Standardization of Whole Life Cost estimation for early design decision-making utilizing BIM

Mariangela Zanni, Tim Sharpe, Philipp Lammers, Leo Arnold, James Pickard

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution book


It is becoming increasingly clear that there is a gap between the ex- pected and actual performance of buildings. A growing body of evidence sug- gests that the most common barrier to achieving design intent is the absence of comprehensive information during design and construction stages, leading to poor decision-making which impacts on performance and Whole Life Cost (WLC). Building Information Modelling (BIM) has the potential to facilitate a more comprehensive and accurate design approach from the early stages. A de- tailed and accurate model can allow designers and clients to understand the wider impacts of design changes, and to track this information through con- struction stages. However, dependencies between design decisions and WLC have yet to be understood. This paper is based on a project that focuses on the Private Rental Sector (PRS), which is the fastest growing new sector in the UK housing market, also known as Build-to-Rent (BTR). The study adopts a mixed method approach for the development and validation of a structured standard- ised process for more accurate WLC estimation through BIM. As a result, the main problems in WLC BIM management are identified, and coordinated into a reverse-engineered systematic process that uses the Integrated DEFinition (IDEF) 3 structured diagramming modelling technique, and the Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) as a basis for large dataset management. The research out- puts aim to enhance BIM lifecycle management through a smart decision- making approach that is integral to the natural design development process.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in Informatics and Computing in Civil and Construction Engineering
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 35th CIB W78 2018 Conference: IT in Design, Construction, and Management
EditorsIvan Mutis, Timo Hartmann
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)9783030002190, 9783030002206
Publication statusPublished - 4 Oct 2018


  • Building Information Modelling (BIM)
  • process modelling
  • nD modelling
  • Whole Life Cost (WLC)
  • Integrated DEFinition (IDEF) language

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