In recent years, the methods of designing and constructing buildings have undergone many progressive changes. Our future and the future of our environment are now being taken into consideration when designing buildings. Current technology is allowing companies to build for the future.
A method known as Building Information Modeling (BIM) has been developed as a means of collecting interconnected computable information about a building. Because information is continuously being collected as a building project develops, dependable digital representations of the building are always available for review by all parties involved in the design. BIM creates one central model of a design which is available to all design and construction teams so they are all on the same page as the building progresses. This allows for better communication as it relates to making modifications and resolving problems.
‘Green’ designs have become a thriving industry. Using technology and innovation, many buildings are now being designed to have the least impact on the environment. Such deigns include recycled material used in constructing the building, green rooftops, a wastewater recycling plant, solar power, on-site power generators, materials that allow water to be captured from the outdoors and get filtered for indoor use. As well, buildings are being designed to use sunlight as much as possible. Using renewable energy technologies and conservation technologies are a major factor when designing modern buildings.
The use of computer-based tools to solve design problems is another way that technology is changing the way the modern building is designed. Using computer technology, building designers can simulate conditions before the building has been constructed. This can include simulating events such as an earthquake.
Buildings are now being designed to meet the ever changing technological advancements. For instance, re-radiating systems (IRS) and distributed antenna systems (DAS) are being installed in large buildings where steel, concrete, and other building materials obstruct radio signals. IRS and DAS boost signals that support cell phones, emergency services radio systems, and personal communications devices. The result is improved safety for building users.
Because much of the workforce either works at home or are on the go, designers are now designing buildings to support wireless technologies. Workers will have the ability to access the Internet, access materials and files from anywhere in the building or while they are away from the building. For instance, some hospitals are conducting patient charting using wireless devices. As well, old and new buildings are now being retrofitted to support wireless technology.
Since our world has become a much more dangerous place, technology is now being used to create safer and stronger building structures. To protect people from those who wish to do us harm, designers are now implementing principles of blast-resistant designs. Buildings are now being designed to sustain and contain a certain amount of bomb damage. This includes preventing a wide-spread collapse of a building, limiting damage to a small area, and reducing the amount of glass and debris spread from a bomb blast.