Increasing Autodesk Revit Productivity for BIM Projects: A practical guide to using Revit workflows to improve productivity and efficiency in BIM projects 9781800566804, 1800566808

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Increasing Autodesk Revit Productivity for BIM Projects: A practical guide to using Revit workflows to improve productivity and efficiency in BIM projects
 9781800566804, 1800566808

Table of contents :
Cover
Title Page
Copyrights and Credits
Dedication
Contributors
Table of Contents
Preface
Section 1: Enhancing Your Productivity in Revit with Data Management and Templates
Chapter 1: Introduction to Productivity in Revit
What you should know about Revit productivity
Computer maintenance
Always use the same Revit update release
Revit's recommended settings
File size
Family creation
Model groups
In-place families
Arrays
Constraints
When using a worksharing environment
Splash screen
Choosing the right tool
What is the best workstation for Revit?
Desktop or laptop?
A fast processor
The best graphics card
Computer memory (RAM)
A fast hard drive
Overview of BIM implementation
BIM and the Revit training scheme
Assessing staff knowledge
Identifying the current training process
Determining the training obstacles
Defining the training budget
Identifying in-house experts
Establishing a process to measure progress
Identifying resources
Training customization
Summary
Chapter 2: Project Data Management
Critical data to start a BIM project
Appointment or Contract
Exchange Information Requirements (EIR)
BIM Execution Plan (BEP)
BIM Execution Plan (BEP) – Pre-contract
BIM Execution Plan (BEP) – Post-contract
Digital data to start a project
BIM documentation overview
Client documents
Project team documents
BIM standards and guidance
Project functions
Appointing Party (Client)
Task Team Manager
Task Information Manager
Information authors
Interface managers
Information Management
AEC UK BIM Protocol
Strategic – BIM Management
Management – Coordination
Production – Modeling/Authoring
Asset Management
COBie
Interview with George Stevenson, Managing Director at ActivePLAN
Establishing an Action Plan to start a BIM project
Action Plan to manage project data
Summary
Chapter 3: Revit Template and Standards
Technical requirements
How to create a Revit template
Starting a Revit template
General settings
Views and sheets
Graphic standards
Annotation standards
Model content
Summary
Section 2: Setting Up Revit Projects Efficiently and Exploring Core Functionalities
Chapter 4: Starting a Revit Project Efficiently
Technical requirements
Overview of Revit coordinate systems
Revit internal origin
Challenges of coordinate systems
Starting a Revit project and setting up the project coordinates
Setting up the Revit project and coordinates
Summary
Chapter 5: Core Revit Functionalities
Understanding schedule management
Basic Workflow
Advanced Workflow
Keynote for the project specification
Keynote types
Annotating drawings with Keynote
Design Options
Revit Phasing
Phase Filters
Phase – Graphic Overrides
Displaying multiple phases from Linked files
Using Scope Boxes
Rotating a Scope Box
Worksharing
How to create a Revit Central file
How to create a Revit Local file
Best practices for Worksharing
Drawing production
Summary
Section 3: Adding Visualizations and Dashboards to Your Data
Chapter 6: Visual Programming with Dynamo
Technical requirements
Introducing Dynamo
Working with Dynamo
Expanding Dynamo
Dynamo packages
Expanding Dynamo with Python
Automating sheet creation
How to use Dynamo Player
Best practices
Summary
Chapter 7: Dashboard Analyses with Power BI
Technical requirements
Introduction to Power BI for Revit
Installing Microsoft Power BI Desktop
Starting Microsoft Power BI
Working with Microsoft Power BI
Exporting and importing data from Revit to Power BI
Connecting Revit to Power BI: An introduction to visualizing model data
Analyzing Revit data with Power BI
Analyzing Revit data with useful workflows in Power BI
Summary
Section 4: Collaborating with Consultants and Plugins and Improving Revit Performance
Chapter 8: Collaborating with Consultants
Strategy for collaboration
Interview with Ricardo Farinha, Marzia Bolpagni, and May Winfield
Technology for collaboration using Revit
Copy/Monitor and Coordination Review
Coordination Review
Shared Views
Design coordination and clash management
Clash management
Summary
Chapter 9: Enhancing Productivity with Plugins
Managing Revit plugins
Revit Autodesk App Store
Let’s learn about security!
Removing Revit plugins
Creating Revit plugins
Revit plugins
Productivity plugins
Visualization plugins
Summary
Chapter 10: Improving Performance
Revit modeling best practices
CAD import best practices
Views and sheet management
Modeling
Revit content management
Third-party families
Overmodeling families
CAD formats imported into families
Avoiding complex shape modeling
Defining element visibility settings
Flexing families
Optimizing Revit's performance
Keyboard shortcuts
Warnings
Compacting a Revit file
Auditing a Revit file
Disabling plugins in Revit
BIM 360 best practices
Summary
Hey!
Why subscribe?
Other Books You May Enjoy
Index

Citation preview

Increasing Autodesk Revit Productivity for BIM Projects A practical guide to using Revit workflows to improve productivity and efficiency in BIM projects

Fabio Roberti Decio Ferreira

BIRMINGHAM—MUMBAI

Increasing Autodesk Revit Productivity for BIM Projects Copyright © 2021 Packt Publishing All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embedded in critical articles or reviews. Every effort has been made in the preparation of this book to ensure the accuracy of the information presented. However, the information contained in this book is sold without warranty, either express or implied. Neither the authors, nor Packt Publishing or its dealers and distributors, will be held liable for any damages caused or alleged to have been caused directly or indirectly by this book. Packt Publishing has endeavored to provide trademark information about all of the companies and products mentioned in this book by the appropriate use of capitals. However, Packt Publishing cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information. Associate Group Product Manager: Pavan Ramchandani Publishing Product Manager: Aaron Tanna Senior Editor: Sofi Rogers Content Development Editor: Divya Vijayan Technical Editor: Deepesh Patel Copy Editor: Safis Editing Project Coordinator: Manthan Patel Proofreader: Safis Editing Indexer: Rekha Nair Production Designer: Roshan Kawale First published: May 2021 Production reference: 1200521 Published by Packt Publishing Ltd. Livery Place 35 Livery Street Birmingham B3 2PB, UK. ISBN 978-1-80056-680-4

www.packt.com

Fabio Roberti: To my wife Lucie and my daughters Evelyn and Hellen for their unbounded support and love while I was writing the book. Thank you to my parents for the love and education. I also would like to thank Packt Publishing for the opportunity to write this book.

Decio Ferreira: First, I would like to dedicate this book to my wife Maria Joao Pinto and to my big "A" (Andre) and SMALL "a" (Afonso) for their support, guidance, inspiration and love – this is for YOU. No less important are all my friends, colleagues, students, readers, and followers for the continuous questions, feedback, ideas, problems, and shares that helped shaping my career. A special THANK YOU to my parents for everything that I am. And I would like to express my gratitude to the entire team at Packt Publishing for this opportunity and for their support and collaboration.

Contributors About the authors

Fabio Roberti Fabio Roberti is a Regional Practice Technology Leader (EMEA) and Associate at HKS Architects, where he develops and implements the digital strategy to consolidate processes and workflows to enhance project deliverables. He supports BIM processes in innovative ways to improve technology adoption with a thorough understanding of British Standards and the ISO 19650 framework and has many years of experience using Revit across all design stages. He holds a Master's degree in Architecture, the Autodesk Revit Architecture Professional Certificate, and a BIM Level 2 Certificate from BRE Academy. Fabio has presented at multiple conferences, including Digital Construction Week and Autodesk University in London and Las Vegas. His passions for digital technology and teaching others new skills helped him achieve his company's objectives and support many colleagues over the years. Besides BIM excellence, Fabio is interested in the rapidly advancing artificial intelligence sector, programming, and technologies that support superior construction deliverables. LinkedIn Profile: linkedin.com/in/froberti Twitter: @F_Roberti_

Decio Ferreira Decio Ferreira, with over 20 years of professional experience as an Architect, is a BIM and Design Systems BIM Coordinator at Foster+Partners, where he is responsible alongside with his team for developing and implementing standards, methods, and procedures across the practice. He is a strong, committed individual who thrives when developing and researching BIM strategies, workflows, and approaches to improve what he believes to be the most important: collaboration. He holds three BIM certifications: BIM Level 2 Fundamentals and BIM Level 2 BS1192-2 Project Information Manager and Task Information Management, both from BRE Academy, and BS EN ISO 19650-3:2020 from BSI, both in London. In terms of software, he has worked with Revit since 2000 and holds Autodesk Revit Architectural, Structural and Mechanical Professional Certificates (since version 2011), along with an AutoCAD Professional Certificate (since version 2005), and is an Autodesk Certified trainer. He lectures at several academic institutions as a guest lecturer and actively lectures at NossoBIM on the International Master BIM Manager program and also at Polytechnic Institute ISEP (Instituto Superior de Engenharia do Porto), providing a high level of expertise in the BIM software training field. Decio has presented at multiple conferences, including at Autodesk University in Las Vegas and Sao Paulo. Decio is passionate about photography, planes, and traveling, which allows him to contact, learn about, and understand new cultures and different lifestyles. For him, there is nothing more important than his family! LinkedIn Profile: linkedin.com/in/deciosantosferreira Twitter: @decioferreira

About the reviewer With a strong focus on quality, Nuno Araujo Nogueira – a Portuguese architect, born in 1978 – has a keen interest in the science of building technology, including standards, workflows, and BIM strategies. A BIM manager with over 15 years' experience managing projects in Portugal, Kuwait, and Egypt ranging up to $1Bn in value, and leading multicultural teams locally and remotely. Although his main working tool is currently Navisworks, he has been using Revit since 2007, which he uses exclusively to develop complete projects. Currently, he is the PMC BIM manager at the largest archaeological museum in the world – the Grand Egyptian Museum. Previously, he was the Main Contractor BIM Manager of an iconic supertall building in Kuwait – the National Bank of Kuwait Headquarters.

Table of Contents Preface

Section 1: Enhancing Your Productivity in Revit with Data Management and Templates

1

Introduction to Productivity in Revit What you should know about Revit productivity

4

Computer maintenance 10 Always use the same Revit update release16 Revit's recommended settings 19 File size 21 Family creation 21 Model groups 22 In-place families 23 Arrays24 Constraints25 When using a worksharing environment 26 Splash screen 34

Choosing the right tool

34

What is the best workstation for Revit? 36 Desktop or laptop? 36 A fast processor 36

The best graphics card  Computer memory (RAM) A fast hard drive

39 41 41

Overview of BIM implementation42 BIM and the Revit training scheme45 Assessing staff knowledge Identifying the current training process Determining the training obstacles Defining the training budget  Identifying in-house experts Establishing a process to measure progress Identifying resources  Training customization

46 46 46 47 47 47 47 48

Summary49

ii Table of Contents

2

Project Data Management Critical data to start a BIM project52 Appointment or Contract 53 Exchange Information Requirements (EIR)54 BIM Execution Plan (BEP) 55 BIM Execution Plan (BEP) – Pre-contract 56 BIM Execution Plan (BEP) – Post-contract 56 Digital data to start a project 58

BIM documentation overview

60

Client documents Project team documents BIM standards and guidance

61 63 64

Project functions Appointing Party (Client) Task Team Manager Task Information Manager

Information authors Interface managers Information Management AEC UK BIM Protocol Strategic – BIM Management  Management – Coordination Production – Modeling/Authoring

67 67 68 68 68 69 69

Asset Management

70

COBie Interview with George Stevenson, Managing Director at ActivePLAN

72 79

Establishing an Action Plan to start a BIM project

87

65

Action Plan to manage project data

87

66 66 67

Summary90

3

Revit Template and Standards Technical requirements 92 How to create a Revit template 92 Starting a Revit template General settings Views and sheets

95 96 131

Graphic standards Annotation standards Model content

Summary

143 169 174

175

Table of Contents iii

Section 2: Setting Up Revit Projects Efficiently and Exploring Core Functionalities

4

Starting a Revit Project Efficiently Technical requirements Overview of Revit coordinate systems Revit internal origin Challenges of coordinate systems

180

setting up the project coordinates

180

Setting up the Revit project and coordinates200

183 187

198

Summary224

Starting a Revit project and

5

Core Revit Functionalities Understanding schedule management226 Basic Workflow Advanced Workflow

Keynote for the project specification Keynote types Annotating drawings with Keynote

Design Options Revit Phasing Phase Filters

227 235

Phase – Graphic Overrides Displaying multiple phases from Linked files

Using Scope Boxes Rotating a Scope Box

240 242 245

247 253 254

Worksharing How to create a Revit Central file How to create a Revit Local file Best practices for Worksharing

258 260

261 266

271 271 275 276

Drawing production 293 Summary296

iv Table of Contents

Section 3: Adding Visualizations and Dashboards to Your Data

6

Visual Programming with Dynamo Technical requirements Introducing Dynamo Working with Dynamo

Expanding Dynamo Dynamo packages

300 300 304

310 310

Expanding Dynamo with Python Automating sheet creation How to use Dynamo Player

319 322 325

Best practices 330 Summary334

7

Dashboard Analyses with Power BI Technical requirements Introduction to Power BI for Revit Installing Microsoft Power BI Desktop Starting Microsoft Power BI Working with Microsoft Power BI

Exporting and importing data from Revit to Power BI

336

Connecting Revit to Power BI: An introduction to visualizing model data 343

336

Analyzing Revit data with Power BI

337 337 340

343

Analyzing Revit data with useful workflows in Power BI

360 361

Summary368

Section 4: Collaborating with Consultants and Plugins and Improving Revit Performance

8

Collaborating with Consultants Strategy for collaboration Interview with Ricardo Farinha, Marzia

372

Bolpagni, and May Winfield 372 Technology for collaboration using Revit379

Table of Contents v

Copy/Monitor and Coordination Review Coordination Review

Shared Views

384 392

395

Design coordination and clash management Clash management

398 400

Summary402

9

Enhancing Productivity with Plugins Managing Revit plugins Revit Autodesk App Store Let's learn about security! Removing Revit plugins Creating Revit plugins

404 405 408 409 411

Revit plugins Productivity plugins Visualization plugins

412 412 418

Summary422

10

Improving Performance Revit modeling best practices

424

CAD import best practices 424 Views and sheet management 427 Modeling438

Revit content management Third-party families Overmodeling families CAD formats imported into families Avoiding complex shape modeling Defining element visibility settings

441 441 442 443 444 444

Other Books You May Enjoy Index

Flexing families

444

Optimizing Revit's performance446 Keyboard shortcuts 446 Warnings449 Compacting a Revit file 453 Auditing a Revit file 455 Disabling plugins in Revit 457

BIM 360 best practices 458 Summary459 Hey!460 Why subscribe? 461

Preface Revit enables architects, designers, engineers, modelers, Building Information Modeling (BIM) coordinators, and BIM managers to create BIM models and analyze intelligent data to improve design and construction. BIM has promoted a transformation in the engineering and construction industries where information is at the core of a methodology that improves productivity, providing several benefits in comparison to the traditional 2D CAD process. This book takes a hands-on approach to implement this new methodology effectively. Complete with step-by-step explanations of essential concepts and practical examples, this Revit book begins by explaining the principle of productivity in Revit and data management for BIM projects. You'll then understand the primary BIM documentation to start a BIM project, including the contract, Exchange Information Requirements (EIR), and the BIM Execution Plan (BEP/BXP). Later, you'll learn how to create a Revit template, start a Revit project, and explore the core functionalities of Revit to increase productivity. Once you've built the foundation, you'll learn about Revit plugins and use Dynamo for visual programming and Power BI for analyzing BIM information. By the end of this book, you'll have a solid understanding of how to increase productivity in Revit and will be able to apply multiple workflows in your project to manage BIM efficiently.

Who this book is for This book is for architects, designers, engineers, modelers, BIM coordinators, and BIM managers interested in learning Revit best practices. Increasing Autodesk Revit productivity for BIM projects will help you to explore a methodology that combines information management and research for quality inputs when working in Revit. This book is also designed for individuals who want to optimize their daily work in Revit to produce more in less time. The hands-on approach to improve your efficiency comes with useful explanations, which will step-change your productivity.

viii

Preface

What this book covers Chapter 1, Introduction to Productivity in Revit, explains how to combine information management principles and the best Revit practices to improve productivity. It also provides the Revit recommended settings and an overview of BIM implementation. Chapter 2, Project Data Management, covers the critical data when starting a BIM project and gives an overview of the appointment, BIM documentation, project functions, asset management, and establishing an action plan to start a BIM project. Chapter 3, Revit Templates and Standards, explains how to create a Revit template and manage graphic standards. Chapter 4, Starting a Revit Project Efficiently, provides an overview of Revit coordinate systems and explains how to start a Revit project and set up the project coordinates. Chapter 5, Core Revit Functionalities, explains how to improve productivity in Revit with schedule management, using keynotes for specification, design options, Revit phasing, scope boxes, work sharing, and drawing production best practices. Chapter 6, Visual Programming with Dynamo, provides a basic knowledge of Dynamo and demonstrates the importance of mastering this application to increase efficiency in Revit. Chapter 7, Dashboard Analyses with Power BI, explains the process of exporting and importing data from Revit to Power BI and analyzing data with Power BI. Chapter 8, Collaborating With Consultants, explores strategies for collaborating with consultants and provides information about the Revit tools to enhance Revit collaboration, such as Copy/Monitor, Coordination Review, and Shared Views. Chapter 9, Enhancing Productivity with Plugins, teaches how to manage Revit plugins and discover the most used Revit plugins to increase productivity in your projects. Chapter 10, Improving Performance, explores additional information for improving performance in Revit, including the modeling best practices, content management, optimizing Revit performance, and BIM 360 best practices.

To get the most out of this book You will need to have access to Revit 2021 or later versions of this software for most of the chapters. The information provided in this book can be applied to any future Revit version because the explanations cover many principles of productivity not based on a specific Revit version. Some chapters will also require you to have access to the following software: AutoCAD, Dynamo BIM, Microsoft Excel, and Microsoft Power BI.

Preface

ix

The chapters are divided into specific areas to improve productivity, and you can explore the book as required. Once you start to read a chapter, you will see how it is organized to make it easy for you to follow and practice the content provided. The book was designed to give you a hands-on approach to improving your efficiency with useful explanations, which will step-change your productivity. There are no prerequisite knowledge or skills required to follow this book. However, having a basic understanding of Revit would be helpful.

Download the example files You can download the example files for this book from GitHub at https://github. com/PacktPublishing/-Increasing-Autodesk-Revit-Productivityfor-BIM-Projects. In case there is an update, it will be placed on the existing GitHub repository. We also have other code bundles from our rich catalog of books and videos available at https://github.com/PacktPublishing/. Check them out!

Download the color images We also provide a PDF file that has color images of the screenshots/diagrams used in this book. You can download it here: https://static.packt-cdn.com/ downloads/9781800566804_ColorImages.pdf.

Conventions used There are a number of text conventions used throughout this book. Code in text: Indicates code words in text, database table names, folder names, filenames, file extensions, pathnames, dummy URLs, user input, and Twitter handles. Here is an example: "Type the parameter name Area Percentage."

Bold: Indicates a new term, an important word, or words that you see onscreen. For example, words in menus or dialog boxes appear in the text like this. Here is an example: "In the Sorting/Grouping tab, select Sort by: Level." Tips or important notes Appear like this.

x

Preface

You will find QR codes to facilitate access to websites while you are reading the book. You can use the camera from your mobile device to scan the QR code and open website links or visualize images. An example of these QR codes is as follows:

Get in touch Feedback from our readers is always welcome. General feedback: If you have questions about any aspect of this book, mention the book title in the subject of your message and email us at [email protected]. Errata: Although we have taken every care to ensure the accuracy of our content, mistakes do happen. If you have found a mistake in this book, we would be grateful if you would report this to us. Please visit www.packtpub.com/support/errata, selecting your book, clicking on the Errata Submission Form link, and entering the details. Piracy: If you come across any illegal copies of our works in any form on the Internet, we would be grateful if you would provide us with the location address or website name. Please contact us at [email protected] with a link to the material. If you are interested in becoming an author: If there is a topic that you have expertise in and you are interested in either writing or contributing to a book, please visit authors. packtpub.com.

Reviews Please leave a review. Once you have read and used this book, why not leave a review on the site that you purchased it from? Potential readers can then see and use your unbiased opinion to make purchase decisions, we at Packt can understand what you think about our products, and our authors can see your feedback on their book. Thank you! For more information about Packt, please visit packt.com.

Section 1: Enhancing Your Productivity in Revit with Data Management and Templates In this section, there are the following chapters: • Chapter 1, Introduction to Productivity in Revit • Chapter 2, Project Data Management • Chapter 3, Revit Templates and Standards In these chapters, you will learn about the basic concepts of productivity with Revit and the best practices to initiate a Revit project with the right information and a good Revit template.

The following topics will be explored: • Combining information management principles and Revit best practices • Recommended Revit settings • An overview of BIM implementation • Critical data to start a BIM project • An overview of the appointment and BIM documentation • Establishing an action plan to start a BIM project • Creating a Revit template • Managing graphic standards

1

Introduction to Productivity in Revit We are living in the Information Age (also known as the Digital Age), and digital transformation is changing businesses and people by encouraging them to rapidly adopt new technologies and processes. Revit is an authoring software tool that is used for Building Information Modeling (BIM); here, the most valuable asset is the information you add to the Revit model. Information is KING; however, managing information and knowledge is POWER! You might already be familiar with Revit, but the combination of information management principles along with the best Revit practices can create a powerful combination to improve your productivity in BIM projects. This chapter will provide you with knowledge of how to improve Revit productivity and also increase your performance when working with BIM projects from smaller to larger scales. We will also explain the importance of selecting the right tool for the task that you need to perform, cover the best practices of BIM implementation, and provide a strategy of how to for creating a training scheme for your company.

4

Introduction to Productivity in Revit

In this chapter, we will cover the following topics: • What you should know about Revit productivity • Choosing the right tool • An overview of the Revit implementation • The Revit training scheme

What you should know about Revit productivity Productivity in business is a significant factor when it comes to the performance of a company, and increasing productivity is the process of working smarter in a predefined time frame to match your project deadline. It is essential to define productivity and gain a better understanding of how you can measure it in your daily activities when working on multiple tasks and utilizing Autodesk Revit, too. Productivity can be defined as a process to measure a production against efficiency and convert inputs into outputs. This process applies to a machine, factory, or a person, where the results can help companies to take operations-based and investment decisions. There are multiple methodologies that you can use to measure productivity; the basic formula is output divided by input, which is equal to productivity: Output ÷ Input = Productivity The methodologies used to measure productivity depend on which sector your company is involved in, and we have listed a few examples next. Here are some productivity methodologies: • Time management • Tasks completed by the workforce • Personal performance • The ratio to manufacture a product We are going the explore the time management methodology to improve productivity and performance when working with Revit. You can use these principles in any task that involves digital production.

What you should know about Revit productivity

5

The critical factor when it comes to improving productivity is to have quality and precise inputs producing your model and sheets before you start to work in Revit. You may be quick when it comes to completing a specific task in Revit, but without quality inputs, there is a risk that you will have to redo the work, which will reduce the overall productivity. Our time management methodology to improve productivity in Revit is based on quality inputs for digital production. This methodology will allow you to be more efficient in Revit and become a team player who meets every single project deadline. The first step in this methodology is to research quality inputs. These can come from your company, coworkers, multiple companies within your project, and, ultimately, the client who is the main stakeholder. Once you have established your quality inputs, you can start working in Revit to produce your model and drawings. The following examples will help us to demonstrate this process. Example 1: Setting up a Revit project In this example, the BIM Execution Plan (BEP) defines the quality inputs. However, often, the information required to set up the project is not fully available, and you will need to research quality inputs. The quality inputs for this example are the naming standards, project standards, collaboration standards, survey strategy, volume strategy, software versions, exchange formats, the level of information need, BIM deliverables, the Common Data Environment (CDE), the project location, coordinates, levels, and grids. Changes in the project number are a common issue in many projects, and by using this methodology, you will need to request this information from your project lead and a confirmation from your client before setting up the Revit files. The project number should be defined clearly in the BEP with the client's approval to avoid any changes during the design and construction phases. Managing information to work smarter is a fundamental part of our methodology, and if you combine this with Revit's best practices, it can take you to the next level of productivity. A simple change in the project number can affect the productivity of multiple coworkers from different areas, such as the document controller, information manager, and the commercial and legal departments. Note that the legacy information from previous drawings will be affected; it will lose its connection to the new drawings because of the new project number.

6

Introduction to Productivity in Revit

In this example, you can see the importance of having the correct information at the right time, and it needs to be confirmed by the main stakeholder or client. Example 2: Defining the room numbering system In this example, the client needs to approve the room numbering system, which also needs to be aligned with the facility management system to guarantee a continuous flow of data. By using this methodology, you can reduce the chances that the room numbering system will be changed in the future, which ultimately improves your and your team's productivity. If you are familiar with Dynamo as a visual programming tool for Revit, you might suggest using Dynamo to rename all of the rooms in your project quickly. Yes, Dynamo can rename the room quickly. Our methodology uses the principle that you should get it right the first time, so you don't need to rework and use Dynamo to rename the room because it was agreed at the beginning of the process. In this example, you can improve your productivity by avoiding having to redo the work twice and wasting time with tasks that can be easily agreed upon at the beginning of the project. Example 3: Training versus productivity Some projects start with a design team without the required knowledge of specific software, which will slow down productivity. Revit training is essential to increase productivity, but the time to provide or receive training needs to be adjusted. Designers will benefit if the training is delivered just days before starting the project because the computational knowledge needs to be fresh. Otherwise, a designer will only retain the main points over a period of time. The trainer needs quality information about when the projects are starting to be able to define the best time frame to provide training. By using this process, the Revit trainer will note a reduction of requests to reattend the training, which will demonstrate the effectiveness of the training and their productivity in providing the training. Revit is an intuitive software in which designers can learn the basic commands quickly, and it benefits the company strategy to switch platforms or provide training for new staff.

What you should know about Revit productivity

7

The following graph shows the benefits of investing in training for quick project implementation, and it will reflect a reduction in the amount of time needed to achieve the Return on Investment (ROI). Overall, it will lead to the improvement of team productivity in Revit and BIM:

Figure 1.1 – Investment in training

Another common issue is when a team member does not have time to attend the Revit training, or they decide to learn Revit on a live project. This process will give you the false feeling that these team members are ready to work in Revit, and the optimal level of productivity will take longer to achieve. In this situation, the trainer needs to provide short slots of training to improve their Revit knowledge and avoid mistakes on the project. In this example, providing training at the right time improves productivity and reduces the time to reach the ROI.

8

Introduction to Productivity in Revit

Example 4: Revit versus 2D CAD – productivity BIM has promoted a transformation in the Architecture, Engineering, Construction, Owner Operator (AECOO) industry, where information is the core of a methodology that improves productivity and brings many benefits when compared with the traditional 2D CAD process. Revit is information-centric in that it offers multiple advantages compared to traditional 2D CAD, and we can easily measure a significant increase in productivity. BIM platforms, such as Revit, give us federated information, which means quality data that can be applied for multiple uses, and this is part of our methodology to work with quality data. Of course, that all depends on the designer using the correct input information and modeling in 3D precisely to optimize the analysis benefits. In this example, we can understand the increase in productivity when switching from 2D CAD to Revit, but quality information is paramount to improve productivity. Example 5: Planning your work in Revit Time management principles focus on the process of planning your work before starting a task, and it is not very different when you work in Revit by yourself or when working in a large design team. Your productivity will increase if you plan your task prior to modeling and search for quality information to avoid any rework. During this process, you can select activities that will have a high impact on your task and consider other activities that can be postponed. The following graph shows the process to prioritize tasks that will have a high impact on the project:

What you should know about Revit productivity

Figure 1.2 – Effort versus Impact

For this example, we will utilize a process to create a door schedule that has many activities to check and collect quality information. High impact Do the following: • Use a door numbering system that has been approved by the client. • List the fire door rating. • Decide which fields will be included in the door schedule. • Check the structural opening. • Check whether the door parameters are reporting the correct data. Plan the following: • Check whether the doorframe dimension is correct. • Check that the family name is the same as the project standard.

9

10

Introduction to Productivity in Revit

Low impact Consider the following: • Depending on the project stage, the door material can be generic. • Depending on the project stage, check the door tolerances. Drop the following: • Depending on the project stage and scope of work, team members could postpone their selection of the ironmongery set. • Check the gap between the door panel and the floor. In this example, we can use time management principles in the Revit modeling process to improve productivity and define the priorities that will have a high impact on the project. Following our methodology, time management processes with quality information will provide a jump in the efficiency of your work. We have reached the end of our examples to define the importance of research and get quality information before doing a task. We have learned how to avoid proceeding based on the immediately available data, which may not be 100 percent reliable or complete. There are other technical factors in Revit that can help you to improve productivity and make your work more efficient. Let's explore them in the next section.

Computer maintenance It is essential to do some housekeeping in order to get the best Revit performance possible. We recommend that you perform the following steps on a fortnightly basis.

Revit local files When working on a worksharing environment, Revit will automatically create local files on the user's computers in the Documents folder. This process will make the Revit local file (that is, the work-in-progress file) a copy of the Revit central file with the addition of your name in the filename.

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The objective of this process is to remove the local files in order to provide more space on your C:\ drive and consequently improve performance:

Figure 1.3 – The Revit local file

These file and folder locations are defined under Revit Options: 1. In the upper-left corner, click on File | Options:

Figure 1.4 – Revit Options

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2. From the left-hand menu, click on File Locations:

Figure 1.5 – Default path for Revit local files

3. Underneath Default path for user files is where Revit saves the local files and folders. It's recommended that you delete any files that are older than two months.

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To improve this process, it's recommended that you create a folder called Revit_20XX_ Local_Files (where 20XX is the Revit version), so the Revit files will not mix with any other files located in the Documents folder: C:\Users\\Documents\ Revit_20XX_Local_Files\

Figure 1.6 – The path for Revit local files

Tip The location might differ depending on the Revit Options you have set. This information will be saved in the Revit.ini file and used for future Revit sessions.

Temporary Windows files Applications that are being used by the user normally create temporary files and often. Therefore, users should delete them on a regular basis. Before running this process, make sure that all Revit sessions are closed. To access this folder, perform the following steps: 1. Open Windows Explorer. 2. In the top bar address, type in %temp% and press Enter:

Figure 1.7 – Temporary Windows files location

3. Select all of the files and click on Delete. If a warning window pops up, ignore all of the read-only files (these are being used by the applications and cannot be deleted at that moment).

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Disk cleanup Another task that users should be running is the Disk Cleanup tool. This tool will also delete files that are no longer needed. To access this tool, perform the following steps: 1. In the Windows search bar, type in disk cleanup. 2. From the list, select the tool you need:

Figure 1.8 – Disk Cleanup

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3. From the list, select which files you want to delete:

Figure 1.9 – Clean up system files

4. Click on the Clean up system files button to start the deletion process. 5. When the process has finished, click on OK.

Restarting Revit If users experience a decrease in performance after carrying out high-demanding tasks (such as exporting, printing, rendering, or upgrading models), Revit should be restarted. This will allow all of the data cached in memory and on the hard disk to be deleted.

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Restarting Windows Following on from what we mentioned earlier about restarting Revit, the same should also be done with Windows. This suggestion depends on how many applications the user has been working on. Tip We recommend that users should restart their computers every day, or at least every other day, to allow the system to clean up, get rid of temporary files, and update itself.

Always use the same Revit update release Quite often, Autodesk deploys new update releases with some new features and bug fixes. It is essential to make sure that when working on a project with other team members, everyone has the same update release to avoid any potential software issues. Tip In the same Revit version – Revit 2021, for example – we can have different update releases, such as the following: Revit 2021.1.1 – Release Date: 18-Sept-2020 Revit 2021.1 – Release Date: 22-July-2020

To confirm which Revit update release you have installed, please start Revit. After Revit has opened, follow this step-by-step guide: 1. In the upper-right corner, click on the small dark arrow close to the Help menu:

Figure 1.10 – Accessing Revit Help

What you should know about Revit productivity

2. Click on the About Autodesk Revit 2021.1.1 option:

Figure 1.11 – Revit version release information

Tip The version available varies depending on which Revit version you have installed on the user's computers.

3. On the right-hand side, it is possible to confirm which Revit release is installed:

Figure 1.12 – Revit release: full description

It is recommended that you keep Revit updated; however, before the deployment, make sure that the version you are about to install is stable enough.

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You can find and download the latest updates from the following locations: • The Autodesk Manage Account portal:

Figure 1.13 – The Autodesk Manage Account portal

• The Autodesk Desktop App:

Figure 1.14 – Autodesk Desktop App

What you should know about Revit productivity Tip It is not recommended that you update the Revit release immediately after the new version is rolled out.

Revit's recommended settings Revit is a high-demanding software in terms of using up computer resources. It is highly recommended that you keep the settings as least demanding as possible. We will only highlight a few recommendations, but others might also apply, depending on which discipline it is or even the task you want to do. The following is accessible through the Revit Options button:

Figure 1.15 – Revit Options

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• User Interface | Tools and analyses It is recommended that you switch off all the analysis tools that you don't need to use. By accessing the User Interface menu, you can untick all of the unnecessary ones:

Figure 1.16 – The Tools and analyses options

• Hardware | Hardware setup Under the Hardware menu, make sure that the Use hardware acceleration (Direct3D®) and Draw visible elements only options are ticked. This helps when navigating through the model, as all hidden elements will be ignored during the navigation, which will improve performance:

Figure 1.17 – Draw visible elements only

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Tip This hardware acceleration feature should be disabled when navigating through a view, when users are experiencing graphics-related issues, or when this feature is incompatible with the graphics card.

File size A Revit file size doesn't depend only on the project size but on many other factors too, such as the geometry complexity, file formats imported, amount of families imported, and any warnings. Auditing the models every week will help to keep the model both in a workable condition and healthy without affecting or reducing the Revit performance. As a reference, and depending on your computer's specifications, Revit models should not be bigger than 300 MB. If the file needs to be bigger, users must decide whether it should be kept as a single model/volume, or if the model segregation and model volume breakdown should be reviewed. For a federated model (that is, files with multiple links), the recommended maximum file size is approximately 500 MB. Tip As a good practice, both project and family files should be purged to reduce the file size by deleting any unwanted or unused elements and settings.

Family creation Family creation is one of the big topics when it comes to performance, as the more complex we develop them (for instance, with multiple formulas, over-modeling, nested families, arrays, voids, or overconstrained with parameters), the bigger the file becomes. When creating families, users should bear the following in mind: • Standard families should be used instead of model in-place families (especially when they will be repeated). • Nested families must be limited to a certain level – they should be kept to one nest level, if possible.

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• When downloading families from websites or suppliers, make sure they are not over-modeled and that they are using native geometries (by using different CAD formats imported, or over-modeled geometry, it will affect the model performance significantly). • Families that cut hosts will consume computing resources when compared to a typical family (that doesn't cut any hosts). When creating a family, users should take the following into consideration: • A Revit family file between 250 KB and 500 KB indicates a suitable file size. • A Revit family file over 1 MB = 1000 KB should be reviewed to reduce the size if possible. • A Revit family file over 2 MB = 2000 KB should definitely be reviewed. • A nested family file size tends to be bigger, so we need to check the larger family files. We do not recommend you to have more than two levels of nested families. Tip Before saving your family file, use the Purge command to reduce the file size and delete any unused objects.

Model groups Revit Groups is a feature that keeps and maintains consistency among repeated elements in a project and facilitates different design interactions. Nevertheless, there are a few topics that should be taken into consideration when working with groups: • Hosted elements: Users should avoid creating groups with hosted elements (such as doors) without the host element included (that is, the wall that hosts the door). • Nested groups: Users should avoid creating groups within other groups as they might become unmanageable and unstable. • Datum objects: Users should avoid adding datum elements (such as levels and grids) inside a group. • Mirroring and rotating: Users should avoid rotating and/or mirroring groups. As a best practice, it should be considered to model different groups that would cover other mirroring options.

