Using Building Information Modelling (BIM) to design flexible spaces with design standards in healthcare facilities

This paper explored key factors that can enhance the designer's role when designing space for flexibility with the focal use of building information modelling (BIM) and design standardisation. An exploratory study was conducted using a questionnaire survey. The questionnaire was piloted to a Web-based Group (48 responses) and then it was distributed to the top 100 UK architectural firms (10 responses) based on the Building Magazine, (2010). Both descriptive and inferential statistics were used. The questionnaire survey included both open ended and close ended questions. The paper provides empirical insights about how design standardisation and flexibility can be applied with BIM. It suggests that embedding flexibility can be enhanced with BIM by supporting the generation of different design options and scheduling design tasks with different information attached. The results also showed that strategies such as “adapting,” “contracting” and “expanding” are more beneficial than other flexible strategies. Regarding standardisation and flexibility, the results showed that although standardisation is not the panacea of providing flexible solutions, it is indeed applied and applicable in construction projects that require flexibility. The chosen research approach measures, records and reports the perceptions and worldviews of the respondents. Therefore, the research findings are based on how reality is formed by the participants and their experiences. With that in mind, the information identified was used to draw some noteworthy findings that provide detailed information on embedding flexibility in healthcare buildings.