it is imperative for designers, contractors and investors to adopt new and upcoming tools and provide services that ensure growth, profit and customer retention. In the construction industry, businesses dealing with animation and visualization frequently boost up their functioning by being more unique and innovate through services like charter animations, 3D walk-through, medial, architectural visualization, three dimensional design of interior and exterior parts of structures and buildings etc.

A designer, contractor or investor can easily sell their designs or property, if they empower their customers with the ability to walk through projects via VR interaction, where customers can feel space, volume and design even before the project is ready. The customer connect is thereby enhanced.

Harika Singh

About Author: is an academician and published writer. Her passion for engineering and technology reflects in the in-depth coverage she provides on technology trends. 20 years of work association with institutes of repute across India and the US positions her to provide valuable insights to business stakeholders on achieving scalability and operational efficiencies through digitalization.

Kaushik Gajjar

About Author: , a licensed architect and a “Best Young Architect” awardee, Kaushik Gajjar has a proven track record of successfully navigating complex projects to meet client expectations. Kaushik brings to the table extensive international experience in architectural planning, designing and BIM. He commands a strong knowledge of architectural design principles, techniques and tools.

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