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• The excluding elements option: Users should use the Exclude Members feature for minor exclusion. • Design options: Users should avoid using groups in design options. • Levels constraints: Users should not constrain elements to levels (for example, a top constraint of a wall). • System families: Users should avoid using system families in groups as they are constrained to a specific level. When copied to different levels, the first level reference will be kept, and any further editing will get more complicated (remember that the further we are from the reference level, the lower the performance we will get). • Worksets: On a worksharing project, when creating a group with elements from different worksets, Revit will ignore the existing worksets and will include all elements in the current workset when creating the group – this workset cannot be edited. • Links: Users should not add Revit links to a group as it will be duplicated and, consequently, affect performance.

In-place families In-place families are bespoke families that users can create within a project context. They should not be used in a project because they will reduce performance and a standard family (that is, a loadable family) can cover most situations:

Figure 1.18 – Model In-Place families

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If users create an in-place family to be used more than once, they should use the standard family (the loadable family). This is because if an in-place family is copied across, Revit will deal with these instances as different families. This will duplicate the family multiple times, which will affect the performance:

Figure 1.19 – Duplicated In-Place families

Arrays When using arrays to copy elements, users should decide whether elements should be kept grouped or not grouped, as this will affect the performance as well. Groups should be kept as minimally associated as possible. Otherwise, they should be ungrouped:

Figure 1.20 – Creating groups within the Array tool

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Constraints Using Constraints will affect model the performance. They should be used sparingly across the project. Constraints can include the following: • Join geometry constraints • Dimensional constraints • Lock alignment constraints When using these constraints, bear in mind that it is almost impossible to see where they are as they can be placed in any view. Revit has, underneath the View Control bar, the Reveal Constraints tool, which allows you to check dimensional and locked alignment constraints by adding a kind of "filter" on top of the view. When using the tool, Revit will apply a garnet border to wrap the view, and all constraints will be highlighted in the same color:

Figure 1.21 – Reveal model constraints

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When using a worksharing environment Worksharing is a working method in Revit that allows team members to work on the same model at the same time:

Figure 1.22 – A worksharing environment

In this working methodology, Revit needs to work with worksets to accommodate such environments. There are a few native tools in Revit related to the worksharing method that require an in-depth understanding, and we will be covering them in the upcoming chapters of this book. Worksets are crucial during this working method, as users can keep ownership of the elements and/or views. Typically, users will be assigned to specific areas of the project or even to a specific functional area to work on.

What you should know about Revit productivity

Based on this process of managing elements or parts of the project, Revit allows users to open/close worksets not only when opening the file, but also when working in views. Therefore, Revit will become faster as if we have worksets switched off, it doesn't need to process all information when working in the model. Recommendations can be followed, but we believe that communication is the way to succeed. It is important to keep all team members informed about what is happening in the design process and how it might affect model organization and even the workset structure. Tip There are several tools that you can use to enhance team collaboration and communication, such as Skype, Microsoft Teams, Microsoft OneNote, Microsoft Planner, Slack, and more.

Opening a worksharing model When opening a worksharing model, Revit allows users to select which worksets should be open. If you close a workset that is not required, Revit will open the file faster and, consequently, improve performance. The closed worksets will not be visible, so you can keep only the information that you need open. To select which worksets users can open or close, follow these steps: 1. Go to the File menu, select Open, and then click Project. 2. Select the Revit Central model to open.

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3. On the right-hand side of the Open button, click on the drop-down arrow and select Specify…:

Figure 1.23 – Specifying which worksets to open

4. An Opening Worksets window pops up. By selecting particular worksets, it's possible to Open/Close them as needed by clicking on the Open and/or Close buttons:

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Figure 1.24 – The Opening Worksets window

5. Click on OK and Revit will open the model only with the elements within the opened workset. Tip This process can be reverted at any time without closing the file by switching between open and closed worksets.

Not only the file will open more quickly, but when navigating through the model, opening views, and even synchronizing with the central model, everything will be quicker than if all of the models and worksets are loaded.

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As a good practice, whenever a design team is working on a multidisciplinary project, it's highly recommended that you use a separate workset for each link, no matter if it is a Revit link or a CAD link. With this process, it's easier to switch off any unrequired links when opening the file. Tip When working in a worksharing environment, users should not double-click on the file to open it. Users need to use always the Open tool to create the local file.

Working with an opened workset If, in a specific view, there is no need to have all of the worksets opened, it's highly recommended that you turn them off as it affects the view processing as well. It is possible to change the workset's visibility when the workset is open in the model. Tip Users will only be able to change a workset's visibility if the workset is open in the Revit session. If the workset is not loaded (that is, open), it needs to be switched to Open. Afterward, the workset visibility can be edited in a specific view.

To select which worksets users can change the visibility of in a view, follow these steps: 1. Open the view in which you want to change the workset's visibility. 2. Underneath Properties, click on Visibility/Graphics Override (this can also be shortened to VV or VG):

What you should know about Revit productivity

Figure 1.25 – Visibility/Graphics Overrides

3. Underneath the Worksets tabs, change the Visibility Setting accordingly:

Figure 1.26 – Controlling a workset's visibility in a view

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There are three options available: Show: Here, the workset will be visible in the current view. Hide: Here, the workset will be invisible in the current view. Use Global Settings (Visible): Here, workset visibility will depend on whether the workset is defined to be visible in all views or not. 4. Click on OK. If there is a workset that is closed in all models, it's possible to confirm this from the Visibility/Graphics Overrides window. The asterisk (*) tells you how to switch the workset to Open:

Figure 1.27 – Closed worksets

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Worksharing Monitor When working within a worksharing environment, it is crucial to know who is working in a file. The Worksharing Monitor will inform you of the following: • Who has the model open: Depending on the number of team members working in the same file, this affects the model's performance. • Who is synchronizing: This will inform you who is synchronizing, and you can wait until this person finishes the process. • Who is working directly in the central file: If someone is working directly in the central file, the person needs to close the file immediately without saving. To access the Worksharing Monitor tool, follow these steps: 1. Underneath Collaborate, click on the Worksharing Monitor tool:

Figure 1.28 – The Worksharing Monitor tool

2. A new window will open, as shown in the following screenshot:

Figure 1.29 – Identifying users in the model with Worksharing Monitor

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Splash screen By using a 2D view for a splash view, you will improve performance when opening the model, as Revit doesn't need to regenerate the entire project. The Starting View tool can be defined under Manage | Starting View:

Figure 1.30 – The Starting View tool

Tip In the splash screen, you can retrieve project information, model issue dates, model coordinates, and the disclaimer note.

To conclude, we have learned about the importance of Revit productivity and or researching for quality information. By following the Revit recommended settings, you will improve the efficiency and productivity of your project. In the next section, we will learn how to choose the correct hardware specification to improve Revit's performance.

Choosing the right tool Another exciting aspect of productivity is the process to select the right tool to perform a specific task. During the concept, design, and construction stages, the design team has a wide range of applications to choose from. Before selecting the tools, we have to take into consideration the team experience and the training strategy. It is fundamental to mention that BIM is not Revit, and Revit is just an application that is used for authoring BIM models; there are multiple applications within the BIM process. The following diagram shows the complexity of some BIM applications that are available on the market to manage data and models:

Choosing the right tool

Figure 1.31 – Multiple BIM applications

Depending on your project size, Revit will demand more computer resources to manage larger models, and it is essential that you understand how to select the correct hardware. Productivity can be directly affected if you don't have the correct hardware or if your company is not providing the optimal infrastructure for the design team. Based on the project's requirements, users need to be able to understand the hardware specification and select the best workstations for Revit.

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What is the best workstation for Revit? There are many workstations options available on the market, and it can be challenging to find the best workstation for Autodesk Revit. Computer requirements need to be defined based on the user's needs, such as the model complexity, rendering options, and the ability to collaborate with multiple files. This guide will help you to define these requirements and select the best workstation for Revit. The following five key points must be taken into consideration during your research to define your Revit workstation: • Desktop or laptop? • A fast processor • The best graphics card • Computer memory (RAM) • A fast hard drive

Desktop or laptop? Desktops tend to be faster than laptops with similar parts, and the average lifespan is longer for desktops. The upgrade process of desktop parts is more straightforward than laptops, and it can extend the overall lifespan of multiple components. Desktops are usually easy to customize, and the benefit of this is that you can add highend components to them, such as a graphics card to improve visualization. In laptops, the options to upgrade are more limited. On the other hand, laptops are portable and very useful for meetings and client presentations.

A fast processor Revit is primarily a single-threaded software, which means that a faster processor is better for Revit performance. There are operations in Revit that are multithreaded, so Revit can use multiple processors and multiple core processors for the following processes in Revit 2021: • Printing in vectors and exporting DWG and DWF files • Ray tracing

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• Representation in plan and section views for wall joins • The process to load elements into memory to reduce opening times • The calculation of silhouette edges during navigation in perspective 3D views • Graphical representations when opening views or updating view properties • Saving and opening files • The display of point cloud data • Exporting DWF as single sheets • Calculations of MEP systems running in the background • Materials UI • Color fill calculations • The structural connection geometry running in the background on another process Currently, these are the most common options for processor types: • Intel Xeon • Intel (i) series i5, i7, i9, and i10 • AMD Ryzen Processor Intel Xeon Intel Xeon is used primarily for business workstations or servers, and the CPUs, typically, have more cores than the Intel (i) series. Additionally, the clock speed is a little inferior if you compare it with an Intel (i) series such as i7 or i9. It has good durability and resilience, which makes this processor a good option for architectural and engineering companies to work with multiple applications. Usually, the Intel Xeon is more expensive than the Intel (i) series. Intel (i) series i3, i5, i7, i9, and i10 The Intel (i) series is usually preferred for personal computers, and the processor cost is inferior if you compare it with Intel Xeon. The excellent point about the Intel (i) series is that the processor clock speed is typically faster per core than the Intel Xeon, so it brings advantages to Revit's performance. Revit's performance improves with processors that have high clock speed per core, which means that the multicore processor will not necessarily enhance performance, as Revit is not completely a multithreaded software.

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AMD Ryzen Threadripper processor The AMD Ryzen Threadripper processor is an option if you want to reduce costs, and it can provide good performance in Revit. With the same process as earlier, you will need to check the clock speed and the maximum turbo speed. Maximum turbo frequency (GHz) Currently, most companies are using Intel technology for Revit workstations, and the process to select the best processor for Revit is based on the highest frequency (GHz), which is the processor speed. The key point when it comes to selecting the right processor is to check the highest frequency (GHz) that can maximize Revit's performance. You need to consider two aspects, as follows: • The processor base frequency (GHz) • The processor maximum turbo frequency (GHz) In simple terms, the processor base frequency (GHz) is the base speed, and the maximum turbo frequency (GHz) is the highest processor speed. As an example, we will analyze the Intel® Core™ i9-10900X X-series processor. You can access the processor specification at the following link. Alternatively, you can use a mobile camera to scan the following QR code. Here is the link: https://intel.ly/2HhqjAV Here is the QR code:

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In the processor specification, you can identify the processor base frequency and the maximum turbo frequency:

Figure 1.32 – Identifying the processor speeds

In your research, you should select the processor with the highest maximum turbo frequency. This is the winner and will provide optimum performance in Revit. Tip Use the processor name to find full specifications online, for example, i910900X X-series.

The best graphics card Autodesk Revit can create rendering images and videos, but companies are also using multiple plugins to enhance the rendering quality and speed. The main issue with Revit is the rendering time, which is often too long when rendering images.

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Revit plugins, such as Enscape, Twinmotion, Lumion, and V-Ray, take advantage of Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) rendering technology, which requires a powerful graphics card from NVIDIA or AMD. Using the GPU can lower the rendering time, and plugins, such as Enscape, can deliver an excellent rendering quality quickly (for instance, less than 1 minute). You can view an example of an Enscape 360° image from the following link: https://bit.ly/35T3FYr

Alternatively, you can scan the QR code here:

Many Revit workstations have graphics card from NVIDIA, and these are divided into two types: • NVIDIA Quadro or NVIDIA Quadro RTX • NVIDIA GeForce GTX or RTX Usually, the NVIDIA Quadro series is more expensive than the NVIDIA GeForce series based on resilience and durability. The NVIDIA RTX technology is the latest development that improves real-time ray tracing, and it will provide detailed lighting effects and better performance in your rendering. On this website, you can compare multiple graphics cards and compare the cost benefit: https://gpu.userbenchmark.com/

For optimal performance and efficiency, the graphics card should have a minimum of 4 GB dedicated memory or RAM. Tip Always check whether you are using the latest available drivers for your graphics card.

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Computer memory (RAM) Depending on your project requirements, we recommend 16 GB of system memory for light users, 32 GB for average users, and 64 GB for users with large projects and everyday use. The cost of memory (RAM) is declining, and if you can afford 64 GB of memory (RAM), it is recommended. In medium and large organizations, 64 GB is the minimum requirement. Computer memory (RAM) will improve Revit's performance as it maintains model data in the memory. Tip It is recommended that you restart the computer and Revit often; this will refresh the memory (RAM). Frequently, users who keep Revit open for days will experience decreasing performance.

A fast hard drive A Solid State Drive (SSD) provides better performance in Revit, and it allows your computer to boot, start applications, and load files many times quicker than a traditional hard drive. Designers often use multiple applications, such as Revit, AutoCAD, Rhino, Navisworks, or Adobe Suite, and various plugins that can take up a large amount of space in the hard drive. The recommended SSD should have a minimum of 500 GB. If there is not enough space to cache Revit processes, slower performance will occur. Tip Always keep a minimum of 30 GB of free space in the hard drive.

It is essential to have the correct software and hardware to improve performance in Revit, and the preceding information will enable you to select the best workstation to maximize performance in Revit. In the next section, we will learn about successful strategies for BIM implementation.

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Overview of BIM implementation BIM is a process that many companies have already implemented, but it is valuable to have an overview of successful strategies. The BIM maturity level is critical to analyze the company implementation and its capability to deliver a BIM project. The BIM implementation does not stop with a couple of projects, but it is a process that requires regular maintenance and continued development. The continuous development will create foundations to increase the maturity level of your organization, and it goes through multiple departments such as the commercial departments, which will analyze contracts and appointments. Tip Successful strategies take the overall company culture into consideration and create a strategic plan that is driven from the top-down and involves directors in the decision to implement BIM.

Successful BIM implementations share these 10 crucial steps: 1. Involve directors in the decision to implement BIM with words and actions. Implementation starts from the top down! 2. Create a group of people to define the implementation process and the overall BIM strategy, which must include multiple departments. 3. Remember that the ultimate goal is for better information management. 4. Create a small team to work on the first project. 5. Create or adapt your company standards to the local BIM regulations and ISO standards. 6. Define the software you will use and support. Understand the investments required, including human resources, to implement new technologies. 7. Train and develop your team. Develop some people to be "champions" to help other people in the company. 8. Improve the BIM process over time and don't focus on technology.

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9. Set realistic goals because the benefits of BIM are well documented; however, you need to invest time and effort to realize the true potential for your organization. 10. Always remember that information management is the most important aspect of the BIM process. During the BIM implementation, the organization can create specific areas for future developments and support the process to increase the BIM maturity level. Areas for continued development include the following: • Company and industry standards, methods, and procedures • Training • The management of digital assets – Revit families, AutoCAD blocks, and other files • Productivity and data analysis These four areas should be in continuous development to bring innovation to and increase productivity in your organization. Many medium and large companies have staff in-house with programming capabilities to increase productivity and customize tools to create new workflows. If you wish to learn programming to apply in the architectural and engineering teams, we recommend Dynamo, Grasshopper, Python, and C#. Programming skills can open doors in a professional career and expand your design capabilities to get you ahead of the competition. Additionally, there are seven other points that you need to dedicate your attention to during the BIM implementation process: 1. Create a BEP template that you will use to respond to the client's requirements for BIM.

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2. Define your company's standard deliverables for BIM according to your local framework, such as the UK BIM Framework. The UK BIM Framework reference can be found here: https://ukbimframework.org/standards-guidance/

Scan the QR code with your mobile camera to access the preceding link:

3. Define the Level of Information Need for BIM projects. The Level of Information Need lists the geometric and data requirements of BIM components and the project prerequisites. These requirements should be defined according to their purpose in order to bring value to the project. In the UK, the previous terminology defined in the PAS_1192_2_2013 was Level of Model Definition/Level of Detail (LOD)/Level of Information (LOI). The UK is currently using Level of Information Need, which is defined in the ISO 19650 series. In the US, the BIMForum publishes the Level of Development (LOD). Here is the link to the BIMForum website: https://bimforum.org/LOD. You can scan the following QR code with your mobile camera to access the preceding link:

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4. Define the typical BIM deliverables and model purpose that you will use as a standard in multiple projects. 5. Write content to answer the pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ) to be used during the bid process to define your company's level of experience and capacity to deliver BIM projects. 6. BIM is affecting contracts and appointments, so the commercial department should be aware of the project's BIM requirements. 7. Align the style and presentation standards with your BIM authoring tool, such as Revit. To conclude, BIM implementation is a process that affects almost all departments of companies involved in the AECOO industry. In the next section, we will learn how to create a Revit training scheme for your company.

BIM and the Revit training scheme Companies are using a variety of applications and plugins that require training to maintain productivity, and it is essential to have a strategic plan for your training scheme. Strategic goals for your training scheme include the following: • Assess staff knowledge. • Identify the current training process. • Determine the training obstacles. • Define the training budget. • Identify in-house experts. • Establish a process to measure progress. • Identify resources, such as computers, training rooms, training material, online video training, company standards, and more. Let's explore each of these strategic goals in detail.

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Assessing staff knowledge Assessing staff knowledge and defining the level of experience will help to determine the training program. It's possible to create a survey with multiple tools, such as SurveyMonkey, Google Forms, Microsoft Forms, and more. Software experience can be tracked based on the following factors: • The number of years (less than 1 year, from 1 to 2 years, from 3 to 4 years, and 5+ years) • The level of experience (none, a fundamental awareness or basic knowledge, novice or limited experience, intermediate, advanced, and expert) • Specific software questions • Task-based questions • A one-to-one interview

Identifying the current training process We need to identify the current training processes to review gaps and find possible improvements. During this research, we could find better options to track and organize our training sessions.

Determining the training obstacles The success of your training depends on how you minimize training obstacles and provide effective training for your staff. The following list offers a few examples of obstacles that you may have to address: • Managing changes: This includes technology, budget, staff, and any other changes. • Getting around a learned habit: It could be challenging to change a process that has been implemented for many years. • Developing BIM/Revit champions: You will need Revit champions to support your implementation and help the staff. • Creating disruptions in the current workflow: The new workflow should improve productivity and reduce any potential disruption. • Engaging staff: The trainer must communicate the training value and productivity advantages.

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• Providing training: Language barriers and geographic limitations could be an issue. • Finding the best time to provide training: Users will benefit from training just before a project starts. It can be challenging to find a date to book it. • Evaluating training effectiveness: It is essential to track the training's effectiveness and identify improvements.

Defining the training budget It is important to demonstrate to the senior leadership the training value and the activities to fund, such as online video training and the time spent to produce training material.

Identifying in-house experts In-house experts will support and motivate the staff during your implementation process. They are a vital element of a continuous training program.

Establishing a process to measure progress Track the training's effectiveness is essential to demonstrate how the training is impacting the organization. The post-training skills assessment will help to collect information, and the follow-up session will identify any gain in productivity.

Identifying resources Identifying resources will help you to understand what needs to be purchased to provide training in terms of technology, training rooms, training material, online video training, and the time to produce or improve the company standards. There are essential points that you need to define before starting the training: Revit material: • The Revit template with company standards • Office Revit families • Shared parameters • The Revit model to be used during the training • Workflows for essential Revit plugins • Rendering material libraries Training program:

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• The training agenda and material • The number of sessions per training • The group size • Training levels – that is, from fundamental to expert Training variety: • Classroom or online training • Small groups • One-to-one training • On-demand training • Video training • Ongoing support • Mentoring

Training customization Successful training strategies are based on the customization for each project role, such as the directors, project managers, BIM managers/BIM coordinators, and information authors. Please note that the project role is different from the job title role, so an architect could act part-time as an architect and BIM coordinator. The training scheme can be divided into four areas: • Senior management and directors: The BIM introduction and core principles should cover the entire company, including the senior management and directors. • Project managers: Project managers will receive an overview of Revit workflow and learn about BIM documentation that includes BEP, Exchange Information Requirements (EIR), and other industry standards.

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• BIM managers/BIM coordinators: BIM managers and BIM coordinators will receive in-depth Revit training and also training for multiple software to manage the clash detection process, asset management data, and other project-based requirements. • Information authors: Information authors are the designers, architects, and engineers who will model in Revit, so in-depth Revit training is required. Toward the end of the training session, the trainer can customize the training to be project-specific, which will engage the staff even more. Project-specific training is very useful in order to demonstrate the challenges that a team will face ahead when they start the project. It could vary from a complex façade design to an intricate project program. To conclude, the information in this section provides the base for you to create a training scheme and customize it accordingly to the various project roles.

Summary In this chapter, we learned that the information within BIM models is our most valuable asset, and information management is an essential process to improve productivity in Revit. Moreover, we can now understand the importance of Revit productivity via a methodology that enables you to research for quality information before you start a task. Additionally, the associated time management techniques can increase your productivity in Revit. We explained Revit's technical key factors to improve productivity and the process to specify the best workstation for Revit. Finally, we learned about successful strategies to implement BIM and create a training scheme for your company. In the next chapter, we will cover project data management and learn about the critical data required to start a Revit project, appointment overview, BIM documentation, project functions, asset management, and establish a plan of action to begin a BIM/Revit project.

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Project data management is an essential aspect of efficiency and productivity when working with Building Information Modeling (BIM) as the authoring software is data-centric. Organizations are increasingly using processes to drive their business based on data analysis for multiple sectors, to improve performance and profitability. When using Revit to manage models and data, the principles of data management are similar. A data-driven culture is growing, and more companies are noticing the value of analyzing data for business decisions that promote improvements and disruption in the Architecture, Engineering, Construction, Owner Operator (AECOO) industry. Companies use a data management plan (DMP) to outline how data will be used during and after a project's completion. BIM projects will start by creating similar documents to support the project development, such as the Exchange Information Requirements (EIR), the BIM Execution Plan (BEP), and others. This chapter will provide information about critical points for data management associated with BIM projects. We will learn how to start a Revit project successfully, taking these key points into consideration. The chapter will also explain the crucial aspects of an Appointment/Contract; project functions in a BIM project; an overview of BIM documentation; challenges with Construction Operations Building Information Exchange (COBie); and establishing an action plan to start a BIM project.

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The following topics will be covered in this chapter: • Critical data to start a BIM project • Appointment overview • BIM documentation overview • Project functions • Asset management • Establishing an Action Plan to start a BIM project

Critical data to start a BIM project It is imperative to start BIM projects with quality information from multiple stages and to consider how this data will be used for Asset Management and, ultimately, for processes to manage a Digital Twin. There are critical challenges in the AECOO industry to provide the required information in the right format at the correct time, and to avoid loss of data between a project's stages. Ideally, we should receive all the necessary information before starting a project. It is common to see projects starting with incomplete information, very often without any information at all other than the request to BIM (or BIM according to a local framework, such as the UK BIM Framework (https://ukbimframework.org/)). To minimize those issues, we will provide information about the critical data to start BIM projects and understand the principles for data management. The principles of a DMP are based on the following items: • Project information: Identify the type of data and parameters required for the project. • Data acquisition: Engagement with multiple stakeholders to collect the data needed for the project, with the associated relevance within the project stage. • Data description: Define the Level of Information Need or Level of Development (LOD) to make decisions during the project life cycle. • Level of Information Need: Terminology used in the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 19650 series. • Level of Development (LOD): Terminology developed by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and described by the BIM Forum (https://bimforum. org/lod/).

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• Legal aspects: Analyze the BIM requirements in the appointment and identify legal issues. • Data curation: Define processes for data validation usually described within the Common Data Environment (CDE) and data interoperability. • Data storage and usage: Identify the organization's internal and cloud data storage for business continuity. This also includes procedures for data usage, collaboration, and operation. Three key documents will provide critical data to start a BIM project, as follows: • Appointment or Contract • Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) • BIM Execution Plan (BEP) There are other documents available in BIM projects, and these will be referenced in the aforementioned critical documents. To start a BIM project, digital data will also be required, such as the survey files or legacy data.

Appointment or Contract The Appointment or Contract will define the scope of work, and further details are included in the BIM Responsibility Matrix. When checking the Appointment, it is essential to identify specific BIM activities that can increase the project risk or require extra time to complete. These activities need to be raised with the Commercial Department to adjust the project fees, if necessary. It is common to see Bids and Appointments that mention BIM ISO Stage 2 but do not provide any detail on how the projects should be delivered, which will increase the project risk. In a situation where the client does not provide information, the lead appointed party should create a BEP with standard deliverables. Tip Define what your company considers the minimum deliverables for BIM ISO Stage 2 or BIM according to a local framework, such as the UK BIM Framework. This will be useful for Bids and Appointments that have not specified their BIM requirements.

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The Appointment may include other Contractual Appendices that need to be revised, such as the following: • Organizational Information Requirements (OIR) • Asset Information Requirements (AIR) • Project Information Requirements (PIR) • Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) These documents need to be analyzed to minimize risks, and an essential factor is a process to associate specific activities with the project stages. Every activity must have a meaningful and clear objective, to increase productivity and avoid wasting time producing information that will not be used. Unfortunately, we still see activities being requested, but the end users are not taking the full benefit. There are a few reasons why this is still happening, but it is essential to align the BIM requirements with a real expectation of the end users. It is a continuous fight for quality information at the correct time to improve efficiency in the AECOO industry.

Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) The EIR is a document that represents the client's requirements for BIM projects, and it is used during the tendering process and after a project has been awarded. The EIR is typically divided into three main areas, as follows: Technical • Software details and versions • Level of Information Need • Common Data Environment (CDE) and exchanging processes • Data exchange formats • Training Management • Roles and responsibilities • Management processes and standards • Data security • Asset information strategy

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Commercial • Strategy purpose • Information about BIM deliverables • Data drops—information exchange milestones This document contains critical data for starting a BIM project, and it should be analyzed to find activities not in your company's scope of work and requirements that increase the liability risk. Companies should engage with the client to refine the Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) and support the production of a document that truly represents the client's interest and provides quality information for the design team, as this is a critical document for increasing efficiency in order to deliver a project. There are cases when the EIR is underdeveloped and does not provide enough information to the design team. We can also find documents that are overdeveloped, with requirements that do not represent the client's real requirements. A typical example of an EIR that is overdeveloped is when it includes excessive requirements for Asset Management and COBie when the end user does not have the capability to manage this data. Another example of this is a request for excessive Asset Management data in the early stages of a project, which will not represent a benefit for the design team, contractor, or client. All this data needs to be validated independently of the project stage at which teams are working. Tip Make sure that every piece of information in the EIR has a clear objective and benefit.

BIM Execution Plan (BEP) A concise and objective BIM Execution Plan is imperative for improving a project's productivity, with a defined framework to answer the client's requests and ensure a successful implementation with the design and construction teams. An effective BEP will facilitate the process of managing models and data, and defines a collaborative approach for appointed parties involved in the project.

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Project Data Management Tip A BEP is the roadmap that guides a project to a successful BIM implementation. Companies need to work in collaboration to produce the BEP and create it with the end user in mind. That is an essential principle for a successful implementation.

BIM Execution Plan (BEP) – Pre-contract A pre-contract BEP is used during the tender process to demonstrate the company's capability to deliver the project based on the EIR requirements. The pre-contract BEP should respond to the EIR requirements with the deliverable strategy and should include the collaboration process, key milestones, and the Project Implementation Plan (PIP). The PIP is part of the BEP, and each company bidding to a project should provide this to demonstrate their capability, experience, and competence in delivering a BIM project.

BIM Execution Plan (BEP) – Post-contract When the contract is awarded, a post-contract BEP is created in collaboration with all Appointed Parties to agree on the standards, methods, and procedures to be used in the project and respond to the client's BIM requirements. A BEP is typically divided into four areas, outlined as follows: Management and commercial requirements • BEP Introduction and Purpose • Project Information • Project Teams—Function and Responsibility • BIM Project Standards • Response to the EIR mapping and variances • BIM Strategic Objectives • Model Purposes • BIM Deliverables • Coordination Meetings • Project Milestones

Critical data to start a BIM project

• Master Information Delivery Plan (MIDP) • Security Requirements • Health and Safety Requirements • Terms and Definitions Used in the BEP Information Standards • Project Setting Out and Coordinates • Levels, Grids, and Phases • Volume and Federation strategy • Level of Information Need or LOD • Naming Convention for Documents, Drawings, and Models • Revisions Convention • Drawings Standards • Specific Software Requirements • Best Practices Information Production, Methods, and Procedures • Collaboration Strategy • CDE and Exchanging Processes • Modeling Scope and Exclusions • Review and Approval Process • Model Check/Validation • Clash Detection Process and Clash Tolerance strategy • Asset Information Requirements and Validation Process • Survey Strategy • Existing Legacy Data Appendices • Master Information Delivery Plan (MIDP) • BIM Responsibility Matrix

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• Capability and IT Assessments • Mobilization Plan • Information Risk Assessment To conclude, project productivity and efficiency are improved because every Appointed Party has a clear objective and procedures to produce the deliverables, which will avoid mistakes and reworkings.

Digital data to start a project We want to enforce the importance of setting up a project correctly at the beginning to maximize productivity and guarantee that multiple software can export and import files to the correct location. This will benefit the project team as they will be able to avoid moving files manually across files and different software, which can often lead to mistakes. This methodology starts with a survey file or national Ordnance Survey (OS) map that provides the site location with the correct coordinates. The survey file is aligned to True North, so this helps to set up True North and Project North in the BIM software. If your project doesn't have a survey file, the quickest way to find the correct coordinates and project orientation is to purchase an OS map in drawing (DWG) layout. In the UK, there are a few companies that sell this type of map. A typical OS map is shown in the following screenshot:

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Figure 2.1 – OS map

Tip The grid intersection on the OS map provides the best coordinate points to set up the Revit file. An alternative is to use the survey stations from survey files.

The Design Lead would typically provide the levels and grids to continue the process to set up the initial project files. The overall objective is to create a Revit master file to be issued to all consultants so that they can acquire coordinates and start the project at the correct location.

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The Revit master file contains the project coordinates (including True and Project North), levels, and grids. This file will be used with the volume strategy to create and set up all subsequent Revit files. Once the initial Revit file is set up, the project coordinates should be used with other platforms, such as AutoCAD and Rhino, to guarantee a straightforward process to export and import data. In Chapter 4, Starting a Revit Project Efficiently, we will show a step-by-step guide on how to set up the Revit project coordinates and initiate a project. To conclude, we have learned about the critical data in order to start a BIM project and about how the primary BIM documents need to be analyzed to reduce risk. In the next section, we will cover other BIM documents and provide further details.

BIM documentation overview It is essential to align the BIM documentation with the project strategy to improve efficiency so that the requirements will be well defined, which increases productivity and decreases cost. Companies must understand which information they should provide for the Design and Construction teams and also define which information they expect to receive for Asset Management to support building maintenance. We understand it is difficult for clients to have precise BIM requirements at the beginning of the project. Still, this has to change to improve the AECOO industry and ensure that project teams have defined requirements during a project life cycle. There are clear benefits to having the BIM documentation well defined. Some of these are outlined here: • Quicker Return on Investment (ROI) • Client and project standards compliance • Ensures the BIM requirements from clients and the project team are aligned • Better communication to deliver the project • Improved quality assurance and quality control for BIM models and data We will provide an overview of the currently most used BIM documentation in the AECOO industry.

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We can divide the BIM documents into three categories, as follows: • Client documents • Project team documents • Standards documents

Client documents It is vital to establish that the Appointment or Contract is the primary contractual document, and it should also have high-level information about the BIM requirements but also include the BIM detail that your organization may consider necessary. The client and the project team need to define on a project basis which BIM documents are contractual or non-contractual. It is common to see in projects the BEP varying from being contractual or non-contractual. If the EIR is not referenced in the Appointment or Contract, it will likely not be a contractual requirement. Company BIM leaders, insurance organizations, and commercial departments should be liaising to define those as contractual requirements. We will now provide an overview of BIM documents for clients that include, but are not limited to, the requirements outlined next.

Organizational Information Requirements (OIR) This establishes the information requirements for the client's Asset Management system at an organizational level, and it includes strategic decisions and expertise in Asset Management. This document will be used to generate the AIR and provide information to create the PIR.

Asset Information Requirements (AIR) The AIR defines specific project needs for Asset Management operation and conveys the objectives from the Organizational Information Requirements (OIR). It helps to inform and create Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) and specifies the Asset Information Model (AIM).

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Project Information Requirement (PIR) The PIR conveys the information from the Organizational Information Requirements (OIR) to define the built asset project. This document will support the development of the EIR.

Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) The EIR defines the information, standards, and processes to be delivered and adopted during the design and construction stages. It should specify the information required to answer the Project Information Requirement (PIR). We covered this in detail in the previous section. To conclude, the documents listed in the client section will support the project team in developing the BIM Execution Plan (BEP) and producing BIM models. The following BIM documents diagram shows in more detail how the documents are connected to provide enough information to the project team to produce BIM models:

Figure 2.2 – BIM documents diagram

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The Project Information Model (PIM) is formed of the BIM models and documents created during the design and construction stages, and it follows the requirements stated in the BEP and EIR. Ultimately, this set of information will enable the process to create the Asset Information Model (AIM) that will be used during the operational phase.

Project team documents We will now provide an overview of the BIM documents for the project team that include, but not limited to, those outlined next.

BIM Execution Plan - Pre-contract This demonstrates that suppliers, architects, and engineers have the capability, during the tendering process, to deliver the project with a BIM methodology. We covered this in detail in the previous section.

BIM Execution Plan - Post-contract After the project award, the post-contract BEP defines the standards, methods, and procedures to be used in the project to respond to the client's BIM requirements. We covered this in detail in the previous section.

Task Information Delivery Plan (TIDP) and Master Information Delivery Plan (MIDP) The Task Information Delivery Plan (TIDP) defines all deliverables for each organization involved in a project. This comes in the form of a spreadsheet that includes the document name, title, format, scale, size, and milestone dates. The Master Information Delivery Plan (MIDP) will combine all TIDPs in a single spreadsheet. To clarify, it is an Excel spreadsheet!

BIM Responsibility Matrix The BIM Responsibility Matrix defines the responsibility of each organization to produce documents and BIM models. The BIM Responsibility Matrix is a spreadsheet that contains the following items: • 3D model component category names with the associated Uniclass 2015 classification or New Rules of Measurement 1 (NRM1) codes • Organizations responsible for delivering the documents and 3D models

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• Level of Information Need (Framework to define the Level of Detail and Level of Information) • Define which model element will require COBie deliverables • Project stage

BIM and IT capability assessments BIM and IT capability assessments are questions to evaluate the capability to deliver BIM projects, IT requirements, and cybersecurity requirements.

Project Implementation Plan (PIP) The PIP is part of the Pre-BEP, and each company bidding to a project should provide this to demonstrate their capability, experience, and competence to deliver a BIM project.

BIM standards and guidance Standards and guidance are imperative for the evolution of a digital AECOO industry, and they support companies and governments in having consistency in projects. This consistency can improve efficiency and productivity for multiple sectors in the AECOO industry. It also has other benefits, such as reducing costs and improving collaboration, coordination, and data exchange. In January 2019, the final version of the British Standard European Norm (BS EN) ISO 19650-1 and - 2 were published to supersede the BS 1192:2007+A2:2016 and the Publicly Available Specification (PAS) 1192-2:2013. For more information about the BS EN ISO 19650 series, access this link: https://ukbimframework.org/standards-guidance/

Here is the Quick Response (QR) code for this:

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We will not be able to cover all BIM standards in detail, but they can be divided into three levels, as illustrated in the following screenshot:

Figure 2.3 – BIM standards

National Standards are country-specific standards such as the British Standards, the European Standards (European Committee for Standardization (CEN)/Technical Committee (TC) 442), and other countries' standards. Organization Standards are specific guides created by an organization to define software and graphical representations such as line weight, drawing tiles, and others. To conclude, we have learned about the BIM documents for clients and project teams and have had an overview of industry standards. In the next section, we will learn about project functions on a BIM project.

