Optus Stadium: Agile BIM project completed ahead of schedule

Optus Stadium located in Perth has been one of Western Australia’s highest profile and most eagerly anticipated developments. The stadium development project was completed three weeks ahead of the schedule. The project is the winner of the Best Sports and Recreation category of Tekla Global BIM Awards 2018. Optus Stadium opened in January 2018.
The five-story-tall facility is the third largest venue in Australia and has the flexibility to host major AFL (Australian Football League), cricket, rugby union and league, soccer, and entertainment events. It completes the greater Sports Park, together with the new children’s playgrounds, community spaces, restaurant, bar and café facilities available year-round. Arup and PDC were involved from design through to construction completion, working within the Westadium Consortium led by Multiplex with architects and other consultants under the DBFM (Design Build Finance and Maintain) Project Agreement. 

BIM powered agile engineering for speed and accuracy

Engineering the complex development involved a number of project requirements and stakeholders, as well as a set of additional prerequisites – for example, the stadium structures were to be designed and built fit-for-purpose.
The engineering team worked with the builder in the pre-bid stage to develop the overall BIM workflow and documentation. Multiplex and PDC then joined and implemented the BIM strategy throughout construction and operational phases of the project. 

The stadium’s Tekla model was broken up into eight quadrants: four stand quadrants of North, South, East and West and four roof structure quadrants. These quadrants enabled the design and detailing teams to improve agility while maintaining the overall schedule.

The engineering team implemented a process that provided significant benefits from the use of the model through increased design collaboration and coordination, while also lessening the burden of the increased deliverable requirements like COBie. This gave the builder a clear direction, as well as compliance checking and assurance that the project could be delivered to meet the client’s aspirations and develop their knowledge of BIM. This meant that architectural and structural refinements could occur in parallel without losing element-to-element connectivity or resulting in the separation of modeling parts, which avoided timely rework at each design update.

As an outcome of the digital workflow, architects and engineers maintained complete coordination and alignment of design throughout the project. Through consultation with Multiplex, it was determined that for the speed of construction (given the tight timeframes imposed by the client), the structure would consist of reinforced concrete lateral stability cores, with a composite steel and concrete frame. This made it possible for the steelwork to be erected quickly with the slabs poured on permanent metal deck formwork without back-propping allowing the fit-out of the structure to quickly follow.

The bowl structure of the stadium was designed using precast pre-stressed concrete plates, which made it possible for more than 3,250 elements to be constructed and stored off-site for “just in time” delivery. The bowl geometry was rationalized to limit the number of changes in plate rise whilst maintaining spectator sight-lines, and plates were designed to maximize use from a limited number of molds, resulting in a highly efficient and economical solution.

50% saving on workflow time with model-based fabrication review

To streamline the review process for structural steelwork, Arup developed the shop model validation process with Multiplex and their sub-contractors. This saved, on average, 50 percent of checking and rework engineering design time. To streamline communication between designers and Tekla model approvers, all of the produced steel design work was detailed within the integrated team. The team worked closely with all involved to develop a workflow, breaking up the structural engineering deliverables into discrete packages based on the floor level and quadrant, and the steelwork Tekla models were reviewed in 3D. Comments and amendments from all were then returned to the steel fabricator to provide clear and concise comments to be incorporated by the steel shop detailer. 

The building information BIM modeling was highly regarded by the State Project Team, who said “The time spent on developing the virtual stadium enabled resolution of coordination between all sub-consultants and sub-contractors in the construction phase.”

Tekla for the Optus Stadium

Due to the vast amount of information from various consultants and sub-contractors, implementing the model validation was pivotal in the successful delivery of the Optus Stadium development. Deploying the Tekla and other model validation tools was for the following reasons:

  • Validation of the Stadium Model 
  • Weekly Progress Clash Checks
  • Model Sharing 
  • Model Compare and Collaboration 
  • Tekla BIMsight

Check how you can work with steel structures faster and with better quality

60 000
+15 000 tonnes
Pre-stressed precast concrete plats
50 000

Project parties:

State Government of Western Australia, State Project Team
Managing Contractor Multiplex

Arup were engaged to provide an additional scope to help formulate the project’s BIM strategy as part of the bid response. The basis of the service was to provide an overall BIM strategy that would allow Multiplex to benefit the implementation of BIM on the project. Due to the State’s Project Team high aspiration of LOD 500 which was one of the first in Australia, Arup went on to develop a streamlined delivery workflow for Analysis to Design to Database to Model to Drawings and required documentation.

PDC Group were engaged in the implementation phase for two critical aspects of the project. The BIM Management for Multiplex on the Stadium, including training and knowledge transfer to their project team, and 3D modeling and steel detailing in close collaboration with the engineers, architectural and fabrication teams for the +15,000 tonnes of steel supply.

Optus Stadium

I really like the people aspect. Quite often we think that technology is the thing that defines it but actually it is the great team working with the technology.  I love the data-centric nature of what they are doing. I do believe that embedded data and model are something that we don’t utilize enough.
Craig Garret
Project Technology Leader
BuroHappold Engineering, Middle East