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U.S. Coast Guard Uses ARCHICAD for Development of Capital Asset Management Process

Graphisoft wins multiyear contract from maritime service to provide model-based design technology that supports homeland security measures

Newton, Mass./Budapest, September 5, 2002 - Graphisoft, developer of the Virtual Building™ concept, today announced that the U.S. Coast Guard is implementing ARCHICAD® as one of its software tools to support its strategic facilities capital asset initiatives. By creating intelligent 3D virtual models of existing buildings with Graphisoft's model-based design technology, the Coast Guard is gathering intelligence about its facility portfolio that proves invaluable with regard to space planning, quantifying building efficiencies, prioritizing capital improvement projects, lowering total cost of ownership, identifying physical vulnerability issues and determining divestiture opportunities across the maritime service's shore facilities. Implementing ARCHICAD shows promise and potentially supports the Coast Guard's accelerated homeland security measures, ensuring that the physical infrastructure will support the service's mission long into the future.

The Coast Guard's initial work with ARCHICAD is focusing on shore facilities in Charleston, S.C., which encompass more than 200,000 square feet and incorporate facilities at two other locations in Georgetown, S.C., and Tybee, Ga. Facility managers there are developing highly detailed virtual models of several buildings that are a primary focus of strategic facility management efforts at the base. The models specify building envelope systems, roofs and exterior walls, mechanical systems, architectural finishes and more. By bringing all of the relevant information about the base's critical buildings into ARCHICAD models, engineers will be empowered to quantify deficiencies and project future scenarios like never before.

"The ability to bring decision-making down to a virtual environment that replicates the physical environment is just extraordinary," said Lt. Commander Jack Dempsey of the U.S. Coast Guard. "The virtual building models created within ARCHICAD give us a fully integrated framework to manage the complex relationships between our facilities and the Coast Guard's missions."

Coast Guard personnel who are responsible for the physical assets at Charleston are looking to double their usual strategic planning forecasts from five to 10 years and pinpoint projections for future facility needs. By managing capital projects within ARCHICAD, engineers will be able to quantify efficiencies and inefficiencies in the execution of budgets and plans in order to lower the total cost of ownership associated with maintaining and operating base facilities. Other applications such as building project simulations and estimating can be executed using the intelligent building models as a foundation, as ARCHICAD models support Industry Foundation Class standards for interoperable software. Graphisoft is a member of the Building Lifecycle Interoperable Software (BLIS) project, an international partnership of companies and organizations dedicated to the development and use of interoperable software.

Unlike a simple 3D CADD model on a computer, a virtual building model created within ARCHICAD contains substantially more information about a building's materials and characteristics, making it possible to administer and manage a building throughout its entire lifecycle. The virtual building model defines the components of a building as well as the relationship of those components within a facility. The U.S. Coast Guard is also employing ArchiFM®, Graphisoft's integrated object-based facility management system, in its capital asset planning and management efforts.

"By providing data currently not available during the planning process, object technology will enable us to reduce cycle times and total ownership costs by bringing downstream design, construction, and maintenance decisions upstream to the business decision," said David Hammond, a Senior Program Manager for the Coast Guard's Shore Facilities Capital Asset Management Division. ARCHICAD will be rolled out in phases within other Coast Guard units for similar capital asset projects. While engineers are focusing on ARCHICAD to drastically improve the Coast Guard's repository of information for existing buildings, new building and construction efforts may incorporate the use of ARCHICAD as well.

"The Coast Guard's visionary application of 3D model-based design technology for strategic capital planning underscores the extraordinary value of the information that an ARCHICAD model captures," said Al Moulton, president of Graphisoft US. "The Coast Guard has focused on accelerating its strategic approach to capital asset management since 1997, and its selection of ARCHICAD as the standard technology in which to document building information will serve as a strong foundation as the Coast Guard meets the increasing challenges associated with homeland security and maritime safety."