Computer-Aided Building Design

LCD-78-300: Published: Jul 11, 1978. Publicly Released: Jul 11, 1978.

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New developments in computer technology have increased the potential for cost-effective changes in the production of goods and services. Computer-aided building design (CABD) in the United States and abroad was studied in order to aid in future evaluations of construction projects.

Using current methods, building designers have encountered difficulties in selecting design alternatives, allocating designer resources to yield the greatest returns on investments, optimizing design systems and minimizing system interferences, and allowing for emphasis on total costs for the life of a structure. CABD could minimize these difficulties and increase speed, accuracy, and versatility. In spite of its potential, CABD has had limited application because the technology is still too new to evaluate cost benefits; there is insufficient motivation for the building industry to conduct research and development; and the capital investment cost is high. If CABD is to be developed in the United States, it will take time, will be an evolutionary process, and will be quite expensive. It will also require the development of standards, definitions of designer needs, an educational process, and increased research.

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