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A BIM’s dimensions specify the type of information that is added to a building model.  We can add 7 types or dimensions of information to a building model.  These are described below:

1D BIM is a basic 3D model of the building, which allows one to understand the shape and massing of the building and its elements.

A 4D BIM adds an additional dimension of information in the form of scheduling data to various model elements.  This allows accurate program visualizations to be obtained and shows just how the project will develop sequentially.

A 7D BIM incorporates asset data such as component status, specifications, operations and maintenance manuals, warranty data, etc.  This information can be extracted in COBie format for use outside the BIM software by 3rd party building management programmes and even Microsoft Excel.  This allows for easier and quicker replacements of parts and a streamlined asset life cycle management over time.  The model can be continually updated during the lifetime of the building to help manage it from design to demolition.

2D BIM incorporates details of all model elements sufficient to obtain 2D CAD drawings and schedules from the model.  The derived drawings must be further detailed and coordinated to produce construction information.

A 5D BIM adds the cost element to the elements of the model.  This allows for obtaining accurate quantities and overall project cost, automatically updated as the model develops.  Along with Construction Sequencing, this further allows for budget planning.

3D BIM incorporates specific 3D data of the building elements, which are coordinated with each other in three dimensions to remove clashes, display assemblies or assembly sequences, create walk-throughs, and produce construction information with little addition of 2D CAD drawings.

A 6D BIM incorporates information on the energy performance of the building elements and its systems.  This allows for the calculation of the energy performance of the building at an early stage.