Why BIM is becoming important for Retail Design?

Across global the retail markets are facing unprecedented challenges from within their sector and also from new e-commerce sectors. Retailers that are successful are aware that this success can be short lived and therefore expansion and roll out of their outlets can sometimes become a limitation for success are aware that Assuming that the challenge is indeed speed to market, for retailers, it is paramount to adopt a design planning process which can help them develop retail ideas that are versatile, clash-free and efficient to build/install within a planned budget. This is where BIM can start to provide significant benefits due to the ease of operation, use of a database of library items and the benefit of repeatability of the design concept.

BIM can be beneficial for the entire retail property development chain from design consultants and architects, to MEP installers and facility managers. If it is used effectively it can lead to faster scale up, design accuracy, higher design flexibility and cost efficiency. Whilst it does take some take and effort to convert conventional CAD drafting processes, blocks and templates to parametric BIM retail design techniques, once done BIM can help retailers to design faster and more accurately. A few of the key benefits of retail design with BIM are discussed in more detail below.

Rapid Development of Design and Construction Documents:

Conventional CAD drafting techniques for building design require different trades to create separate drawings, which sometimes stack up too many inconsistent documents as they are incomplete, usually without a lot of information that may be created by other skilled parties, such as quantity surveyors. This information is usually mandatory for building construction and includes specifications, bill of materials, cost modelling and schedule data. Not only does a BIM model provide this data, freeing up QS (quantity surveyor) resource, it also provides information from the 3d model that contains intelligent data related to design intent and construction and facilities management information. The major stakeholders will typically receive the data that is combined within a master BIM model to then extract further use and benefit from the design model.

Although the success of retail BIM projects depends on the acceptance levels of all the project participants to perceive BIM as a future-ready tool, the actual benefit of BIM lies in its ability to assist in extraction of various documents, data and views including plans, sections, elevations, renderings, bill of quantities (BOQ), material costs and time schedule, all within record time. All this results in quicker, on-demand data extraction and generation from BIM models for any construction-related designs or drawings.

Development of Standardized Re-usable BIM Families:

To maintain consistency, a retailer may use typical fixtures and fittings across their retail network as retail industry primarily focuses on brand image and brand appearance. Retail design teams, with the help of BIM teams, are able to create standardized libraries of BIM for fixtures and fittings which, with further modifications can be used when designing and planning new outlets, thus enabling retail owners to maintain exclusivity with regards to visual elements, consumer experiences and shoplifting layouts. The design team, keeps BIM libraries updated for various unique outlet chains which help in saving time during conceptual and detail design stages whilst boosting efficiency ratios.

For example, consistency within all the outlets can be maintained by keeping the key retail architectural elements uniform with the help of BIM families which leaves scope for tweaking other architectural details and regional elements.

Creating Store Prototype Models that Can Be Localized:

When developing new prototype store designs, BIM proves to be a valuable asset to retailers BIM prototypes not only offer 3D visualisation prowess but also provide a quality database which consists of detailed information on crucial aspects such as materials, fixtures, components, cost estimation and quantity take-offs. As compared to traditional CAD drafting methods, intuitive and elaborate prototypes like these, accelerate the roll out of new store designs.

In summary, using design standards, fixtures, fittings and brand guidelines in a BIM environment as opposed to a CAD environment may incur an up-front cost and time contribution, but the benefit for mass roll out using a library of intelligent components will significantly reduce overall design time and also improve accuracy of project drawings and project data – providing greater certainly for construction teams and also costing teams.


Advantages of CAD Drafting over Manual Drafting

Computer Aided Design (CAD) has been a real breakthrough in the AEC industry by becoming the primary source of communicating design intent. Before the advent of CAD, the only source for draftsmen was pencil and paper for drawing sketches. The traditional method of manual drafting is iterative and time consuming. However, now there has been a paradigm shift from traditional manual drafting to cad design and drafting.

Some of the benefits of CAD Drafting are as follows-

Architectural Drafting Services
Architectural Drafting Services

Data storing and Accessibility – One of the advantages of CAD drafting is that the drawings need not be filed and stored in folder unlike in manual drafting. CAD drafting can be easily saved on the computer server and can be accessed from anywhere with internet connection. The chance of losing the documents is higher in manual drafting. As CAD drawings can be saved electronically without the use of paper, it is also an environment friendly method.

3D views – 3D drawings are the best way to virtually represent a structure. Though one can manually create a 3d model, it wouldn’t look as realistic as the 3D model generated by AutoCAD. AutoCAD breathes life in the 3D model and aid the visualization process. While creating 3D view manually is a challenging, time-consuming and tire-some job,   it becomes much easier with software like AutoCAD.

Revisions – While you create any drawing on paper or software, there is bound to be some amount of revisions or modifications. In manual drafting, you need to erase and redraw to make any modification to your drawing. CAD simplifies the revision process to a large extent with its various editing tools. With few clicks of mouse, you can undo, redo or delete your actions. You need not re-draw an object anytime later as you can modify the existing object by mirroring, stretching, rotating, scaling etc.

Speed and Time – Technologies are invented to make our work easier, save our time and to complete the work faster. AutoCAD is significantly faster than the traditional method of manual drafting. It speeds up the task of preparing bill of materials, reports, scaling etc. The tedious task of drawing each line on paper can be done in few mouse clicks. As CAD software eliminates repetitive iterations, a substantial amount of time is saved. In AutoCAD, data describing a component or its family is associative in nature and hence revisions are automatically made to all places the data is used.