Project functions The standard ISO 19650 series has replaced the word roles with functions, but the meaning is still the same, which is to define the responsibilities of a specific person or group of people. The Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) and the BIM Execution Plan (BEP) will define project functions to outline key responsibilities, and this can improve productivity as each team member will be aware of the tasks that need to be performed. It is essential to highlight that project functions are not job titles, and more than one person can take and perform multiple functions. The Appointing Party (Client) that writes the EIR will define the Information Management function primarily. The Appointing Party can nominate a person from their organization or appoint a third-party company to perform this function.

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The project team will define the following functions in the BEP: • Task Team Manager • Task Information Manager • Information Authors • Interface Managers In the following sections, we will describe the key responsibilities of each function.

Appointing Party (Client) The Appointing Party has a critical responsibility to provide quality information to the design team, and this would include the following: • Organizational Information Requirements (OIR) • Asset Information Requirements (AIR) • Project Information Requirement (PIR) • Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) Important Note The Common Data Environment (CDE) and project number must be confirmed with the Appointing Party (Client).

Task Team Manager The Task Team Manager will perform activities including, but not limited to, the following: • Developing the Task Information Delivery Plan (TIDP) • Reviewing and approving the information produced by their team • Defining the appropriate information status • Approving information issued in the Common Data Environment (CDE)

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Task Information Manager The Task Information Manager will perform the activities including, but not limited to, the following: • Reviewing the Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) • Reviewing the Appointment and checking the BIM requirements • Creating the BIM Execution Plan (BEP) • Ensuring that the Task Team can produce information based on the project standards, methods, and procedures • Implementing project protocols and technical standards • Providing support and training • Reviewing Asset Information Requirements (AIR)

Information authors Information authors will perform the activities including but not limited to the following: • ​Creating the model by using a BIM software • Producing or changing information following the project BEP • Ensuring that graphical models are spatially coordinated • Updating the model based on the clash detection process • Producing deliverables in accordance with the Task Information Delivery Plan (TIDP)

Interface managers Interface managers will perform the activities, including but not limited to the following: • Managing spatial coordination to avoid and resolve clashes • Creating clash reports • Federating BIM models

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Information Management The Appointing Party (Client) will nominate a person within their organization or point to a third-party company to take the Information Management function. The list of activities for the Information Management function varies substantially from project to project. In the BS EN ISO 19650-2 standard, there is Annex A, which is a matrix template for Information Management responsibilities.

AEC UK BIM Protocol The Automatic Exposure Controls (AEC) (UK) BIM Protocol released in 2015 is still relevant for explaining practical functions that are widely used in the AEC industry. This document assigns activities to three specific areas, outlined as follows: • Strategic • Management • Production

Strategic – BIM Management This role represents the company-wide BIM Manager that defines and takes strategic decisions on the BIM implementation and support training. The company-wide BIM Manager will perform activities including, but not limited to, the following: • Corporate objectives related to BIM • Research on technology and new processes • Developing processes and new workflows • Developing standards and protocols • Responsible for the BIM implementation • Providing training for technology and new processes • Analyzing or create the BIM documentation (BEP and others)

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Management – Coordination This role represents the BIM Coordinator, who will perform activities including, but not limited to, the following: • Providing team training for technology and new processes • Analyzing or creating the BIM documentation (BEP and others) • Auditing BIM models • Model coordination and clash detection • Content creation

Production – Modeling/Authoring This role represents the architects, engineers, designers, and BIM modelers that are producing information in the BIM model. They will perform activities including, but not limited to, the following: • Project-specific content creation • Project-specific modeling • Project-specific drawing production The AEC (UK) BIM Protocol functions can be seen in the following table:

Figure 2.4 – AEC (UK) BIM Protocol functions

It is essential to highlight that these are not job titles, and the same person can perform multiple functions.

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To conclude, the information in this section has provided details about the project functions commonly used in the AEC industry and fully defined in the BEP. In the next section, we will learn about Asset Management and how it can maximize the value of building assets.

Asset Management Asset Management is a process to support building owners to maximize the value of their asset by providing strategic and operational services. The lifespan of a building and utilities are limited, and the building life cycle after the construction stage represents the highest cost for real estate owners. If we take into consideration a period of 25 years, it is estimated that the cost to operate, maintain, and repair a building is around 80% of the total cost of ownership. This is illustrated in the following diagram:

Figure 2.5 – Total cost of ownership

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The importance of Asset Management during the building life cycle is clear, yet the AECOO industry still has improvements to make in providing digital and structured data to integrate into Asset Management and operational processes. Efficiency and productivity will increase if the data created during the design and construction stages are flawlessly transferred to the Asset Management digital platforms. Currently, we still have issues with transferring data between project stages and the Operation/Maintenance (O&M) manuals into a facility management digital system. The main problem is that the available data is not structured, and part of the information is on paper or simple Portable Document Format (PDF) files. This lack of data integration can lead to significant data loss, decreasing productivity and increasing the cost of maintaining assets and managing data. The expected process to manage data includes a Common Data Environment (CDE) and full integration with a facility management digital system, as illustrated in the following diagram:

Figure 2.6 – Expected process for data integration

The Common Data Environment will help to collect the data during the design and construction stages in the form of BIM models, drawings, and product data. This information becomes integrated with the facility management digital system. When the Operation / Maintenance Manuals (O&M) are digital and structured, these will be integrated into the facility management digital system, which completes the ideal process. Unfortunately, the data integration is still fragmented in many projects, leading to data loss and inefficiencies. It is still common to find projects using private servers to exchange data during the design stage and only utilizing a CDE in the construction stage, which can cause data loss.

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There are also potential data losses between the CDE and the facility management digital system if the integration is not established, as the information needs to be structured to enable this process. Data loss can also occur when the O&M manuals are not digital or organized with structured data, as illustrated in the following diagram:

Figure 2.7 – Possible data loss without data integration

Private clients and the UK Government share a similar strategy to improve this process by utilizing COBie as a BIM requirement.

COBie Construction Operations Building Information Exchange (COBie) is an international standard to support Asset Management processes that include space and equipment. It provides the required information post-completion and product data from the construction team to the operational team. Tip COBie doesn't add new requirements to typical contractual delivery. It just changes the format of existing deliverables to an open and international standard format.

COBie is a subset of Industry Foundation Classes (IFC), and the most common representation is a spreadsheet. Depending on the facility management system, the process to import data can be different.

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COBie spreadsheet information A COBie spreadsheet contains information about the facility, such as floors and spaces; a list of products; further details on the warranties; and other aspects connected to the Asset Management process. One COBie file should be provided per each facility on the project. Having said that, if there are multiple facilities, additional COBie files should be provided. All deliverables should be compliant with the Facility Management handover requirements. A typical COBie spreadsheet is shown in the following screenshot:

Figure 2.8 – Typical COBie spreadsheet

The main COBie objective is to provide structured data at handover to the Facility Management team and increase efficiency to manage building assets. Without structured data, the AECOO industry will not be able to reach a high level of efficiency in managing data, and this could potentially affect the development of Digital Twin technologies. The project owner or client has the responsibility to define the Asset Management and COBie requirements, and it needs to be aligned with the Facility Management team's requirements and capabilities. Tip It is essential to meet and engage with the Facility Management team at the beginning of the project to verify the Asset Management and COBie requirements.

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COBie data requirements Sometimes, COBie requirements are over- or underspecified and do not represent the real client need, so it is crucial to engage with the client and the Facility Management team to clarify the maintainable assets. We can increase productivity by checking which building categories or objects need maintenance or replacement, and therefore this information will be included in the COBie deliverable as required. Tip Define the maintainable assets to be included in the COBie deliverable and exclude objects that do not need maintenance or replacement.

By adding this data at the project stage, this will increase productivity as well. Not all information needs to be filled in from the very beginning of a project. Tip COBie tabs should be progressively filled out throughout a project.

Data information can be filled in progressively and aligned with the design development, relating to the following areas: • Project Information and Contact • Requirements and Constraints • Outline Solution and lifecycle costs • Construction Information • Operations and Maintenance Information • Post Occupancy Validation Information and Ongoing O&M Project Information and Contact At the beginning of a project, information in both the Instruction and Contact tabs needs to be filled in. Cells are color-coded based on the criteria shown in the following screenshot:

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Figure 2.9 – COBie color-coded cells

Tabs that need to be checked and filled in include the following: • Instruction • Contact—provide relevant contact data Requirements and Constraints This is data that needs to be typically included with the expected Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Stage 2 or 3. This information is provided to basically ensure that the emergent design and specifications are consistent with the Appointing Party brief in terms of function and cost. Tabs that need to be filled in include the following: • Facility—data filled in manually in the BIM file • Floor—data exported from Floors (extracted from the model) • Space—data exported from Spaces (extracted from the model) • Zone—data exported from Zones (extracted from the model) Outline Solution and lifecycle costs This is data that needs to be typically included with the expected RIBA Stage 4. This information can be used to ensure that the whole project is aligned with the Appointing Party brief in terms of function, cost, and carbon performance. At this stage, the model can be used for bidding as we can export data straight from the model by using schedules (doors, windows, equipment, and so on).

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Tabs that need to be filled in include the following: • Type—data extracted from the model • Component—data extracted from the model • System—data extracted from the model • Connection—data extracted from the model • Coordinate—data extracted from the model The Construction Industry Council (CIC) Working Group indicates that the likely accuracy for information gathered at this stage is to be 75%-80%, with a tolerance of ± 20-25%. Construction information This is data that needs to be typically included with the expected RIBA Stage 5. The checks are there to ensure the design from the previous stage and specifications are consistent with the Appointing Party brief in terms of function, cost, and carbon performance. The model, now fully coordinated, can be used for construction, and coordinated technical drawings can now be driven for construction. Comparing this with the previous stage, the model now represents a technical solution that can be built, with all inputs from the contractor already incorporated into the model. Tabs that need to be filled in include the following: • Type • Attribute—data for type, components, systems, coordinates, connections, and documents attributes gets updated to the construction level (extracted from the model) The CIC Working Group indicates that the likely accuracy for information gathered at this stage is to be 85%-90%. Operations and Maintenance Information This is data that needs to be typically included with the expected RIBA Stage 6. All this data will be related to Operations and Management Information. It is related to the operational and detailed functional information supplied by the manufacturers and trade contractors who have installed and commissioned them as systems. The model now represents the building as built and contains all information provided by all subcontractors. It includes all information regarding systems and equipment installed.

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Tabs that need to be filled in include the following: • Job • Resource • Spare The accuracy for information gathered is expected to be 100%. Post Occupancy Validation Information and Ongoing O&M The concept of this post-occupancy information is to review and check how the asset is actually being used. This stage should be used to update the post-occupancy system with the final and most updated operational dataset once all systems and procedures have settled into operation. The model now represents the building in use and contains all information from the management teams and systems implemented.

COBie concept The COBie concept is simple, but the process to deliver COBie is not always straightforward because it depends on the BIM model quality. Organizations usually use Solibri or the Autodesk COBie Extension for Revit to produce the COBie deliverables. The Solibri Model Checker logo can be seen here:

Figure 2.10 – Solibri Model Checker

You can visit the Solibri website at this address: https://www.solibri.com/.

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Here is the QR code for this:

The Autodesk COBie Extension for Revit is free, and it can increase your productivity to deliver COBie requirements. You can see the extension in the following screenshot:

Figure 2.11 –Autodesk COBie Extension for Revit

You can visit the Autodesk COBie Extension for Revit website at this address: https:// www.biminteroperabilitytools.com/cobieextensionrevit.php.

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Here is the QR code for this:

The Revit COBie extension has a download for each Revit version such as Revit 2021, 2020, and others. Sample files and training material are also available for free on the website. Note The Revit COBie extension has issues exporting COBie data from Model Groups in Revit.

To enhance the discussion about Asset Management, we have interviewed George Stevenson from ActivePLAN, who is an expert in Asset Management processes.

Interview with George Stevenson, Managing Director at ActivePLAN Hi George, thank you for the interview. We would like to have your views about Asset Management and the future of this sector. Could you please present yourself and your company? I am a Xerox-trained information management specialist who came into the construction industry in 1982. Initially, I was involved in developing estimating and planned maintenance software for M&E contractors, which then progressed to database-driven CAD and object-oriented building modeling (Sonata and Reflex, which became Revit). I founded the UK's first Project Extranet/CDE, BIW, which is now Oracle Aconex.

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Now, I am Managing Director of ActivePLAN, a 20-person software and information management firm. We are Autodesk developers but principally focus on creating web-based BIM applications for briefing, information requirements, and applications that can be used throughout the design and construction process to deliver better information for asset management. See https://activeplan.co.uk/transformingconstruction/ for further information. Many of our clients are asset owners and FM contractors, so we have developed solutions to transform handover information to populate different FM applications and also to provide an enduring digital O&M/AIM. We also have solutions to take their existing O&Ms and transform them into BIM-compliant data models—generally 2D. Still, where they choose to invest in point clouds and 3D models (perhaps for Plant Rooms), we include those through our API integration with Forge/BIM 360 and 3D Repo. Data engineering is a large part of what we do, and I was a founding member of what is now called BuildingSmart and was UK Chair of the FM working group. We have been working with the BRE to develop a data dictionary application to create and manage standardized datasets as reusable data templates. This has formed the basis of the free platform that is being used by product manufacturers—Lexicon. For many years, I have dedicated 20% of my time to working pro bono on initiatives to improve the industry, and the four current ones are: • BIM4Housing—Chair • BIM4HA/HACT Housing Asset Data Standards Working Group • Golden Thread Initiative—Chair of the Asset Information Working Group • Constructing Excellence Collaborative Working Champions What are the challenges for architects and engineers to deliver asset information requirements in the pre-construction and post-construction stage? Asset information requirements are seldom provided in a form that integrates with their authoring tools (generally, they are PDF documents). So, it tends to be a manual process. Adding the requirements as metadata on 3D BIM objects is not ideal and, if they use IFC to export the data, there are problems because they tend to use 2x3, which is the coordination MVD, and that isn't designed for asset information. This is compounded when people convert from Revit to IFC, import into a federated IFC model, and then convert back to COBie—what could possibly go wrong? Used properly, a native output, directly from Revit using COBie extensions, seems to be more reliable.

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However, the biggest issue is that most of the required asset information comes from product manufacturers and installation contractors, who use databases and Excel to produce their data, not Revit or ArchiCAD. In fact, a lot of the assets that need to be scheduled and maintained, such as door closers and actuators, are not modeled by designers—or contractors ActivePLAN addresses that by providing trade contractors and manufacturers with BIM-compliant data templates (spreadsheet or forms), populated and generated from the Project Information Model, for suppliers to use to provide the rest of the information. Since they come from the federated PIM, which includes all the geometric models, all of the data collected is referenced to the types and instances in the 3D model. How can we improve productivity and efficiency to deliver the asset information requirements? The most significant improvement to productivity is to do something once and reuse it many times. ActivePLAN is helping with that by supporting the development of standardized libraries of requirements and solutions. Individual clients in different sectors can tailor these to reflect their operational needs. Auditable versions of requirements and auditing of the supply chain's submissions to ensure they include the right information in the correct format is essential. So, we have developed a collaborative platform that automates the validation of the data in a similar way that applications like Solibri, Navisworks, and 3D Repo validate geometry. In fact, the ActivePLAN PIM/AIM platform includes the BIM 360 platform for the Autodesk world and 3D Repo for the Open community. The requirements for a project are delivered as a web service that can be integrated, via APIs, with Revit, AutoCAD, and other authoring applications, making it easier to populate data as part of the typical design process. These project requirements can include pre-populated values, such as Uniclass codes, minimum heating, lighting, ventilation, and acoustic requirements, along with reference codes that connect specifications and data, providing a Golden Thread of information. Manufacturers' product data is seldom provided in a standard format, which means finding information is a very manual process, and this adds huge cost and risk to the cost of design, construction, and operations. Manufacturers have been converting their brochures and data sheets to digital for years. However, they have not followed a consistent database format, which means people still need to read and interpret them manually. We worked with the BRE to develop a free data template platform that anyone can use to create their own data templates and product libraries, and that can be shared in a network of interconnected product libraries.

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Even if a manufacturer has not yet used the free templates to publish their products in a free product library, a designer or contractor can do it just once to support the specification, change management, procurement, and production of Digital O&Ms— and retain it in a shared library for reuse on future schemes that use that manufactured product. Why do we still have data loss between the construction and handover stage? The record of what is actually procured and installed is typically analog (spreadsheets and PDFs) and not managed as machine-readable data that connects back to the geometric model, which should provide location and system information. This would not require the installers to use a 3D model; they simply need to be able to maintain a digital reference to the item in the model. The people commissioning systems or paying for work completed should be engaged in this validation and verification process. Still, they are often scared off because of the perception that BIM is 3D and they might be expected to wear augmented-reality headsets. They become disconnected from what was designed, which is typically in the BIM model. Historically, people used to work with detailed schedules. Hence, there was a means of tracking things through the process but, ironically, BIM has created a disconnection because there is an assumption that the required information will be in the models and it seldom is. The strict naming conventions that were standard practice in the analog world seem to be less rigorously policed in the digital world, and we rely on the parameters being set up correctly in the applications. For example, "systems" are critical to MEP maintenance, yet we seldom see COBie data with Assets and Components referenced to the correct Systems (ideally Uniclass). I understand that there are several ways this can be captured and exported using Revit, but it requires the setup to be appropriately configured—and policed. If the construction and handover stages are fully integrated, do you think the asset information requirements between stage 2 and 4 will not be necessary as the design is still evolving? If FMs only see information after stage 4, opportunities to save costs and energy will be lost. FMs need to see the intended solutions to be able to advise clients on a solution and product selection. This is increasingly important as environmental performance becomes a major driver.

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Establishing the spatial model in COBie is essential to ensure that the locations of all the assets are automatically recorded. The asset types would usually be determined by stage 3, even if they are later changed, and registering what they were before they were changed is valuable information for an asset manager replacing a failed product that may have been "value engineered" with the one the designer originally recommended. How can standardized client requirements and standardized product data improve efficiency in the process to deliver asset information? This is fundamental. The information asset team's need for pumps, fan coils, doors, or cladding are mostly the same across different sectors—residential, education, retail, offices, and healthcare sectors. Clearly, there are differences of criticality even within these sectors, and the client's requirements need to reflect the needs of the different stakeholder groups on each project. However, by starting from a peer-reviewed set of standard libraries, the amount of effort required to make those changes is minor. By standardizing performance requirements in a machine-readable format, the post-occupancy measurement can inform the effectiveness of a design and, perhaps, modifications to the requirements. Similarly, manufacturers can create their standardized product libraries to include the information and performance levels clients are asking for and more closely align what they are creating to the client's needs. The cost of operational effectiveness and environmental performance can be modeled to create far more sustainable buildings. In simple terms, few buildings, even today, are delivering fit-for-purpose asset information, because it is still such a manual process that is left to the end when time and cost is running out. By standardising the information from the outset, the committed information manager can invest their time on the aspects that really need their skills, leaving the delivery of the asset information to the process. What is your view about COBie, now and in future developments? Is COBie a longterm goal or, in the future, could it be replaced by advanced technology to structure data differently? Everything can be improved, but I am nervous of moving the goalposts when we are finally gaining some traction with people understanding that the data is as (if not more) important as the geometry in BIM. COBie is a data schema, which can accommodate much more than it is used for at the moment. It isn't perfect but, by using Attributes effectively, we can get it to do 95% of what we need.

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It is important to clarify what we mean by the information that asset teams need. They use different applications for different reasons. For example, there are: • CMMS—Computerized maintenance management applications that are principally used to generate work instructions for regular/planned maintenance. This typically would include just 10% of the assets in the O&M. • Helpdesk—These support reactive maintenance, and there is a trend towards using CRM applications for this purpose. • H&S/O&M—Typically, the as-built records of what was installed with the associated documentation. There is a requirement to keep this updated with any changes, but that is seldom done. ActivePLAN delivers this as a Digital O&M or Asset Information Model (AIM) that contains everything, including the asset types in the CMMS. • Survey and inspection—These are specialist mobile applications that need very focused information and to be able to deliver that data back to an AIM. • Lifecycle management—This is often done in spreadsheets. • Space management—This is sometimes termed FM and includes room bookings, generally delivered as a separate application (or module) to the CMMS application—for example, IBM Maximo and IBM Tririga. • BMS/Digital Twins—I am connecting these because they are both ways of using/ applying the coordinated Asset data that is in the AIM. A completed COBie data model or Excel workbook should contain all of the information required for each of these applications/uses. However, we should not expect these applications to read a full COBie data model or workbook—or indeed develop an IFC module. Even the large CMMS applications, who have developed the means to deal with COBie, convert it to import into their database. So, it makes more sense for the handover COBie data to go into an Asset Information Model like ActivePLAN that can hold and manage ALL of the required information and generate tailored outputs for the different CMMS applications plus all of the types of applications mentioned above. In the modern world of "data services", by ensuring the COBie data schema is complied with, web services can provide the dynamic interoperability that enables the contractor carrying out an inspection/service of fire doors—for example—to record a failure in their CMMS application, raise a "job" to repair it, and feed back to the AIM the changed status of that asset so that an appropriate risk can be assessed in the context of the whole building.

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The work we are doing with BRE is teaching us about the use of Ontology and how this can be used to provide a context for determining what needs to be collected and how it should be used. The data scientists we are working with are happy to use COBie as the data exchange mechanism—the key thing is getting the right data for the right purposes. There have been discussions about removing "Coordinates" from the schema. This would be a real shame because the asset information needs to be "located" and not merely referenced to a space. If you have 20 CCTV cameras in a single space, holding the x/y/z coordinates in the data (that is, not a separate geometric model) is essential. What are the challenges of integrating operations and maintenance (O&M) and asset management (AM) in the construction industry? I see Asset Management as the overall process of which operations and maintenance are subprocesses, alongside lifecycle planning/replacement, small works, space management, BMS. They are (and will continue to be) supported by many applications, used for many different reasons by different stakeholders. This is easily addressed if we can overcome the two largest barriers—the quality of data (structure, content, reliability, and currency) and lack of investment. The latter affects the former. FM is often the first thing to be cut when money is tight. Money for new developments is often easier to secure than funds to install a new heating or air-conditioning system. Even with PFI, where the importance of investing in facilities is well recognized, contracts are often put in place, where the FM has little choice but to cut corners. Few projects (even today) are delivering reliable information about the location of fire dampers and fire stopping, so how is the FM supposed to budget and plan for their inspection, maintenance, and replacement? Clients seldom know what is in their buildings (in some cases, they don't even know how many buildings they have). FMs are often expected to tender for maintenance on existing estates, with very incomplete data about what they will be maintaining. They might commission surveys (they often need to do this on brand-new BIM-delivered buildings). Still, many of the items they are expected to maintain are not easily visible for surveyors to record, so they are not picked up. Is a Digital Twin the future of Operations and Maintenance (O&M) and Asset Management integration? Digital Twin is a term used by different people and with different meanings. I attended the September 2019 Digital Twin event at the ICE in London, where a veteran from Formula One explained that they have been using Digital Twins for 20 years—they used to call it Simulation.

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I think that is how we should differentiate between a 3D model, even one with IoT sensors, and a proper Digital Twin that is able to simulate activities and scenarios to inform better asset management. BMS applications are becoming increasingly sophisticated and are undoubtedly part of this process, as is Artificial Intelligence. We have been experimenting with AI since 2018 to understand how agents can be trained to respond to a question or an event. My business partner, Tim Aikin, has sensors all over his house, feeding his own Digital Twin, using ActivePLAN AIM as the platform. We are also experimenting with Graph database, to take the spatial model from a residential tower block, assign the fire protection assets to systems and spaces, and model the impact of a failure of a single asset on the spaces and people within them. Our next step is to create scenarios using AI to simulate how people will respond to an event and how the environment could be improved to make them safer. The fact is that all of these processes are reliant on better asset information that is kept updated and the more people who are connecting with, and using, that information for different purposes, the better. How could Revit and BIM authoring tools improve to facilitate the process to deliver Asset Management? Is data in the Cloud the future of asset management in BIM tools? All applications can be improved to facilitate the process, but we need to understand that BIM is about the information and not the applications that create it. Holding asset data in an application that is primarily designed to create 3D models is not sensible. Data is best managed in databases, and the Cloud makes that even easier. Different stakeholders can be given the rights to use and update elements of the information, ideally from the applications they are using for their day-to-day tasks—not only 3D modeling applications. Revit and other authoring applications support APIs, so there is no need to add the non-geometric data to the 3D objects themselves. The dynamic connection to a Cloud service gives the impression of the data being in the model when the user clicks on it. Still, it is being managed (and created) elsewhere—often by subject matter experts who have quality-assured the data.

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George, thank you very much for the interview. To conclude this section, we learned about the importance of Asset Management during the building lifecycle, and how structured data is critical to integrate data across multiple Facility Management platforms. COBie provides structured data that is used in the strategy of private clients and the UK Government to support Asset Management processes. In the next section, we will learn about how to create an Action Plan to start a BIM project.

Establishing an Action Plan to start a BIM project An Action Plan helps organizations to start BIM projects with an established process to manage project data and turn goals into reality, which will avoid problems during the design, construction, and building life cycle. The Action Plan will provide a list of tasks to be completed to achieve initial objectives to manage project data, and it can increase efficiencies on your workflow to start a project. The Action Plan will include the following tasks, but is not limited to these: • Defining the initial BIM objectives to manage project data • Listing the task to be completed to reach your objectives • Prioritizing essential tasks in conjunction with project deadlines • Defining initial project deadlines to receive information • Defining the resources required to complete your tasks • Measuring and evaluating the progress and updating the Action Plan as required An effective Action Plan can help to keep you on track to set up BIM projects correctly and improve productivity to manage BIM data.

Action Plan to manage project data The main objective of this Action Plan is to analyze BIM contractual requirements, reduce risk, and collect all necessary information to start a BIM project. Sometimes, a project starts without a BEP fully defined, and also, your company may not be the Lead Appointed Party that is developing the BEP.

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When the BEP is completed, all Appointed Parties will follow it to deliver the project.

Listing the tasks to reach your objectives The following tasks will help define the project objectives and support the initial process to set up a BIM project: 1. Analyze the BIM contractual requirements. 2. If the client does not have BIM requirements, your company should define the standard BIM deliverables contractually. 3. Engage with the Client and Asset Management team to clarify every BIM requirement. 4. Request the following documents to the client: • Organizational Information Requirements (OIR) • Asset Information Requirements (AIR) • Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) 5. Request and analyze any legacy and survey files and Ordnance Survey maps. 6. Check and validate the information received. 7. Request or develop the BEP and collaborate with other organizations. 8. Request or develop the BIM Responsibility Matrix. The BIM Responsibility Matrix needs to be checked against design/construction responsibilities and the Appointment. 9. Check the BIM and IT Capability Assessments. 10. Set up or request the Master Coordinates file to define the correct project coordinates at the beginning of the project. 11. Book in a kick-off meeting to explain in detail all agreed terms to deliver the project.

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To produce the Action Plan, we can use this simple table:

Figure 2.12 – List of tasks to be completed

Prioritizing important tasks and deadlines During the process to create the Action Plan, we can prioritize essential tasks such as the contractual requirements and the BIM Responsibility Matrix.

Defining project deadlines for data exchange The project deadlines will provide useful guidance when you need to request and receive that necessary information to make informed decisions.

Defining the resources required to complete your tasks Projects can vary in complexity, and resources or information may be necessary.

Measuring and evaluating the progress and updating the Action Plan as required We can measure and evaluate the benefits of the Action Plan if your project team has understood the contractual and non-contractual BIM deliverables. The end product of this process is a project correctly set up with all BIM requirements agreed and aligned with real clients' requests. As mentioned before, the client's requirements can be incomplete or overspecified. To conclude, we have learned about how to create an Action Plan to start BIM projects efficiently and have contractual and non-contractual BIM deliverables agreed by the client and project teams.

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Summary In this chapter, we have learned about the importance of Project Data Management to increase efficiency and improve productivity. We explained the benefits of having clear BIM requirements defined by the client, and which BIM documents the client is responsible for providing to the project team. We provided an overview of the BIM documentation for clients, project teams, and industry standards. You also learned about the project functions that are involved in a BIM project, the importance of Asset Management, and how to create an Action Plan to start a BIM project. In the next chapter, we will cover how a good Revit template and graphical standards can improve productivity.

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Revit Template and Standards Productivity in Revit is directly associated with the quality of Revit Templates used in projects, including industry and organization standards. Revit templates can help to increase efficiency when working in Revit, and your company will benefit from consistency across projects. The templates save a lot of time by having predefined standards, so Revit users don't have to recreate or adapt the Revit settings for each new project. As industry standards evolve, Revit templates need to be revised to include the latest developments. In January 2019, the BS EN ISO 19650-1 and 2 were published to supersede the BS 1192:2007+A2:2016 and PAS 1192-2:2013. This implies changes to the Revit templates that align with the new ISO 19650 series. A Revit template can be created for multiple disciplines, such as architecture, structure, and MEP, but it can also be customized for a specific use, such as surveys and other usages. In this chapter, you will learn how to create a Revit template and manage its graphical settings to improve drawings created in Revit. This will include information about view templates and how to customize your title block.

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In this chapter, we will cover the following topic: • How to create a Revit template

Technical requirements In this chapter, you will need access to Autodesk Revit. The version used to describe all of these exercises is Revit 2021, but you can follow along with another version. It's important to take the following into consideration: • Different versions might be slightly different from each other. • Older versions of Revit cannot open files from an earlier version. All datasets used for this chapter can be found in the book's GitHub repository at https://github.com/PacktPublishing/-Increasing-Autodesk-RevitProductivity-for-BIM-Projects.

How to create a Revit template Revit templates provide consistency and improve productivity in projects. They do so by defining graphical and technical settings that align with your organization and industry standards. The Revit template is not static; it will evolve with improvements for continuous development as we adjust it for new standards and workflows. As you might already know, Autodesk releases a new Revit version every year. However, updating Revit templates for multiple versions can be time-consuming. To avoid creating and updating multiple Revit templates in different Revit versions, we suggest that you keep the template in the same Revit versions for a few years; this could vary between 3 and 4 years. We also recommend that you recreate your template from scratch every 5 years. To explain this process, let's assume that your company has a Revit template in Revit version 2021. This Revit template in the 2021 version will be used for 3 to 4 years and updated as required during this period. When Autodesk releases Revit 2025, your company will recreate the Revit template from scratch, which will include any significant changes from the past 5 years.

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In this workflow, your company will be able to use any Revit version from Revit 2021. However, the Revit 2021 template will be upgraded to a specific Revit version when a new project starts. In the Revit Options, you can change the Revit Templates Paths and update it as required:

Figure 3.1 – Changing the Revit template path

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In the book's dataset for Chapter 3, you will find a checklist of items to update on the Revit template. The file is Revit_Template_Check_List.xlsx:

Figure 3.2 – The Revit Template checklist

You can use the following link to download the book dataset's ZIP file: https://github.com/PacktPublishing/-Increasing-Autodesk-RevitProductivity-for-BIM-Projects/blob/main/Chapter%203/Revit_ Template_Check_List.xlsx

In the Technical requirements section, you can also find the book's GitHub repository link where the datasets can be downloaded. After downloading the ZIP file, you need to unzip the file to access the book's dataset files. We will follow the Revit_Template_Check_List.xlsx file to explain the required changes to customize a Revit template. The Revit template checklist is divided into the following areas: • Starting a Revit template • General settings • Views and sheets

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• Graphic standards • Annotation standards • Model content

Starting a Revit template We will start a new Revit template by using the existing DefaultGBRENU.rte template that is saved when Revit gets installed. There are multiple options for templates, as we will explain next. The templates for multiple languages can be found here: C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT 2021\Templates

Metric templates in English can be found here: C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT 2021\Templates\English

Imperial templates in English can be found here: C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT 2021\Templates\English-Imperial

We need to start a New project by selecting an existing template (DefaultGBRENU. rte) and selecting Save As to save the template inside a different folder with a new name. This is so that we can start editing the file:

Figure 3.3 – Opening a Revit template

After opening the template, we need to save the file. To save the file, navigate to File | Save As | Template and rename the file accordingly.

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After creating the new template, we need to add it as an option when creating new projects. To add the new template created, please follow the process explained earlier in this chapter. Our new template will be available to start a new project. Now, we are ready to start configuring the template file as required.

General settings The Revit General Settings cover the basic configuration. It is divided into the following items: • Browser Organization • Snaps • Project Information • Project parameters • Shared parameters • Global parameters • Project units • Family name conventions • Exporting Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) settings • IFC mapping for specific project parameters (assigned to objects) • Keynote settings • Worksets

Browser Organization The Browser Organization tool is essential to increase productivity in Revit. This is because you can optimize the way you organize views and sheets to suit your company's workflow.

How to create a Revit template

The Browser Organization tool is divided into three parts, as follows: • Browser Organization – Views • Browser Organization – Schedules • Browser Organization – Sheets

Figure 3.4 – Browser Organization

Let's take a look at each of them next. Browser Organization – Views The methodology to customize the Browser Organization tool varies from company to company. The most common methods are using View Types or specific Project Parameters to help organize your views and sheets.

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Organizing views by view types When using view types to organize the Project Browser, it's important to rename the view types accordingly. To rename views, select a view from the Project Browser and perform the steps in the following screenshot to rename a view type:

Figure 3.5 – Renaming a view type

During the process of creating views and renaming view types, we recommended that you create a new Browser Organization method. To do that, follow these steps: 1. Hover your mouse over Views (all) in the Project Browser. Then, right-click and select Browser Organization:

Figure 3.6 – Browser Organization

2. Click on New and type a new name, for example, FD_View_Type:

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Figure 3.7 – Adding a name for your Browser Organization

3. Click on OK. When you click on OK, a new window opens that asks you to define the properties you want to use. These properties are grouped under two different tabs: • Filtering: This allows views to be filtered: Filter by: Here, select Sheet Name Equal to . This will make the views invisible when they are dropped into a sheet:

Figure 3.8 – Browser Organization Properties – Filtering

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• Grouping and Sorting: This allows views to be grouped and sorted according to the properties you want: Group by: Here, select Type. This will group the views by View Type. Sort by: Here, select Associated Level and then select Descending. This will sort the plan views based on the Floor Plan height:

Figure 3.9 – Browser Organization Properties – Grouping and Sorting

4. Click on OK. 5. Make sure that FD_View_Type is checked and then click on OK:

How to create a Revit template

Figure 3.10 – Creating a new view Browser Organization

Tip It is recommended that you delete the existing Browser Organization. Any other combination can be created as required.

In this example, we used View Types, which help you to identify where the views are dropped:

Figure 3.11 – Viewing the browser according to the view type

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Organizing views by project parameters In this process, we need to create a new Browser Organization type to use project parameters instead of view types to organize views. Follow the process we have already demonstrated to create a new Browser Organization type and give it the name FD_General:

Figure 3.12 – Viewing the Browser Organization type based on the project parameters

To organize the Project Browser using a project parameter, we will start creating two parameters for the views. View Parameters: • View Package • View Sub-Code

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1. From the Ribbon, under Manage, click on Project Parameters:

Figure 3.13 – Creating new project parameters

2. A window will pop up with all of the parameters already created in the template:

Figure 3.14 – Adding new project parameters

3. Click on Add… to open a new window. This window is divided into three areas: • Parameter Type: This is where users can specify whether the parameter is a project parameter or a shared parameter. • Parameter Data: This is where users can specify what kind of parameter will be created. • Categories: This is where users can assign this new parameter to specific Revit categories.

