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CRB Reduces Coordination Time by 60% on MycoTechnology’s New Production Facility with Autodesk Construction Cloud

Founded in 1984, CRB is a global design and construction firm specializing in the life sciences and food & beverage industries. Recently contracted on a mushroom fermentation production facility for MycoTechnology, Inc., CRB needed a connected platform to enable seamless coordination and collaboration across multidisciplinary teams from design through handover. With their ONEsolutionTM initiative powered by Autodesk Construction CloudTM, CRB took an integrated approach to project delivery reducing risk and coordination time by 60%.
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The Challenge: How to Collaborate across Multidisciplinary Teams for Model Coordination

CRB works on a variety of project delivery types across several industries, but biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and food & beverage are their bread and butter.

When tasked with building a new state-of-the-art factory for MycoTechnology to produce their mushroom-based plant protein, CRB knew it would be more than just a simple factory build. The 86,000 square-foot facility headquartered in Aurora, Colorado, would serve as the company’s headquarters and primary fermentation production facility, manufacturing 4,000 metric tons of protein per year. The process plant included office space, customer experience areas, research and development and quality control labs and needed to have the ability to accommodate future expansion opportunities.

“The challenges of designing and building a facility with future expansion opportunities in mind means that we needed to get creative in how we were working with our subcontractors for design and constructability reviews to determine the best paths for the installation of large utility equipment,” says Rob Decker, Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) Regional Manager at CRB. “We needed a solution that would elicit coordination across disciplines to resolve clashes in real-time and ensure teams were working off the latest project data to reduce RFIs and change orders.”

With an expedited project delivery schedule, CRB was in the market for a connected platform that enabled the transference of data across the full project lifecycle to enhance collaboration, communication, and automate and reduce cumbersome workflows to improve project outcomes.

The Solution: Automating Workflows with Cloud-based Solutions

With their ONEsolution approach, CRB brought all project stakeholders together at the onset of the project to discuss the project constraints and the tools that would be implemented to ensure project success. Rather than all stakeholders creating their models from scratch, the ONEsolution approach accelerates decision making by co-authoring models between designers, trade partners, and fabricators. This methodology eliminates redundancy and creates a leaner approach that drives greater collaboration and results in greater coordination.

With the use of BIM 360 and PlanGrid within Autodesk Construction Cloud, CRB was able to automate clash detection and resolve issues earlier before engaging their field teams during construction.

BIM 360 Coordinate is changing the way clash detection is done for CRB, moving from a specialized process needing specialized tools, to one where every project stakeholder can access the models and data, and participate in coordination without requiring specialized training or tools.

“This approach allowed us to eliminate the number of RFIs from the field and allow our specialty contractors to do what they do best,” says Decker. “With access to BIM 360 Coordinate from the field via an iPad, teams have the most up-to-date model, and have visibility into exactly what the space should look like, minimizing the risk of confusion and rework.”

All the office work loses its value if the field team can’t act on it quickly with up-to-date information. CRB’s construction team has been using PlanGrid to do just that. With immediate project syncing, the team can take any new information and build from it directly from the field.

The Results: Fulfilling ONEsolution promises by connecting all project teams

The implementation of Autodesk Construction Cloud allowed CRB to take an integrated approach on
the design-build project to increase their team’s efficiency and collaboration throughout all phases of the MycoTechnology project and drive their ONEsolution strategy.

With BIM 360 Coordinate, CRB has found many opportunities to save time, money, and rework by resolving clashes before they become issues during construction. The transformation has led to more collaboration between project teams as everyone has access to real-time project data in one centralized platform.

Before implementing BIM 360 Coordinate, conducting model coordination was time-intensive, as CRB had to share through an FTP site and did not have a common data environment. Having a centralized platform where all project stakeholders can upload models allows coordination to happen more organically, so teams are always coordinating rather than periodically - which is a significant value. CRB estimates this integration will save them at least two weeks of work on each project and improve communication with their subcontractors.

“The time saved with automatically identifying clashes in BIM 360 Coordinate increases visibility into potential issues and shortens coordination cycles,” says Decker. “It also allows me to focus on larger clashes that require more expertise and potential design changes.”

The work with Autodesk Construction Cloud helped CRB deliver on this high value project for their
client as the MycoTechnology plant was lauded by publications in the manufacturing industry. It was named Food Engineering magazine’s 2020 Sustainable Plant of the Year and the Best Manufacturing Project of 2019 by ENR Mountain States. With both awards acknowledging the sustainable practices implemented by MycoTechnology and the superior results of CRB’s ONEsolution project delivery.

Quotation mark

"With access to BIM 360 Coordinate from the field via an iPad, teams have the most up-to-date model, and have visibility into exactly what the space should look like, minimizing the risk of confusion and rework."

- Rob Decker, Virtual Design and Construction Regional Manager, CRB