As a practicing architect, I often found it difficult to communicate design intent to our clients. While working on a building project, we often used 3D modeling softwares/authoring tools but communicated the schematic and conceptual designs to clients and other stakeholders by generating 2D static renderings from fixed viewpoints on paper, Powerpoint presentations or renders on a flat computer screen.
I realized that what we visualize, understand, interpret and absorb from these traditional tools to communicate design intent – the images on our screen, the 2D static renders, or the floorplans and elevations on paper – are often disconnected from the reality of what’s planned to be built inside and outside of the front door, and none of the architecture software programs available could solve this problem. Since this medium is neither to-scale nor immersive, clients often do not fully understand an architect’s design intent, leading to significant collaboration-based shortfalls that result in coordination-related problems later leading to time and cost based losses.
Now, imagine providing your client an immersive virtual tour (using VR software for architecture and interior design) through their house or workplace that is at full-scale and color, even before it is built. Seems too good to be true? Not at all. This is how virtual reality architecture software is improving the way design intent is communicated – by providing an immersive and to-scale design experience, as real as it can get.
VR ensures that clients and other stakeholders – such as engineering consultants and contractors – understand the design better and before anything has been built. From the initial design stages right through to the construction stage, when the need to effectively collaborate is at its peak, the benefits offered by VR help the entire project team work with a single version of the truth. You can even get your client to participate in the design process, and finalize the design much faster with far fewer iterations. If there are other professionals also working on the project, such as interior designers or remodelers (find more here about their work), they too can view the comprehensive view of the entire space in VR, enabling easier changes and upgrades. The results: zero gaps in expectations and a significant jump in both project profitability and client satisfaction.
The availability and affordability of high-performance virtual reality head-mounted devices (HMDs) such as the Oculus Rift, HTC VIVE and HP Mixed Reality Headset is improving by the day. VR is now the new and a very real solution that can address the pain points that architects have suffered for long.
Immersive technologies are here! It is time for every architect to adopts them too. It is a logical progression from the way we have worked for years and solves a problem we have all long wished to solve.
If you are a SketchUp, Revit or Rhino user, check out Trezi to know more about real-time VR rendering and find out how you can convert your files from SketchUp to VR, Revit to VR, and Rhino to VR in a single click. Message us in the form below to learn how VR can benefit you and your company.
To learn about how architectural and design firms such as Alcove are using VR to change the design process and conclude projects faster, read this blog here.
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