Rocklea to Darra: BIM Management with 12d Synergy

by | Aug 11, 2020

With over 80,000 vehicles a day and an extremely narrow design corridor, the Ipswich Motorway Upgrade Project: Rocklea to Darra – Stage 1, was always going to be a challenge. But the BG&E and Cardno Design Joint Venture (DJV) were further tasked with delivering the first design and construct project to fully integrate and manage Building Information Modelling (BIM) in Queensland, Australia – and do so on a demanding deadline.

To meet this deadline while delivering a detailed BIM design, the DJV had to work in an innovative, collaborative, and fundamentally different way. All of which, including the BIM management, was enabled by 12d Synergy’s common data environment.

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The $400m project was split between State and Federal governments and was chosen as the Department of Transport and Main Roads’ (TMR) pilot BIM project. The project was used to build a BIM project template for future projects like the Cross River Rail project.

Rocklea to Darra Site Map Flexible Working

The extensive project included road and ramp upgrades, lane additions, cycle way provisions, intersection raises to avoid flooding and 10 new bridges.

The Challenges the DJV Faced:

BIM Management

Maintaining Quality Document Management

Providing a flexible work environment

Ensuring design and documentation efficiency

Watch: Stuart Cook of BG&E at the 2018 12d Technical Forum


Watch a presentation by Stuart Cook (Queensland Transport Lead, BG&E) at our sold-out 2018 12d Technical Forum. You will hear about BG&E’s winning 12d Innovation Award entry, which details the challenging Rocklea to Darra upgrade, BIM Management and how 12d Synergy was used to solve this.

Rock Solid BIM for Working Remote

Backing BIM Management

Being the provisional BIM undertaking for TMR, many people were eager to see how it would be implemented. 12d Synergy and 12d Model worked in tandem to provide a complete platform for BIM. You can learn how 12d Synergy integrates with 12d Model better here. 12d Model was used for the majority of the civil elements including alignments and drainage, Revit and Tekla were also used on the project for other design aspects. 12d Synergy was the BIM Management solution for all files and workflows, allowing for the BIM Coordinator to use the common data environment to select the information that he needed to combine in NavisWorks.

“Success that was enabled through both 12d Synergy and 12d Model and the wider adoption of BIM” – Stuart Cook, BG&E Queensland Transport Lead.


Tough Quality Requirements (Solved)

Being a government funded project, there were many requirements for the DJV (and I mean lots!). TMR placed TeamBinder (a Quality Assurance tool) as a strict requirement, and of course a rigorous Scope of Works and Technical Criteria (SWTC).

With over 80 employees needing access to the data at the project’s peak; following every guideline would have been a nightmare. 12d Synergy helped force folder structure and naming rules to ensure quality standards were adopted. 12d Synergy’s check-in and check-out function facilitated a full history of all revisions and provided accountability for the DJV.

Final review was a “click and flick” for the Queensland Transport Lead, Stuart Cook, as he knew all stages of document control had occurred, and he could sign off on them.


Freedom to Work Anywhere, Anytime

Expecting his third child during the project, Stuart Cook, wanted a platform to give all who worked on the development to have flexibility. This is not a new idea but as Stuart Cook explains “the challenge comes when you try and bring that to a Design Joint Venture, and you are working with a partner”.

From firewalls to consultants and subcontractors, creating a combined DJV approach was very restricted. 12d Synergy set up a stand-alone server, securely isolated fromthe DJV’s own internal systems, giving Stuart free roam to allow access to whomever needed it, wherever they were knowing no one external could access their sensitive files.

BIM Management 12d Synergy and 12d Model12d Synergy enabled flexible working on the project via remote access to the projects common data environment, regardless of whether the worker was on-site, at home or in the office.

This remote access meant the most skilled workers could be employed on the project, including the BIM Coordinator being located 750km south in Newcastle. 12d Synergy took the DJV out of the office but let the work continue.

Stuart relied on 12d Synergy’s worksharing capabilities during two, weeklong breaks:

“Having access to all project files during this time over 12d Synergy allowed me to quickly check in on progress and critical design elements and then check back out, providing me with confidence work was continuing as planned and no major issues were arising that need to be managed” – Stuart Cook, BG&E Queensland Transport Lead.


 Efficiency Made Easy

With a tight time and budget, Stuart Cook decided to eliminate paper-based design review processes: no printers, scanners, paper, or pens (shocking!). There is massive material and productivity costs when it comes to paper-based methods. 12d Synergy gave the DJV a federated system, housing all drawings together including their previous revisions.

12d Synergy supplied a full review process, which passed the documents through control and at the end Stuart Cook could see all relevant mark-ups in the history and know with confidence the document was prepared correctly.


“We took back a couple hundred drawings to store for QA purposes, and I think our mark ups were in the range of 20 to 30,000” – Stuart Cook, BG&E Queensland Transport Lead

Rocklea to Darra Work Flexibility

Benefits of 12d Synergy for BG&E and Cardno

The major takeaway for the DJV was the flawless collaboration that was provided by 12d Synergy’s worksharing capabilities.

WorksharingFreedom from the desk: 12d Synergy let both sides of the DJV to work from home or the office at whatever time suited them the best. Meaning all workers involved could be with their families, a perfect work-life balance

Employ the best from across the country: Using 12d Synergy the best talent from around Australia could be pulled in to help with this project. Leveraging the best in each field meant the DJV could ensure an efficient and accurate design process.


Rock Solid Document Management: With 12d Synergy’s folder structures, naming convention rules, document history and air tight document transmittals the DJV worked to the tight guidelines put to them by various levels of government.


“I actually dread the day where I’m not using 12d Synergy. It’s got everything from our design program and flood models, to our traffic models and all our design reports. For me it is a complete project management tool. The savings have been substantial.” – Stuart Cook, BG&E Queensland Transport Lead

Interested in learning more about what 12d Synergy can unlock for your business?

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As a Business Development Representative, Sam helps engineering and construction firms big and small achieve success through digital transformation. Outside the office, Sam is a sports fanatic, die-hard Parramatta Eels fan (we don’t know why) and is a nerd with all things tech.