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4. Use these settings to create new parameters, View Package and View Sub-Code:

Figure 3.15 – New project parameters

5. Now, repeat the process to create the View Sub-Code parameter. For this parameter, it is not necessary to select the Schedules category. Tip If the parameter properties need to be changed for some reason, under the Project Parameters window, select the parameter name and click on Modify. Keep in mind that it is not possible to change some of the properties after creating the parameter; in this scenario, the parameter needs to be deleted and created from scratch. If any information is already filled in, it will be deleted from the template (or the project).

6. Once the two new parameters are created, we can configure the FD_General Browser Organization.

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In this example, we will only be using the Grouping and Sorting tab: • Grouping and Sorting: This allows views to be grouped and sorted according to the desired properties: Group by: Here, select View Package. This will group the views according to what will be filled under this parameter. Then by: Here, select View Sub-Code. This will group the views according to what will be filled under this parameter. Sort by: Here, select Associated Level and then select Descending. This will sort the plan views based on the Floor Plan height:

Figure 3.16 – Editing View Organization – FD_General

7. Click on OK. 8. Make sure that FD_General is checked and then click on OK. In this example, we used Browser Organization to place views into groups divided by new parameters, View Package and View Sub-Code.

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We suggest to have five View Package options in the template. These and different folders can be created by filling in the two parameters when creating the views. These packages are organized as follows: • 00 – Administration Views: These views are related to the template definitions. • 01 – WIP Views: This is where all the work-in-progress views should be kept. • 02 – Views Export: These are the views that need to be exported into different formats and for different usages. • 03 – User Views: These are the views created and kept for a specific reason by a user. • 04 – Sheet Views: These are the views that will be dropped into sheets. The Project Browser will be organized as per the following screenshot:

Figure 3.17 – Views Organization – FD_General

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You can move views to a different package by changing the value of the parameters:

Figure 3.18 – Moving views to different packages

It's important to understand that depending on the company, or even the project base, the Project Browser will have different Browser Organizations. It's important to understand how the browser is organized in order to gain a better understanding of where the views are dropped.

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Browser Organization – Sheets In the drawing sheets' Browser Organization, we need to create two new parameters: • Sheet Package • Sheet Sub-Code We can use the process already demonstrated to create new project parameters using the following settings:

Figure 3.19 – View Organization – FD_General

After the parameters have been created, we can edit the Sheets Browser Organization:

How to create a Revit template

Figure 3.20 – Editing the Sheets Browser Organization

Once this has been set up, we can move the sheets to multiple packages, as follows:

Figure 3.21 – Parameters to move sheets to different packages

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As mentioned earlier, it's crucial to understand how the Project Browser is organized. This is because each project, and each company, will have different Browser Organizations. Browser Organization – Schedules In the Browser Organization for schedules, we will use the parameter that has already been created for View Package. We will be able to move schedules to different packages, as follows:

Figure 3.22 – Parameters to move schedules to different packages

To conclude, the Browser Organization helps organize views, sheets, and schedules; this saves time and also improves efficiency.

Snaps Object snaps come in handy when adding or editing an element in Revit as it will display the snap point symbol. Let's start by accessing the feature. Under Manage, click on Snaps:

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Figure 3.23 – Snaps

A new window will pop up where you can change the settings, as required, for a specific workflow:

Figure 3.24 – Editing the Snap settings

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The Object Snaps settings will allow users to enable and/or disable a specific snap to fit a specific workflow. Additionally, we can increase productivity by using the shortcuts that are between the brackets, for example, (SE), (SM), (SC), and more.

Project Information These settings are useful when specifying information about the project, such as the following: • Organization Name • Organization Description • Building Name • Author • Energy Settings • Route Analysis Settings • Project Issue Date • Project Status • Client Name • Project Address • Project Name • Project Number This information can be accessed by clicking on Manage, then Project Information:

Figure 3.25 – Project Information

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A new window will open where we can add and edit all of the information as needed:

Figure 3.26 – Project Information parameters

Further project information can be added by creating a new project or shared parameters, as needed.

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Additional parameters are required to include in the title sheet, splash screen, tags, and more. The process of creating project parameters and shared parameters will be explained in a dedicated section:

Figure 3.27 – Additional Project Information parameters

It is recommended that all information related to all of the projects should always be kept under the Project Information. By keeping it consistent, it's easy to find the information you need.

Project parameters Project parameters are parameters that allow users to add information to specific Revit categories within a project. These parameters are visible in schedules but cannot be used in tags (as they are not shared with the external files).

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Users can add as many project parameters as needed, but they should be kept to a minimum. This is because it will increase the file size and become more difficult to maintain the unnecessary data inside the model.

Shared parameters Shared parameters are similar to project parameters. The main difference is that these parameters can be used in multiple families or projects. Additionally, they can be tagged, scheduled, and exported as ODBC. When working with shared parameters, it is necessary to have an external file (a *.TXT file) to host this information. Each project should have its own shared parameter (that is, a *.TXT file) where template parameters can be created. This includes any additional shared parameters that are required on a project level. If we create a shared parameter for a Revit family, we need to make sure that it is also created inside the project in order for it to work. The process to create a shared parameter consists of three different steps: • Create a new shared parameter file. • Create group parameters and parameters in the shared parameter file. • Add a shared parameter file to the Revit file. Creating a new shared parameter file and parameters To create a shared parameter file, follow these steps: 1. In the Manage tab, click on Shared Parameters:

Figure 3.28 – Creating a shared parameter file

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2. Click on Create to create a shared parameter file and save it in an appropriate location using the name convention of ProjectCode_ProjectName_ SharedParameters.txt:

Figure 3.29 – Creating a shared parameter file

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Before creating the parameter, users need to create a Group Parameter where the parameter should be created. Group parameters will help you to organize all of the shared parameters. After creating the group parameter, you can create the parameter. If a group parameter already exists, ensure that the new parameter will be created in the corresponding group:

Figure 3.30 – Creating a new group for the shared parameters

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3. Click on New, type in the parameter Name, and select the Discipline. Select the Type of Parameter and then click on OK:

Figure 3.31 – Creating shared parameters

4. There are multiple clicks required to add a new shared parameter, as demonstrated in the following screenshot. Navigate to Manage > Project Parameters > Add > Shared Parameter > Select. Then, select the correct category, select the parameter that you want to add, and click on OK. Follow the numbers in the following image:

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Figure 3.32 – Adding a new Shared parameter

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Revit Template and Standards Tip You can move parameters from one group to another by selecting the parameter and clicking on Move.

Now, the process of creating a shared parameter is complete.

Global parameters A global parameter is a parameter that is not assigned to a specific category and can be used in multiple objects from different categories. For example, a global parameter can be used to control all of the window sill heights so that they are the same. To access the global parameters, perform the following steps: 1. From the ribbon, click on Manage and then click on Global Parameters:

Figure 3.33 – Global Parameters

2. At the bottom of the Global Parameters window, you can create, edit, and delete the parameters as needed:

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Figure 3.34 – Creating global parameters

Tip Note that it is possible to use another formula or specific value.

Project units When working in Revit, you can define the units you are using at any time. When changing this, Revit will automatically adjust all the projects with the newly defined units without the need for any other input from the user. Project units are grouped per discipline. By changing the discipline, different unit types will be shown.

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To access the project units, perform the following steps: 1. From the ribbon, click on Manage, and then click on Project Units:

Figure 3.35 – Project Units

2. Under Project Units, you can also change the settings. For each unit type, there is a preview of the display format:

Figure 3.36 – Editing project units

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Family name conventions Regarding naming conventions, there are many available examples around the world. We recommended that the family naming convention be based on and complied according to BS_8541-1_2012: Library objects for architecture, engineering, and construction – Part 1: Identification and classification. Code of practice. To get consistent results when searching for content, as a best practice, the following rules need to be followed: • CamelCase should be used for naming (that is, capitalized letters). • Do not use spaces. • Use _ (underscore) as a delimiter between fields. • Use full words (when, and if, possible). • Do not use special characters such as ,. ! " £ $ % ^ & * ( ) { }[ ] + = ? | \ / @ ' ~ #¬ ` ' . We recommended that you rename family files as follows: ___ For each field we have the following: • : This identifies the design discipline code responsible for developing the content: A. • : This specifies information about the purpose of the object (it should not be confused with the Revit family category): A_Annotation. • : This specifies the second level of information that will help you to distinguish one family from another: A_Annotation_TitleBlock. • : This allows users to add additional information to differentiate between subtypes (it is optional): A_Annotation_TitleBlock_A1Metric. To rename the Revit content, we can proceed in two different ways: • Via plugins (or Dynamo): This can be used to export all of the existing Revit content names to an Excel spreadsheet. Then, we can edit them in Excel, and import the Excel spreadsheet back to Revit (we will look at some plugins that can be used to help with this task in a later chapter of this book).

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• Manually: By right-clicking and selecting Rename:

Figure 3.37 – Renaming families

Exporting the IFC settings The IFC file format provides an interoperability file format that allows different BIM software to be imported and used by the model for coordination purposes. It can be used for communication, productivity, and quality throughout the build life cycle by reducing information loss during transmission between software. To enable this interoperability, there are established standards maintained by buildingSMART. The buildingSMART website can be found at https://bit.ly/2JGIz8u. Alternatively, you can refer to the following QR code:

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Before exporting the model in IFC file format, it will be necessary to map all of the Revit families to a specific IFC class and IFC type. This will result in a better understanding of what element type should be identified across different software types. To access the IFC Export mapping configuration, perform the following steps: 1. From the File menu, go to Export. In Options, click on IFC Options:

Figure 3.38 – IFC class mapping options

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2. From the new window, you can define which IFC classes each Revit category will be exported to:

Figure 3.39 – IFC Export Classes mapping

When exporting to IFC, it's essential to know which IFC version (Model View Definition or MVD) should be used. You can learn more about the IFC Specification Database from the buildingSMART website at https://bit.ly/2XcdqNk. Alternatively, you can use the following QR code:

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You can learn more about the MVD database from the buildingSMART website at https://bit.ly/2L00PKO. Alternatively, you can use the following QR code:

You can learn more about IFC Implementation Guidance from the buildingSMART website at https://bit.ly/38edrqt. Alternatively, you can use the following QR code:

You can learn more about software implementation from the buildingSMART website at https://bit.ly/3oeoK7G.

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Alternatively, you can use the following QR code:

Tip When working with IFC, make sure you use the latest version of the IFC Exporter.

Keynote settings Keynote is a feature that allows all model elements to be classified based on a classification system. This classification system can be internal (that is, from the office and based on the internal standard) or industry standard. You can access Keynote as shown in the following image:

Figure 3.40 – Keynote

By default, the keynote classification system provided is based on the 1995 Construction Specification Institute (CSI) Master format. Using keynotes is an easy and efficient way of linking the model elements with the project specifications. This is because the information will be added to the elements and the tag will show the information.

How to create a Revit template

This information is derived from an external *.TXT file that contains a key value and a description. By default, the file is saved as %ALLUSERSPROFILE%\Autodesk\RVT 2021\Libraries\:

Figure 3.41 – The keynote file structure

A new file can be loaded into the project by accessing Keynoting Settings, on the Annotate tab:

Figure 3.42 – Keynoting Settings

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There are three different keynote types: • The Element keynote: This is a keynote that is assigned to an entire model element. • The Material keynote: This is a keynote that is assigned to a material of a model element. • The User keynote: This is a keynote that is assigned per user.

Worksets When working on a worksharing project (this is a modeling method that allows multiple users to work on the same model simultaneously), worksets become crucial as they work as a collection of elements. When worksets are created, it's possible to open and close them to improve the performance of Revit. In the Revit_Template_Check_List.xls file, we can find a list of the most common worksets that can be used on a project:

Figure 3.43 – The Revit template checklist

Worksets can only be created on a project file (RVT), when using the worksharing tools and environment, and cannot be created in a template (RTE).

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Tip Creating worksets should be a task that is assigned only to the task information manager who is responsible for the project.

Views and sheets Regarding view naming conventions, it's important to keep a naming convention that facilitates identifying what both the view and the sheet contain. This will improve productivity when working on a project. For a quick search, you can right-click and select Search, underneath the Browser Organization name:

Figure 3.44 – Searching for a view and sheet of a family in the project

Depending on the project size, we might end up with hundreds of views, which is when this option becomes useful.

View names The process of renaming views is the same as the one that we referred to earlier: • Via plugins (or Dynamo): By using an external plugin • Manually: By right-clicking and selecting Rename Tip Selecting the view and pressing F2 will allow you to edit the view name (the same applies to the family name and family type name).

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Depending on which method you have used to organize the Project Browser (that is, by parameters or by view types), all of the views should be organized as much as possible:

Figure 3.45 – Naming views

As mentioned earlier, we recommend that you use a naming convention for the view name.

Sheet names Following the same strategy as view names, sheet names should be clear about what they contain. We recommend following a proper naming convention:

How to create a Revit template

Figure 3.46 – Naming sheets

In the same way as views, bear in mind that a naming convention should be followed.

Starting page – splash screen Essentially, the splash screen is the Project starting page, where the main information regarding the project should be included. It is recommended that you use a Title Block, as it contains information commonly related to sheets: • Project Code • Project Name • Client Name • Design Consultant • Design Discipline • Design Stage • Project Information Manager • Task Information Manager • Revisions

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All of these parameters should be shared parameters and added in the same way that we explained in the Shared Parameters section:

Figure 3.47 – Splash screen

Defining a starting view It's possible to define a starting view by performing the following steps: 1. From the ribbon, click on Manage. 2. Click on Starting View:

Figure 3.48 – Defining a starting view

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3. Select which view should be used and then click on OK:

Figure 3.49 – Selecting a view to be used as the starting view

It is good practice to define a 2D view, as a starting view will increase the model opening. This is because Revit doesn't need to update any 3D views.

The title block family The title block follows the same principles as the splash screen: • It needs to have relevant information regarding the project and the sheet. • Shared parameters need to be added using the same principle explained earlier. • Some project-specific information will have to be edited.

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To create a title block from scratch, Revit needs to use a Revit family template specifically for it, called Title Blocks. To create this, follow these steps: 1. Go to File and, underneath New, select Title Block:

Figure 3.50 – Opening a title block family

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2. From the New Title Block window, select the size to use as a starting point and then click on OK:

Figure 3.51 – Selecting a title block family template

Now that you have opened a family template, save the file (following the naming convention) and create it as needed. You should have the following: • Lines: This is used to draw all the lines that are needed. • Text: This is used to write the headers of each area. • Labels: This is used to add all of the parameters and shared parameters (these need to be created from the shared parameter file, as explained earlier in this chapter) to be filled inside a project.

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• Image: This can be used, if needed, as a company logo:

Figure 3.52 – The title block family

When creating the title block, we suggest that you do the following: • The key plan should be added as a family. • Consultants logos should be vectorized for a high-quality drawing (when exporting to DWG, we should not get an image as an external reference).

Revision schedules A revision schedule will allow you to display the revisions that you have made to the project. This revision schedule can only be added to a title block.

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To create a revision schedule in a title block family, follow this step: 3. From the ribbon, click on View and click on Revision Schedule:

Figure 3.53 – Inserting a revision schedule into the title block

We recommend that you set up how revisions will be used on a project. It's also recommended that you use the ISO 19650 revision system: P01.01. To access the revisions, follow these steps: 1. On the ribbon, click on View. 2. Click on Revisions. The Sheet Issues/Revisions window will open. From here, you can change the settings to be used in the project:

Figure 3.54 – Revision information settings

As a recommendation, the revision numbering should follow ISO 19650.

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Schedules Schedules in Revit allow you to create lists of almost all instances of the types of elements in the model. These schedules are automatically updated depending on what information can be found in the model. It's possible to extract different types of schedules: • Quantity schedules: This allows users to extract a list of building elements from the model. • Key schedules: This allows users to define keys in order to fill the quantities schedule more consistently. • Graphical column schedules: This allows users to create column schedules by intersecting grid lines, including their top and bottom constraints and offsets. • Material takeoff: This allows users to export material information assigned to elements from the model. • Sheet lists: This allows users to list the drawing list in the project. • Note block schedules: This allows users to define annotation schedules that can be added to the model using the Symbol tool. • View lists: This allows users to list the views in the project. • Revision schedules: This allows users to list the revisions assigned to a sheet. • Panel schedules: This allows users to create panel schedules with information about electrical panels, the circuits connected to the panel, and their corresponding loads. The process to create schedules is quite simple: 1. Hover your mouse over Schedules/Quantities, right-click, and then click on which schedule type you want to create:

How to create a Revit template

Figure 3.55 – Creating new schedules

2. After creating the schedules, we recommend that you drop them into a specific folder, based on the View Package parameter:

Figure 3.56 – Schedules organized per package

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Revit Template and Standards Tip When working with schedules, by holding the Control key and moving the mouse wheel, it will Zoom In and Zoom Out.

Legends Legend views can have multiple purposes, depending on how users want to use them in a project. They can be used to list model components or annotations, or be used as general notes:

Figure 3.57 – Creating new legends

We can have different legends types, as follows: • Legend: This allows users to create typical legends, such as annotation legends, line style legends, and pattern legends. • Keynote legend: This allows users to create a schedule with all the keynotes and keynote descriptions assigned to elements or materials in the project or the view. Legends can be dropped into more than one sheet.

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Graphic standards In this section, we will be covering the main settings that are available to control the graphics in Revit. This is an important topic, as it will affect both productivity and consistency across all construction drawings. We will be covering the following: • Line patterns • Line styles • Line weights • Object styles • Fill patterns • Material library • View templates • Filters • Color fill legend schemes • Phases • Exporting to DWG • Arrowheads

Line patterns In Revit, you can create line patterns. These line patterns are created by combining dashes and dots with blank spaces between them. Dashes and spaces can have specific dimensions. These line patterns can be combined with colors to define a line style (this will be covered later).

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Follow these steps to create a line pattern: 1. From the Ribbon, click on Manage, and in Additional Settings, click on Line Patterns:

Figure 3.58 – The Line Patterns setting

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2. With the Line Patterns window open, you can create, edit, delete, and rename line patterns. We recommend that you use a naming convention and create only the most commonly used line patterns:

Figure 3.59 – Line patterns available in the project

Line patterns can only be created using dashes, spaces, and points.

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Line styles Line styles are a combination of line patterns, line weights, and colors. Follow these steps to create a line style: 1. From the Ribbon, click on Manage. Then, in Additional Settings, click on Line Styles:

Figure 3.60 – The Line Styles setting

2. With the Line Styles window open, you can create, edit, delete, and rename line styles. 3. In the Category column, you can see a list of all the line styles that are available in the project. Some of the line styles have , which indicates that the line style is a system (hardcoded) and cannot be deleted or renamed. The other line styles can be created, renamed, and deleted:

How to create a Revit template

Figure 3.61 – The line styles available in the project

Line styles can be used as model or detail lines on the project level.

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Line weights Line weights allow users to define the width of the pen when printing out the objects. Follow these steps to change the line weight: 1. From the ribbon, under Manage, click on Additional Settings and then click on Line Weights:

Figure 3.62 – The Line Weights setting

2. These settings allow you to control the Model Line Weights, Perspective Line Weights, and Annotation Line Weights:

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Figure 3.63 – Line Weights

• Model Line Weights: Using this, you can specify the line weights for 3D elements in orthographic views; note that this depends on the scale of the view. • Perspective Line Weights: Using this, you can specify the line weights for 3D elements in perspective views; note that this doesn't depend on the scale of the view. • Annotation Line Weights: Using this, you can specify the line weights for the annotation elements in orthographic views; note that this doesn't depend on the scale of the view.

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Object styles As mentioned earlier, object styles allow users to set all of the generic settings per category, regarding line weights (cut and projection), line colors, line patterns, and materials (if there is no material assigned to the element): 1. From the ribbon, click on Manage and then click on Object Styles:

Figure 3.64 – Object Styles

2. These settings allow to control the Model Objects, Annotation Objects, Analytical Objects, and Imported Objects:

Figure 3.65 – The Object Styles settings

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• Model Objects: With this, you can configure all model objects from all disciplines in the project. • Annotation Objects: With this, you can configure all annotation elements in the project. • Analytical Objects: With this, you can configure all analytical elements (including the structural disciplines and zones) of the project. • Imported Objects: With this, you can configure all of the imported elements in the project (that is, those imported directly into the project or a family).

Fill patterns Fill patterns can be used in Revit to define the appearance of the surfaces of objects. Regarding 3D elements, it can define the appearance not only from surfaces but also from the cut areas. Follow these steps to create a fill pattern: 1. From the ribbon, click on Manage and then click on Fill Patterns:

Figure 3.66 – Fill Patterns

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2. With the Fill Patterns window open, you can create, edit, delete, and rename these patterns. They can be divided into two different pattern types: • Drafting: Typically, this is used to represent the cut areas of the model elements. This means that in terms of scale, they will be kept as defined (concerning the drawing sheet). • Model: This is normally used to define model elements and their surfaces. This means that they will scale with the model (that is, as the view scale changes, the pattern scale changes accordingly). 3. Each type of pattern needs to be created according to its corresponding type; it can be swapped by clicking in the top area. We recommend using a proper naming convention:

Figure 3.67 – The Drafting and Model fill patterns settings

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Patterns can be created by importing the pattern file from AutoCAD (the PAT file) or created directly in Revit if they are basic patterns.

Material library Materials in Revit are not just about rendering; they also control how elements will be displayed in views and add specific data regarding their properties. From the material, we can combine five different assets: • Identity: This can be used to add technical information about the material. • Graphical: This can be used to control the color and the corresponding patterns to be viewed in a project view. • Appearance: This can be used for rendered views, realistic views, or ray-traced views. • Physical: This can be used for structural analysis. • Thermal: This can be used for energy analysis. This information can be accessed by clicking on Manage, under Materials:

Figure 3.68 – The Materials library

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A new window will open where we can add and edit all of the information we need:

Figure 3.69 – Material Browser

This window can be expanded or collapsed when you click on the double arrows:

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Figure 3.70 – Material Browser

As a good practice, we recommend that you do the following: • Use a proper naming convention to identify the material. • Under the Identify asset, use a proper class for easier filtering. • When possible, rename the Physical and Thermal assets as per the material name. • Create a material library with proper categories for each project. Tip Revit Materials can be shared with Autodesk Inventor and Autodesk Civil 3D.

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View templates You can define view templates as a collection of view properties that can be controlled and assigned to specific views, ensuring the assigned views will use the same view settings and keeping consistency across construction documentation sets. Before creating view templates, we suggest that you think about how the views will be used in your project. For example, they can be organized per package: • Site plans • Floor plans • Reflective ceiling plans • Elevations View templates can be accessed as follows: 1. From the Ribbon, click on View. Then, click on View Templates and Manage View Templates:

Figure 3.71 – Manage View Templates

You can duplicate existing view templates through the new window and rename or delete existing ones. Tip Another workflow to create a view template is to configure the view as required. Then, in the Project Browser, hover the mouse over View Name, right-click, and click on Create View Template from View….

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For better control and organization, we suggest that you define a minimum number of view templates in the template and create more as per your project requirements and needs. Tip Having as many settings as possible controlled by view templates will keep consistency across all drawings, and it is also an easier way to change any settings.

2. The following screenshot shows a list of all view templates available in the template:

Figure 3.72 – The View Templates setting

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3. After creating a view template, you can assign it to a view or a group of views. You can do this by selecting and changing the view properties, under the View Template parameter:

Figure 3.73 – Applying a view template to a view

Tip When a view template is assigned to a view, it's not possible to change the view properties that are controlled by the view template. Under the Visibility bar, you can use the Temporary View Properties option to change the settings temporarily and redefine it as it was by resetting to the view template assigned.

Filters Filters can be used not only to override graphical representations, but also the visibility of elements.

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View filters can be accessed by performing the following steps: 1. From the Ribbon, click on View and then click on Filters:

Figure 3.74 – View Filters

2. From the new window, you can create two different view filters, as follows: • Rule-based Filters: These are filters that are based on the element categories and parameters. • Selection Filters: These are filters that are based on selections:

Figure 3.75 – View Filters settings

These view filters can be added to view templates for better control of the visibility and graphics of your project.

Color fill legends and schemes Color fill legends are different graphical ways of applying colors to rooms, areas, and space based on the model data available. They can be used and placed anywhere in the floor plan along with a legend with the color code that is used to fill the model elements.

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Color fill legends can be added by navigating to Annotate, under the Color Fill panel:

Figure 3.76 – Adding color fill schemes

Revit will place the color fill legend and activate the color scheme itself. The legend can be deleted at any time, and the color scheme can be removed or added under Properties:

Figure 3.77 – Toggling color scheme visibility

Color-coding can be added based on the different data that has been added to the rooms' properties.

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Phases The Phases feature allows you to work with refurbishment projects. This means that the project will be represented on different project stages: before and after refurbishment. With this tool, Revit will track the phase elements that are New, Demolished, Existing, and Temporary. This feature can only be applied to model elements. By using phase filtering, we can apply color-coding to objects in these four states: • Existing: Elements that exist in the view phase. • New: Elements modeled in the view phase. • Demolished: Existing elements demolished in the view phase (that is, when Phase Created and Phase Demolished are different). • Temporary: New elements are demolished in the same phase (that is, when Phase Created and Phase Demolished are the same). To access the Phases feature, follow these steps: 1. From the ribbon, click on Manage and then click on Phases:

Figure 3.78 – The Phases setting

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2. The Phasing window is divided into three different tabs:

Figure 3.79 – Phasing settings

• Project Phases: This allows users to define different phases. • Phase Filters: This allows users to create different combinations to apply different color codes and visibility, depending on the four different states of New, Existing, Demolished, and Temporary. • Graphic Overrides: This allows users to define how objects will be represented at a specific stage.

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3. Floor plans, ceiling plans, area plans, elevations, sections, 3D views, and callouts have two Phasing parameters that can be changed. These are Phase Filter and Phase:

Figure 3.80 – Viewing the Phasing parameters

Depending on which schedules we have in a project, we can use both parameters (for example, doors, windows, and more), one parameter (for example, rooms) or any (for example, areas). In our template, we have changed the original Autodesk settings to improve usability, as follows: • In the Project Phases, we have changed the Phase name from New Construction to New so we have just Existing and New Phases:

Figure 3.81 – Phases

• Delete all the phase filters from Autodesk and recreate them using a better naming convention and combination of settings. The naming convention should include a sequential number plus the description.

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For example, consider the following: • 01-Existing • 02-New • 03-Demolition • 04-Existing + New by Category • 05-Existing + New Overridden • 06-Existing + New Construction Overridden + Demolition Overridden + Temporary Overridden:

Figure 3.82 – Phase Filters

We can create multiple combinations as necessary.

Exporting to DWG Even when using BIM software such as Revit, ArchiCAD, Tekla, Vectorworks, or similar, and depending on the EIR, it might be necessary to export the drawings into DWG format, where the elements will need to be converted into layers with specific properties, such as a color code, line style, layer name.

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To access the export process, follow these steps: 1. From the upper-left corner, click on File. Then click on Export, CAD Formats, and DWG:

Figure 3.83 – DWG exports

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2. To set up the export settings, click on …, as follows:

Figure 3.84 – DWG Export settings

3. By creating new export settings, it's possible to collect all the settings and use them as needed. We recommend that you keep the most commonly used settings in the template:

Figure 3.85 – Saved DWG Export settings

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4. When editing the settings, you can also set up a few configurations prior to the export process; these configurations will be saved with the Export Setup:

Figure 3.86 – Saved DWG Export settings

It's crucial that you go through all of these tabs and understand which settings are available: • Layers: This allows users to map Revit categories with CAD layers (this is based on any naming convention). • Lines: This allows users to map Revit line types with AutoCAD line types. • Patterns: This allows users to map Revit patterns with AutoCAD hatches. • Text & Fonts: This allows users to map text to a specific DWG text style. • Colors: This allows users to select which color mapping system they want to use. • Solids: This allows users to export 3D elements as solids or surfaces. • Units & Coordinates: This allows users to select which units will be exported and which coordinate system will be used when exporting. • General: This allows users to select the general settings before exporting.

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In terms of the system coordinates, when exporting sheets, it's not possible to carry out an export based on any system coordinates; that is, only model view and 3D model users can select which system to use.

Arrowheads Arrowheads can be used for dimension objects or with objects that use leader lines, such as tags, spot elevations, spot coordinates, and text. To access the arrowheads settings, follow these steps: 1. From the ribbon, click on Manage. Then, click on Additional Settings and click on Arrowheads:

Figure 3.87 – Arrowheads setup

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2. After creating them, they will be available for use on a specific object:

Figure 3.88 – Arrowheads setup

Arrowheads can be used with dimensions and leaders when using tags or even normal text.

Annotation standards In this section, we will be covering Annotation Standards. As we mentioned in the previous section, this will affect both productivity and consistency across all construction drawings. These settings are relatively straightforward in terms of configuration, and they include the following: • Text types • Dimension types • Symbols • View titles • Tags

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Text types Text is an essential object as it will be used in almost all drawings. The BS-ISO 30980:1998 defines a range of text heights, including 1.8 mm, 2.5 mm, 3.5 mm, 5 mm, 7 mm, 10 mm, 14 mm, and 20 mm. These settings can be accessed by clicking on Text Types, under Annotate:

Figure 3.89 – The text type setup

All of the available settings are related to the text font and color:

Figure 3.90 – Type Properties

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Keep in mind that text height will be kept when printing, no matter which scale is used in the view.

Dimension types Dimensions are used to measure distances in a project regarding text size, and as mentioned previously, they should follow the same standard sizes. These settings can be accessed by clicking on Dimension, under Annotate:

Figure 3.91 – Dimension types

Depending on each dimension type, a new dimension type can be created:

Figure 3.92 – Dimension type setup

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As mentioned in the Text types section, all dimension settings will be kept when printing, no matter which scale is used in the view.

Symbols Symbols are graphic representations of any annotation element used inside a project:

Figure 3.93 – Symbols

To gain a better understanding of the symbols used in a project, we recommend that you have a legend with all of the used symbols.

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View Title View Titles are used to provide standard information from the dropped views into a sheet. Normally, this provides the View Name, View Scale, and Detail Number:

Figure 3.94 – Symbols

This tag will be filled in when dropping the view into a sheet along with the view name and view scale from the view that has been dropped.

Tags A tag is a 2D annotation element that is used to identify elements in a drawing. These tags are category-specific, which means every Revit category can have a tag to extract information from the host element. These elements can be added to the project from the Tag panel, under the Annotate tab:

Figure 3.95 –Tags from different Revit categories

When adding tags, you can add them to both 2D views and 3D views. To add it to a 3D View, we suggest that you lock the 3D view first.

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Model content Before starting a project, it's essential that you understand the project requirements and the project BIM scope. All this information will be critical for aligning the BIM production with the BIM scope and the desired graphical results for the drawing production. All team members should be aware of the level of information required for the elements that need to be modeled. This information is not only graphical but also non-graphical, as both will impact the Revit performance. Some team members tend to develop complex and over-detailed models. This will have a critical impact in terms of performance. The main aspects that can affect performance are as follows: • Linked files: When using linked files, ensure that all files are linked correctly and if extreme needed. Always control whether the paths are okay because when Revit loses the paths, it will affect performance as well. • Multiple constrainments and parametric relationships between elements: It's common to use constraints when modeling elements, for example, lock alignments, lock dimensions, and parametric arrays. All of these procedures will affect performance, as Revit will always check for constraints prior to any update. • Complex geometry: When modeling the project, it's common to over-model elements or when importing elements from different software (for example, Rhino) import complex geometry into Revit. Before importing that geometry, check whether it's possible to simplify the shape of the elements. A Quality Assurance workflow should be part of the project to keep the model performance. As a reference, here are a few checks that need to be carried out: • The file size should be under 250 MB. • All links with the right file path • The number of groups is not too high (groups with system families should be avoided). • The number of in-place families should be reduced to the minimum (if there is more than one instance of the same family, the in-place family should be converted into a loadable family). • If the model is workshared, make sure that all elements are in the right workset (it will facilitate turning on/off elements). • Warnings should be kept to a minimum.

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System families System families do not affect Revit performance that much unless they have hosted standard families (loadable families). With these families, all constraints, formulas and shape complexities are not very flexible, keeping the object with low complexity. To create different family types, Revit only allows users to edit the hardcoded parameters. Therefore, it's not possible to create complex formulas or parameters, which generally affect the model performance.

Standard families and loadable families Standard families (or loadable families) are those that will most affect Revit performance. That happens because these families are highly customizable, that is, they are more complex and constrained in terms of relationships between the different pieces of geometry. For example, when modeling a family with extrusions, if you are using sweeps, blends, sweep blends, or even revolves, families will become heavier and more complex as Revit needs to control more constraints apart from dimensions (the shape is always constant). Another example that affects performance is when families include non-Revit elements, such as imported 3D geometry from Rhino, SAT, or DWG). We should avoid using non-native geometries or, if they are needed, we should keep them as simple as possible. As a reference, loadable families should have an average size of 1 MB. If larger than this, ensure that they are essential and need to be used.

Summary In this chapter, we learned how to create a Revit template from scratch, along with the main settings that need to be included in the template to improve productivity at the project level. We explained how to organize views, sheets, schedules, and all of the information in the model for a faster and easier way of managing the information that is available. These settings are relatively important and of high priority; however, this doesn't mean that these are the unique settings that need to be added to the template. You also learned what should be modeled and what the impact would be on the Revit performance and productivity.

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Productivity should be achieved when adding all the necessary standards to the template file and making sure they will be used across all projects. Whatever is essential and required as a Standard must be added or improved within the template. Some of these tasks that we touch base on can be automated by using specific third-party pieces of software: plugins or even a Dynamo script. Later, in this book, we will be covering some plugins or Dynamo scripts that can be used for specific tasks. In the next chapter, we will look at how to set up a Revit project efficiently by understanding the Revit coordinate system and all the challenges related to it. Additionally, we will look at how to set up a project correctly using the project coordinates and how a project should be split into different models by learning about the volume strategy that can be used.

Section 2: Setting Up Revit Projects Efficiently and Exploring Core Functionalities In this section, there are the following chapters: • Chapter 4, Starting a Revit Project Efficiently • Chapter 5, Core Revit Functionalities In these chapters, you will learn about the following concepts to enhance your productivity in daily tasks: • Revit coordinate systems • The best practices for starting a Revit project • Improving productivity in Revit with schedule management, keynote for specification, design options, Revit phasing, scope boxes, worksharing, and drawing production best practices

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Starting a Revit Project Efficiently Our methodology for researching quality information continues in this chapter. We will learn how to increase productivity efficiently while starting a new Revit project. Our strategy is to do this correctly from the outset so that we can avoid having to do any rework during the development of the project. With this in mind, our strategy will require proper execution, which we will also learn about in this chapter. Do it once, do it right, use it in every project The processes explained in this chapter can be applied to small and large projects, and they should allow you to feel confident in setting up new projects or advising your project team on how to improve a particular project by setting out the workflow. We need to have a holistic view of the project and technology used at different stages to set it up and also decide whether we should include other platforms. Alongside Revit, many companies are using a variety of other applications during project development, such as Rhino, AutoCAD, MicroStation, Tekla, and ArchiCAD. We need to ensure that it is possible to export and import models at the correct locations without needing to move any files manually. This chapter will explain how to start a Revit project using a step-by-step process that we have been successfully implementing for many years. We will also go through the

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Revit coordinate systems in order to understand how to manage multiple elements such as Project North, True North, the survey point, the project base point, and the internal origin. The chapter will also explain the important aspects to consider when receiving Revit survey models and point cloud files with the coordinate system aligned. In this chapter, we will cover the following topics: • Overview of Revit coordinate systems • Challenges of coordinate systems • Starting a Revit project and setting up the project coordinates • Volume strategy and multiple buildings on site

Technical requirements In this chapter, you will need access to Autodesk Revit. The version used to describe all of these exercises is Revit 2021, but you can follow along with another version. It's important to take the following into consideration: • Different versions might be slightly different from each other. • Older versions of Revit cannot open files from an earlier version. All datasets used for this chapter can be found in the book's GitHub repository at https://github.com/PacktPublishing/-Increasing-Autodesk-RevitProductivity-for-BIM-Projects.

