While Germany has not passed a mandatory BIM regulation as quickly as other countries such as the UK, Germany has mandated construction of public infrastructure works to be done with BIM processes by 2020. There is a degree of education needed across Germany’s construction market to meet this deadline. A BIM steering group entitled Planen Bauen 4.0 has been tasked to provide clear guidelines about what is expected of the various players affected by the BIM mandate – including contractors, architects and MEP designers. It is accepted that although the right technology is available in the German market, adoption is limited by how well it is understood.

Germany’s Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (Bundesministerium für Verkehr und digitale Infrastruktur (BMVI)) is supporting four pilot BIM projects with research results expected this year. The projects, comprising road and rail construction, have been reported as reaching a total of €3.8m.


“In total the German construction market is huge – weighing in at €300bn[1],” said Fred Van Schaik, Area Manager DACH for MagiCAD by Progman. “But the use of 2D design technology is still popular, and the market for 3D software is currently fragmented. Many designers and contractors are running Nemetschek above AutoDesk, so the German market has its own peculiarities, different from other developed markets[2].”


But Germany has one huge advantage over markets where BIM adoption may have appeared to be quicker: huge German contractor companies that work across borders, in foreign markets, are honing their BIM expertise on construction sites, and bringing those experiences back home. One such design firm is Arup, a MagiCAD customer.


“In keeping with German innovation, the adoption of BIM is expected to be quick and efficient. Methodologies in BIM have already been learned. Risk management is very important on German job-sites and BIM helps them achieve that,” said van Schaik. “They are starting to always include a design phase in every project.”


He continued, “In the case of MEP design, BIM enables the architect on a project to see the same model as the MEP designers. This ability to communicate more clearly and increase the speed of a build has been hailed as being like the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution,’ in one of the leading manufacturing countries in the world.”


Progman’s MEP design solution, MagiCAD, is already being used in Germany, with 20,000 licenses globally. The solution can be interfaced via IFC for designers not using AutoCad or Revit. MagiCAD supports a BIM workflow and provides the productivity tools to give all the workers on the construction site a single platform from which to view and design the build.

[1] Source: Roland Daguer


[2] Source: Competitiononline poll reported in architosh