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DB-Lab was founded in 2017 to design, develop, and deploy web platforms for BIM (Building Information Modeling) project management and collaboration. The Paris-based company developed DABOX, a private platform for BIM collaboration, and the firm also creates custom web applications for organizations seeking to streamline workflows for and improve visualization into intelligent models.
Also based in Paris, Brunet Saunier Architecture (BSA) primarily designs large public buildings such as hospitals. BSA asked DB-Lab to improve the sharing and accessibility of data for these complex building projects. DB-Lab's solution—a data management web platform and the RoomDataChecker tool—are built with Forge APIs.
Hospital building projects are exceptionally complex. They require management of hundreds of data sources, as well as data access and sharing with many outside stakeholders, and traceability of data changes during lengthy construction lifecycles. For the construction of 2 new buildings at Hôpital Lariboisière in Paris, BSA had to manage many requirements from project economists, healthcare officials, and operations managers, all providing input and decision-making at every stage of the multiyear project.
To manage data for hospital projects—which can have thousands of rooms, each with 100-plus data parameters—BSA typically relied on moving BIM data from Revit building design software and BIM 360 Docs construction document management software to Microsoft Excel spreadsheets so that project partners could access information such as cost estimates. Once reviewed, the data had to be uploaded back to Revit—a time-consuming and error-prone process. The manual multistep processes also slowed BSA’s data sheet creation for each hospital room.
To solve BSA’s challenges of managing data for thousands of hospital rooms, DB-Lab used Forge to build a web-based data management platform connected to BIM 360 Design collaboration software and BIM 360 Docs. DB-Lab used the Data Management API to access BIM 360 Docs data, along with the BIM 360 Account Admin API and the BIM 360 Document Management API to synchronize BIM data. The Viewer API shows and localizes individual hospital rooms inside the intelligent model. With the Model Derivative API, project stakeholders can use the web platform and RoomDataChecker to see visualizations of rooms and their associated data without having to open the intelligent model itself—and with no BIM tool expertise.
The platform provides a common environment for hospital room management data, including the ability to track data for the lifecycle of each individual room—which will help operations teams make better maintenance decisions long after hospitals are built. Since all data is integrated within the digital models shared on the web platform, BSA can automatically edit and deliver complete data sheets for each hospital room without time-consuming manual steps.
Forge highlights include the following:
“Only Forge lets us create tools that integrate data from many sources, such as Revit and BIM 360 Docs, into a single platform—while maintaining access for all users to all projects. And the Forge APIs help us build platforms that anticipate our customers’ future needs, like tracking data for many stakeholders.”—Mathieu Lalanne, CEO, DB-Lab