Overview of Revit coordinate systems Understanding the Revit coordinate system will help us set up the Revit project correctly and avoid any rework in the future. Therefore, it should make us more efficient.

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There are two coordinate systems in Revit, as follows: • The Survey Coordinate System: The survey coordinate system uses a Revit object, called a Survey Point, to locate the project on the Earth's surface with a real-world coordinates system. We can acquire this information from a survey file or Ordnance Survey Maps (OS Maps):

Figure 4.1 – Survey Point

• The Project Coordinate System: The project coordinate system uses a Revit object, called a Project Base Point, to locate a specific coordinate point near your building or site:

Figure 4.2 – Project Base Point

Let's find the survey point and the project base point in Revit: 1. Start a new Revit project or open an existing project. 2. Open the Level 1 floor plan in the Project Browser. 3. Under the View tab, click on Visibility/Graphics, or use the shortcut. You can type in VG or VV if you want to use the shortcut:

Figure 4.3 –Visibility/Graphics

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4. Expand the Site category, select the Survey Point option, and then click on OK:

Figure 4.4 – Survey Point and Project Base Point

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You should see the Survey Point, as follows:

Figure 4.5 – Survey Point

5. Repeat Step 4 and then select the Project Base Point to get the following result:

Figure 4.6 – Project Base Point

The Survey Point and the Project Base Point will be used to set up the coordinate system in Revit. Now, let's find the Revit Internal Origin, which is an essential reference point in this context.

Revit internal origin The Revit internal origin helps you to identify the Revit internal coordinate system's starting point, which is at the X=0, Y=0, and Z=0 coordinates. We should place the Revit model close to the Revit internal origin because the model geometry needs to be within the maximum distance from the Revit internal origin – a 16-kilometer (that is, 10-mile) radius.

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If the geometry is too far from the internal origin, Revit becomes less accurate, and it will display graphical issues:

Figure 4.7 – Revit Internal Origin

Tip The Revit model geometry needs to be relatively close to the Revit internal origin.

From Revit 2020.2 version, we can easily find the Revit internal origin and make it visible. To do so, perform the following steps: 1. Open the Level 1 floor plan in the Project Browser. 2. Click on Visibility/Graphics, or use the shortcut by typing in VG or VV:

Figure 4.8 –Visibility/Graphics

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3. Expand the Site category, select the Internal Origin option, and then click on OK:

Figure 4.9 – Revit Internal Origin

You should see the Revit Internal Origin with this symbol:

Figure 4.10 – The Revit internal origin symbol

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The Revit Internal Origin is hidden for Revit in versions prior to 2020.2, and you can only find it by following these steps: 1. Turn ON the Project Base Point. 2. Unclip the Project Base Point:

Figure 4.11 – Unclipping the Project Base Point

3. Right-click on the Project Base Point and select the Move to Startup Location option:

Figure 4.12 – Move to Startup Location

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The Project Base Point will move to the X=0, Y=0, Z=0 coordinates, and this location will indicate the Revit internal origin for versions prior to Revit 2020.2. We could add a Revit Reference Plane to mark this location, as the Internal Origin is invisible. It is good to know that other platforms, such as AutoCAD and Rhino, also have an internal origin located at the X=0, Y=0, and Z=0 coordinates, and, possibly, we might need to align these points.

Challenges of coordinate systems A coordinate system's main challenge is about linking files at the correct position, and these files could come from multiple platforms and formats. We could receive files for collaboration from Revit, ArchiCAD, AECOsim, Rhino, Tekla, AutoCAD, IFC, or other software. Each software works with the coordinates system differently, so we need to ensure that Revit can export and import files from multiple platforms without position errors, keeping this interoperability between software. When working in a collaborative environment, we need to ensure that other companies or subcontractors can export and import files correctly. When setting up Revit projects, we might need to think about other software and help these subcontractors if necessary. Your productivity will increase if you don't have to fix and correct files from other companies after the project begins. Tip Do not accept files that are not positioned in the correct location after linking them. If a problem appears, try to resolve it as soon as possible and avoid moving files manually.

We have another challenge, which is to decide the best coordinate point to use in the project. Usually, we have three typical options, as follows: • The survey station point • The Ordnance Survey Map grid intersection point • The building coordinates point

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In the dataset for Chapter 4, we can find the OS MAP-Survey.dwg file:

Figure 4.13 – Site with coordinates

The following screenshot shows a zoomed-in view of the site, which displays three coordinates:

Figure 4.14 – Site with three typical coordinates

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We advise that you always use the Survey Station Point as the primary option. The second option will be the Ordnance Survey Map Grid Intersection Point. We do not advise using the Building Coordinates Point and coordinates points from a structure project grid. There are two reasons not to use these points: • The building coordinates point does not have a rounded number that can cause software inaccuracy (X=5514291.6539, Y=181598.9381). The software might display a rounded number (X=5514291.7, Y=181599.0), and maybe companies will begin using (X=5514291.7, Y=181599.0) instead of the correct coordinate. • The structure project grid can change these positions during development. Tip Give preference to the survey station point or the Ordnance Survey Map grid intersections point when setting up the Revit project.

In the next section, we will learn how to set up the Revit coordinates with this AutoCAD file. Now, let's learn about the process of linking and importing files to Revit. We can Link or Import multiple file types in Revit, as follows:

Figure 4.15 – Inserting files into Revit

1. Link Revit: The Link Revit files and file extension is *.RVT. 2. Link IFC: Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) is a model where the components contain data. Currently, IFC is developed by building SMART, and BIM software uses the IFC format to exchange models and data for interoperability. The file extensions that are supported are *.IFC, *.ifcXML, and *.ifcZIP. 3. Link CAD: We can link files to the following extensions: *.DWG, *.DXF, *.DGN, *.SAT, and *.SKP.

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4. Point Cloud: A point cloud is a file that is usually provided by survey companies to represent an existing construction with thousands of points inside a space. We can link *.RCP and *.RCS files. 5. Coordination Model: Here, we can link Navisworks files to Revit with two file extensions, *.NWD and *.NWC. Navisworks is used for clash detection, quantification, simulation, and 5D analysis. 6. Manage Links: Here, we can manage files to Reload From…, Reload, Unload, Add…, and Remove:

Figure 4.16 – Manage Links

7. Import CAD: We can import multiple file formats such as *.DWG, *DXF, *.DGN, *.SAT, *.SKP, and *.3DM. Remember that importing files can reduce Revit performance, so the best option is to link them instead of importing them. Tip In the next Revit version, we will be able to link Rhino files instead of importing them.

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The most common linked or imported files in Revit appear in the following formats: • Native Revit files (*.RTV) • AutoCAD files (*.DWG) • IFC files (*.IFC) • Rhino files (*.3DM) • Point cloud files (*.RCP and *.RCS) Suppose your project team is using any of these formats. In that case, we need to plan and ensure that every company can import and export files with the correct coordinate system to increase productivity and save time across multiple companies. Let's take a look at an overview of the coordinate system of each application and the best practices to link files into Revit.

Native Revit files (*.RVT) We have already explained the coordinate system in Revit, so we will now show the process of how to link Revit files. You can follow these steps: 1. Click on Insert and Link Revit:

Figure 4.17 – Linking Revit files

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2. Select one of the options to position the link. The most used options are Auto - By Shared Coordinates, Auto - Internal Origin to Internal Origin, and Auto Project Base Point to Project Base Point:

Figure 4.18 – Linking Revit files

The other options should be avoided, such as Auto - Center to Center, Manual - Internal Origin, Manual - Base Point, and Manual - Center. We will provide more details about this in the next section, focusing on linking via Auto By Shared Coordinates.

AutoCAD files (*.DWG) In the workflow to link AutoCAD files, we have a few options, as follows:

Figure 4.19 – Linking AutoCAD files

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The Manual - Origin and Manual - Center options are not commonly used, so we will focus on the other three options instead: Auto - Center to Center, Auto - Origin to Internal Origin, and Auto - By Shared Coordinates. The Auto - Center to Center option means that the AutoCAD geometric center will be linked with the Revit model center. This option is only used to link a DWG file if we want the workflow to acquire coordinates. In the next section, we will explain the workflow for acquiring coordinates in more detail. The Auto - Origin to Internal Origin option means the AutoCAD origin at the X=0, Y=0, and Z=0 coordinates will be positioned in the Revit internal origin. The Auto - By Shared Coordinates option means that the AutoCAD file has received the shared coordinates system from a Revit file, and it will be positioned at the correct location.

IFC files (*.IFC) IFC files are used for interoperability between different BIM software; Revit has only one option to import IFC files, which represents a limitation. It would be helpful to indicate the options to link, such as Origin to Internal Origin and By Shared Coordinates:

Figure 4.20 – Linking IFC files

Autodesk has created the Revit IFC manual, which you can download for free at https://bit.ly/38cqf0F.

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Alternatively, you can use the following QR code:

If you have any problems linking IFC files at the correct location, we recommend that you use these two workflows instead: 1. Try to correct or change the project position in the software that is creating the IFC files. If this is not possible, use the following workflow. 2. Create a Revit Container file and position the IFC files manually at the correct location. Once you link the Revit container file using By Shared Coordinates, the IFC file will display at the correct location:

Figure 4.21 – Process to use the Revit Container file

These two workflows will help us to manage issues when positioning the IFC files in Revit.

Rhino files (*.3DM) Many companies use Rhino to design complex geometry, and the Rhino design needs to be inserted in Revit for project documentation and to be part of the design development. Unlike Revit, which has two coordinates systems, Rhino has only one coordinate system: the software internal origin at X=0, Y=0, and Z=0.

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This means that the Rhino Origin at (X=0, Y=0, and Z=0) needs to be located at the Revit Internal Origin to ensure that the Rhino model is at the correct location:

Figure 4.22 – Process to use the Revit Container file

Another possible option is to use a script in Rhino to rotate the model before inserting the model geometry to Revit. The main point to keep in mind is that the Rhino geometry must be aligned with Revit to avoid having to move files manually. The process to translate Rhino geometry into Revit has improved with Rhino 7, and the workflow with Rhino.Inside facilitates this process. There are also a few plugins available to help with the transfer of Rhino geometry into Revit: • BEAM: https://www.mksdtech.com/ • Conveyor: https://provingground.io/tools/conveyor/ • GeometryGym: https://geometrygym.wordpress.com/

Point cloud files (*.RCP and *.RCS) Point cloud files are used to represent an existing construction, and you can verify a Revit model's existing conditions against the point cloud file. When a survey company creates a Revit file for an existing building, we need to request that they include the point cloud coordinate system. This will ensure that the point cloud is linked in Revit at the correct location without needing to move it manually. This process can save time and improve accuracy when comparing Revit geometry with the point cloud.

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If the survey company has provided a Revit file with a specific coordinate system for the point cloud, follow this process: 1. Click on the Manage tab. 2. Click on Location. 3. Click on Site. 4. Select the coordinate system provided by the survey company. 5. Click on Make Current. 6. Click on OK:

Figure 4.23 – The point cloud coordinates system

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7. After this process, you can link the point cloud file:

Figure 4.24 – Linking the point cloud file

Once the point cloud is linked to Revit, we need to change the coordinate system to the primary coordinate system by selecting the Make Current option for the Revit models:

Figure 4.25 – Making the primary coordinate system current

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This process improves productivity, as we will avoid having to move files manually. When users have the challenges of coordinate systems in mind, better and informed decisions will be made. Consequently, this will save time and improve efficiencies. Improving performance is not only connected to your company as supporting other organizations is essential to achieve a better outcome. To conclude, we have learned about the Revit survey point, project base point, and Revit internal origin. We have also explained the challenges of the coordinate system when linking files from multiple software. In the next section, we will learn how to start a Revit project and set up the project coordinates system.

Starting a Revit project and setting up the project coordinates Chapter 2, Project Data Management, described the importance of having precise BIM requirements to manage project data and successfully start a BIM project. Accordingly, the first process is to start a Revit project by analyzing the following documents: • Appointment or Contract • Exchange Information Requirements (EIR) • Asset Information Requirements (AIR) • BIM Execution Plan (BEP) • BIM Responsibility Matrix We acknowledge that not all projects will provide the preceding documentation at the beginning or even during the duration of the project. Nevertheless, if this problem appears, we suggest creating a simple BEP with the available information and get it agreed upon by the client and the project team. The second process is to use the correct Revit template to start the process to set up the project. You can use your company template, the template provided in Chapter 3, Revit Templates and Standards, or the template that comes with Revit.

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Follow these steps to create a new Revit project: 1. Open Revit, and click on File; then click on New and Project:

Figure 4.26 – Starting a new project with a template

2. Select the correct template for your discipline. We will use the architectural template that is provided alongside Revit:

Figure 4.27 – Selecting the template

3. Click on Save and give it an appropriate name based on your company standards. In the next exercise, we will start the process of setting up the Revit project.

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Setting up the Revit project and coordinates In the dataset for Chapter 4, we can find the following files:

Figure 4.28 – Chapter 4's dataset files

We will use the AutoCAD file (OS MAP- Survey.dwg) to acquire the project coordinates and the Revit files (Setting Up Revit Project - Practisefile. rvt) to do the exercise. If you have used other Revit files to practice, make sure that the Revit units are set to Meters. Tip For the metric project, set the coordinates in meters. We can change this to millimeters after the process has been completed.

Revit coordinates We can now start the exercise. Follow these steps to set up the Revit coordinates: 1. Open the Setting Up Revit Project - Practisefile.rvt Revit file and open the Level 1 floor plan view. Ensure the Revit Survey Point, Project Base Point, and Internal Origin options are all checked:

Figure 4.29 – Survey Point, Project Base Point, and Internal Origin are visible (checked)

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2. Link the OS MAP- Survey.dwg AutoCAD file by using the following settings and click on Open: • Colors: Black and White. • Import units: meter. The AutoCAD file is in meters, and we should always select the Import units to match the AutoCAD units. If you are not sure about the AutoCAD file units, open the file and check it before importing it. • Positioning: Auto – Center to Center:

Figure 4.30 – Linking the CAD file

Tip In this process, we can always use the Positioning: Auto - Center to Center, as we will move the AutoCAD file in the next step.

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3. Select the AutoCAD file in Revit, click to unpin the file, if necessary, and move it, ensuring the survey station point in the DWG coincides with the Revit Internal Origin and Project Base Point:

Figure 4.31 – Moving the AutoCAD file

By selecting the project base point, you will see the coordinates of 0,0,0. We will acquire the AutoCAD file coordinates, and the project base point coordinates will change in the next step:

Figure 4.32 – Revit Project Base Point at 0,0,0

Starting a Revit project and setting up the project coordinates

4. In the Manage Tab, select Coordinates and click on Acquire Coordinates. After that, click on the AutoCAD file that is linked in Revit:

Figure 4.33 – Acquiring coordinates from the AutoCAD file

You should see this message and any changes that have been made to the survey point and the project base point:

Figure 4.34 – Acquire Coordinates Succeed

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5. Select the Revit project base point to see the coordinates updated:

Figure 4.35 – Project Base Point updated

Now, let's find the Revit survey point. 6. Right-click on the Revit drawings areas and select Zoom to Fit (or use the shortcut of ZF):

Figure 4.36 – Survey Point at 0,0,0, Coordinates

We recommend that you always keep the Revit survey point at coordinates 0,0,0. If you keep the Revit survey point in this position, it could be useful for other workflows when we need to fix model positions.

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Tip Keep the Revit survey point at coordinates 0,0,0 to support other workflows.

7. We can now hide the Survey Point, as follows:

Figure 4.37 – Hiding the Survey Point

8. Let's use Zoom to Fit to view the project site (or use the shortcut of ZF). 9. Click on Save. The process to set up the Revit coordinate system is now complete. As a good practice, we can rename the site coordinate system. The name should be used in all Revit files from all consultants:

Figure 4.38 – Renaming the site coordinate system

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We recommend using this process to set up all Revit projects; the methodology to link Revit files will be By Shared Coordinates. There are multiple options to link Revit files, but if you always use Auto - By Shared Coordinates, all of the projects will be set up in the same way. This will increase your performance and reduce any potential mistakes.

True North and Project North Now, we need to set up the Revit True North and Project North. • True North is the real-world North position acquired from the survey files or OS Maps. • Project North is the position that we want to rotate the project to facilitate the modeling process with walls in a 90-degree axis and that can best fit the drawing sheets. We can find True North in survey files or OS Maps, as shown in the following screenshot:

Figure 4.39 – True North from the Survey file

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Now, let's learn how to select the best position to rotate Project North. In this process, we need to choose a line in the survey file that we want to be either horizontal or vertical. We will select the line in the South façade to be horizontal. Please refer to Line to be horizontal in the following screenshot:

Figure 4.40 – Survey file with a selected line to be horizontal

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Now, we can start the process to rotate Project North, as follows: 1. In the Manage tab, select Position, and then click on Rotate Project North:

Figure 4.41 – Rotate Project North

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2. We should see the following options. Select the Align selected line or plane option:

Figure 4.42 – The Align selected line or plane option

3. Select the line, as indicated in the following screenshot:

Figure 4.43 – Selecting the line in the survey file

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4. We should see the project rotated, and a message that the process has been completed successfully should pop up. Click on OK:

Figure 4.44 – Project North rotated

5. Select the Project Base Point to check the Angle to True North. This is the rotation angle between True North and Project North:

Figure 4.45 – Angle to True North

The process to rotate Project North is complete. Now, let's learn how to switch between Project North and True North.

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In the Revit floor plan view, in Properties, we can select one of the following two options:

Figure 4.46 – Switching between Project North and True North

We can see the project rotating between both options. These two options only appear in floor plans, ceiling plans, and area plans. Now, let's assume that we need to rotate Project North to a different position.

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We can use the options to rotate 90° clockwise or 90° counterclockwise:

Figure 4.47 – The rotate 90° clockwise or 90° counterclockwise options

We can use these two options to rotate Project North, as needed, until you set up the correct position.

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The AutoCAD file position After rotating Project North and trying to save the Revit file, you should get the following message:

Figure 4.48 – AutoCAD position has changed

Click on Save: Saves the new position back to the link. and close the Revit file. This option will change the DWG position. When you reopen the Revit files, you will not see this message again.

Exporting to AutoCAD with the correct orientation Depending on the project stage, companies may use a hybrid process and utilize Revit and AutoCAD simultaneously. In this scenario, we need to export a DWG file from Revit that contains the project in the correct orientation.

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The main objective of this section is to demonstrate the importance of having files with the correct coordinate system to improve efficiency and increase productivity for all of the companies involved in the project. We can follow these steps to export a DWG file from Revit: 1. Click on Export to export the DWG file:

Figure 4.49 – Exporting the DWG file

2. We need to check the DWG settings before exporting and then select the best option for your project: • Select the DWG units. • Select the DWG coordinates:

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Figure 4.50 – The DWG options before exporting

Tip If you use the Internal Origin setting to export a DWG file, the DWG origin (X=0, Y=0, Z=0) coordinates will be located in the same location as the Revit internal origin.

We will start adding levels and grids in the Revit file to complete the project setup.

Adding levels and grids As we now have the project coordinates defined, the next process is to add levels and grids to our project. In the Architecture tab, we can find the tools to add Level and Grid:

Figure 4.51 – Adding levels and grids

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1. Create a Revit section that is parallel to the site and create more levels: Tip Ensure that you stretch the levels and grids to cover the entire building site.

Figure 4.52 – Area to stretch the levels

2. Add the project grids, ensuring they stretch through all the levels and the building site. Now, the process to start a Revit project and set up the project coordinates, levels, and grids is complete. Therefore, you can save this file using the Save As option with the Levels and Grids description. In a project environment, this file should be shared with all consultants so that they can acquire the coordinates from it to set up all the other Revit models from different disciplines. This process will guarantee that all consultants have the files with the correct coordinate system across the project.

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Depending on your project requirements, we need to learn about developing the Volume Strategy and guarantee that every model is linked at the correct location.

Volume strategy Volume strategy is the process of splitting the project into multiple 3D models to facilitate various people working simultaneously and to improve file performance:

Figure 4.53 – Typical volume strategy

Tip Keep in mind that the size of the Revit files should be kept under 300 MB. If you suspect your files might become larger than that, you will need to consider splitting the model.

The process to set up multiple Revit models is simple, and we need to use the Save As option for the Levels and Grids file we created earlier and use it for the other architectural models. Usually, structural and MEP teams need to link the Levels and Grids file, which was initially created by the architects. They should link the file using this option:

Figure 4.54 – Linking with Auto - Internal Origin to Internal Origin

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After this process, the structural and MEP teams need to acquire the coordinates from the Levels and Grids file:

Figure 4.55 – Acquire Coordinates

Once completed, the structural and MEP teams will have their Revit models aligned with the architects' coordinate systems. Now, we need to learn about another project variant, which is when you have multiple buildings on the site with different Project North and rotation points.

Multiple buildings on the site with different Project North We could have multiple buildings on the site with different Project North, so we need to guarantee that all buildings are aligned with the same coordinate system. If the new building is close to the main site where the project base point is located, we can follow these steps: 1. Duplicate the Levels and Grids file or request the site file for your project team. 2. Identify the desired project position for the new building.

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3. Use the Revit tool to rotate Project North as necessary:

Figure 4.56 – Rotate Project North

4. Link the new Revit file with the Auto - By Shared Coordinates option:

Figure 4.57 – Acquiring the coordinates

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In the Chapter 4 dataset, you will find the Building A with different Project North.rvt file, which we can link to Auto - By Shared Coordinates. We should see Building A rotated on the Levels and Grids file. Tip If we have multiple buildings on the site that are close to each other, the best option is to use the same project base point and survey point for all Revit files.

When your project requires a Revit file with a different internal origin and project base point, we can use another workflow to ensure that all files align with the correct coordinate system. This workflow can also be used to fix files that have been incorrectly set up, as we will Publish the coordinates system to the incorrect file. To learn how to publish a coordinate to a Revit file, follow these steps: 1. Open the Setting Up Revit Project - Completed file.rvt file. 2. Link the Building C to fix the Coordinate System.rvt Revit file and use the Auto - Internal Origin to Internal Origin positioning, as follows:

Figure 4.58 – Linking the Revit file

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3. Hold and drag the link to another location:

Figure 4.59 – Holding and dragging the link to another location

Let's assume that it is the desired position for the new building. 4. Now, let's publish the correct coordinate system in this building. Click on Publish Coordinates and then select the new building:

Figure 4.60 – Publish Coordinates

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5. You will the see the following dialogue box. Click on OK:

Figure 4.61 – Publishing the coordinates

6. Click on Save, and we should see a new message. In the new message, click on Save: Saves the new position back to the link.:

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Figure 4.62 – Saving the new position back to the link

Now, the new building has the correct coordinate system, and the project team can link it by using the Auto - By Shared Coordinates positioning. To conclude this section, we have learned how to set up a Revit project and coordinate system. We also explained the volume strategy and learned how to set up multiple buildings on the site.

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Summary In this chapter, we have learned about the Revit coordinate system, which includes the survey point, the project case point, and the Revit internal origin. We explained the challenges of coordinate systems and the importance of having files imported and exported at the correct location to increase efficiency and improve productivity. You also learned how to start a Revit project and set up the project coordinates, including defining True North and Project North. We also looked at an overview of the volume strategy and managed the coordinate system with multiple buildings on the site. In the next chapter, we will show you how to increase productivity with the core Revit functionalities.

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Core Revit Functionalities Revit's core functionalities are the native Revit tools that do not use visual programming or additional plugins to manage model geometry and data. We can gain productivity with Revit's core functionalities by planning ahead using the best workflows in a project and understanding their key functionalities. We need to think critically about how we will spend our time in Revit to become more efficient and analyze possible consequences, if we decide to use a specific workflow. Before we start a specific task, we need to research quality information to ensure that we have enough details to successfully complete the task and think about why we have decided to use a specific process, as well as its benefits. We need to focus our time and energy on the workflow, which will significantly impact our tasks and deliver the required results. Adopting the best Revit practices while you fully understand the problem you wish to solve will improve your effectiveness in BIM projects. This chapter will provide you with knowledge about the best practices for schedule management and how to use Revit Keynote for specification. We will also look at Design Options, Revit Phasing, Scope Boxes, Worksharing, and drawing production best practices.

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The following topics will be covered in this chapter: • Understanding schedule management • Keynote for the project specification • Design Options, Revit Phasing, and Scope Boxes • Worksharing and drawing production best practices

Understanding schedule management You can use Revit schedules to create a list of components from your model that automatically update when the model changes. In Revit, six schedule types are available:

Figure 5.1 – Revit schedule types

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Let's look at these in detail: • Schedule/Quantities This schedule type is the most used schedule to quantify elements in the model. You can find multiple object categories here, such as Curtain Panels, Doors, Furniture, Rooms, Walls, Windows, and others. • Graphical Column Schedules Graphical Column Schedules are used to visualize a column's height, size, and material in a chart. • Material Takeoff The Material Takeoff schedule type calculates the materials in the project. We can use it to estimate quantities and for support cost analysis. • Sheet List The Sheet List schedule type lists all the sheets in the project. It can provide an overview of all project sheets. • Note Block The Note Block schedule type helps make annotation text more efficient, and it gets updated across multiple views. • View List The View List schedule type lists all the views that are available in the project. Now, we will present multiple processes that support Revit schedule management. We have divided the Revit schedule processes into Basic and Advanced to cover multiple levels of experience.

Basic Workflow In the Basic Workflow, have the following processes, which help improve productivity.

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Editing tools We can find most of the editing tools in the Properties section. We can choose to edit Fields, Filter, Sorting/Grouping, Formatting, Appearance, and more:

Figure 5.2 – Revit schedule editing tools

Freeze the Schedule Header When we need to scroll a schedule up and down and keep the schedule header visible, we can use the Revit Freeze Header tool:

Figure 5.3 – Revit schedule – Freeze Header

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Zoom IN and OUT of a Schedule In the latest Revit versions, we can zoom IN and OUT of schedules. If you open any Revit schedule, you can use Ctrl + "+" to zoom in and Ctrl + "-" to zoom out the schedule. However, the most practical process is to hold the Ctrl key and rotate the mouse wheel to zoom into the schedule. Tip To return to 100% zoom, just press Ctrl + 0.

Highlight Rows with Different Colors In this workflow, we can highlight alternate rows with different colors. Follow the steps shown in the following image:

Figure 5.4 – Highlighting rows with different colors

Here, we can see rows with alternate colors that facilitate reading the schedule:

Figure 5.5 – Schedule rows with different colors

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We can also turn on this feature by clicking on Stripe Rows:

Figure 5.6 – Schedule – Stripe Rows

Highlight in Model This tool is useful for highlighting a particular door, room, or other Revit component in the model. We need to select a row and click Highlight in Model:

Figure 5.7 – Highlight in Model

Adding Images to Families and Display in Schedules We can add images of objects to be associated with Revit families and display them on a schedule. Follow these steps to do this: 1. Select a furniture chair family in the project and click Edit Family. 2. Click on the box to select an image file (*.JPG). We must use the Type Image parameter:

Understanding schedule management

Figure 5.8 – Type Image parameter

3. Click …, select the image, and click OK. Load the family back into the project. 4. Add the Type Image parameter to the schedule:

Figure 5.9 – Type Image parameter in the schedule

5. Add Furniture Schedule to the sheet; you will see the product image:

Figure 5.10 – Furniture Schedule with product image

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We can also use the Image parameter to add images to be displayed in schedules:

Figure 5.11 – Using the Image parameter

With this, we can control the image inside the Revit project instead of inside the Revit family. Design Options in Schedules In this workflow, we can display the quantities of objects from Revit Design Options in schedules. You must have Design Options in your project to use this workflow and select which options we want to display in the schedule. Open the Revit schedule and follow these steps to change the specified Design Option:

Figure 5.12 – Design Options in Revit schedules

Schedules for Existing and New Phases We can also create schedules for specific Revit phases, such as Existing or New Construction.

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We can open the schedule and select the required Revit phase in Properties:

Figure 5.13 – Revit phases in schedules

Calculate Totals We can calculate the totals in a schedule to find the total internal area of a building, specific floor, or total quantities.

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To calculate totals, follow these steps: 1. Let's edit a room schedule and select the Area parameter to calculate the totals in the Formatting tab:

Figure 5.14 – Calculate totals

2. In the Sorting/Grouping tab, select Sort by: Level and tick the Footer and Grand Totals options:

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Figure 5.15 – Calculate totals

After clicking OK, we will be able to see the total area that's been calculated.

Advanced Workflow In the Advanced Workflow, we can resolve more difficult tasks in the project. Conditional Formatting Conditional Formatting is a process that's used to compare data and highlight a specific value based on its assigned rules. Let's say we want to identify rooms with an area greater than 100 m2. Here, we can use the Conditional Formatting option to do this.

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Follow these steps to work with Conditional Formatting: 1. Open a room schedule that contains the Area parameter. 2. In the Formatting tab, select the Area parameter and click Conditional Format…:

Figure 5.16 – Conditional Format…

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3. Select the Greater Than option, type in 100, select a Background Color, and click OK:

Figure 5.17 – Conditional Formatting options

We will see all the areas that are greater than 100 m2 highlighted in red:

Figure 5.18 – Areas highlighted with Conditional Formatting

Calculated Fields We can create new parameters in the schedules with formulas and calculate the percentage.

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Follow these steps to calculate the total area percentage: 1. Create a room schedule with the following fields: Count, Level, Name, Number, and Area. 2. Click on Edit… next to Fields and click on fx, labeled Add Calculated Parameter in the following diagram:

Figure 5.19 – Add Calculated Parameter

3. Type in Area Percentage as the parameter's name, select Percentage, and click OK:

Figure 5.20 – Calculated Area Percentage

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4. Now, let's format the Area Percentage units so that they include two decimal places. In the Formatting tab, select Field Format, change Rounding to 2 decimal places, and click OK:

Figure 5.21 – Field Format with 2 decimal places

We will see Area Percentage calculated in the schedule:

Figure 5.22 – Area Percentage calculated with two decimal places

We can also use Calculated Fields to add formulas and calculate multiple values, such as the following: • Cost per area or calculate the general cost. • Compare your designed areas with the client's requirements for areas. • Use formulas to add construction tolerances. • Calculate the weight per square meter and other functionalities.

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To conclude, we have learned about schedule management's key aspects that can support the creation of efficient schedules in Revit. In the next section, we will learn about Revit Keynote, which is used for the project specification. This speeds up the process of adding text annotations.

Keynote for the project specification Keynote is an essential feature for assigning a project specification to element types, individual families, and materials. These processes will save you a lot of time adding notes to your Revit project. Before you can use Keynote, the project team needs to decide which construction specification standards will be implemented. In the UK, the construction industry has used the Common Arrangement of Work Sections (CAWS) codes for many years, but it is no longer maintained. Projects are increasing their usage of Uniclass 2015 codes for the specification. In North America, the construction industry may use OmniClass, which is equivalent to Uniclass, or MasterSpec as the specification system. Companies may use other specification systems as a project requirement. We can find the Keynote tool in the Annotate tab:

Figure 5.23 – Revit Keynote

Before you can annotate objects with Keynotes, you need to receive the Keynote text file (*.txt) from your project specification team or use Autodesk's text file and edit it as necessary.

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Click on Keynoting Settings to find the text file's (*.txt) location:

Figure 5.24 – Revit Keynote text file (*.txt)

The file path's location is C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT2021\Libraries\UK\ RevitKeynotes_GBR.txt. In Keynoting Settings, we can also click Browse to locate the text file. The Keynote text file needs to be copied to your project folder and renamed as required. Usually, the filename will have project code + project name + keynotes in the filename's description. We can visualize the specification code by clicking View:

Figure 5.25 – Visualizing the Keynote text file (*.txt)

When the Keynote file is updated during the project, we need to click on Reload to reload the Keynote file.

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Keynote types There are three ways we can add keynotes:

Figure 5.26 – Keynote options

Let's look at these in detail: • Element Keynote We can apply the Element Keynote to component and system families, including walls, floors, roofs, and other Revit families. The Element Keynote will use the Keynote type parameter to add the specification code as keynote text:

Keynote for the project specification

Figure 5.27 –Keynote type parameter

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We can select the keynote specification code from the list of Keynotes:

Figure 5.28 – Keynote type parameter

• Material Keynote In the Material Keynote, we can add the specification for the material instead of the whole family, as in the previous method:

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Figure 5.29 – Material Keynote

This method is useful when we want to add the specification to individual materials such as bricks, plasterboards, glazing, and others. • User Keynote The User Keynote method is not frequently used as the keynote specification is not associated with Revit components. We can still use the keynote specification list to add annotations to drawings, but it will lose its intelligence and connections with Revit components.

Annotating drawings with Keynote The Revit Keynote process will improve our efficiency of annotating drawings because the specification will be associated with objects. If we change the keynote text, it will automatically update in all views and drawings. Keynote's intelligence is essential to increasing productivity when producing and annotating drawings.

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The process of adding Keynote is simple – we can adopt one of the three aforementioned methods and select a Revit component. Follow these steps to add a keynote: 1. Let's click Element Keynote and select a wall in a plan view. 2. We will see a question mark symbol. Upon clicking a second time to place the annotation, we will be able to select the specification's keynote text:

Figure 5.30 – Selecting the keynote text

3. After clicking OK, we will see the Keynote assigned to the wall:

Figure 5.31 – Keynote assigned to the wall

To conclude, we have learned how to improve productivity and efficiency to annotate drawings with Keynote. In the next section, we will learn about the best practices of Revit's Design Options.

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Design Options Revit's Design Options let you have more than one design solution in the same Revit file. We can switch between Design Options, which helps us design meetings and with client's presentations. The process of creating Design Options is relatively simple, and we will focus on the best practices for managing Design Options to improve our productivity and efficiency. We can find the Design Options tool in the Manage tab | Design Options:

Figure 5.32 – Design Options

Tip When using Design Options, it is better to have "hosting" and "element hosted" in the same Design Option; for example, a wall (hosting) and a door (hosted).

Let's learn about the best practices for managing Design Options in Revit. Naming Design Options Revit Design Options should be named based on your company standards and avoid using the default naming conventions such as "Option 1," "Option 2," and so on.

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When we provide our Design Options with meaningful descriptions, we improve team communication and help team members save time identifying which Design Options needs to be selected or updated. We can rename an Option Set, as well as individual options:

Figure 5.33 – Rename – Design Options

Design Options Visibility When we want to display a specific Design Option in a Revit view, we can overwrite the Primary Option and display another Design Option. This process helps us print or show multiple designs.

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By working with the Enscape Revit plugin, we can show the rendering of multiple design options in real time very quickly. To select which Design Options we want to change the visibility of on a view, follow these steps: 1. Open the view that you want to change the Design Option for. 2. Under Properties, click on Visibility/Graphics Overrides (we can use the VV or VG shortcuts to do this:

Figure 5.34 – Overwrite the Primary Design Option

3. Under the Design Options tab, select the required Design Option:

Figure 5.35 – Overwriting the primary Design Option

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This process will allow us to change Primary Option to another Design Option, such as Extended Kitchen Area or Open Space, as shown in the preceding screenshot. It's worth mentioning that the option will display the Primary Option. Now, let's learn how to do the same process when we're working with Linked Files. If you have multiple Linked Files and you want to change the Design Option, follow these steps: 1. Under Properties, click on Visibility/Graphics Overrides (or type VV or VG as a shortcut). 2. We will see a new tab called Revit Links. Click on Revit Links and then By Host View:

Figure 5.36 – Selecting By Host View

3. In the Basics tab, select Custom:

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Figure 5.37 – Selecting Custom to enable this process

4. In the Design Options tab, select from the drop - down menu and select to change the required Design Option from a Linked file:

Figure 5.38 – Changing a Design Option from a Linked file

Schedule Design Options We can create a Revit Schedule to show the quantities that are provided in Design Options. If we don't change these settings, Revit will always display the quantities in the Primary Option.

