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Construction site in Duesseldorf, Germany | © Getty Images/Westend61

Building Industry Landscape

Germany is Europe’s leading construction market and home to the continent’s largest building stock. A number of drivers have led to a boom in German construction investment and this is largely expected to continue in the foreseeable future.

As part of its ongoing transition to a sustainable energy system, Germany aims to have an almost climate-neutral building stock by 2050. Three quarters of buildings in Germany were built before 1980, making the renovation of existing stock key to meeting energy efficiency targets. With buoyant demand and tight building codes, Germany offers providers of energy efficient building products and services a highly dynamic market.

Digitizing the construction industry: Building Information Modeling (BIM)

Whether it is tracking systems for construction machinery, digital construction files, or drones flying above a building site to control the construction status – digitization has arrived in the German construction industry. The Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) has developed a “Road Map for Digital Design and Construction”, which promotes the development and utilization of Building Information Modeling (BIM) as a standard planning tool for all federal infrastructure projects as of 2020. The goal is to clarify legal and technical requirements and develop standards for BIM.

The technology promises an integrated planning process, efficient and sustainable use of resources in buildings, and the immediate transfer of information between all stakeholders in the planning and construction process. However, a study by the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering found that 41% of the construction firms and planners surveyed had never used BIM. To change this, architects, engineers, construction companies, scientists, and other stakeholders are collaborating and exchanging knowledge in 16 BIM clusters (as of May 2017) across Germany. Innovative foreign companies are invited to join the process of turning integrated digital planning and construction from a vision of the future into a standard in construction.

Road Map for Digital Design and Construction
Road Map for Digital Design and Construction | © Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure 2016
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