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26 April 2017

Sustainable Design & The use of BIM in 2017

Building Information Modelling (BIM) and Sustainable Design are becoming increasingly important in the construction industry. Concerns regarding cost savings, energy conservation and environmental protection are driving demand for ‘green’ buildings, with developers and property owners gradually recognising its importance.

What is Sustainable Design?

Sustainable Design is the philosophy of minimising negative environmental impacts. In the built environment, this is achieved through increased efficiencies and moderation of the usage of materials and energy in both the construction process and life-cycle of a building.

The global construction industry contributes an average of 30% of the world’s greenhouse gases and generates hundreds of millions of tonnes of building waste annually. Pressure is mounting across the industry to improve its effect on the environment.

Civil infrastructure, architectural and building system designers can all employ methods and technologies to reduce environmental impacts, therefore improving sustainability. Energy efficiency, water usage, air quality and construction material selection are all aspects that affect a building’s sustainability rating.

Building Information Modelling

Building Information Modelling is a single platform that can be used by all parties involved in the design process.

Historically, sustainable design features have been somewhat of an afterthought, added once a design has been finalised. BIM technology provides a more comprehensive approach, allowing for the inclusion of sustainable design features from the outset.

Furthermore, BIM allows for the automatic tracking of the types and quantity of materials, which has both economic and financial benefits - reducing onsite wastage and subsequently reducing cost.


Whilst the construction industry is under increasing pressure to reduce its negative impact on the environment to adopt principles of sustainable design, it needs to be financially feasible for the property owners and developers. By addressing both economic and environmental factors when designing a building, the true meaning of sustainability is achieved - environmental sustainability for the planet and economic sustainability for stakeholders.

At JV Tierney & Co, we have the tools and expertise to assist in Sustainable Design achieved through the use of BIM. For more information on any of the issues discussed in this article or for assistance with your project, please call us on 00353 1421 4900 or visit our website http://www.jvtierney.ie.

We look forward to helping you with your construction needs.