NEW HIGH TECNOLOGY! Kalle Heiska science journalist
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VTT technical solutions simplify decision-making in building construction
New IT methods reduce life cycle costs of buildings

In collaboration with the British partner, the University of Reading, VTT has brought together the best methods for supporting complex decision-making in construction projects. Developed solutions ease the various complex situations and help to verify end result compliance with client requirements in advance. The process also verifies suitability to different user groups. In building projects right initial decisions are the key to improved functionality and performance enabling significant cost savings during life cycle of buildings.

The IT solutions developed by VTT offer tools for cutting down the complexity of decision-making at different stages of the construction project. They were successfully field-tested in the design of a steel-frame detached house and a two-storey office building with a glass facade. The methods resulted in a significant increase in co-operation among project participants and reduced simultaneously need to solve conflict between clients and construction firms after the building is completion.

The methods are most influential in the early stages of the construction project, when most determining decisions for subsequent decisions take place and create the basis for long-term economic choices. Systematic processing of the construction project objectives culminate in life span cost savings. The amount of savings depends on methods used and the level of exploitation.

The methods enable learning from past experiences, thus actors in the construction field can identify more easily the requirements for future buildings. Companies manufacturing construction products can develop competitive mass products for construction industry supporting also safety, flexibility and sustainable development. Finally, the solutions also improve built environment quality by taking cognizance of client needs from the early stage.

The European Commission funded the research and development project, in which a total of 60 European construction organisations participated. The project proved that the core of good construction projects lacks international framework and universal performance classification that clarifies the used terminology. Further there is also strong need for integrated technology platform enabling interoperable tools bridging value adding whole life services.

The new methods for supporting decision-making in construction projects are also suitable for other fields. They have been used recently in urban and environmental planning to help the evaluation of architecture competition entries of new Vuores district in Tampere and Lempäälä.

More information:

Janne Porkka, Research Scientist
Tel. +358 20 722 6203

Feel free to use all news. Photographs copyright Kalle Heiska.
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