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To create a schedule and display a different Design Option, open the Revit Schedule and follow the steps highlighted in the following image:

Figure 5.39 – Changing the Design Options for Revit schedules

Empty Design Options We may need to create an empty Design Option when we don't need to show new geometry in the Primary Option. In this situation, the Primary Option will be empty, but the other Designs Options will have geometry. Increasing Performance With Design Options Multiple Design Options in a Revit file can reduce performance, and it is essential to remove unused Design Options and views frequently. We need to consider what is included in a Design Option wisely so that we have good Revit performance. If the Design Option is a large portion of a building, we may consider creating a new Revit file to link instead of creating a Design Option. Before removing Design Options, we advise that you back up the Revit file with all the Design Options in case the project team needs to return a specific design option in the future.

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After removing the unused Design Options, we recommend running the Purge command to remove unused families. This reduces the file size and improves performance. Issuing Revit Models Without Design Options When you're issuing Revit files to consultants, all the Design Options need to be removed to keep the Revit files optimized for good performance. If required, we can keep specific Design Options based on whether the project team agrees. In this section, we have learned about the best practices surrounding Design Options to gain productivity. In the next section, we will learn about Revit Phasing.

Revit Phasing Revit phases are an excellent function for working with existing buildings as they allow us to distinguish elements from different Phases and Phase Statuses, such as Existing, New, Demolished, and so on. It also helps us control their visibility. In Chapter 3, Revit Templates and Standards, we showed you how to implement Revit Phases for Revit templates. In this section, we will present the best practices for using Revit Phases. Depending on your project's size, we advise having one Revit file for the Existing Phase and another Revit file for the New Phase. Although we may use just one Revit file with both Phases for a single house project, we can gain productivity by using separated files for each Phase in medium and large projects. Revit File with Only the Existing Phase This Revit file will only contain the surveyed model for the existing building, and it will only be used to demolish objects. We can use the Demolish tool from the Modify tab and select objects as required:

Figure 5.40 – The Demolish tool

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Revit File with Only the New Phase This Revit file will contain only the New Phase with new objects. The design team links the Revit file containing the Existing phase to this file, which only contains the new design. This workflow proposes a clear separation between the Existing and New phases, which can help design teams gain productivity. It helps save you time managing objects from different Phases. It will also increase productivity when we need to create schedules or provide Asset Management data that only comes from the Revit file that contains the New phase. Once we've done this, we can link the Revit file containing the Existing phase to the Revit file containing the New phase and use it as a background to develop the design:

Figure 5.41 – Linking the Revit file containing the Existing phase to the New phase

We can add multiple Phases to a project, but it is common to only see the Existing and the New phases being used in various projects.

Phase Filters The Phase Filters that were originally created in Revit are not intuitive and are barriers to understanding and usability, so we advise deleting rows 2 to 7:

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Figure 5.42 – Revit Phase Filters to be deleted

We can increase productivity by recreating new Phase Filters as required in our project, thus facilitating usability. The Phase Filter description is essential to keeping things simple. We suggest the following naming convention: Sequential number + description + graphic overrides description Some examples are as follows: • 01-Existing-By Category • 02-New-By Category • 03-Demolition-By Category • 04-Existing and New-By Category • 05-Existing and New-Overridden • 06-Existing and Demo-Overridden • 07-New and Demo-Overridden

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In Phase Filters, we can create multiple combinations and control Phase Filter overrides:

Figure 5.43 – Revit Phase Filters with new naming conventions

In Phase Filters, there are three options we can choose from: By Category, Overridden, and Not Displayed. When we select a specific Phase Filter, it will display its Graphic Overrides:

Figure 5.44 – Phase Filters and Graphic Overrides tabs

Revit Phasing

We can change Phase Filter and Phase in the Properties section as required by View. This is a quick way to update any view that is not displaying correct information:

Figure 5.45 – Changing the Phase Filters and Phase by View properties

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Phase – Graphic Overrides Graphic Overrides can be updated based on your company standards, and we can choose different colors to represent each Phase Status. The following Phase Statuses are available: • Existing • Demolished • New • Temporary The following screenshot shows the options for changing the Graphic Overrides options:

Figure 5.46 – Revit Phases – Graphic Overrides settings

Tip "Demolished" is the Phase Status of an object and not a Revit Project Phase.

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When working with Phases and Graphic Overrides, we may notice components that are not in the correct Phase. To resolve these issues, we can select the components and change their Phase in the Properties section:

Figure 5.47 – Changing a Revit Phase

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Displaying multiple phases from Linked files Let's learn how to display multiple phases from Linked files in the same view. If we have multiple Linked files and we want to display various phases, then we must follow these steps: 1. Under Properties, click on Visibility/Graphics Overrides (we can use the VV or VG shortcut here):

Figure 5.48 – Changing a Revit Phase

2. We will see a new tab called Revit Links. Click Revit Links and then By Host View:

Figure 5.49 – Changing a Revit Phase By Host View

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3. In the Basic tab, select Custom and select the required Phase or Phase filter from the drop - down menu:

Figure 5.50 – Changing the linked Revit Phase or Phase Filter

In this section, we learned about how to manage Revit Phases to gain productivity. In the next section, we will learn about Scope Boxes, which help control the crop region of multiple views.

Using Scope Boxes Scope Boxes can increase efficiency by applying a specific crop region to multiple views and control Levels and Grids extensions. Scope Boxes are created in the Floor or Ceiling Plan views, but they are visible in multiple views and can be adjusted as required.

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To create a Scope Box, select the Scope Box tool from the View tab:

Figure 5.51 – Drafting the Scope Box in a plan view

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After adding the Scope Box, we need to select and name it. Usually, the name should be a description of the area that you are cropping:

Figure 5.52 – Changing the Scope Box's name

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Once the Scope Box has been created, we can select it from Properties to crop its view:

Figure 5.53 – Selecting and applying the Scope Box to a view

Using Scope Boxes

Now, we can select multiple views from the Project Browser menu and apply the same Scope Boxes:

Figure 5.54 – Selecting and applying the Scope Box to multiple views

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If we need to edit the Scope Box area, we need to select the None option to make the view crop region editable: Tip Tick the Annotation Crop option to hide annotations outside the Scope Box.

Figure 5.55 – Ticking the Annotation Crop option to hide annotations outside the Scope Box

Rotating a Scope Box Rotating a Scope Box can increase our productivity if we are working in a building wing that is not horizontal or vertical. After rotating the Scope Box, we can draft in Revit using horizontal and vertical axes, which is easier than drawing an angle. Follow these steps:

Using Scope Boxes

1. To start, we need to create a Scope Box and rotate it as required:

Figure 5.56 – Creating a Scope Box and rotating it as required

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2. Apply the Scope Box to a view. You will need to zoom out and find the rotated view:

Figure 5.57 – Horizontal view with a rotated Scope Box

As we can see, the view is rotated horizontally and can carry on working in this view as required. Now, if we want to rotate the view in a different direction by using Scope Boxes, we need to follow these steps:

Using Scope Boxes

1. Select the Scope Box. We will see the Scope Box rotation symbol, which is at the top right:

Figure 5.58 – Scope Box rotation symbol

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2. Use the Rotate tool to rotate the Scope Box as required. In the following image, we can see that the Scope Box rotation symbol is at the bottom left before we assign the Scope Box to a view. Once we've assigned the Scope Box to a view, the view will be rotated so that the rotation symbol is at the top right:

Figure 5.59 – Before and after rotating the Scope Box

In this workflow, we can see that after assigning the Scope Box to a view, the view will rotate to place the rotation symbol at the top right. In this section, we learned how to use a Scope Box to increase productivity. In the next section, we will learn about Worksharing in Revit.

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Worksharing Worksharing in Revit is a process that allows multiple users to work simultaneously in the same Revit file. We can collaborate with multiple users by adopting the Central and Local files workflow.

Figure 5.60 – Synchronizing with Central and Local files

How to create a Revit Central file Let's learn how to create a Revit Central file. Follow these steps: 1. Save the initial Revit file in the correct folder and with the appropriate naming convention. In Chapter 4, Starting a Revit Project Efficiently, we learned how to start a Revit project and set up the project's coordinates, so this will be the initial file that contains the correct coordinate system.

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2. In the Collaborate tab, click on Collaborate:

Figure 5.61 – Collaborate tool

3. Let's assume that we are working in your private network and not using the Autodesk BIM 360 cloud platform. Select the Within your network option and click OK:

Figure 5.62 – Collaborating within your network

Worksharing

4. Click Save in the Quick Access bar:

Figure 5.63 – Save

5. A new window will appear. Click Yes:

Figure 5.64 – Enable Worksharing

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6. Click on the following option to synchronize:

Figure 5.65 – Synchronize with Central

7. Tick the User-Created Worksets option and click OK:

Figure 5.66 – Synchronize with Central

Now we've created a Revit Central file, we should close it. Tip We should never work in the Central file as it will cause problems with Worksharing, and the Local files will stop working.

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We can now invite other users to collaborate in the same file by creating their Revit Local files. it's useful to create the project Worksets as required. We will learn about Revit Worksets later in this section.

How to create a Revit Local file Let's learn how to create a Revit Local file, which is the working file that users will be continually creating to collaborate and work on the project. Each team member will have their own Local file to work in, and we will make a new Local file every time we want to open a Revit file that is using Worksharing. You need to have a Revit Central file to create a Revit Local file. The Local file should be saved on your computer and not on the company drivers' network. To create a Revit Local file, follow these steps: 1. Start Revit. 2. Click Open and browse to locate the project's Central file. Then, select it. The Create New Local option will be automatically selected. Click Open:

Figure 5.67 – Creating a Revit Local file

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Now that the Revit Local file has been created, we can see our username or Autodesk ID in the filename:

Figure 5.68 – Revit username

We should repeat this process to create a new Local file every time we want to work on a project with Worksharing enabled and Central files. After creating the Local file, we can work in the Revit file, but we need to Synchronize to save our work back to the Central file as necessary. There are two options for synchronizing, as shown in the following image:

Figure 5.69 – Synchronizing to the Central file

We should Synchronize every 30 minutes or every time we make a significant change to the model. This will "relinquish" the objects that you have control over back to the Central file so that other users can have access to those objects.

Best practices for Worksharing The following best practices for Worksharing will help you avoid issues and maintain good Revit performance.

Worksharing

Worksets Worksets is a tool that allows us to create a collection of objects that we can unload (Close) and reload (Open) and control the visibility of in a view. There are two main benefits of Worksets: • Improve Revit performance: When objects are unloaded (Closed), Revit will perform faster. • Improve your performance: Control the object's visibility to hide unnecessary geometry to improve your performance when working on a specific task. A list of typical worksets can be found in the following file, which you can find in the dataset for Chapter 3, Revit_Template_Check_List.xlsx:

Figure 5.70 – Worksets List

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The process of creating worksets is simple. Follow the steps shown in the following screenshot:

Figure 5.71 – Creating Worksets

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The following are the best practices for managing worksets: • Create one Workset for every linked model. This will help unload unnecessary links. There is also another option for unload links called For me under Manage Links:

Figure 5.72 – Option to unload links

• Create one Workset for all CAD/DWG files. Note that these files will be linked instead of imported. • Avoid creating a large number of worksets. Less than 20 Worksets should be able to support most project types. • Close the worksets that you don't need so that Revit performance improves.

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• When you're creating a Local file, selecting which Worksets we want to close by choosing the Specify… option will make Revit open the file quicker:

Figure 5.73 – Closing Worksets when creating a Local file

We can make the Specify… option the default option by recreating the Central file with the Save As option:

Figure 5.74 – Setting the Specify option as the default

• Revit components must be added to the correct workset, which will increase productivity and help control visibility and performance. • Keep a good naming convention for Worksets. • Levels and Grids should be on the Shared Levels and Grids workset.

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• You can control the Workset's visibility by using a specific view:

Figure 5.75 – Controlling the Workset's visibility in a specific view

• You can control the Workset's visibility globally across the project in multiple views:

Figure 5.76 – Controlling the Workset's visibility across the project in multiple views

• Synchronize with the Central file frequently to relinquish objects from Worksets.

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• Avoid deleting or renaming the default worksets:

Figure 5.77 – Default Workset

• Avoid making the worksets Editable and set this to No:

Figure 5.78 – Avoid making the Workset editable

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• The Worksharing Display Settings option enables us to color code Worksets:

Figure 5.79 – Color-coding Worksets

• Manage Worksets from linked files. In Manage Links, select the link and click on Manage Worksets:

Figure 5.80 – Managing Worksets from linked files

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Core Revit Functionalities Tip The quickest way to access Manage Worksets is by going to the Project Browser, right-clicking, and selecting Manage Worksets:

Figure 5.81 – Selecting Manage Worksets

Local File Saving Path The Local file should be saved on your local computer on its local hard drive, not on your company's network drives:

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Figure 5.82 – Path for Revit Local files

We recommend creating a dedicated folder to save the Local files in, such as Revit_20XX_ Local_Files (where 20XX is the Revit version), so that the Revit files aren't mixed up with other files located in the Documents folder. The default path for the user files is C:\Users\\Documents\ Revit_20XX_Local_Files\.

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Username The Revit Username is used to identify your Local file. The Autodesk license that utilizes Single Sign-On (SSO) automatically defines this Username based on your Autodesk profile:

Figure 5.83 – Username

Worksharing Monitor Worksharing Monitor is used to identify users in the model and choose the best time to synchronize them. This helps save time if we're wait for other users to complete this process:

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Figure 5.84 – Identifying users in the model with Worksharing Monitor

Central File Maintenance The Central file needs to be audited and compacted from time to time to improve its performance and reduce any risk of file corruption. The following points are essential for managing Central Files: • Audit Central files from time to time:

Figure 5.85 – Auditing a Central file

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• When you're synchronizing the Local file, Compact the Central file from time to time:

Figure 5.86 – Compact Central Model (slow)

• If necessary, use the Restore Backup option to roll back changes that were made to the Central file:

Figure 5.87 – Restore Backup

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• We can find our synchronization history under the Show History option, which helps us identify the last person to synchronize the model and its comments:

Figure 5.88 – Show History

• Recreating the Central file requires all users to be out of the project. This can also be applied to other maintenance tasks. • To open the Central Model for maintenance, untick the Create New Local option:

Figure 5.89 – Opening the Central file

• There are two options for issuing Revit models: click Open and select Detach from Central or select the Transmit model(s) tool from the Add-ins tab:

Figure 5.90 – Issuing Central files

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Local files The following points are essential for managing Local files: • We should create a new Local file every time we want to open the Revit file. • Always work from the Local file. • Never open an old Local file or use the icons on Revit's opening screen:

Figure 5.91 – Recent Files – Revit opening screen

• Synchronize frequently. We recommend doing so every 30 minutes or every time you make a significant change to the model. • Avoid keeping the Local file open and inactive for a long period of time. It may slow down the Local files of your team, and it will take longer to synchronize. If you're going to a meeting, lunch, or leaving the company in the evening, close your Local file.

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• Synchronize the Local file before closing it. We can also save time if we choose Relinquish All Mine first before choosing to Synchronize:

Figure 5.92 – Relinquish All Mine

• If we want to close the file without saving, select the Relinquish all elements and worksets option:

Figure 5.93 – Relinquish all elements and worksets

• Follow the Revit Recommended Settings options from Chapter 1, Introduction to Productivity in Revit, to model economically and keep the file sizes small.

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• Replacing the Consultants model with a new version that must keep the Revit file with the same name to avoid losing your overwriting settings. When you receive a new file, the filename needs to be identical and not have an issue date. The filename must not have been revised. You may be wondering, how can we identify which model revision is linked to our model? We create folders for each revision (P01, P02, and so on), and when we link the Revit files from these folders, we can check the revisions in the file path by going to Manage Links:

Figure 5.94 – Identifying the Consultants model

Upgrading Central Files Before we can upgrade Revit files to a new Revit version, we need to consider a few factors: • If the project is at a late stage or in the Construction stage, consider working in the same version and not upgrading. That being said, if the required version is not available in the Autodesk Portal to be downloaded, you may need to ask for dispensation from Autodesk to use an old version of Revit. • Before the upgrade, you must get the agreement of the whole team. • Ensure that the Revit plugins you can used in the project can work in the new Revit version. • Upgrade a Revit Detached copy to run the tests. If the tests run without problems, we can upgrade the main Central file. Select the Detach from Central and Audit options:

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Figure 5.95 – Select the Detach from Central and Audit options before the upgrade

• Confirm that all the Revit versions involved in the upgrade have the latest Revit release updates. • Start upgrading the linked files and then the main file, which contains all the links. If you upgrade the main file first, it will take longer to complete the process as each link needs to be upgraded in the background. We can also remove the links before upgrading. • After upgrading, check the Revit file for lost geometry and data. • If we are upgrading legacy files from many years ago, you may wish to upgrade to the latest version directly. If you find any problems, you can upgrade the file to an old version and move it to a more recent Revit version, every 2 or 3 versions, until you get to the required version. In this section, we learned how to create Central file and Local files, as well as the best practices about Worksharing in Revit. In the next section, we will learn about drawing production.

Drawing production Efficient drawing production is an essential skill if you wish to master Revit and deliver a set of PDF and DWG files as project deliverables. We can increase productivity for drawing production by focusing on three best practices: • Plan the drawing list. • Work with a good Revit template. • Control drawing visibility. Plan the Drawing List At the beginning of each stage, we must plan the drawing list to be produced and avoid creating drawings as the project continues to be developed.

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When we have a list of drawings, the project team or the BIM coordinator can quickly create all the sheets with the correct names, numbers, statuses, and other information. This process is essential for gaining productivity in delivering drawings. We can automate this process to create multiple sheets directly in Revit, or we can use the Dynamo and Revit plugins to speed up this process. The key point is to make it clear what deliverables will be produced to the design team and assign team members responsibilities regarding drawing production. Once the drawings sheets have been created, the project team or the BIM coordinator can populate most of the sheets with Revit views, even if the views haven't been completed or are very basic. As the project develops, the drawing sheets will start to take form, and the project manager can print the set of drawings to verify your progress. This initial drawing set is called Cartoon Set, which helps you plan project deliverables. The Cartoon Set increases efficiency as we can ensure that the drawing set includes all the necessary information to be delivered. As the projects are developed, the Cartoon Set will become a complete set of drawings, which helps ensure that we meet our deadlines smoothly and efficiently. Tip Creating multiple drawing sheets at the last minute before the deadline is a bad idea!

Work with a Good Revit Template The drawing's production efficiency will depend on the Revit template's quality, which will include line weight, view templates, title sheets, and other Revit settings. In Chapter 3, Revit Templates and Standards, we learned how to create and improve the Revit template. The industry and organization standards included in the template will promote consistency across the project(s) and align them with the graphical and technical standards. Control Drawing Visibility We can control the drawing visibility in multiple ways, such as by using View Templates and other techniques, but a few processes can help improve productivity so that we can create drawings in PDF and DWG format.

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The following can help you improve performance: • Control the View Range settings to limit what Revit needs to calculate as geometry beyond what's necessary. The Primary Range Bottom and View Depth can be used to limit the calculated geometry, which will improve performance:

Figure 5.96 – View Range settings

• Control Far Clip Offset to display the required area only. Revit will increase performance when we limit the calculated geometry:

Figure 5.97 – Far Clip Offset

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• Shadows will increase the time to create PDF files. Turn off shadows if they are not required. • Check if the linked files are necessary for a specific view. Revit's performance will increase if we unload the unnecessary links. • Ensure we have installed the latest printer driver or plugin installed to print PDF files. In Chapter 9, Enhancing Productivity with Plugins, we will learn more about Revit plugins. In this section, we learned about three factors that can affect productivity when we're producing drawings in Revit.

Summary In this chapter, we learned about the Revit core functionalities and best practices to improve efficiency when working with schedules and keynotes for construction specifications. The schedule workflows were divided into Basic and Advanced to help cover the essential processes for managing schedules. In Revit, keynotes are used to assign construction specifications to Revit components, thus increasing productivity and consistency when we're annotating drawings. We then explained the best practices and workflows for Design Options, Phasing, and Scope Boxes, which help us to be more efficient in our daily activities when we're working with Revit. We also learned about workflows for Worksharing so that we can collaborate with multiple users working simultaneously in the same file. After that, we presented the three main factors for increasing productivity during drawing production, including defining the drawing list, working with a good Revit template, and controlling the drawing's visibility. In the next chapter, we will cover visual programming with Dynamo and learn how to automate specific tasks in Revit.

Section 3: Adding Visualizations and Dashboards to Your Data In this section, there are the following chapters: • Chapter 6, Visual Programming with Dynamo • Chapter 7, Dashboard Analyses with Power BI In these chapters, you will gain the basic knowledge of Dynamo you need to increase your productivity in Revit, and you will also learn how to run multiple analyses in Power BI with Revit data. The following topics will be covered: • The basics of Dynamo BIM • The importance of mastering Dynamo to increase efficiency in Revit • How to export and import data from Revit to Power BI • Analyzing Revit data with Power BI

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Visual Programming with Dynamo Visual programming enables users to create a script by changing graphical elements rather than text programming, which is the typical process for developing a code. Basically, we are creating algorithms without writing code:

Figure 6.1 – Dynamo graphical elements

Users don't require any programming experience to start using visual programming applications, such as Dynamo, and automate Revit tasks, but it requires dedication to learn and master a new process. Dynamo is an open source software that enables visual programming for Revit, Civil 3D, and other software.

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The principles of Dynamo follow three basic processes: INPUT + FUNCTIONS AND OPERATIONS + OUTPUT We will be able to increase productivity in Revit by using Dynamo to automate multiple workflows and complete repetitive tasks quickly. This chapter will provide you with a basic knowledge of Dynamo and demonstrate the importance of mastering this application to increase efficiency in Revit. The chapter will also provide you with an introduction to Dynamo, show the most commonly used Dynamo packages, and explain how to use certain workflows with Dynamo. The following topics will be covered in this chapter: • Dynamo • Expanding Dynamo • Best practices

Technical requirements In this chapter, you will need access to Autodesk Revit. The version used to describe all of these exercises is Revit 2021, but you can follow along with another version. It's important to take the following into consideration: • Different versions might be slightly different from each other. • Older versions of Revit cannot open files from an earlier version. All datasets used for this chapter can be found in the book's GitHub repository at https://github.com/PacktPublishing/-Increasing-Autodesk-RevitProductivity-for-BIM-Projects.

Introducing Dynamo Productivity in business is a significant factor for a company's performance. Increasing productivity is a process for working smarter in a pre-defined time frame to match your project deadline.

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Productivity methodologies are as follows: • Time management • Tasks completed by the workforce • Personal performance • Ratio to manufacture a product Dynamo will increase productivity by improving your performance to complete a repetitive task and work with complex geometry. Dynamo is an open source application that can be used as a standalone Sandbox or connected with other software, such as Revit, Maya, Civil3D, or any other application that has an API (short for Application Programming Interface) available. It is designed to expand Revit's capability by automating processes and workflows. It will not add new tools to Revit, but it will help to automate existing tools for almost unlimited tasks and modeling processes. Let's start by accessing Dynamo from Revit: 1. Open a new Revit project. 2. From the Manage tab, go to the Visual Programming panel.

Figure 6.2 – Visual Programming panel

3. Click on Dynamo.

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After clicking, the Dynamo window will appear:

Figure 6.3 – Dynamo canvas

For more information about Dynamo, please refer to the following link: https://bit.ly/3b9vxua

QR code:

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Tip This can be accessed by clicking Dynamo Website from the Dynamo Start page, where you can access the main web page with all the information about the software.

To access video tutorials, please refer to the following link: https://bit.ly/3tBTUsQ

QR code:

Tip This can be accessed by clicking Video Tutorials from the Dynamo Start page.

There is a vast community available where it is possible to not only learn from the rest of the community, but also to share knowledge. The following link will allow access to the forum: https://bit.ly/3ajneMZ

QR code:

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Visual Programming with Dynamo Tip This can be accessed by clicking Discussion Forum from the Dynamo Start page.

There is also a dictionary where we can find Dynamo-related information. This is continuing to evolve as the community updates it from time to time: https://bit.ly/3cPuBgJ

QR code:

Tip This can be accessed by clicking Dynamo Dictionary from the Dynamo Start page.

What is a visual programming tool? A visual programming tool allows all users (programmers and non-programmers) to use the tool more interactively. This way, it facilitates how they will be working with the software by making a graph (visual script).

Working with Dynamo Working in conjunction with Revit software, Dynamo enables progressive learning typically in three stages: • Experts: Develop parametric and complex models. • Intermediates: Perform QA/QC checks. • Beginners: Manage data in Revit models to import and export information.

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Dynamo version When working with Dynamo, it is crucial to know which Dynamo version we are working on. On a project level, and when a Dynamo script is developed, it is important to always keep the same Dynamo version as some of the packages may vary from one version to the next. To find out which Dynamo version we are working on, perform the following steps: 1. From the Help pull-down menu, click About:

Figure 6.4 – About Dynamo window

It is essential to keep Dynamo updated, but bear in mind that before updating to a more recent version, all Dynamo graphs that are in use on projects can still be used in the newer version.

Creating a new script As an overview, we can say that Dynamo's main output is a graph that connects to Revit models. This graph creates a dependency relationship with the Revit elements. Having said this, we can say that working with Dynamo means building a graph to edit Revit elements.

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All nodes available in Dynamo are organized as follows: • Libraries • Categories • Subcategories

Figure 6.5 – Dynamo library structure

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Tip By hovering the mouse over a subcategory, Dynamo will bring up a tip with a description of the tool.

When users want to add nodes to the canvas, they usually use the search area and type the node-related name:

Figure 6.6 – Search node

When any user needs to add a new node, it is possible (and faster) to right-click in the canvas and type the node's name in the Search area.

Figure 6.7 – Searching a node through the context menu

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After clicking the subcategory, the node will be added to the canvas. Each node has a structure similar to the following:

Figure 6.8 – Node structure

When starting to work with Dynamo, it is essential to understand all these areas as they will provide important information from the node itself.

Creating a simple graph To create a graph in Dynamo, we need to fire up from one node to another by clicking from the node's output to the next node's input. When developing a graph, it should be read from the left-hand side to the right-hand side. The same order will be followed by Dynamo when we execute it. To start creating a new graph, perform the following steps: 1. From the Dynamo Splash Screen, click New. 2. Right-click in the canvas and search for the following: • Number • Point • Watch

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3. For each search result, click on the following: • Number Slider • By Coordinates • Watch 4. From the Number Slider node, click on the right-hand side arrow output and click again on any of the point coordinates' input (X, Y or Z):

Figure 6.9 – Connecting nodes

5. Do the same from the Point.ByCoordinates node to the Watch node. By default, Dynamo is set up to run automatically following any change, so you will be able to see the result:

Figure 6.10 – Connecting nodes

The results will be automatically updated by changing which coordinate we want to use or by adding more sliders and assigning them to different inputs:

Figure 6.11 – Changing how a script will run

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As a good practice, we recommend always having it as manual. Otherwise, with every single change, the script will run automatically. By changing it, only when the user clicks Run will Dynamo execute the script. To conclude, we have learned how to know which Dynamo version is installed and how to start creating a simple graph using the nodes that are available when installing the software. In the next section, we will learn how to install and manage the already installed Dynamo packages and add or identify existing Python scripts. We will also cover how to run a script using Dynamo and the Dynamo Player.

Expanding Dynamo When working with Dynamo, some scripts will require further development by using the Python computational language. Using Python is an essential skill in becoming an expert in Dynamo. As the Dynamo community is based on an open source environment, many users share these graphs with all other users and are available to be installed at any time. These packages are Dynamo version-specific, and that's why it is essential to always keep track of all versions that are available and have been installed. It is not recommended to update them in the middle of a project but, if it is really necessary, update them only if the design team agrees. By not doing this control, it may happen that the scripts developed and used during the project will no longer work because of these updates. Bear in mind that if this is an open source community, there is no guarantee that these packages shared previously will be maintained for future versions. Advanced users will develop their scripts as this will stop these dependencies of having packages developed by a third-party individual or company.

Dynamo packages One of the most important activities that needs to be done is to install and manage Dynamo packages. There is a massive list of packages available that can be used when working with Dynamo. It would be almost impossible to know all the available packages, and even knowing that, there are new scripts and packages shared on a daily basis.

Expanding Dynamo

To access the list of all available packages, perform the following steps: 1. Open Revit and, from the Manage tab, click on Dynamo:

Figure 6.12 – Opening Dynamo from Revit

2. From the top menu, click on Packages and then select Manage Packages...:

Figure 6.13 – Managing installed packages

3. In the new window, click on the Package Manager Website button:

Figure 6.14 – Installed Packages Manager

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This will allow users to access the Dynamo Package Manager. This web page shows all the packages available, how many installations were performed, and how many registered authors have developed scripts:

Figure 6.15 – Dynamo Package Manager web page

Along with this information, it is possible to see which are the newest packages shared with the community, which packages have been updated most recently, which packages have been installed the most, and which packages are depended on the most. These packages are shared by community members and should be consumed and installed with confidence in the community. There is a list of authors where we can see who has the most votes, who is the most active, and who has the most packages installed.

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You can access this information by referring to the following link: https://bit.ly/3rUP1cm

QR code:

Installing packages When sharing a Dynamo script, it is vital to ensure that all users will have the same packages that need to be installed to run it. This is very important as any user can install a package available by accessing it directly from Dynamo. To install packages, perform the following steps: 1. Open Revit and, from the Manage tab, click on Dynamo. 2. From the top menu, click on Packages and select Search for a Package…:

Figure 6.16 – Installing a package

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3. In the new window, under Search, click the package name to be searched – Rhythm. When typing the package name, Dynamo filters the results available:

Figure 6.17 – Online package available

4. To install the package, click the arrow on the left-hand side:

Figure 6.18 – Package installation

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Tip By clicking the package's description, it is possible to access the package's history, and a specific version can be installed, if available.

5. A window will pop up to confirm installation:

Figure 6.19 – Package installation

If the package installed has dependencies, for example, Python scripts or binaries, a warning pops up to confirm whether it can be installed. Important Note As Python scripts may affect your computer, please ensure that the source from where the script is being downloaded can be trusted.

Depending on which Dynamo version is being used, the package that the user is trying to install might not be compatible with the current Dynamo version:

Figure 6.20 – Package installation confirmation

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Once the package has been installed, Dynamo will show that information:

Figure 6.21 – Package installed

Although it is possible to install as many packages as you want, it is recommended to keep the number of packages at the minimum required. Ensure that only trusted packages will be installed since, when executing them, this may corrupt the model. Here is a list of some excellent packages that we recommend to be installed: • Archilab.net • Clockwork • Lunchbox • Rhythm • Spring Nodes When installed, they will be available in the Add-ons library:

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Figure 6.22 – New packages installed and available

Using the Dynamo forum will allow you to be aware of more interesting packages that can be used.

Managing installed packages To manage the list of all packages installed, perform the following steps: 1. Open Revit and, from the Manage tab, click on Dynamo:

Figure 6.23 – Opening Dynamo from Revit

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2. From the top menu, click on Packages and then select Manage Packages…:

Figure 6.24 – Managing installed packages

3. To uninstall a package, click the icon on the right-hand side and select Uninstall…:

Figure 6.25 – Uninstalling packages

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A warning pops up informing you that, after uninstalling, Dynamo needs to be closed and restarted:

Figure 6.26 – Message to restart before uninstallation is executed

Another warning will be presented to the user to confirm whether the package should be uninstalled. After clicking on Yes, the package will be uninstalled:

Figure 6.27 – Confirmation of uninstalling

After uninstalling a package, some of the scripts with dependencies on the packages installed will not be able to run.

Expanding Dynamo with Python Python is one of the most popular programming languages, and it can be used to develop Dynamo scripts as it is user-friendly and easy to learn. As mentioned before, by developing our Python scripts, we can avoid having external dependencies (no packages needed), and the scripts can be more optimized and quick to execute on a project. It is recommended to develop bespoke scriptings based on what the project demands with regard to automation. This is possible as Python can connect with the Revit API – a set of communication methods between various components of the software, to interact with Revit elements.

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By way of a summary, these are the advantages of using Python: • It does not depend on other Dynamo dependencies. • It can be more structured regarding the use of nodes. • It is much faster and objective regarding the task to be developed. Dynamo has a built-in editor for Python. To access it, perform the following steps: 1. Search for a Python node:

Figure 6.28 – Python Script node

2. Double-click in the light gray area to access the editor:

Figure 6.29 – Python editor

After adding all script lines, by clicking on Save Changes, the node will be recorded automatically and kept in Dynamo:

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Figure 6.30 – Python node

For more information about Python, please refer to the following link: https://bit.ly/3d9Bo5d

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For more information about the Revit API, please refer to the following link: https://bit.ly/2Ox8EZL

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Dynamo Workflows It requires some experience to develop graphs, but you can build your skills and increase productivity with Dynamo over time. Before running the graph, ensure that you are running the correct graph with all the packages installed as required. Before running the script, confirm that you understand what is required as input. This might require some confidence in editing graphs to add what is necessary regarding the selected inputs.

Automating sheet creation In this step-by-step process, we will be importing some data from an Excel file, and it will be used to create sheet placeholders. It is possible to add any information required by adding another column and use the header with the Parameter name (case sensitive). To use Dynamo on a Revit project for this workflow, perform the following steps: 1. Open Revit and then open the Project_Sample-Dynamo.rvt file. 2. Under the Manage tab, click on Dynamo. 3. In the Dynamo window, click File and then select Open. Select the script AutomateSheetCreation-Dynamo.dyn:

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Figure 6.31 – Opening scripts

After opening, confirm the script should run in Manual mode. As mentioned before, when running a script, it may be necessary to give some inputs before running the script. In this exercise, we will be selecting the Excel file. It is essential to take the following into consideration: a. The Excel file needs to be selected, and the sheet number should be unique. b. The sheet name must be taken into consideration. c. The first lines from the excel needs to be ignored as they are the excel headers (First row of the data). 4. Click Browse and then select the Excel file, DrawingList.xlsx. 5. Ensure that the sheet name matches the one in the node.

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6. Confirm whether the number of headers matches the number in Excel:

Figure 6.32 – Inputs to be confirmed

7. Click Run. Going back to Revit, all the sheet placeholders have been created and are ready to be used:

Figure 6.33 – Sheet placeholders in Revit

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When creating the sheets, all the information will be populated accordingly:

Figure 6.34 – Sheets created in Revit

How to use Dynamo Player Dynamo Player is a handy feature that allows users to run a Dynamo script more simply without opening Dynamo. It can be configured to set a specific folder with a list of scripts with all users within an organization. It is easy to keep the folder updated and ensure that all users will be using the same scripts.

Setting up Dynamo Player Dynamo Player needs to be open from Revit, and it is not necessary to open any Dynamo instance. If necessary, the script can be opened from Dynamo Player. Let´s go through the exercise: 1. Open Revit and then open the Project_Sample-DynamoPlayer.rvt file.

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2. Under the Manage tab, click on Dynamo Player:

Figure 6.35 – Opening Dynamo Player

A new window will open where it is possible to configure where all the scripts will be accessed:

Figure 6.36 – Dynamo Player

At the top of the floating window, we have three icons that allow users to do the following: • Browse to Folder: This option allows users to select the folder from which the scripts can be accessed. • View Current Folder: This option allows users to open the folder where the scripts are saved.

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• Refresh: This option allows users to refresh the list of scripts available in the folder, and which are listed here. We can access all scripts available in the folder defined as the central folder where all the scripts should be saved: • List of scripts: This option allows users to select which script needs to be run by clicking the Play icon. When clicking the Play icon, the script will be executed. If the script requires user inputs, it will be requested by Dynamo Player:

Figure 6.37 – User inputs using Dynamo Player

We recommend using Dynamo Player as the main tool to run scripts, knowing that some of the scripts are better for advanced users as they may be more demanding.

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To set up the folder where all the scripts should be kept, perform the following steps: 1. Click on the Browser to Folder icon and select the DynamoScripts folder:

Figure 6.38 – Setting up the folder to save the Dynamo scripts

2. Click OK. All the scripts available in that folder will be listed. Another important aspect that we need to bear in mind is that some scripts may require inputs. To have the nodes defined as inputs, it needs to be done by using Dynamo: 1. Hover the mouse over the node and right-click. 2. Select Is Input:

Figure 6.39 – Defining nodes as "Is Input"

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This needs to be done to all nodes that need to be used as Inputs as it will allow Dynamo Player to show it to the user.

