The industry is moving towards greater sophistication in design and engineering information management, better efficiencies in construction and lower reliance on manual labour on site.
Hugely transformative technological tools are bringing in systemic shifts in all aspects of design and construction. Data analytics linked to computational design tools allow for intelligent, informed design with much more sophistication than conventional means. BIM enables detailed modelling of all system components eliminating conflicts and increasing efficiencies. This is linking further with building assembly strategies that use prefab and factory production of system components as means of increasing efficiencies in cost, time and quality. “While 3D printing and robotic assembly are the utopian future far removed from Indian context, more appropriate technologies such as PEB, prefab, precast and slipform are gaining acceptance,” said Kalhan K Mattoo, Director, Planet 3 Studios Pvt Ltd.
The awareness that a building is a system that needs to perform efficiently and sustainably over a life cycle is driving better material and building construction choices. Technology is now at the heart of diagnostics, monitoring and management of facilities, he observed.
While explaining the greatest breakthrough technology of 2016 Architect Kalhan points out a few trends certainly stand out which include use of drones for surveying, 3D spatial mapping, BIM ecosystem, hybrid systems that combine conventional and new construction technologies, and more efficient project monitoring through proprietary, customised solutions. He said, “The industry is moving towards greater sophistication in design and engineering information management, better efficiencies in construction and lower reliance on manual labour on site. Just in time capacity additions, speed to market are driving the pre-engineered and pre-fab trend, housing deficit and the 2022 deadline is sparking a few innovations in precast and hybrid technologies.”
Exercising a greater degree of control
Founded and led by husband-wife duo, Kalhan and Santha Mattoo, Planet 3 Studios has evolved as a multidisciplinary practice with a rapidly growing eclectic portfolio of projects. Commenting on how has the technology added value to the firm’s performance, Kalhan said, “We create greater value through better informed design with computational modelling, better information management and conflict avoidance through BIM, superior project monitoring through proprietary systems. We commit to additional project management mandate for some of our prominent, challenging projects and these new technological tools enable us to establish and commit to fixed project cost and timelines. There is a greater degree of control that we are able to exercise at all stages of design and construction process. Strategic use of these means has provided us a competitive advantage in winning bids for projects with challenging mandates.”
Putting together the best strategies
With an aim to make its international cruise terminal a hub of tourism and entertainment, Mumbai Port Trust (MBPT) has decided to undergo a major revamp by developing its land on the eastern seafront. Planet 3 Studios is tasked with the design and project implementation of the new international cruise terminal at Ballard Pier extension. The firm is adopting advanced technologies for detailed modelling of this project. Sharing more details, Architect Kalhan said, “The project exemplifies adoption of the above technologies in an ongoing project for us. Modelling passenger movement for throughput considerations, facade design through visibility and climate parametrics, logistics planning for uninterrupted operations, BIM ecosystem linked to BMS, off site fabrications and much more. For a prominent and challenging project such as this, we need to dip into our technology toolkit to put together the best strategies to deliver on challenges.”