Towards intelligent structural design of buildings: a BIM-based solution

Tofigh Hamidavi*, Sepehr Abrishami, M. Reza Hosseini

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Despite the unprecedented permeation of Building Information Modelling (BIM) and collaboration platforms, architects and structural engineers, for the most part, act as separate entities. That is, linking architectural models with those of structural engineers remains labour-intensive and cumbersome; structural engineers can generate few alternatives for any given architectural model. This paper is an attempt to address these problems. It provides an automated procedure, computational details and the configuration of toolsets in the form of a proof of concept (PoC) prototype that: binds architectural models with structural ones for tall buildings; automatically generates and updates alternatives for structural models, based on the input extracted from the architectural model; and provides engineers with an optimum design that fulfils the set criteria. The prototype is developed based on an initial needs assessment study – to determine the requirements of practitioners. The practicality of the solution is assessed in a case project. The paper contributes to the field by presenting one of the first solutions capable of automated generation of optimised structural design based on architectural models. Designed for tall buildings to incorporate immense complexity, the solution acts as a blueprint in developing similar systems for simpler buildings.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101685
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Building Engineering
Early online date10 Aug 2020
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2020


  • BIM level 3
  • Civil engineering
  • Collaboration
  • Data management
  • Digital engineering
  • Integrated design


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