Kent-based contractor Baxall Construction has been delivering new build, refurbishment, project management and design and build (D&B) solutions for a diverse portfolio of projects across London and the South East for more than half a century. The firm specialises in the education, high quality residential, ecclesiastical, health, leisure and commercial sectors, serving the needs of its clients in both public and private sectors.
One of Baxall’s clear differentiators in winning work throughout the region is its pioneering use and continuing promotion of Building Information Modelling (BIM). The firm’s ‘Buildings Built on Teamwork’ slogan perfectly reflects its approach to BIM, encompassing inclusivity, working collaboratively, sharing best practice and utilising modern methods of construction.
To further complement its BIM capability, Baxall Construction selected Rapid5D to provide Trimble Vico Office software, support and training. Vico Office delivers an integrated BIM workflow for construction projects, extending the basic 3D model with constructability analysis and coordination, quantity takeoff, 4D location-based scheduling and production control, 5D estimating, and layout.
Rapid change in the construction industry is increasing the demand for efficiency and shorter delivery times. Process integration and improved communications throughout the project life cycle are proving to be an essential part of this change. As a result, BIM is becoming the new standard for the construction industry.
Baxall Construction’s Hankham Primary School Extension Project for East Sussex County Council is an exemplar of BIM in action. The project demonstrates the efficiencies of modern methods of construction in combination with collaborative working between the client and its stakeholders, the design team and the supply chain.
The D&B project involved a new £1m extension, one of four school extensions carried out by Baxall Construction in partnership with offsite construction specialists, STREIF, under the Sussex Cluster Framework Agreement.
The large extension, which included new classrooms and a hall, needed to be constructed quickly in order to minimise disruption during term time. It also had to blend in with the existing school building, using similar finishing materials including timber cladding and brickwork.
From a proposed 42 week programme using traditional construction methods, the project was delivered six weeks ahead of the original schedule with client savings in excess of £0.25 million (18.6% of the original budget) – a sustainable BIM solution that generated whole life cost savings and more energy efficient school facilities.
As a true champion of BIM, Baxall continues to enhance its capabilities. Building on the success on the Sussex schools extension projects, Baxall evaluated several software options to extend its BIM offering before selecting Vico Office.
With the support of Rapid5D, Baxall has introduced a collaborative training forum for its design team which is producing real cost and programme efficiencies. The integration of Vico Office is delivering tangible cost and schedule improvements on five new project awards throughout the South East region totalling in excess of £20m: two further schools projects for East Sussex County Council, two new build schools projects for Kent County Council and one (private sector) South London school extension project.
“The ongoing support, workshops, presentations and bespoke software training provided by Rapid5D has proved invaluable since we introduced Vico Office to our processes. Their BIM Consultants have become an integral part of our team, sharing their skills and knowledge and facilitating the introduction of next generation software that now allows us to offer a truly integrated 4D and 5D BIM solution,” comments Malcolm Clarke, Managing Director, Baxall Construction.
“By using Trimble’s 4D and 5D BIM solutions, contractors can collaborate efficiently, improve predictability, reduce risk, manage costs and optimise schedules on large, complex building projects. Baxall Construction is well ahead of the game in embracing our purpose-built BIM platform, delivering increased profitability, competitiveness and sustainability,” added Steve Brunning, Managing Director, Rapid5D.
Photo: The STREIF system provided an innovative method to construction