‘The life of BIM is going to be extended’

Paul Daugalis, Managing Director of the Lithuanian company ‘Hugaas Engineering UAB’, is following a visionary strategy: offering a one stop shop for a complete integrated asset lifecycle management of buildings. Being part of the Norwegian ‘Hugaasgruppen’, their services cover the entire lifecycle of buildings starting from the conceptual design and construction through to maintenance until disposal. In order to manage and coordinate the diverse scopes of responsibilities, the company adopted the BIM method. This approach has earned Hugaas Engineering the 2016 Lithuanian Open BIM Award in the overall category ‘Best integrated BIM project’ as well as in the subcategory ‘Best MEP BIM project’ for their new Hugaas head office Mooya Fellesbygg.

Text: Katharina Duric

Being based in Lithuania but deeply rooted in Norway, Hugaas Engineering provides full building turnkey solutions to the Norwegian market within a group of companies that operate under the umbrella of Hugaasgruppen. “We specialize in sporting arenas, industrial and commercial buildings, agricultural structures and shopping centres,” Paul Daugalis explains. They cover all disciplines: architectural, structural, electrical, automation, HVAC, water and waste, plumbing and now have established maintenance as well.

An award winning BIM project

When Hugaas Engineering entered the Lithuanian Open BIM contest as one of the youngest companies (being established only in 2013) they wanted to submit a project that they own. “We chose this project because it is very dear to our hearts, as it is our new head office in Norway and it showcases all of our talents on one of our own buildings,” elaborates Daugalis. “It is not a complex structure – 3 levels with a total of 3.300 m² – but it involved all disciplines within our team. This project highlights for us how well not just Hugaas Engineering had performed its part, but how the whole company, Hugaas Entreprenor, Front Energi, Front Tech, Hugaas Construction had come together to realize this design.” He adds proudly, “It was a team effort.”

While the structure of the project may not have been complex, the design process across all disciplines, different teams and even different countries certainly was. Daugalis admits, “Working from a 1.500 kilometer distance Vilnius to Trondheim was a challenge. Communication could be quite complicated at times.” Their solution: Building Information Modeling. “The BIM process is a method that allows us to communicate and interact with our sister and parent companies. We are able to exchange ideas and ensure the end result is exactly what we are after. The visualization of the model describes the situation better and actually shows, where a potential issue could arise, so we can find a solution. BIM is the only way to work.”

BIM ensures that the “engine of the asset lifecycle” runs smoothly

Hugaas Engineering needed a tool that was part of their overall BIM strategy. Since one of their sister companies was working with the open BIM software DDS-CAD, Daugalis opted for the same. “The advantage that we have in DDS-CAD is the compatibility with the rest of our software packages that we use and the collaboration with our Norwegian counterparts. DDS-CAD allows our team of engineers to provide detailed information into the models that can then be used to communicate clearly back to the project managers or respectively clients how the final structure will behave. Our engineers find it the fastest interacting interface on the market compared to other products. When you are working on a project for eight to ten hours a day, you want some software that keeps up with you. And our engineers are working in a very rapid pace.”  According to Paul Daugalis, from the conceptual design to handing over the building they are now up to six months faster than their competition, which is using more of the manual methods. He also states that the BIM tool is not only saving time but also reducing errors drastically. This applies not only to the engineering part but to the construction part as well. “We know that after we performed the clash detection and after we got the full integration, the issued installation drawings are accurate. For example that they do not have piping go through steel structures,” Daugalis says.

This accuracy is particularly important as he considers the MEP side one of the most critical parts in their business and “the engine of the asset lifecycle”. Daugalis points out, “The equipment requires some sort of maintenance or consumes some sort of energy compared to the structural side, which just stands there and looks pretty. It is the one that helps us provide the best asset lifecycle value to our clients. Cost to build might be cheap, but cost to maintain might be high, if the parts fail after only 5 years of operation or consume a lot of electricity.”   

Hugaas Engineering takes BIM further

He believes this long term approach gave them the special edge compared to their fellow contestants of the Open BIM Award. Hugaas Engineering was the only organization that integrated the maintenance part as well. “We work with an internal team to move from the start of a project until the end of it and continue to support our clients over the next 10 to 30 years in which they own and operate the asset.” In his opinion BIM becomes more interesting after the models have been built. “What we will see in the future is that BIM will be used to operate and maintain the asset as well. The information that is collected in the BIM models is going to ensure that we provide our clients the best solution and value over time, with reliable equipment and well performing energy consumption. This is our vision, our goal!”


Project info
Architecture: Hugaas group, Hugaas Engineering
- Software: ArchiCAD
Structure: Hugaas Engineering
- Software: Dlubal + Tekla Structures
MEP: Hugaas Engineering - Software: DDS-CAD

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