I get asked quite often when I am at conferences such as Autodesk University if we support 3D model views of Revit models in FM:Interact. I will typically answer this question with a tentative yes followed by asking them why they want to see the 3D model views in a facilities management system. The usual answer that I receive is that it’s nice to see the overall model in an isometric view so they can better see the relationship between spaces, systems and general architecture.
This is certainly achievable by providing access to the model and a viewer that allows the end user to navigate by panning, zooming, rotating and occasionally walking through the model but does this provide enough benefits to justify including 3D views in daily facilities workflows? Most of the end users of our system often don’t know that a Revit model exists even if it is bi-directionally connected to FM:Interact simply because the work that they perform such as updating occupancy, managing moves and performing maintenance hasn’t traditionally required it.
That being said more and more end users are asking for it and are exploring how it can enhance and improve the work they perform within their facilities teams. In response to this FM:Systems is exploring new technologies that not only provide views of the entire model but also allow the user to actively query the model to return data on the objects within such as spaces, assets, and building components (walls, doors etc.) We’ve recently completed an Autodesk BIM 360 viewer integration prototype that was shown by the Autodesk BIM 360 API development team during the Autodesk Developer Network pre-conference at Autodesk University and the response has been outstanding. Keep an eye on this blog over the coming months as I’ll be actively reporting on our progress.