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Author: Matt Miyamoto AutoCAD Civil 3D, Revit, Navisworks, Navisworks Manage, AutoCAD 2017, AutoCAD

This year, Ideate is offering a new class based on the BIM for Road and Highway design to go along with Autodesk’s new BIM Specialist: Roads and Highways certification. 

Although the concept of BIM or Building Information Modeling has been around for years, its integration into the world of Road and Highway design has been relatively slow when compared to that of Building design. The 2014 Autodesk Infrastructure Design Suite provides users with core products for use in BIM modeling for Roads and Highways. In this article, we’ll talk about the products involved, and some the roles they play in the BIM Workflow process.

When looking at the list of products in the Infrastructure Design suite – Ultimate version, we’ll find applications for many stages of the project lifecycle. For the purpose of our blog, we’ll break this down into three main areas.

For Stage 1, Autodesk InfraWorks is available to combine both existing and proposed data sources and create a virtual 3D model of a planned development. Autodesk InfraWorks is compatible with GIS, AutoCAD, Civil 3D, Revit, Point Cloud and other data types and also includes tools for creating proposed features and cloud-based profile optimization for road design. 

Once models are created, Autodesk InfraWorks also includes tools for creating storyboards, virtual fly-throughs, and scenarios for communicating design concepts. Finally, Autodesk InfraWorks models can easily be exported and imported into Autodesk AutoCAD Civil 3D for continuing on to the next stage of the design process

The Autodesk AutoCAD Civil 3D modeling tools provide civil engineers with the ability to add large amounts of information to the models for use in the BIM process. Built-in analysis tools like Storm and Sanitary Analysis and Hydraflow, along with  plan production tools to automatically cut Plan and Profile and Section Sheets make AutoCAD Civil 3D an excellent program to use for Stage 2 of our workflow. Additional tools for Quantity Take-offs, earthwork, and material volume calculations also provide the necessary data for construction cost estimates based on the information contained in our models.

Once designs are finalized, we can move on to Stage 3 of our BIM Workflow. Model components can be exported back to Autodesk InfraWorks for high quality visualizations of the final design, and imported into Navisworks Manage for construction management and simulation. Both applications are also compatible with files from Autodesk Revit as well as other software packages, giving us the ability to create realistic composite models using data received from all parties involved in a project.

Within Navisworks Manage, the Timeliner tool can be used for creating 4D and 5D construction simulations by linking model components to timelines created in project scheduling software like Microsoft Project or Primavera.

Along with the Timeliner, Navisworks Manage also includes Clash Detection for detecting clearance violations and hard clashes between model components.  Simulated construction sequencing and virtual clash detection help save time and money through early detection of issues that could lead to costly redesigns and change orders if found during construction.

So there you have it, Autodesk InfraWorks for preliminary planning stage design, Autodesk AutoCAD Civil 3D for detailed design and construction documentation, then back to Autodesk InfraWorks or into Autodesk Navisworks Manage for advanced visualizations, construction simulation, clash detection and construction management. A BIM Workflow for Road and Highway design using applications included in the 2014 Autodesk Infrastructure Design Suites.

Interested in finding out more? Visit our website for the next open enrollment class on BIM Workflow for Roads & Highways and to find out more about Autodesk’s BIM Specialist: Roads & Highways certification.

For more information on the software solutions, training and consulting Ideate provides, please visit the Ideate, Inc. homepage.


      Matt Miyamoto
Matt Miyamoto
ENI Manager & Senior Application Specialist

Matt is an ENI Manager and Senior Application Specialist in Ideate, Inc.’s Seattle office. He has a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and is a licensed Civil Engineer. Prior to joining Ideate, Matt worked as a civil engineer, using Civil 3D on a variety of projects including site development, roadway improvements and infrastructure design. With over 10 years of experience in the civil engineering industry, Matt now provides training, consulting, technical support, and implementation strategies for organizations transitioning to Civil 3D. Matt is an Autodesk Certified Instructor (ACI), as well as an Autodesk Certified BIM Specialist: Roads and Highway Solutions. Additionally, Matt is and Autodesk Certified Professional for AutoCAD, and AutoCAD Civil 3D. Find Matt on Twitter.