Running a script with Dynamo Player Now that the script is ready to request the inputs, let's run a script with Dynamo Player: 1. Click on the Play icon. 2. Dynamo Player pops up all the inputs required. 3. Once all of them are filled, click on the Play icon again:

Figure 6.40 – Script inputs

After running the scripts, all the placeholders will be created as expected if there are no errors. To conclude, we have learned how to install and managing Dynamo packages. We also explained how to add and edit Python nodes, which is very useful for users with Python programming knowledge. We learned how to run a script using the Dynamo Player to facilitate the process of using Dynamo and improve productivity.

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In the next section, we will describe what should be the best practices when creating a graph.

Best practices When constructing a graph, it is quite common to add nodes all over the place:

Figure 6.41 – A disorganized Dynamo graph

When a graph becomes more complex, it will be hard to read or even to maintain. For that reason, it is essential when a user is developing a script to keep it organized as much as possible. This becomes a critical aspect when it is distributed across multiple teams. As best practices, we recommend the following: • Organize the graph properly: a. Group the graph as much as possible into different functionalities. b. Order the script from left to right. c. When having parallel processes at the same time, order the script vertically:

Figure 6.42 – A properly structured Dynamo script

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• Name everything properly: a. All groups should be named with a clear title indicating the group's overall function (with a large font size to be visible when zoomed out). b. All code blocks, custom nodes, Python nodes, and other useful objects should be appropriately named in an informative way to help users understand the whole graph better. c. Name the parameters/code block variables:

Figure 6.43 – Groups and nodes appropriately named

• Use a Color Code for the groups according to the categories used: a. Input b. Control c. Function d. Output

Figure 6.44 – Color code for groups

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• Add, as many as are required: a. If required, add them as a panel or note. b. Additional information should be added when required:

Figure 6.45 – Notes added to the graph

All this extra information will make the script easier to read as it will identify whatever should be used and whatever needs to be understood before using the script. As this script might be used for a large number of team members and may be shared across projects and teams, it is essential to add some valuable information, including the following: • TITLE: This is what the script does in general. • AUTHOR'S NAME: If, for some reason, there is a problem with the script and it needs to be amended or explained, you know who to ask. • DESCRIPTION: This option explains what the script will do. • DATE: This is when the script was developed. • DEPENDENCIES: This option indicates which packages are required in order to use the script, and which versions per package.

Best practices

Figure 6.46 – Adding a header with important information about the script

Once the graph is complete, it should be clear and easy to understand. Having this standard in place will help to maintain consistency across all scripts:

Figure 6.47 – Dynamo Script following standards

Also, when an upgrade or any maintenance is required, it will be easier to access what needs to be changed and updated.

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Summary In this chapter, we have learned what Dynamo is and how users can work with Dynamo to improve performance and productivity. We learned that Python is one of the most common Programming languages, and it can be used in Dynamo together with the Revit API. This connection can enhance what can be altered in Revit. We learned how to use Dynamo Player as a feature to run scripts on a project. We also looked into how to set up a folder that can be used across the organization to share the most common scripts that can be used in multiple projects. We shared the best practices that should be used when developing Dynamo scripts (which can be extended to all the software that requires specific visual programming, such as Grasshopper). In the next chapter, we will cover how we can get and manage the dashboard using Power BI or other software, such as Excel.

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Dashboard Analyses with Power BI Data science in construction is an emerging sector with a vast potential to improve businesses in multiple areas, such as predicting design or construction issues, risk analysis, and optimizing building assets. Companies are using data-driven workflows to understand data and increase certainty in business decisions. Dashboard analyses can help us to understand data with graphics and support companies to make better decisions in the project environment. It provides an efficient way to analyze building data, and BIM software is a data resource that we can use for multiple analyses. There are many applications for producing dashboards, but we will use Microsoft Power BI in this book. This chapter will introduce Power BI for Revit to enable you to progress into more advanced workflows with Power BI. The chapter will also explain the process of exporting and importing data from Revit to Power BI and analyzing data with Power BI. The following topics will be covered in this chapter: • Introduction to Power BI for Revit • Exporting and importing data from Revit to Power BI • Analyzing Revit data with Power BI

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Technical requirements In this chapter, you will need access to Autodesk Revit. The version used to describe all of these exercises is Revit 2021, but you can follow along with another version. It's important to take the following into consideration: • Different versions might be slightly different from each other. • Older versions of Revit cannot open files from an earlier version. All datasets used for this chapter can be found in the book's GitHub repository at https://github.com/PacktPublishing/-Increasing-Autodesk-RevitProductivity-for-BIM-Projects.

Introduction to Power BI for Revit Power BI is a software developed by Microsoft that has a vast collection of software services, apps, and connectors developed to work together and make sure that the data gathered can be shown in a coherent, visual, and interactive way through different dashboards. The data can be brought in in different ways, from various sources, and analyzed in different ways. As Microsoft Power BI has different versions, tools, and apps, we will be using the free version: Microsoft Power BI Desktop. All the different versions of Microsoft Power BI can be found at the following link: https://bit.ly/3qVVi7U

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Installing Microsoft Power BI Desktop The process of getting the application is quite simple and straightforward. By accessing the Microsoft Power BI web page, it will be possible to get the software and version the users want to get or subscribe. As mentioned before, we recommend getting Microsoft Power BI Desktop:

Figure 7.1 – Microsoft Power BI download web page

The download can be performed by using the two links: • Download: This option will allow Microsoft Power BI Desktop to be installed automatically through the Microsoft Store in the background. • Advanced download options: This option will allow the Microsoft Power BI Desktop installer to be downloaded after selecting which language the user wants to use. When using the second option – downloading the installer – once the download is complete, double-click in the file to start the installation process and follow the steps until it is finished.

Starting Microsoft Power BI Following installation, the software can be accessed through the shortcut in the Desktop or by accessing the Start menu and typing in Power BI Desktop.

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After a few seconds, Power BI Desktop is ready to be used. A splash screen is presented with some options and hyperlinks that can be used to access the last dashboard, start a new dashboard by importing data from a data source, or even access some web pages to learn how to work with Microsoft Power BI:

Figure 7.2 – Microsoft Power BI splash screen

From the splash screen, it is easy to understand that one of the most important things is to get data. By clicking Get data, Power BI will allow users to select which kind of data it will use:

Figure 7.3 – Getting data to be analyzed

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After clicking on the link, a list of different ways of getting data is presented. We can get data from multiple file formats (such as .xls, .txt, .csv, and .xml) and from cloud-based services that can be linked directly, allowing real-time data to be analyzed:

Figure 7.4 – Using different data imports

In this chapter, we will be exporting data from the BIM model to be used for a different kind of analysis. It can be exported from Revit from a regular schedule as a TXT file or, for more advanced users, we could use Dynamo for more complex information. Tip Revit information can also be extracted using different plugins, such as BIM Link from Ideate, or SheetLink from DiRoots. Chapter 9, Enhancing Productivity with Plugins, will cover some of them.

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Working with Microsoft Power BI Let´s have a high-level overview of the Microsoft Power BI interface, where we can find the main features when using the software. This subtopic aims not to explain Microsoft Power BI Desktop in detail, but to understand its main interface. We will do a high-level overview, defining some tools and workflows as we go along with an exercise. In the ribbon, we have the following tabs:

Figure 7.5 – Home tab

• File: This option allows the main file management commands to be accessed (Open, Save, Import, Export, and so on). • Home: This option allows some of the main tools to be accessed, especially to bring in some data from different kinds of file types or data sources. It includes other tools that will allow the information to be formatted. • Insert: This option allows tools to be accessed that will enable users to insert new visuals, buttons, custom shapes, and even text and some images, which will help to arrange and make our dashboards more understandable. • Modeling: This option allows tools to be accessed that enable users to work with complex datasets, which contain more than one table, as those tables need to be related somehow. • View: This option allows tools to be accessed that are related to the visuals where we can find some themes predefined and used straight away in our dashboards. From here, it is possible to switch some of the panels on and off. • Help: This option allows some useful links to tutorials, training, and the Power BI community page to be accessed.

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On the left-hand side, we still have three important and useful tabs:

Figure 7.6 – Reports, Data, and Model tabs

• Reports: This option allows the reports and dashboards area to be accessed. • Data: This option allows the tables imported into Power BI to be accessed. • Model: This option allows the area where we can relate different tables in between data to be accessed. On the right-hand side, we have the following:

Figure 7.7 – Filters, Visualizations, and Fields tabs

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• Filters: This option allows filters to be defined and applied to all pages or to the active page. • Visualizations: This option allows different visuals (dashboards, tables, and so on) to be inserted into the report. • Fields: This option allows that data that will be used in the visuals and in the filters to be picked. Lastly, we have the following in the bottom left-hand corner:

Figure 7.8 – Pages

• Pages: This option allows different analyses of the data we are working on to be available in Power BI. Now that we have a better understanding of the Microsoft Power BI interface, we are ready to move on and talk about a possible workflow to get data to create dashboards.

A simple workflow when working with Power BI Taking into consideration the fact that Power BI works with data collected from a wide variety of data sources, a typical workflow is as follows: 1. Connect Power BI to a data source (could be more than one). 2. Build an interactive report. 3. Share the report with the relevant people. Although teaching you how to work with Power BI is not part of this book, it is important to mention a number of important things before moving on. To conclude this section, we have learned how to install Microsoft Power BI and the software interface identifying the main areas. We also shared a simple workflow that we followed to extract data exported from our data source: the Revit model.

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In the next section, we will learn how to export data from a Revit model, import the data into Microsoft Power BI, and create quick and nice dashboards.

Exporting and importing data from Revit to Power BI This chapter aims to export data from the BIM model, import it back into Microsoft Power BI, and produce a dashboard that will allow us to perform a proper analysis based on the data extracted. To go through this topic, we will be using the datasets available from Chapter 7.

Connecting Revit to Power BI: An introduction to visualizing model data In Revit, it is quite simple to export data from the model without using any plugin or even a Dynamo graph. Exporting directly from Revit, this can basically be done in two steps: 1. Create a schedule with all the data that needs to be exported. 2. Export the schedule as a TXT file. If using a Dynamo graph, this can be done in two steps as well: 1. Create/open a Dynamo graph. 2. Export the data as an Excel file. After exporting this data, it can be opened with Excel or imported into Microsoft Power BI.

Creating schedules in Revit Creating schedules in Revit is simple, and as it works as a data source, we can extract the data related to the objects to be scheduled. Almost all objects can be extracted, and as they are still connected with the model, it will be updated if any design change is implemented in the model when opening the file or refreshing the data if the Microsoft Power BI report is open.

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To explain the process, we will be creating a room schedule, and we will be including some of the parameters to be extracted: 1. Open Revit and then open the Project_Sample-Export Data.rvt file. 2. Under Project Browser, right-click and select New Schedule/Quantities:

Figure 7.9 – Creating a room schedule in Revit

3. From Categories, select Rooms and then click OK:

Figure 7.10 – Rooms category to be extracted

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4. From the parameters listed under Available fields, select and add the following parameters to be included in the schedule: Level, Number, Name, Area, Volume, Perimeter, Comments, and Occupancy:

Figure 7.11 – Room parameters to be exported

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As we will be working with numbers, it is important to ensure that the Area, Volume, and Perimeter parameters don't have the units listed in the schedule. To remove them from it, perform the following steps: 1. From the Formatting tab, select the Area parameter and then click on Field Format…:

Figure 7.12 – Formatting the Area parameter

2. In the Format window, untick the Use project settings option, and then, under Unit symbol, select None:

Figure 7.13 – Area units

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3. Follow the same procedure for the Volume and Perimeter parameters. 4. On the Appearance tab, untick the Blank row before data option and click OK:

Figure 7.14 – Removing blank rows from the schedule

Revit will create a schedule with all the information from the project:

Figure 7.15 – Revit schedule with all the rooms from the BIM model

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Dashboard Analyses with Power BI Tip If the Area, Volume, and Perimeter parameters still have the units displayed, under Formatting properties, click on Edit and proceed as described previously to remove the Area units.

Now that we have the data extracted, let's export this data to a TXT file.

Exporting data from Revit Exporting data from Revit is simple and straightforward. We will be using the built-in feature to be doing this, but as mentioned before, it is possible to extract data by using Dynamo or any other plugins available (some of these will be listed in Chapter 9). As with Power BI, it is possible to import data from a TXT file. We will be using this option: 1. Under the File menu, click Export|Reports|Schedule:

Figure 7.16 – Exporting a schedule from Revit

2. Rename the file as required and click Save. When exporting the file, it is important to understand some options: • Title should be not included, as it is not required in Microsoft Power BI. • Headers should be kept as ungrouped.

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• Output delimiter should be reminded when importing to Microsoft Power BI:

Figure 7.17 – Exporting schedule options

3. Click OK. If you open the TXT file, it is possible to see all the data exported and ready to be imported into Microsoft Power BI:

Figure 7.18 – Data exported from the BIM model

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Let's jump over Microsoft Power BI and start importing the data exported.

Importing data into Microsoft Power BI After exporting all the data needed, we will be importing it into Microsoft Power BI. The process is quite simple. If you are not able to follow the export process for some reason, a file has been shared and is ready to be used: 07.01_Room Schedule.txt: 1. Let's start by opening Microsoft Power BI. 2. From the Home tab, click the arrow under the Get data icon and select Text/CSV:

Figure 7.19 – Data imported into Microsoft Power BI

3. Select the 07.01_Room Schedule.txt file and then click Open.

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4. In the new window, click Load to import all the data:

Figure 7.20 – Loading data into Microsoft Power BI

After a few seconds, all the data will be available and ready to be used. It can be confirmed by accessing the right-hand side, under the Fields panel:

Figure 7.21 – Fields available in Microsoft Power BI

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By zooming in to the fields available, we can see that Perimeter has a sum symbol (∑). This indicates that if this field is used, Microsoft Power BI will try to sum those values. Having said this, we can ask, why do Area and Volume not have the same sum symbol? And the answer is simple: because of the decimal separator used, those values were imported as Text. It is recommended to change it if we want to get that sum: 1. In the left-hand tab, click on Data:

Figure 7.22 – Swapping to the data area

2. From the Fields panel, select the Area header. 3. In Data type, select Decimal Number; all data under Area will be updated. 4. Under Summarization, make sure we have selected Sum:

Figure 7.23 – Swapping a data type to be a decimal number

5. Proceed in the same manner as for Volume.

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6. Make sure that Number is Text as we don't need to perform a sum with this column:

Figure 7.24 – Swapping a data type to be text

After changing this property and going back to the Report tab, it is possible to confirm that Number no longer has the ∑ symbol:

Figure 7.25 – Summing the ∑ symbols under Fields

Now we are ready to start creating our dashboards.

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Creating a quick dashboard with data imported from Revit When creating a dashboard, it may be necessary to add some images, shapes, or even text to communicate our dashboards better. These options are similar to the other options available in Microsoft software such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. These options are available under the Insert tab:

Figure 7.26 – Insert tab

We can add a textbox and insert an image at the very top of our page to make our dashboard more attractive:

Figure 7.27 – Text and image inserted into the dashboard

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Another important setting is the page size, where we will be creating the dashboard. By accessing the Visualizations tab, under the Format option, it is possible to access Page size:

Figure 7.28 – Changing the page size

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Dashboard Analyses with Power BI Tip Page size is important and must be defined depending on whether the dashboard will be printed or if it will be accessed only through Power BI. If it is to be presented, we recommend using the Custom option and defining the number of pixels depending on the screen resolution.

If, for some reason, you are not able to follow the previous steps, a file has been shared and is ready to be used: 07.02_Data Imported.pbix: 1. Open the 07.02_Data Imported.pbix file. 2. From the Visualizations tab, click on Table:

Figure 7.29 – Adding a table to our report

3. To add data to the table, select the table and, under Fields, tick Number, Name, Area, Volume, Perimeter, Occupancy, and Comments. When adding the data to the table, Headers and Data might need to be adjusted for a bigger/smaller size and/or font type. 4. Keep Table selected and then, under Format, expand Column headers and change the text size to 14pt.

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5. Expand Values and change the text size to 12pt:

Figure 7.30 – Formatting the text size and font for column headers and data values

We have completed the page overall, and as it has all the values from the project, we can rename the table Overall. 6. Double-click on the page name and rename it Overall:

Figure 7.31 – Page renamed

As this page contains the overall information, let's create a page for each level of the project and filter the data as per the corresponding level. Creating a new page per level If, for some reason, you are not able to follow the previous steps, a file has been shared and is ready to be used: 07.03_Overall Table.pbix.

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To create a new page, perform the following steps: 1. Open the 07.03_Overall Table.pbix file. 2. Press the + icon. 3. Double-click and rename the page Level 0. 4. Under Format options, change Page size to Letter:

Figure 7.32 – New page created: Level 0

5. From the Overall page, while pressing the Ctrl key, select Title and Table and then press Ctrl+C. 6. On the new Level 0 page, click Ctrl+V. 7. Rename the title to add the level name: Luxury Villa - Level 0. Now that we have the same table with the overall information, we need to filter this data to get only the data corresponding to Level 0. 8. To filter this page per level from Fields, select Level and drag it into the Filters tab under Filters on this page. 9. Tick Level 0:

Figure 7.33 – Filtering the data for Level 0

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Now that we have this page filtered, we will recommend adding more visualizations and try to see how information can be presented: Treemap and Pie Chart:

Figure 7.34 – Level 0 analytics data

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To complete our dashboards, we should be doing the same for Level 1:

Figure 7.35 – Level 1 analytics data

Now that we have concluded this section, we have learned how to create and export data from a Revit project and how to import data into Microsoft Power BI. We also explained how a report could be created easily. In the next section, we will learn about how we can analyze data in Microsoft Power BI.

Analyzing Revit data with Power BI After importing and creating our visuals with the data exported from the BIM model, it is possible to analyze all the data, depending on what needs to be checked. This analysis can be expanded to include other aspects, such as related materials, overall areas, and even monitoring the Revit model's performance. To do this, it might require the use of Dynamo graphs to export the information required to an Excel file.

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We will now go through some workflows using Microsoft Power BI and see how these analyses can be carried out.

Analyzing Revit data with useful workflows in Power BI There is no limit to using Microsoft Power BI to analyze data from a BIM project. We will be giving you some ideas on how to do this kind of analysis.

Normal analyses Microsoft Power BI allows interactive analysis by creating in any part of the data. This will allow Microsoft Power BI to highlight all data related to the selection. As it is interactive, data can be selected directly, and all the dashboards will be updated. We will be using the shared file: 07.04_Both Levels.pbix. To create a new page, perform the following steps: 1. Open the 07.04_Both Levels.pbix file. 2. Go to the Level 0 page. 3. In the Area by Occupancy dashboard, click on Wet Area:

Figure 7.36 – Wet Area data selected

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4. To reset the previous analysis, click in the same area of the dashboard or table. 5. To select more than one area or row, press the Ctrl key and select which data needs to be selected:

Figure 7.37 – Multi-data selected

Depending on which visualization type we are using, the outcome will be different. We highly recommend going through all the different visual types available. If required, different toolkits can be installed, as we will demonstrate in the next subtopic.

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Different visuals When working with Microsoft Power BI, it is possible to use and combine different types of visualizations. However, it is possible to expand this capacity even more by installing different visuals. There are some toolkits that can be acquired, and it will streamline the process of connecting Revit models with Microsoft Power BI. One of these is Tracer, which is basically a plugin that allows data information to be exported from Revit straight to Microsoft Power BI. For more information, please visit the following link: https://bit.ly/3r2ruWX

QR code:

Synoptic Panel is a different visual that can be used, and it is free. It can be accessed by following this link: https://bit.ly/2O7bGE0 QR code:

After downloading, we can access it through the Visualization panel in Microsoft Power BI:

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Dashboard Analyses with Power BI Tip The installer was not shared as the tool can be updated at any time. The most recent version can always be accessed by following the previous link and following the steps to get the installer.

1. Open Microsoft Power BI. 2. From the Visualizations panel, click the ellipsis, and then click on Import a visual from a file:

Figure 7.38 – Adding more visuals to Microsoft Power BI

3. After importing the file downloaded previously, you'll get a message informing you that the visual has been imported:

Figure 7.39 – Confirmation of an imported custom visual

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Once the process of importing is complete, the new visual can be accessed through the Visualizations panel:

Figure 7.40 – Synoptic visual imported

To use a synoptic visual, you need to create a view for each view type that needs to be used (Floor Plan, Elevation, Section, and so on). When selecting one of the data items available, it will highlight which one is in the corresponding view that it is linked to. To create each view, we first need to create an image, and after defining the areas through the following link: https://bit.ly/3bMMIBJ

QR code:

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When the floor plan is created and added to Microsoft Power BI, we can better understand what room it is related to: 1. Open the 07.05_Floor Plans.pbix file. 2. Go to the Level 0 – Floor Plan page 3. In Table, select Kitchen:

Figure 7.41 – Synoptic visual from Level 0

The same interaction will happen if selecting any of the areas from the floor plan.

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Microsoft Power BI gallery By accessing the Microsoft Power BI galleries, it is possible to understand better what can be done by using this software and how these analyses can be improved. Follow this link to go to the gallery: https://bit.ly/3svmevq

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By way of an example, here is how a dashboard can be presented with BIM data: https://bit.ly/3kvX6Sk

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To conclude this section, we have learned how to analyze and create different types of dashboards that will help us better understand the data we have to analyze. We also shared some examples of different visuals that can be used as a reference.

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Summary In this chapter, we have learned how to install and start using Power BI with Revit data. We have exported data from the BIM model and used the data to link to a Microsoft Power BI to create dashboards that anyone in the project can quickly analyze. This methodology of analyzing project data through Power BI can increase your efficiency and lead us to take better project decisions. We also covered a number of extra tools designed to enhance your dashboards and streamline the process of connecting Revit models with Microsoft Power BI. In the next chapter, we will cover processes for collaborating with consultants and how they can be more effective and streamlined.

Section 4: Collaborating with Consultants and Plugins and Improving Revit Performance In this section, there are the following chapters: • Chapter 8, Collaborating With Consultants • Chapter 9, Enhancing Productivity with Plugins • Chapter 10, Improving Performance In these chapters, you will get insight into collaborating with consultants, improving your performance with the best Revit plugins, and best practices in Revit to improve your efficiency.

The following topics will be covered: • Strategies to collaborate with consultants • Revit collaboration with Copy/Monitor, Coordination Review, and Shared Views • How to manage Revit plugins and using the most-used Revit plugins to increase productivity in your projects • The best modeling practices, content management, optimizing Revit performance, and BIM 360 best practices

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Collaborating with Consultants Collaborating with consultants is an essential component of information management and BIM workflows, but we need to ensure effective collaboration that leads to increased performance across multiple organizations. Companies that promote collaboration share knowledge and best practices to achieve the project objectives. Successful collaboration is based on trust, respect, and active collaboration with clear communication and defined information exchange processes. In the previous chapters, we accomplished some aspects of collaboration. Chapter 2, Project Data Management explained project data management and BIM documentation, which involves companies' collaboration. Chapter 4, Starting a Revit Project Efficiently discussed the importance of having models from consultants with the same coordinate system to import and export models at the correct location to gain efficiency and improve productivity. Chapter 5, Core Revit Functionalities presented the best practices for worksharing to enable Revit collaboration and the process to manage worksets from your team and consultants' files. This chapter will overview the strategy for collaboration and provide information about the Revit tools to enhance Revit collaboration, such as Copy/Monitor, Coordination Review, and Shared Views.

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The chapter will also give an overview of design coordination and clash management. The following topics will be covered in this chapter: • Strategy for collaboration • Copy/Monitor and Coordination Review • Shared Views • Design coordination and clash management

Strategy for collaboration Having a strategy for collaboration and information exchange is essential to deliver information at the right time for the right person. It is not enough to state that we are happy to "collaborate" with all companies involved in the project but not have an effective plan to produce and deliver information on time. Clients and companies work toward a common objective, but they still don't receive all the required information systematically at the right time. This issue is not exclusive to BIM modeling requirements, as we find these issues across many other areas, such as specification, sustainability, and asset management. Companies with strong leadership facilitate processes for project teams to focus on achieving business objectives and enhancing collaboration. Effective collaboration can be supported by defining accountability in the responsibility matrix that is commonly used in projects. The BIM Execution Plan (BEP) is a document that can be used to define the collaboration team's goals and expectations for all consultants. To enhance the discussion about the strategy for collaboration, we have interviewed three experts in the sector: • Ricardo Farinha, Director of Technology at Sweco in Finland • Marzia Bolpagni, Head of BIM International - Associate Director at MACE • May Winfield, Head of Commercial and Legal: Cities and Digital at Buro Happold

Interview with Ricardo Farinha, Marzia Bolpagni, and May Winfield Hi Ricardo, Marzia, and May, thank you for the interview.

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We would like to have your perspective about the strategy for collaboration with consultants. Could you please present yourself and your company? Ricardo: Currently, I am the Director of Technology in Sweco, Finland, since 2013. Sweco plans and designs the sustainable cities and communities of the future. Sweco has about 17,500 employees and operates mainly in the European market. Marzia: I am Marzia Bolpagni, Head of BIM International - Associate Director at MACE. MACE is a global company, and our purpose is to refine the boundaries of ambition, so we develop, consult, construct, operate, and these are the four engines of MACE. In particular, I work in the consultancy side of MACE and on the Digital - BIM Group. May: I am Head of Commercial and Legal: Cities and Digital at international engineering company, Buro Happold. In this role, I lead the Commercial and Legal team's support of Buro Happold's Cities and Digital businesses globally. From the Digital side, this includes working closely with the business to provide legal support and advice to the teams within Buro Happold, providing digital and BIM services, and assisting the development of new construction technology and digital data products, services, and offerings across our global business. Every day is different, and I enjoy the opportunity to use my knowledge and experience to help the business improve processes and deal with legal and commercial issues arising from construction technology and digitization, whether it is BIM, modular construction, software, or something else. Outside of my day job, I have been heavily involved in the development of BIM documentation and writing papers on this topic for some years. I speak regularly at conferences worldwide about legal and contractual issues of BIM and construction technology, and write papers and articles on these topics. I am the chair of BIM4Legal, which I explain more about below. I am also a Core Team Member of the international 4D Construction Group, a member of the Working Groups for the ISO19650 Transition Guidance, the ISO19650 Guidance, the Centre for Digital Built Britain's National Digital Twins Roadmap and the Digital Twins Toolkit. I am also an Ambassador for the UK BIM Alliance. I have led the teams that wrote the 2018 JCT Practice Note on BIM and the ISO19650-compliant Information Protocol, and consulted/commented on a number of other BIM guidance documents.

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Buro Happold is a global practice of engineers, consultants, and advisers. Through integrated thinking and a truly interdisciplinary, interconnected community of passionate experts, we create transformative outcomes for clients and communities alike. Buro Happold is committed to delivering elegant solutions that leave a positive, lasting legacy for the communities we work in and the environment (see, for example, Global Sustainability Report 2020 – Buro Happold – https://bit.ly/2RZNGV4). We value human wellbeing, embrace mutual responsibility, and understand that a sustainable future is intrinsic to the economic and social impact of our work. Buro Happold is known for its forward-thinking and technologically advanced ethos, for example, internally implementing BIM on all projects for some years and being fully compliant with the new information management requirements of the ISO19650. We understand that technology is revolutionizing construction for the benefit of our client, requiring agile thinking to provide the most relevant service and deliverables. One of Buro Happold's digital thought leaders, Alain Waha, put it that Buro Happold are "inventing the future" with clients, such as via our work with the Construction Innovation Hub; our computational engineering approach allowing us to integrate design processes with technologies forming part of the construction process or finish assets, or even optimizing design for offsite construction. Importantly, we engage with our supply chain toward full digital construction, as collaboration is a key part of successful digitization and BIM. Widening involvement in this essential digital space further, Buro Happold recently released its first digital product, Workplace Analytics, and continues to progress its open source, collaborative model platform called the BHOM (https://bit.ly/3sXDZDF), which enables consultants to get over the real problems of interoperability when collaborating on models. What is your advice to build strong collaborative relationships with consultants? Ricardo: I think strong relationships come from trust. I have noticed we can create trust between all project stakeholders if we are aware of what needs to be done and are aware of what it takes to make things done. I work with customers using Agile methodology that helps our business process a lot because clients are fully involved in the project's decision-making at all times. This inclusiveness of the client and other stakeholders in the project created a stronger bond between them and created an environment of trust that allowed the multiple projects done with that team to be quite successful.

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Marzia: To create strong collaborative relationships, we need to consider developing soft skills that help communicate, create a collaborative environment, make people confident to innovate and make errors, and engaged in specific tasks supporting the strategy defined by the leadership. When we speak about collaboration, the contractual agreement is an important factor to promote a collaborative environment for the teams involved in the project. I'm writing a book about Industry 4.0, and it is not only about the technology side, but we also speak about methodologies on developing soft skills, digital leadership, and ensuring people feel part of a team. The book is called Industry 4.0 for the Built Environment: Methodologies, Technologies and Skills, and it is planned to be published by Springer in 2021. May: Firstly, there has to be the right mindset. The construction industry is traditionally quite adversarial and risk-averse, with contracts seeking to pass on risk and liability to the other party. The Latham and Egan reports pointed out the urgent need to shift towards a more collaborative culture, as did the aptly titled Farmer report, Modernise or Die. Achieving this collaborative mindset definitely requires the correct ethos and internal principles within organizations. However, to achieve such collaborative mindset and indeed to build collaborative relationships, the following key steps could also assist: • Contract documentation that has the intent of collaboration and also contains collaborative procedures that parties are obliged to comply with, such as regular discussions and exchanges of information (being obliged to collaborate would then also lead to parties realizing, in complying with such steps, that it truly is a more efficient and better way of interaction). • Implementing and enforcing processes between the parties that ensure regular and open exchange of information, discussion, and mutual assistance, to support and build strong, collaborative relationships. • Developing strong, regular, or repeat working relationships with other parties would also assist as it can be difficult to fully develop close, collaborative relationships with parties one has just met as opposed to those one has worked with repeatedly. • Using technology and digital processes that make collaboration easier and more effective. For example, BIM modeling, exchanging information via cloud platforms, and exchanging data in formats that are easily viewed and understood by all.

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What is your view about the difficulties in collaboration when we have a segmented supply chain with a diverse set of skills? Ricardo: Communication and knowledge sharing are problematic in this type of segmented supply chain environments. It decreases the success rate of the projects and often makes the project go over time and over budget. It is essential to provide a training scheme to improve technology and collaboration skills. Marzia: It is a good question. Our industry is still on the digitalization journey, even after the mandate for digitalization many years ago in the UK, so the level of maturity in the industry is really diverse globally. When we select partners, it is essential to check their capabilities and not just rely on their CV and promises. Sometimes, it is impossible to choose the partners, but checking their capabilities on how they work and behave in a specific situation is one way of selecting the team. Another thing is providing training and understand their limitations and requirements as each company has different processes. It is also important to define clear information requirements and the different Level of Information Need of each actor of the supply chain to promote collaboration. In this case, it is clear what is needed to fulfill their requirements and be able to run multiple analyses and processes. The standard EN 17412-1 can be used to define the Level of Information Need framework. May: Arguably the diversity of skills should promote collaboration as parties need to rely on others' skillsets or knowledge, and work together to achieve a complete design or completed project. However, the industry is indeed very fragmented and, as mentioned previously, traditionally quite adversarial. However, there has been a clear shift and movement towards more collaborative ways of working, stimulated by the Government's mandates and publications (for example, the mandates in the UK Government Construction Strategy 2011, and the clear ethos and principles within the UK Government's 2020 Construction Playbook). We still have some way to go, as some within the industry may be hesitant to embrace a seeming radical shift towards collaboration compared to their accustomed working methods of the last few decades and the necessary digital tools to facilitate and speed up collaboration are not implemented by some within the industry. Whilst it will therefore take time for collaboration to be truly cemented as business as usual, it needs the commitment and support of people within the industry to promote and encourage collaborative ways of working, and take active steps to achieve this.

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Full collaboration is also arguably made difficult due to the nature of insurance policies, which may prevent parties being completely open when issues arise, due to concern of invalidating their policies. Integrated Project Insurance (IPI) is being tried by the UK Government with a view to overcoming such difficulties and obstacles to collaboration. How can companies promote effective collaboration? Ricardo: The best way to promote anything is by showing success stories. It has been the way for me to introduce several ways of working at Sweco, even though they sounded alien to the people I was presenting to. It is always easier to convince people by showing past examples. Marzia: Collaborative contracts would be the first step to promote effective collaboration, but also selecting the right team members from your company. This process is not only about the technical skills, but it is also about the behave and soft skills that are so important, and at MACE, we have metrics called "Behaviours for Success" because we are evaluating not just how we perform technically, but we evaluated how we behave, interact, and work with others. It is also important from the strategic and leadership point of view that these behaviors are evaluated and included in professional appraisals in the company. When we are in projects, it is important to define clear information requirements and particularly define the Level of Information Need as stated in the ISO19650 series. I'm the lead author of the standard EN 17412-1 on the Level of Information Need framework that replaces the "LOD" concept. It is really effective to define the requirements at the early stages of the project and automatically compare deliverables against initial needs. In addition, the use of digital tools can help collaboration in companies. But it is also important having regular catch-ups and meetings to understand how people feel, and informal talks can create a collaborative environment where people don't fear making mistakes or speaking up when issues arise, but they feel supported to do their jobs with the right technical tools and training. May: It has to be embedded within the culture and ethos of the organization. I am very proud that Buro Happold takes collaboration seriously, both externally with our clients, collaborators, and sub-consultants, as well as internally between teams and offices. There are processes, tools, and documentation which provide a good framework for such collaboration to take place in an easy and uniform way. Clear commitment by an organization in thought and action in turn encourages those within the organization to adopt this approach.

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What are your views about contracts types that enhance collaborative working? Ricardo: Here in Finland (probably in other countries), we have had some different type of contracts: the alliance contracts. These contracts are sometimes used in big projects, and the idea behind them is to enhance collaboration in the project. In this process, all stakeholders share the risks/benefits of the projects. Marzia: For me, it is the top one reason to enhance collaborative working, and it was the topic of my master thesis in 2012 regarding public procurement using building information modeling, and I analyzed different procurement methods, including the traditional and collaborative, across different countries. In the US, there is the Integrated Project Delivery (IPD), in Australia is more the Project Alliancing contracting, and in the UK, the government strategy defines three ways for procurement methods that enhance collaboration (Cost-Led Procurement (CLP), Integrated Project Insurance (IPI), Two-Stage Open Book). Also, the work lead by Prof. David Mosey is really relevant, and the FAC1 framework can be used for alliancing contacts to promote a collaborative approach. Unfortunately, I must say that we don't use so much as we want because there are many barriers to change the contract procurement process. We need to improve in this regard if we want to take the full benefits of a digital process. May: It is helpful and important that the contract is set up to encourage and require collaboration, including containing processes that oblige collaboration to be implemented between parties as well as setting out parties' rights and obligations in a manner that promotes collaboration. A contract that seeks to pass all risk and liability to another party, or contains terms which encourage protective or adversarial behavior, will have a detrimental effect to attempts at building a collaborative atmosphere. Terms that require parties to work in "mutual trust and co-operation" or similar ensure parties start out with the right intentions and, hopefully, progress positively from there. Contracts with collaborative ways of working such as BIM would usually contain or incorporate references to collaborative processes or technical documents, such as the BIM Execution Plan, which are created by mutual agreement of all parties and continually updated together. These documents in turn result in parties working closely together, progressing a more collaborative way of working than the traditional silos.