Accuracy – In manual drafting, all the objects drawn must be of correct size and alignment. Each object need to be manually verified and dimensioned as the slightest error can be catastrophic to the entire project. With CAD, there are numerous techniques available to obtain exact dimensions thus leading to improved accuracy in the project.

Owing to the numerous benefits in terms of speed, accuracy, data storage, revision CAD offers over manual drafting, it has become a standard for the AEC industries.

Integrated Project Delivery (IPD)

IPD (Integrated Project Delivery) adoption helps to ensures closer working relationships within the entire design team and the supply chain for construction and engineering projects.

As a collaborative process IPD allows utilizes modern technology, teams from all stages of the construction process and the respective processes and practices of these teams to deliver projects on time and on budget.

These teams are brought together at the start of a project to ensure that all stages of the project are ‘integrated’. The IPD structure and concept was formulated in response to the decreasing levels of productivity and profitability in the construction sector. With the aim of an improved project outcome upon adoption of the IPD approach. IPD also allows management of risk allocation while focusing on the needs of the end client.

By adopting the principles of IPD, customers hope to reduce wastage while optimizing efficiency during the design, manufacture, installation and construction stages of the project.

At XS CAD India we provide a range of services to allow our customers to adopt the IPD principle and approach. We do this by providing the technology infrastructure (a range of online collaboration tools), a technical delivery solution (using Revit BIM Modeling software) and a project methodology that is required to generate and control all design output that is generated from the IPD process.

Our involvement on IPD projects is focused around high quality management and delivery of design data – whether this is 3d models, bills of quantities, construction drawings or record drawings.

Our aim is to ensure that all parties involved in the project (beyond the initial architect, client and main contractor) are bought into an overall standard for the production and use of design and construction data. By ensuring involvement of all stakeholders (including fabricators and specialist contractors) throughout the design process, we enable customers to benefit from adoption of IPD even when they are not yet fully equipped to do so with their existing resources.

Our engagement model for IPD projects varies and is dependent on the type of project and also on our scope upon appointment. Our IPD support services range from initial consultation for project standards to complete management and execution of a range of IPD support services.

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Revit BIM Modeling

Revit BIM Modeling provides unrivalled output of construction focused, design data for all types of construction projects thereby allowing project teams to benefit from improved design data and processes from the design table right through to the construction site.Revit is a database driven software utility, which means that changes to schedules, plans, elevations, sections or the 3D model itself result in coordinated updates to all corresponding areas. This is referred to as ‘integrated bidirectional associativity’ by Autodesk.

Revit is helping BIM software to become the design standard for many architects and general contractors, with benefits ranging from intelligent models that contain actual construction data to interference checking and site phasing tools.

Due to the database structure of Revit, the application allows for a range of other benefits including material takeoff and improved compatibility with other Autodesk software. One such tool is the gbxml (Green Building Mark Up Language) utility, which can be used to analyze and manipulate energy aspects of the building including the carbon footprint. XS CAD India is able to provide building analysis services (working towards carbon neutrality) using Autodesk’s Green Building Studio application.

At XS CAD India we provide BIM Modeling services via the Autodesk Revit suite of products which include Revit Architecture, Revit Mep and Revit Structures. Our Revit project experience includes development of construction drawing sets for leading homebuilders in the US and Canada, development of models and associated drawings and schedules for multi-use buildings in the UK, US, Middle East and Australia including high-rise structures and creation of Revit based construction drawing sets for retail design updates.

Using Autodesk’s Revit software as our main BIM tool, we create intelligent BIM models (Building Information Models) that contain parametric models. These models are intelligent and will re-size according to actual manufacturing data that we have used to create them through our Revit Family Modeling services.

If you would like to learn more about our Revit BIM services then please do not hesitate to contact us for more information.

Architectural Drafting

We at XS CAD India provide architectural drafting and architectural detailing services to architects from a range of architectural institutes around the world including the American Institute of Architects (AIA) in the US and The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) in the UK.

We provide architectural CAD services for all types and all stages of projects from tender, planning, working and construction drawings and details for industrial, commercial, retail and residential projects.

Retail / Shop Fitting

We provide complete construction drawing sets (CD Sets) for retail chains. Our drawings include all aspects of space planning and interior design and construction. Working to custom design standards we create a series of sheets (plans, elevations and sections) for construction purposes. Our experience encompasses food and beverage outlets, clothing and fashion retailers, electronics retailers, department stores and specialist retailers. Our current customers include those based in Canada, the US and the UK – in most cases we provide dedicated resource to our customers for such projects.


We create complete construction sets for new homes, lot specific details and address specific drawings for single unit and multi-unit dwellings. We currently work with large homebuilders from the US, Australia, Canada and the UK working as a dedicated offshore resource team that works with the local team to produce architectural drawings to local standards.


We provide architectural drawings for a range of commercial projects including office premises, hotels and restaurants. We will usually work as part of the design documentation for these projects – providing a service to detail the drawings according to AIA or RIBA standards.


Working as part of the design development team, we also support architects with the detailed design of public hospitals and educational facilities. Our CAD drafting and documentation services for larger healthcare/hospital, school and college projects are normally provided over a fixed term at a fixed cost – usually as part of the dedicated offshore team set up.