BSI revises design and construction code of practice

Standard is brought into line with the Government Soft Landings framework, post occupancy evaluation, and BIM requirements

BSI, the business standards company, has revised its document BS 8536-1 Briefing for design and construction: Code of practice for facilities management (Buildings infrastructure) .

The standard has been included in the Level 2 BIM package of documents which the Government expects companies to demonstrate they are using when tendering for Government contracts.

The standard has now been brought into line with the principles of the Soft Landings Framework and Government Soft Landings (GSL), post occupancy evaluation and BIM requirements.

Soft landings enables the smooth transition from design and construction into operation and use of an asset or facility. It advocates close collaboration during briefing, design, construction and handover between the design and construction team and the operator, operations team or facilities manager, as appropriate, in matters affecting operations and end users.

Both BS 8536-1 and Soft Landings recognise that the impact of ongoing business performance, maintenance and operational cost of a building during its lifecycle far outweigh the original capital cost of construction. The need to optimise in-use performance from a social, economic and environmental perspective is recognised and sought through strategic target setting, learning from previous experience, early engagement with the operators and end users in the design and construction process, post hand-over support, in-use performance evaluation and benchmarking.

Anthony Burd, head of construction at BSI, said: “By working closely with operators and users, the operational costs and impacts of a building can be better understood and considered in both design and construction, and can reduce whole life cost and support improved operational delivery.

The principles of supply chain collaborative working and engagement - in a structured process throughout the whole lifecycle - underpins this standard. It also encourages the data output created during the design and construction process to be made available using BIM for use in the operation phase. Creating one document enabling clients to achieve better performance outcomes from their facilities, is a huge step forward.”

The standard will be applicable to all new-build projects and major refurbishments and is of particular benefit to architects and design firms, structural engineers, mechanical and electrical engineers, real estate managers, facility managers, and asset managers.

BS 8536-1 intends to:

  • Help- users achieve the performance outcomes specified at the outset of the project
  • Address operational needs and running costs adding to the efficiency of the business
  • Enable user and operator needs to be assessed throughout the design process so assets become cheaper to construct and operate and do not require changes after handover
  • Allow assets to meet their optimum performance much quicker because designers and the construction team will be involved in optimising their operation
  • Make assets more sustainable

BS 8536 was developed using a collaborative consensus-based process with expertise from organisations including the British Institute of Facilities Managers, BIM Task Group, the Building Services Research and Information Association, BSRIA Soft Landings user group, Buildingsmart, The Facilities Society, Government Soft Landings Stewardship Group, the Institution of Civil Engineers, the Ministry of Justice Estates, the Royal Institute of British Architects and the University of Bolton.

The standard is available as a free download sponsored by the Construction Industry Council (CIC) on behalf of the Building Information Modelling (BIM) Task Group.

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