Pioneering 4D planning on Gospel Oak to Barking civil engineering

CPMS was the first company within the rail industry to use 4D (3D + time) building information modelling (BIM) on a large scale to animate plans in real time and identify work package clashes.

Introducing the fourth dimension of time enabled the various contractors, consultants and clients to all get involved in planning and see the impact of their actions on each other.

What made this 4D model pioneering was its scale. Previous models created within the rail industry concentrated on a small section of track (typically a couple of hundred meters) and included around 2,000 lines of information from a Gantt chart – detailing tasks and events against time. Our model incorporated over 10,000 lines of information across a 14-mile-long worksite. By adjusting one element of information we could instantly see the future implications across the whole route and proactively resolve any issues that might arise. The cost involved in closing the Gospel Oak to Barking route on a typical weekend was around £80,000. Making the ability to save time, and therefore substantial amounts of money, vital.