Architecture departments honored for interdisciplinary effort

July 02, 2010

An interdisciplinary effort involving the Penn State Architecture, Architectural Engineering and Landscape Architecture departments has won a Citation Award, the highest honor in the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Building Information Modeling Awards Program. Penn State's Integrated Project Delivery/Building Information Modeling (IPD/BIM) initiative was honored in the Academic Curriculum Development category. The BIM Awards Program is administered by the AIA Architectural Practice Knowledge Community.

The award recognizes IDP/BIM efforts across the three departments, led by Bob Holland (joint appointment in Architecture and Architectural Engineering), Ute Poerschke (Architecture), Madis Pihlak (joint appointment in architecture and landscape architecture), John Messner (architectural engineering) and Kevin Parfitt (architectural engineering).

BIM uses 3D modeling technology to visualize complex geometry, allowing for better integration of building systems and the sharing of design information, as well as providing analytical tools to create more sustainable buildings. IPD draws all stakeholders into the planning process, so that owners, architects, contractors and others involved in the project are working together from the beginning.

The AIA award recognizes the architecture systems integration course developed and taught by Poerschke, the interdisciplinary BIM studio (architecture, landscape architecture and architectural engineering students), and the architectural engineering IDP/BIM thesis capstone project. For the thesis capstone project, student teams included a member from each of the four architectural engineering options (construction, structural, mechanical and lighting/electrical engineering). Using IPD/BIM process and modeling, each team analyzed a landmark high-rise building and proposed changes in the design to improve sustainability, life-cycle cost and constructability.

Brian Orland, outgoing director of Penn State's H. Campbell and Eleanor R. Stuckeman School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, said the award demonstrates Stuckeman School and architectural engineering faculty's commitment to interdisciplinary efforts.

"This is well-deserved recognition for their commitment to curriculum development testing BIM, not only as an aid to integrated building delivery, but also as a platform for interdisciplinary working."

The interdisciplinary efforts have been supported by the Raymond A. Bowers Program for Excellence in Design and Construction of the Built Environment and the Leonhard Center for Enhancement of Engineering Education at Penn State, and the Thornton Tomasetti Foundation, which supports activities related to building engineering, design or technology.

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Last Updated January 09, 2015