100 years in BIM. Laser scanning in BIM-design in reconstruction the building of 1899


Вид-на-здание — копия

View of the building under reconstruction. Photo of 1980.

2016-06-03_092534   “Due to the combined use of BIM technology and laser scanning our company has made a big step forward and got a great competitive advantage”
Sergey Nikolayevich Kompaniyets, Director of the bureau Alllevels

In modern design there are the strictest demands to the quality and completeness of the information.

The most questioned and difficult is to these demands in complex design and reconditioning of buildings and constructions. One of the main concerns is to get up-to-date information about the current state of an object.

Firstly, it is necessary to obtain architectural measurements. But the measurements of complex objects can be long-termed and incomplete, if it was difficult to reach some parts of the objects.

Secondly, creation of a set of drawings that reflects the condition of the construction is a long-termed and a labor-intensive process especially when measurements and recalculations are to be performed.

These issues can be successfully solved through modern measurement tools that allow to computerize the information-gathering about the object as well as provide output data  in electronic format.

Point cloud – “cast of a building”

Laser scanning – a measuring geodesic technology that allows to create a digital 3D model of an object presenting it through a set of points (as a rule several million) with space coordinates.

The technology is based on a laser scanner that measures point coordinates of an object’s surface. That set of points is called “point cloud” and can be presented as a 3D model of the object, 2D drawing, a set of cuts, surfaces etc. for export and work in BIM technologies.

Key advantages of laser scanning:

  • accuracy and high speed of the scanner;
  • highly-detailed scanning;
  • no human factor;
  • the result – 3D model that can be exported in CAD.

Key areas of laser scanning application – pre-design survey, as-built photographic surveying and monitoring of construction and assembly works (getting the picture of “what has been built”).


Underground accommodations. This is not a photo but a cloud point.

In Vysotskiy consulting we have been applying laser scanning since 2011 (article 1, article 2), in cooperation with experts from Trimetari Consulting company working out appropriate methods for processing cloud points and modeling building constructions. We have told about some delivered projects during our events.

Wine warehouses. 3 steps from scanning to BIM

The object of reconstruction on the current project is Camilla Depré wine trade house – historic building dated back to 1899, designed by architect Robert Julius Klein is situated in the centre of Moscow on Petrovsky Avenue. It is a two-storey building with the wine shop on the ground floor. In the basement there is a wine bottling workshop and a wine warehouses). The building has been out of service for the recent 20 years.

The aim of the reconstruction is to modify the building into loft-apartments.


Underground accommodations. Photograph.
Архитектурно-инженерное бюро Alllevels является генеральным проектировщиком и разработчиком проекта реконструкции, работает в среде BIM c 2013 года.

2016-06-03_115347   The architectural and engineering bureau Alllevels is the general designer and developer of the reconstruction project. Has been using BIM since 2013.“The building has a complex layout and a large wall surface deviation from the vertical. Therefore to speed up the measuring and to improve the quality we have decided to implement laser scanning. It has also allowed us to fasten the creation of BIM model in Revit and to work with the model and the architects, as well as the constructors and engineers.”

 - Konstantin Sitnikov, Deputy Director in Alllevels

Technologically the project has been delivered in 3 steps:

  • Scanning of the building and getting the point cloud
  • Modeling of existing constructions
  • Direct design of the reconstruction


Interiors. Photograph 1900.

A day with a scanner saves a month with a tape measure

Before starting the work reconnaissance has been performed. Spots to set scanners and a plan for work field were determined.

Laser scanning of the object has been performed with two scanners Leica P20 and FARO Focus3D. Scanner Leica P20:

  • scans with the speed up to 1 million pts/s
  • with the range of 120 m
  • with the speed of 3 mm


Laser scanner Leica P20 on one of the spots
Therefore 3 days (!) of work field resulted in 7 000 m² (two floors, basement, roof). A point cloud from 300 scanning stations (spots where scanners have been set). The inbuilt camera has allowed to color each point in accordance with the object.

Traditional measuring (manual measuring and sketching the location) of the object would take a month as a minimum.


