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 Technology&more

out of the way of future construction, and avoid future construction 
for temporary utilities. Once the piers were poured and pier caps set 
in the formwork, JE Dunn field crews used Trimble's Robotic Layout 
Solution—Trimble Field Link for Structures—to verify the placement 
of anchor bolts. 

The surveyors also provided significant support to the site activities. For 
instance, field crews marked light-pole centerlines and 3-foot offsets 
per the 3D model, which allowed the electrical contractor to dig the 
trenches and set the conduit. The positions of the trenches were mea-
sured and uploaded to support the owner’s as-built conditions model. 

Andre Schlappe, with Martin & Martin Consulting Engineers, adds, 
“Several potential utility collisions were identified early in the design, 
saving lost time and rework during construction. Also, the 3D mod-
eling allowed for rapid coordination between disciplines, saving 
design time on the front end.”

Accurate to the Core 
Using BIM-to-field processes, engineers found numerous opportuni-
ties to further streamline the project’s design, detail, fabrication and 
construction phases of structural steel, concrete, rebar and exterior 
metal studs.

To reduce duplication of effort, the project team used one model from 
design through construction. For example, the structural engineer, 
steel detailer, rebar detailer and concrete contractor centralized their 
production work by collaborating within a federated Tekla Structures 
BIM software project model. The structural engineer’s design model, 
set up with the appropriate concrete pours, was used to develop lift 
drawings in Tekla Structures. The steel detailer’s embedment details 
and the rebar detailer’s reinforcement layouts were also combined.

Field personnel used the Tekla Structures structural model for direct steel 
frame layout, in conjunction with robotic Trimble robotic total stations 
and Trimble Tablets. The result was zero placement errors. Lina Stinnett, 
BIM Manager for JE Dunn, said, “Using the single Tekla Structures model 
from design through construction and fabrication allowed us to erect 
our last steel column within quarter-inch (0.63-cm) tolerance.”

A Valuable Lesson
The Trimble Rockies Campus was completed in May 2013. The 
benefits of collaborative, technology-driven methods have helped 
shape a smooth, just-in-time lean delivery process that set a new 
standard for office construction in Colorado and across the country.  

“The Trimble Rockies Campus project provided us with a unique 
opportunity to demonstrate, evaluate and document the value of 
collaboration, technology and innovation to deliver more value 
to our client while establishing a more predictable, repeatable 
workflow for the entire project team,” said Brad Schenck, JE Dunn’s 
vice president of preconstruction. “Perhaps the greatest value to the 
industry was that we all took one more giant step forward in improv-
ing reliability and reducing waste in materials, processes and labor.”

See feature in American Surveyors Issue 10 #7: www.amerisurv.com

All designs—architectural, structural, mechanical, electrical, etc—were 

combined into a single federated model. 

Trimble total stations and Trimble Field Link for Structures layout 

solution were used to verify edge of slab in buildout of elevator core.

Early in the construction process, a contractor uses Trimble equipment 

to take measurements on structural steel. 

In addition to dimensionally accurate information for design and 

fabrication, the 3D models enabled contractors to coordinate 

movement of materials and machinery.