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What are the key points to define a strategy for collaboration? Ricardo: I think that you need to have the vision and the mission for any kind of strategy. Then you need to define the short- and long-term objectives and set the milestones between them to measure if you are moving in the right direction, and if you are not, you know where to improve. The measuring process is the key to a successful implementation. Marzia: The key points to define a strategy for collaboration is to select the correct contract type because, in the end, the collaborative contract will support the early involvement of contractors, multiple participants, and a clear definition of responsibilities. From the insurance point of view, companies will share the vantages and disadvantages as they are in the same "boat", so the contract is really vital for promoting a collaborative approach where the delivery team and clients share the same goals. Apart from that, selecting the right people with the right attitude, define the information requirements, and frequently check what people need to perform their function supports collaboration. Digital tools can facilitate collaboration, but we need good foundations and leaders to drive projects collaboratively. The human factor is key. May: Key points can be very organization- and project-specific, to be suitable for the circumstances and requirements; however, some key points include: • Having collaborative terms and requirements within the contractual documents • Implementing and enforcing collaborative processes internally and externally • Using digital and other tools that facilitate easier and secure collaboration Ricardo, Marzia, and May, thank you very much for the interview. Now, let's learn about the technologies to enable collaboration between internal teams and consultants.

Technology for collaboration using Revit Technology for collaboration enables employees to work and collaborate in multiple file types in the cloud or on-premises, which is essential when working with large teams and various consultants.

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Your company's IT infrastructure must define how you will be able to collaborate with internal teams and consultants. There are multiple options available, and cybersecurity should be the top priority. In Chapter 5, Core Revit Functionalities we learned about Revit worksharing and how to create a central and local file for collaboration inside your premises and IT network:

Figure 8.1 – Worksharing process inside of your IT network

When you need to collaborate outside of your company's IT network, such as when working from home or collaborating with consultants in Revit, you need a different solution to enable the Revit synchronization process. Currently, there are three main options to enable this process: • Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) • Autodesk BIM 360 and Autodesk Construction Cloud • Revit Server Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) VDI enables users to connect to virtual machines (virtual desktop instances), and all processing occurs on the host server. Users can access these virtual machines from any location or device.

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Virtualization graphical applications, such as Revit, AutoCAD, Rhino, and Enscape, can be challenging as they depend on processing power and good graphics card performance. You also need to check whether your plugins work in the VDI environment. This solution can represent a substantial investment because it may involve purchasing hardware and software to implement VDI, but it will support multiple applications and not only Revit. VDI solutions are becoming more popular and accessible to companies. The following figure shows the VDI system simplified, and users can access virtual machines to work in Revit and other software:

Figure 8.2 – VDI system

Autodesk BIM 360 and Autodesk Construction Cloud Autodesk provides a cloud platform with multiple services to enhance collaboration between internal teams and consultants. Autodesk BIM 360 and Autodesk Construction Cloud enable users to work and collaborate in the cloud with the ability to synchronize Revit models. Autodesk provides cloud services for design authoring, collaboration, coordination, quantification, project management, facility management, and other services.

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At the following links, we can find more information about Autodesk's cloud services: • Autodesk BIM 360: https://autode.sk/2NYGuH1 • Autodesk Construction Cloud: https://bit.ly/2MsqfS4 There are multiple advantages to collaboration using the Autodesk cloud, including cost benefits, and it is easily scalable to increase or decrease the number of users based on your project requirements. You can also increase capacity to run very large models with a large number of people working simultaneously. The following figure shows how multiple companies can work simultaneously with Revit files in the Autodesk cloud:

Figure 8.3 – Autodesk cloud system

Autodesk cloud services provide many other services that we are not able to cover in this book. Strategically, the Autodesk cloud represents a superior collaboration tool that can improve your company's efficiency and connect multiple teams in the cloud. Revit Server Revit Server is a technology used for large companies before BIM 360 and VDI, but it is still an alternative to improve efficiency when working with large teams.

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When companies need to work on a highly confidential project that does not allow cloud access, this could be an option to improve efficiency to work with large teams on the same premises. We can also use Revit Server and the accelerator with cloud access for teams that are geographically separated. Using Revit Server speeds up the process of synchronizing models, with Revit Server instances working as host to store Revit models and the accelerator providing quick access to the hosts server. This process will increase efficiency because when the user requests Revit changes, the accelerator already has information stored, which will speed up the communication with Revit Server:

Figure 8.4 – Revit Server diagram

To conclude this section, we learned about the importance of effective collaboration between internal teams and consultants to reach project objectives. We also provided an overview of three systems for collaboration: VDI, the Autodesk cloud, and Revit Server. In the next section, we will learn about Copy/Monitor and Coordination Review to improve coordination.

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Copy/Monitor and Coordination Review The Copy/Monitor command enables Revit to copy elements from a linked file and monitor whether these elements change. We can use Copy/Monitor for the following Revit categories: • Levels • Grids • Columns • Wall • Floors • Openings • Multiple MEP fixtures categories The main Revit categories used with Copy/Monitor are levels and grids. The other categories are not frequently used because we expect design changes; therefore, monitoring the elements is not recommended. Copy/Monitor has three main functions: • Identifies mistakes when levels and grids are inappropriately changed • Ensures better project coordination for levels and grids • Increases productivity to create/copy levels and grids We usually start a Revit project by creating the levels and grids, and often, this task is assigned to the design leader or project BIM lead. Once the Revit file is created with the correct coordinates, levels, and grids, it is sent to other companies or consultants to copy the levels and grids and start their files. Suppose you are the design lead and your project has multiple Revit models, such as the cladding, interior, and site models. In that case, you can copy/monitor the levels and grids across various models. Let's learn how to use Copy/Monitor for levels and grids in the following steps (let's assume that we are a consultant and we have received a Revit file with levels and grids from the design lead or BIM consultant to copy and coordinate):

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1. In the dataset for this chapter, we can find the following files. Open the Consultant File.rvt Revit file:

Figure 8.5 – Dataset for this chapter

2. Open Floor Plan – Level 0. 3. In the Insert tab, click on Link Revit to link the FD_Design-BIM Lead file with Levels and Grids.rvt file:

Figure 8.6 – Link Revit

4. Select the FD_Design-BIM Lead file with Levels and Grids.rvt file and use the Auto - Internal Origin to Internal Origin positioning:

Figure 8.7 – Process to link Revit files

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5. Open South, under Elevations:

Figure 8.8 – South elevation

6. Select the Collaborate tab, click on Copy/Monitor, and then click on Select Link:

Figure 8.9 – Copy/Monitor tool – Select Link

7. In the drawing area, click on the linked FD_Design-BIM Lead file with Levels and Grids.rvt file. 8. A new ribbon tab will appear, and you can click on Copy:

Figure 8.10 – Copy/Monitor tool – Copy

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9. In the options bar, tick the Multiple option:

Figure 8.11 – Copy/Monitor tool – Select Multiple

10. Open a selection box to select all levels:

Figure 8.12 – Selection box to select all levels

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11. Click on Finish in the options bar:

Figure 8.13 – Clicking Finish in Options Bar

12. In the Copy/Monitor tab, click on Finish:

Figure 8.14 – Clicking Finish in Copy/Monitor Tab

We will see that all levels have been created in our model. The process is complete, but let's learn two more details about this workflow: • In Options, we can define how Revit will behave when copying the levels and grids. We can change the offset level, add a suffix/prefix, and select a different family type:

Figure 8.15 – Options for the Copy/Monitor command

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• When you select an object that has Copy/Monitor enabled, you will see a symbol to indicate that this object has been monitored, and there is a Stop Monitoring option:

Figure 8.16 – Stop Monitoring option

Now, let's repeat the same process to copy/monitor grids using the following steps: 1. Open Floor Plan – Level 0. 2. Repeat steps 6 to 9 from the previous task. 3. Open a selection box to select all grids:

Figure 8.17 – Select all grids

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4. Click on Finish in the options bar:

Figure 8.18 – Clicking Finish

5. In the Copy/Monitor tab, click on Finish:

Figure 8.19 – Clicking Finish

All grids are now created in our model. Now, we may want to create the floor plans for those levels that we have just created. Follow these steps to make floor plans for all levels:

Copy/Monitor and Coordination Review

Figure 8.20 – Creating floor plans for levels

We can see that all floor plans have been created:

Figure 8.21 – Floor plans created

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Now, let's save this file and close it. Next, we will learn about Coordination Review in Revit.

Coordination Review The Coordination Review tool will inform us if monitored elements have been edited, moved, or deleted in the linked file. When opening a Revit model or reloading a link, Revit will automatically check for changes. Follow these steps to learn about Coordination Review (let's assume that we are the lead designer and we decided to move grid 10 to the left by 2,000 mm): 1. Open the FD_Design-BIM Lead file with Levels and Grids.rvt Revit file. 2. Move grid 10 to the left by 2,000 mm:

Figure 8.22 – Moving grid 10 to the left

3. Click Save and close the file. 4. Now, let's assume that we are the consultant, and we have received the file with changes from the lead designer. Let's open the consultant's Consultant File. rvt Revit file.

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5. During the process of opening the Revit file, we will see the following message indicating that we need to check the Coordination Review. Click OK, and the file will continue to open:

Figure 8.23 – Instance of link needs Coordination Review

6. In the Collaborate tab, click on Coordination Review and click on Select Link:

Figure 8.24 – Coordination Review – Issue description

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7. In the drawing area, select the linked file, which is the grids. A new window will appear, and we can identify the issue description:

Figure 8.25 – Coordination Review

8. In Action, click on the drop-down menu and select Modify Grid '10'. Click Apply to move the grid and OK to close the window:

Figure 8.26 – Selecting an option in the Action drop-down menu

9. Grid 10 will move to the correct position based on the designer leader linked model.

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The Coordination Review tool enables us to easily track level and grid changes and improve productivity to control elements from a linked file. In the next section, we will learn about shared views.

Shared Views Shared Views are a new feature for Revit 2021.1 that you can use to share 3D views with your design team and consultants for review and comments. The Shared Views tool only works for users with Revit subscription licenses, and it will not work for maintenance licenses and Revit trial versions. This tool is handy to use with non-Revit users such as project managers and directors to quickly visualize a model via the web browser. Follow these steps to learn about shared views: 1. Open a Revit file and go to the 3D view. This tool only works in the 3D view, and you have to be logged in to your Autodesk account to use this tool. 2. In the Collaborate tab, select Shared Views:

Figure 8.27 – Coordination Review

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3. A new window will appear, and we can click on New Shared View:

Figure 8.28 – New Shared View

4. Type the shared view name and click Share:

Figure 8.29 – Shared view name

5. Revit will upload the model to Autodesk Viewer, and when the process is completed, we can select from two options: • View in the Browser

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• Copy the link: You can share this link with consultants:

Figure 8.30 – Option to share the view with consultants

6. Click on View in the Browser. 7. Once the model is open in the browser, we have multiple tools to navigate the model and add comments. Click on Comments to add a description of your view:

Figure 8.31 – Multiple tools to manage shared views

8. In Revit, click the highlighted icon to load the comments back to Revit. You will be able to see the comments inside of Revit:

Figure 8.32 – Loading comments from shared views

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To conclude, we have learned about shared views and the ability to collaborate with consultants. In the next section, we will learn about design coordination and clash management.

Design coordination and clash management Design coordination and clash management are essential aspects of consultant collaboration to resolve design and model issues. The BEP will define the clash detection process and tolerances to optimize the results based on the project design stage. The primary tools used to run the clash detection process are Navisworks from Autodesk and Solibri from Nemetschek. Autodesk has a cloud platform to run clash detection processes and resolve model issues. It is part of Autodesk Construction Cloud and is currently called BIM 360 Coordinate. The clash detection process can be divided into two types: • Clash avoidance • Clash detection Let's look at them in detail. Clash avoidance Clash avoidance is the process of identifying clashes between spatial zones assigned for the architecture, structure, and MEP disciplines. The following diagram shows a volume created to define the MEP zone and use it in the clash avoidance process. We can also work with large clash tolerances during the clash avoidance process. This proactive process can run from the early stages of design and ensure that each discipline creates elements inside a specific zone. It will reduce the number of clashes when the design teams move to the clash detection process:

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Figure 8.33 – Volume to define the MEP zone

Clash detection Clash detection is the process to identify clashes between two or more elements in the pre-construction stages. We compare building categories to run the clash detection process, such as structural beams versus ducts and pipes. This process does not prevent the clash, but it is a corrective process:

Figure 8.34 – Clash detection between two elements

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Clash management Clash management is a collaborative process where design teams and consultants exchange models to coordinate and resolve multiple design issues. Communication between the consultants is critical to understand the priorities to model and resolve design issues. Good communication will reduce the number of clashes First, let's identify the common challenges for project coordination. The following are typical problems: • Communication of clashes and issues via email is uncoordinated. • Poor communication and no transparency to resolve design issues. • The issue resolutions don't have a trackable history. • Identifying model issues in the clash detection software can be time-consuming. • No clear accountability to resolve model issues. • Lack of risk management associated with design issues. • Non-collaborative teams have more difficulties in resolving model issues. For these reasons, many companies use other software with advanced features to manage clashes and design issues. As previously mentioned, the primary tools used to run the clash detection process are Navisworks from Autodesk and Solibri from Nemetschek. After identifying the clashes, we can upload the clashes to the clash management software. The following list is not exhaustive, but this software can be used with Navisworks and Solibri for clash management: • Revizto: https://revizto.com/en/ • BIM Track: https://bimtrack.co/ • BIMcollab: https://www.bimcollab.com/en • Autodesk BIM 360 Coordinate: https://bit.ly/3u24Os0 • Fuzor: https://www.kalloctech.com This clash management software helps to improve efficiency in managing clashes and enhance team communication to resolve design problems.

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This software can manage not only a clash between two model elements but also multiple types of design issues. The following list shows the typical issues that can be tracked by using this software: • Add and exchange comments about the design. • Add a solution for design issues. • Add a request for changes. • Check for data validation. • Visualize and comment on the typical clash issues between model elements. • Identify components for replacement. • Identify defects in the construction. • Identify modeling errors. • Add general questions about the design and financial issues. When using clash management software, we need to be aware of potential commercial and legal issues. The following questions need to be answered to ensure that we make the right decisions: • Who is providing the licenses? • How many licenses are required for the design team? • Who is managing the software permissions for users and roles? • Who is responsible for implementation and training the design team? • Do we have a contractual agreement to guarantee full access to data uploaded to the clash management software during and after construction? • Can we download the data from this cloud software to keep a copy in our private servers? These questions are essential points to be raised before using clash management software. To conclude, clash management software is essential to increase productivity in managing clashes and design issues. It will also keep track of the project history and increase accountability.

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Summary In this chapter, we have learned that effective collaboration with consultants can increase team performance, but it is necessary to have good communication, trust, and defined processes to exchange information. Strong leadership can support teams to improve collaboration and focus on achieving business objectives. The collaboration strategy should be well defined to support the teams, and further information can be added to the BEP and the responsibility matrix. The interview with Ricardo, Marzia, and May enhanced the discussion about the strategy for collaboration. We provided an overview of technologies for collaboration using Revit, including, VDI, the Autodesk cloud, and Revit Server. We explained using the Revit Copy/Monitor command to increase project coordination and productivity when coordinating levels and grids. The Coordination Review command helps us detect when a grid was moved from a linked file, and we can decide to postpone, reject, or accept the difference or modify the grid. We also learned about clash management, which includes the clash avoidance and clash detection processes. There are many challenges for project coordination, and many companies use specific software for clash management to increase productivity, keep track of the project history, and increase accountability. In the next chapter, we will provide an overview of how to enhance productivity with plugins.

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Enhancing Productivity with Plugins Revit plugins can enhance productivity by providing new functionalities and can expand the current Revit tools. Third-party plugins work in the full Revit version, but unfortunately, the Revit LT version does not support them. Plugins are simple to implement as it does not require programming skills to develop or use a specific application. The installation process is straightforward, and we will learn how to manage Revit plugins to avoid potential conflicts and a reduction in Revit performance. We will learn how to enable and disable Revit plugins to test performance or if the plugin is crashing Revit projects. We will find many exciting plugins in the Revit Autodesk App Store to improve productivity from multiple areas and disciplines. We can also find plugins directly from the developer websites, which will be presented in this chapter. There are many free plugins available, but some of the paid plugins can also provide you with an excellent cost-benefit.

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This chapter will provide information about the most-used Revit plugins to increase productivity in your projects. The plugins are divided into categories, including productivity and visualization. The following topics will be covered in this chapter: • Managing Revit plugins • Revit plugins

Managing Revit plugins Autodesk tries to improve Revit every year with a new release, but third-party plugins are necessary to increase productivity and run essential functions, such as batch printing PDF files. We can download plugins from the Revit Autodesk App Store or directly from the developer website. The Revit Autodesk App Store can be found at https://bit.ly/3uleRbQ. The QR code is as follows:

Managing Revit plugins

Revit Autodesk App Store The following screenshot shows the Revit Autodesk App Store with featured, paid, and most popular plugins:

Figure 9.1 – Revit Autodesk App Store

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In the Revit Autodesk App Store, we can find a menu that organizes the plugins by specific functionality:

Figure 9.2 – Revit Autodesk App Store menu

We can also access the Revit Autodesk App Store by clicking on the icon at the Revit screen's top right:

Figure 9.3 – Icon to access the Revit Autodesk App Store

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In the Revit Autodesk App Store, we can find free and paid plugins. Before installing plugins, check with IT and your technology leader that the plugin is suitable for your workflow and whether you can download or request it to be installed on your system. We also need to check before upgrading any project from one version to another to ensure that all plugins used are already available in the new version to avoid any impact on the current workflow. You also need to check whether the plugin is compatible with your current Revit version and see whether it has been recently updated. Click on the Revit plugin to find information about the release date, last updated date, and compatible Revit versions:

Figure 9.4 – Information about a Revit plugin

Tip It is recommended to close Revit before the plugin installation.

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When we open Revit after the plugin installation, the following message will appear. The Always Load option must be selected to avoid issues:

Figure 9.5 – Option to always load Revit plugins

If we select Do Not Load, it will create two issues: • The app will still be installed on your PC, taking up valuable space on your hard drive. • If we decide to use the plugin, we first need to uninstall and then reinstall the plugin.

Let's learn about security! In terms of security, we should give preference to apps that have been signed with a certificate provided by Microsoft and from trusted publishers. In the following figure, we can see a comparison between unsigned and signed plugins. We can identify whether the plugin has been signed with a certificate.

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The following windows will appear after the installation when you start Revit. Refer to the arrows pointing out the differences:

Figure 9.6 – Unsigned and signed plugins

If the plugin is unsigned, we should check whether the developer is a trusted company.

Removing Revit plugins Plugins will slow down the Revit startup, but this slowdown is minimal, so we don't need to worry about it. On the other hand, plugins can conflict with other plugins or affect a specific functionality in Revit, which will slow down and may crash projects.

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If you are experiencing problems, you can remove the plugin from Windows | Control Panel and test Revit without the plugin:

Figure 9.7 – Windows Control Panel option to remove plugins

If the plugin removal is not successful, or the plugin does not appear in the list to be removed, we need to uninstall the plugin manually. Removing plugins manually can be challenging as you need to find them in multiple locations in your C:\hard drive. We can find Revit plugins installed in the following paths: • C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\Revit\Addins\ • C:\Users\%Username%\AppData\Roaming\Autodesk\Revit\Addins\ • C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\ApplicationPlugins • C:\Program Files\Autodesk\Revit 2021\AddIns Note You may need to select the folder based on the Revit version.

Once we find the required plugin, we can select and delete the files to remove from Revit. If you wish to test Revit without the plugin, you can move the plugin files to another folder and restart Revit. After testing, you can move the plugin back to the same folder.

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Tip Use the free plugin from Stantec to disable Revit plugins.

There is a great, free application from Stantec to enable and disable Revit plugins quickly. We can find the download and instructions at the following link: https://bit.ly/3qDb9Ii

The QR code is as follows:

The application will allow you to select multiple plugins to enable or disable them:

Figure 9.8 – Stantec free application to enable and disable plugins

Creating Revit plugins Autodesk allows users to create Revit plugins. If your organization has people with programming skills in C# and VB.NET, they can access the Revit Application Programming Interface (API) to create Revit plugins based on your requirements.

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We can find multiple resources online, but the following link is a tutorial from Autodesk on how to create your first Revit plugin: https://autode.sk/3aqYcvC

The QR code is as follows:

To conclude, we have learned about processes to manage Revit plugins. In the next section, we will learn about the best Revit plugins for productivity, visualization, and analysis.

Revit plugins There are many Revit plugins on the Autodesk App Store, and we will highlight some of the best plugins to improve productivity and create new workflows when working in Revit. We have divided the plugins into two categories: • Productivity • Visualization

Productivity plugins We will give a short description of each plugin to explain how it can benefit your daily activities in Revit. The plugins are from both the Autodesk App Store and developers. We recommend you download the plugins for testing and further learning: • DiRoots plugins: DiRoots provides a collection of excellent, free Revit plugins, and they can also create custom plugins based on your requirements. The ProSheets plugin can batch print PDF files with the correct naming convention.

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A link to the plugins is as follows: https://bit.ly/3pB88Xp:

Figure 9.9 – Revit plugins from DiRoots

• RTV Tools: RTV Tools has a plugin called RTV Xporter to batch print PDF files with the correct naming convention. This tool works better with the PDF drivers from Adobe Acrobat DC and PDF Creator. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/3dsI1jb. • Xrev Transmit: Xrev Transmit can simultaneously print and export multiple formats, including DWF, DWG, DGN, DXF, and PDF. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/2MbCFxB. • Bonus Tools: Bonus Tools is a collection of over 140 Revit plugins in the same product that is very useful for saving time carrying out daily activities in Revit. We can duplicate sheets with views, list in-place families, remove views and sheets before issue files, and much more. A link to the product is as follows: https://bit.ly/2M7kU2g. A link to the various plugins' descriptions is as follows: https://bit. ly/3brnrwL. • pyRevit: pyRevit is a collection of fantastic Revit plugins where we can make patterns, create multiple sheets, manage keynotes, copy sheets between projects, and use many other features. It also enables you to create Revit plugins and share them in your organization. A link to the download is as follows: https://bit.ly/3bo6vYe. A YouTube link for the core plugins is as follows: https://bit.ly/2NsLd3z.

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• RushForth Tools: RushForth Tools is a collection of plugins for project setup, controlling parameters, importing Excel tables into Revit, and other functionalities. A link to the plugins is as follows: https://bit.ly/2NMWOdy. • AGACAD: AGACAD provides multiple free and paid plugins to improve productivity for prefabricated design, timber, and metal construction design. The BIM solutions link is as follows: https://bit.ly/2NQE3pW. The tools for Revit link is as follows: https://bit.ly/37C1HgR. • Ideate BIMLink: Ideate BIMLink enables Revit users to export and import a large quantity of data from BIM models to Excel with speed and accuracy. The Ideate website also provides other plugins to improve productivity. A link to the website is as follows: https://bit.ly/2MdsZCI. • ArchSmarter Toolbox: ArchSmarter Toolbox is a free Revit plugin with multiple functionalities, such as deleting views, aligning views, replacing fonts, batch renaming, and making sheets. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/2M9SXXE. • COINS Auto-Section Box: The COINS Auto-Section Box tool gives you the ability to create Revit section boxes around selected elements and compare side by side the plan and the 3D view. It is a free tool and provides an excellent workflow to use when designing MEP services. A link to the tool is as follows: https://bit.ly/3ujG66w. • CAD Link Opener: CAD Link Opener is a free plugin that saves time when opening DWG links from Revit. The user selects the DWG link and it will open with AutoCAD. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/3bvf4AF. • Isolate Warnings: Isolate Warnings is a free plugin to create 3D views to isolate and highlight the model elements that have warnings. A link to the tool is as follows: https://bit.ly/3k9W3Y7. • Layers Manager: Layers Manager is a free plugin that automatically creates shared parameters of system families, and we can use it to tag and display information about materials and thicknesses. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/2NhCxgB. A link to how to use Layers Manager is as follows: https://bit.ly/2ZyqnSU.

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• Align: Align is a free plugin that saves time with aligning and organizing model elements, including annotations, tags, and text. It is very useful for MEP model elements and annotations:

Figure 9.10 – Align Revit plugin

A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/37BXGJj. • Room Finishing: Room Finishing is a free plugin to automatically create a skirting board or a finished floor all the way around any architectural room. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/3aFd4Xh. • Guardian: Guardian has an interesting concept of trying to resolve Revit data issues before inserting them in the model. It is a proactive tool to identify the incoming properties, and after that, we can map any property into existing project properties or remove them. A link to the tool is as follows: https://bit.ly/3dzUaTh. • Master Purger: Master Purger is a free plugin to remove unplaced views, legends, schedules, unplaced rooms, unplaced spaces, unused scope boxes, and imported/ linked CAD files. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/2NhFkGB. • Kinship: Kinship is an excellent plugin to manage Revit families. It is easy to maintain the family library, and the Revit families can be automatically uploaded to the cloud, making it quick and straightforward to share across multiple projects. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://kinship.io. • Autodesk Navisworks NWC Export Utility: Autodesk Navisworks NWC Export Utility is a free plugin to export NWC files from Revit to be used in Navisworks for clash detection. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/3yhLKIg. • IFC Exporter: Revit can export IFC files natively, but the IFC Exporter plugin provides additional functionalities. Each Revit has a specific IFC Exporter version, and you can search for them in the Revit Autodesk App Store.

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• Autodesk BIM Interoperability Tools: Autodesk BIM Interoperability Tools is a free collection of plugins to help designers apply classification, such as Uniclass 2015, to model elements, export COBie from Revit, and other functionalities:

Figure 9.11 – Autodesk BIM Interoperability Tools

A link to the tool is as follows: https://bit.ly/2MdR6Be. • BEAM: BEAM is a plugin to enable Rhino and Revit interoperability. We can move geometry across the platforms without extensive programming knowledge:

Figure 9.12 – The BEAM plugin for Rhino and Revit interoperability

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A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/3umSEtJ. • iSync: iSync is a plugin to auto-relinquish, save, and synchronize Revit models. This process can be beneficial for large teams working in Revit as it enables autorelinquishing without synchronization. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/3skZKgN. • Family Editor Interface: Family Editor Interface is a free plugin that gives an interactive way of creating or editing family content. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/2NQtD9t. • Scan Terrain: Scan Terrain will create a Revit toposurface from a laser-scanned point cloud. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/37Cupy9. • Export Schedule: Export Schedule is a free plugin to export a Revit schedule to an Excel file with the correct font styles, column widths, merged column headers, and background colors. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/3shIlFM. • TransferSingle: TransferSingle is a plugin to enable the transfer standards for selected objects across multiple projects. We can copy selected elements, views, printing setups, section boxes, worksets, and legends. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/3bpGpUB. • External Access Links Manager: External Access Links Manager is a free plugin to enable users to view Revit links in project files without having to open them and re-path the links. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/3dAKLeu. • Unhide Elements in View: Unhide Elements in View is a free plugin to quickly identify all hidden elements in the active view and unhide them. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/3aEnnup.

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Visualization plugins Visualization plugins have transformed how architects and designers visualize models in real time and can produce high-quality rendering quickly. The learning curve for these plugins is short because they are usually straightforward to learn, and the cost-benefit is excellent. Plugins such as Enscape enable real-time rendering and provide new ways to market your project with cloud visualization, facilitating design reviews and design approvals. The following plugins are great for visualization: • Enscape: Enscape is the most-used plugin for real-time rendering with fantastic cost-benefits and a short learning curve. We can create rendering, walkthrough videos, and 360° images and visualize models in the cloud via the web browser and Virtual Reality (VR) experiences. Enscape works for Revit, Rhino, ArchiCAD, Vectorworks, and SketchUp. A link to the website is as follows: https://enscape3d.com. Scan the QR code with your cell phone camera to see the 360° image on your device. We can use the QR codes provided by Enscape in drawing sheets to show the rendering to clients. The QR code for a 360° image, also shown in the figure, is as follows:

Figure 9.13 – Enscape 360° image

A link to the preceding image is as follows: https://bit.ly/3s9Genh.

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• Twinmotion: Twinmotion is an excellent software to produce high-quality images, walkthrough videos, panoramas, and 360° VR experiences. The Revit plugin will export the model to Twinmotion, where we can apply materials and improve the rendering. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/2OX26UB. Twinmotion is powered by Unreal Engine. For advanced users, Unreal Engine gives multiple possibilities to develop cutting-edge experiences. • Lumion: Lumion can do a quicker rendering of videos and panoramas. It is easy to use, and the Revit plugin will export the model to Lumion, where we can apply materials, add people, and enhance the visualization. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://lumion.com. • V-Ray for Revit: V-Ray for Revit provides real-time visualization and a seamless Revit integration. V-Ray enables the usage of two rendering engines, and we can choose between the GPU and CPU or a hybrid rendering process. We can simulate accurate lighting with multiple types of natural and artificial lighting. A link to the tool is as follows: https://bit.ly/2ZDk0xu. • VIM: VIM has an exciting technology that enables quick navigation in very large BIM models, such as stadiums and complex building towers, with all structures and MEP services. It also provides multi-user collaboration in the cloud. A link to the tool is as follows: https://www.vimaec.com. • AUGmentecture: AUGmentecture is a plugin to enable viewing 3D models on a mobile device in an Augmented Reality (AR) format. A link to the plugin is as follows: https://bit.ly/2NQAkIA. • Shapespark: Shapespark has an innovative process for online walkthroughs, which is beneficial for design approvals. It is an excellent tool for communication and marketing that creates an interactive application, and the client can change materials via the web browser. It also provides functionality for 3D meetings in the web browser with the following key functionalities: 1. Share your screen and play videos on the wall screen. 2. Change floor material or access web links.

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3. Interaction between users with video and audio. 4. Display your webcam:

Figure 9.14 – Shapespark 3D meetings

Shapespark also creates an interactive online application where users or clients can easily navigate a room for design review or approval or use it as a marketing tool. We can visualize an interactive presentation for design approval on a web browser or cell phone at the following link: https://bit.ly/3dUBNss

The QR code is as follows:

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There is a menu at the top right to select different areas, and we can use the mouse or our fingers on a cell phone to navigate the room:

Figure 9.15 – Shapespark interactive options for mobile cell phones

We can change the scene materials by clicking on the symbol:

Figure 9.16 – Changing materials in Shapespark

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The presentation credits are as follows: www.vazproducoes.com. For further information on Shapespark, see the company website: https://www.shapespark.com

To conclude, we have learned about multiple processes to manage Revit plugins to avoid issues and increase performance. We have also provided a list of some of the most useful Revit plugins to increase productivity in daily tasks and visualization.

Summary In this chapter, we have learned that Revit plugins only work for the full Revit version, and they are simple to implement and use in daily tasks. We explained how to manage Revit plugins for the following tasks: • Accessing plugins via the Revit Autodesk App Store • The installation process • Checking a plugin's security • Removing plugins • Enabling and disabling plugins for Revit testing • Information about creating plugins Plugins enhance Revit's capability with new functionality that can save a considerable amount of time. We also learned about fantastic plugins that are widely used to improve productivity and increase performance to visualize BIM models or create amazing rendering and videos. We can find numerous free and paid plugins available to download from the Revit Autodesk App Store and the developer websites. In the next chapter, we will provide further information for improving Revit's performance.

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Improving Performance Following on from what we have described since Chapter 1, Introduction to Productivity in Revit, we would like to close this journey with the same subject that we started with: improving productivity and performance by sharing the best practices when working on a BIM project using Revit. With the combined knowledge provided across all the chapters, we now complete our objective – changing your productivity in carrying out daily tasks when working in Revit. This chapter will provide additional best practices to improve Revit's performance and increase your productivity in carrying out daily tasks. We will explain the best practices to manage CAD imports and views and sheets as well as other tasks to improve productivity. This chapter will also provide information about Revit content management and additional tasks to optimize Revit's performance, including reviewing warnings and auditing Revit files.

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The following topics will be covered in this chapter: • Revit modeling best practices • Revit content management • Optimizing Revit's performance • BIM 360 best practices

Revit modeling best practices In a project, during the modeling process, it is important to always follow the best practices to avoid re-work or anything that will affect Revit's performance and cause work to be disrupted. We will be listing some aspects to always have in the front of our minds when doing specific Revit tasks. The following Revit modeling best practices will be covered in this section: • CAD import best practices • Views and sheet management • Modeling

CAD import best practices It is very common to import DWG files (or other CAD files) into a Revit project, but we need to control this process to avoid performance issues. When doing it, users should be aware of what might affect the model performance and what they should constantly be tracking. CAD files can reduce Revit's performance, and the following tips and tricks can minimize those issues. First, import and link CAD. When working with CAD formats, it's important to avoid using the Import CAD option as the file will be part of the model, and it might become challenging to identify which view the file has imported:

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Figure 10.1 – Import CAD

Tip We might need Revit plugins or a Dynamo script to find imported CAD files.

The following recommendations should be used to avoid reducing performance in Revit: • When working in a worksharing environment, ensure that all imported/linked CAD files are placed in the correct workset. • Importing CAD files must be avoided. • Linking CAD files should be limited to a minimum. • Before importing or linking a CAD file, ensure it is cleaned and purged and only shows what is required for the project. • It's not recommended to have CAD files bigger than 10 MB. • Make sure that you keep CAD files linked that are really needed. • Ensure that all files have the correct links (links not found take longer to open, save, and synchronize a file). In Manage Links, we can find the link status. • When working with imported and/or linked CAD files, it is essential to use Zoom Extents in AutoCAD to ensure that we don't have any elements far away from the model (if that happens, the CAD file should be edited to delete the unnecessary elements). • Before importing and/or linking CAD files, make sure all objects in the file are using Linetype and Colour as ByLayer as this will allow editing these properties from Revit. • Depending on the project, we recommend creating a Revit model to link all the CAD files needed. • We should never explode a DWG file inside of a Revit project.

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• When setting up CAD elements with Index Colours in the CAD software, defining a line weight during the importing process is possible. The Line Weight settings should be defined before importing and/or linking by clicking the Import Line Weights option:

Figure 10.2 – Import Line Weights settings

• When linking DWGs, use Current view only if possible. When importing a DWG into Revit, it's possible to have it as a 3D element (visible in 3D) or a 2D element (which will be visible only in the current view when imported or linked). By selecting this option, the link file will be flattened into the current view, and it will have less impact on the overall model:

Figure 10.3 – Linking CAD format options

• CAD Import for Detail Components to create construction details. When creating Detail Items families, it is not possible to link CAD files, and we can only import CAD files. As mentioned previously, we can control the line weight before importing DWG files:

Figure 10.4 – Importing CAD files into detail item families

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• In the Manage tab, we can find the Object Styles tool, which allows the user to control the CAD layers to change colors and line styles:

Figure 10.5 – Imported objects settings through object styles

Tip It is possible to have different settings per view by accessing Visibility/ Graphics Overrides, which can also be controlled via View Template.

Views and sheet management Views and sheet management is an essential factor to keep good Revit performance. As the project develops, we need to perform tasks to minimize issues in Revit. It is very common to create views for specific modeling tasks, and we might have many views created, which will affect Revit's performance. The following tips and tricks help to manage views and sheets to improve performance.

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Close hidden windows When working with too many views opened, it will affect performance. It is recommended to keep the minimum number of views open. Views can be closed by accessing the View tab and clicking on Close Inactive:

Figure 10.6 – Closing inactive views

Delete unnecessary views and sheets By deleting unnecessary views and sheets, it will improve the file size and performance. If a Revit file has too many sheets and the overall file size can't be reduced, we may need to split the model into two volumes and divide the number of sheets present on the models to reduce the file size.

Far clip sections and elevations When working with sections or elevations, the Far Clipping area should be minimized as required. This will improve performance as the geometry hidden by other elements in the view will not be affected when regenerating the view. This option can be controlled in two different ways: • When doing the section or elevation on a floor plan by controlling the depth when the section or elevation symbol is selected:

Figure 10.7 – Section view depth controllers

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• In a section view, we can access the properties, change the Far Clipping settings, and define a precise Far Clip Offset value:

Figure 10.8 – Far Clipping options

View the range on floor plans Like Far Clipping, on a floor plan, there is a parameter where we can control the view depth: View Range. View Range controls the view depth, affecting how many elements will be displayed and, consequently, affecting performance:

Figure 10.9 – View Range in floor plans

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By clicking the