The traditional process of building plans submission and approval is laborious and often fraught with challenges due to the huge number of building by-laws, sometimes cryptic interpretations of the regulations and the need for trained experts to decipher the layers of information contained in the plans. Thus, it is no surprise when oversights are common and seeking final approval is usually a protracted journey. In light of public expectations and accelerated development, approving authorities can no longer depend on manual methods but instead rely on technology to improve on efficiency.
Recently, the Holy Makkah Municipality (HMM), Saudi Arabia through a local partner awarded novaCITYNETS International Pte Ltd to implement an Automated Regulatory Compliance System (ARCS) that will automate the checking of building plan regulatory compliance submitted to the municipality, a move that promises to revolutionize the construction industry.
The ARCS is a portal-based system that complements the permitting process in HMM for the purpose of a comprehensive automated plans review. The implementation of ARCS will deliver significant benefits to HMM, namely:
- Facilitate code compliance self-review by consultants. The system generate a report listing the non-compliances which allows the consultants to make necessary amendments prior to submission to HMM,
- Means to ensure unified, co-ordinated and integrated approach in dealing with the process of building plan reviews for directorate’s staff,
- A platform for enforcing consistent in interpretation of building codes as well as transparency in the approval process and
- Make possible a consolidated and holistic view of each submission; assisting in better decision-making and approval process.
ARCS implementation is based on Nova’s own proprietary software, FORNAX e-Plancheck, an automated building plan checking expert system.
About FORNAX e-PlanCheck
FORNAXTM ePlanCheck (Automated Building Plan Checking Expert System) is built on a web-based architecture based on industry open standards with interoperability in mind and support data exchange conforming to industry best practices. The ARCS allows HMM staff to perform a thorough check and review on building design for regulatory compliance, with the aim to achieve quantum improvements in turnaround time, quality, and productivity.
The traditional checking and approval using the manual process is generally very time-consuming and inefficient. FORNAXTM ePlanCheck speed up the checking process by providing a system that could automatically check the “Electronic Building Models” for compliance to regulatory requirements with the help of Artificial Intelligent (AI) and Building Information Modelling (BIM) technologies. It will also help to reduce ambiguities and subjectivity in building code interpretation that could differ for different individuals.