Spots of setting the scanner in the basement

“Cloud” lacing – we get a full picture

Software complex Cyclone-REGISTER by Leica Geosystems was used for processing, geotagging and “lacing” of the data from the scanners.

Additionally, on the basis of the “point cloud” with the help of Leica TrueView a map spherical views of the object has been formed at that stage. It allows to view from any scanning spot as well as to measure, make sleeve-notes etc. that simplifies cooperation with customers and team work in terms of the project.


View in Leica TrueView program
Lacing of the “point cloud” has taken 5 days.

A “cloud” received with the help of Cyclone-REGISTER has been exported for further processing to Autodesk ReCap software program.

Autodesk ReCap contains a lot of settings to control “clouds” (disposal of the points, lighting, editing intensity of color displaying etc.) and allows get the necessary level of detailing for BIM-modeling.

Final stage of measuring – BIM-model of the existed constructions



Point cloud in Autodesk Revit. Display of true colors of the object.
Actual model of the object (2015) has been constructed on the point cloud in Autodesk Revit.

Lightweight point cloud has been uploaded in Autodesk Revit.

To simplify the process Leica CloudWorx for Revit has been used. It fastens the modeling of the object due to the construction recognition tools, working with “point cloud” segments while creating 2D and 3D drafts etc. Thanks to it time to construct a lot of objects has been saved.

“Cloud” has also been used for construction purpose as a 3D substrate for construction purpose. That is the simplest and the most reliable method although the most time- and labor-consuming.


Application of the BIM-model and the point cloud.
Measurement diagram of all the building face and floor plans were provided. All the necessary cuts on major axis were completed. The stage lasted for 30 days.

A plan of the existed constructions (basement) in Autodesk Revit.
The unique trait of the work on the “cloud” is that it has been completed without any additional site visits and extra measurements. All the missing measurements were provided with the help of spherical views in Leica TrueView. It was the most comfortable condition for engineers as the project has took into consideration transit utility systems in the basements of the nearly-situated buildings. The engineers had an opportunity to get a detailed look on the parts of the utility systems with the help of spherical views in Leica TrueView without site visiting on every matter. That made the work less time- and labor-consuming.

Work space of spherical views Leica TrueView with the existed utility systems

“Stages” in Revit – the best solution for reconstruction

There is a useful tool “Stages” that can be used for reconstruction. It allows to set the main work stages in the project and to connect them with the erection and demolition of objects. Therefore, we have a full BIM-model of all types of works in one file with the accurate documentation, specifications etc.

All the existed objects get the stage of erection called “Existed” and when a demolition is necessary, demolition is noted in properties. All the erected objects are created in “New Constructions”.

So, it gives the opportunity not only to provide documentation for different stages but also to get specifications, 3D views with any settings of element display.

Model cut with the view of demolition and erection of the objects. Stage in 2015.

Plan of the underground floor with the display of utility systems. Stage in 2015.

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Floor-by-floor cut of the building
Development of the project has taken 2 months. That is twice as fast as in “2D design”.

Clouds + BIM = best quality and high speed

This project has showed once again that modern technologies can fasten the work and remove “traditional” errors.

Laser scanning is a powerful and a stiffly accurate measurement tool that has a maximum efficiency rate in complex projects of reconstruction and modernization.

The project lasted 3 months.

  • 3 day – measurements instead of one month
  • data processing (cloud lacing and modeling) - 30 days instead of 3 months
  • design – 2 months instead of 4

Thanks to BIM-model that has been formed applying laser scanning and processing, it is possible to execute modernization with the extremely high accuracy. Application of the latest software products, and work methods have allowed to dramatically increase the productivity while modeling.

2016-06-03_115347   “Combined use of laser scanning and BIM-technologies is not just the enormous work intensification, but also an absolutely different and of a higher and more effective   quality design level and cooperation of all the participants of the project. This work concerns the most accurate data and information model of any levels of detail.”
– Konstantin Sitnikov, Deputy Director of Alllevels


Architecture &
  Architectural and engineering bureau – General Designer

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Trimetari Consulting   Laser scanning and data processing of any degree of complexity
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