Acronym: BIM4CH


Title: Building Information Modelling for the planned conservation of Cultural Heritage: a question about Geomatics too


Principal investigator: Andrea Adami

Primary ERC sub-sector: SH5_11 – Cultural heritage, cultural memory

Secondary ERC sub-sector: PE8_10 – Production technology, process engineering



The Proposal’s goal is to verify the role of Geomatics in the management of architecture, especially  Cultural Heritage, as concerning the planned conservation process. Geomatics indeed can play a relevant role which is more than traditional survey and it can be fully integrated in the complex approach which is called Building Information Modelling (BIM). The project aims to investigate the new opportunities provided by the latest technology in the field of real data acquisition and processing and, at the same time, to develop a specific approach to topographic data modelling. The new model – three-dimensional but more complex than a CAD model- has to be correctly implemented in the BIM. It has to be responsive to the specific needs of the process of preservation of architecture.
BIM is an innovative system that is rapidly spreading for new constructions. It allows to integrate, manage and organize the various operations of the architectural design. It is a collaborative process which optimizes the stages of documentation, analysis, design, implementation and maintenance of a building in terms of architecture, structure, plant engineering, energy and money by the use a 3D model. This approach has been widely tested on new buildings and it showed a great potential. In the field of existing buildings, however, the experimentations are much less popular because of typical problems of Cultural Heritage: the uniqueness of each cultural asset, problems in the standardization of elements and processes up to difficulties in the process of deep knowledge and analysis.
The mail goal is to find the most suitable tools to ensure the collaborative approach to architectural heritage for all stages of its life, from the beginning (documentation and analysis) to planned conservation. Basically the research focuses on the steps of data acquisition and 3D modelling as this allows to organize an efficient database. The 3D model is not intended simply as digital copy of the architecture, but it has to be used as an index of the whole building – a reference where to geo-reference all data- and to design restoration and conservation. The 3D model is much more similar to a geographic database –GIS-, but it affects a single building and not the territory. Furthermore the 3D model/database integrates all data related to the phases of documentation, diagnostics, design and maintenance and it can be considered as a tool for cross-communication between the operators. Thus it allows to optimize the architectural process (in terms of time-spending and results) and to minimize errors of the construction site. The data formats, their content, their representation and communication and also their updating are relevant aspect of the BIM process. And for this reason they must therefore be compared with the existing regulations, at national and international level, in order to define suitable standards and guidelines.
The research will try to join together the possibilities and problems of 3D modelling (data acquisition and transformation from an analytical model to a parametric model) with the requirements for the stages of diagnostics, conservation and management of architecture as identified by experts. The applied method envisages to work simultaneously on both aspects to define issues and requirements and to deal with the practical experimentations on Cultural Heritage. It allows to verify the theoretical issues in real cases and to identify strengths and weaknesses.
The expected outcome of this research is a set of guidelines to describe the step of acquisition and modelling of real data. They illustrate also the correct structure of the parametric model as a database perfectly suitable to the conservation of architectural heritage. In the guidelines there will be guidances also about what kind of data can be included and how, the most suitable existing software and how they can be employed and also about the most possible interchange forma.

Host institution: Politecnico di Milano

With cooperation of:

-Prof. Luigi Fregonese

-Prof. Stefano Della Torre


Funded by the Italian research programme SIR (scientific independence of young Researchers)  D.D. 197 23/01/2014

Selection decree: MIUR.AOODPFSR. registro decreti.0001350.25-06-2015

STAFF coinvolto nel progetto

ANDREA ADAMI  – rilievo
STEFANO DELLA TORRE   – conservazione programmata
BARBARA SCALA  – conservazione programmata
ANNA SCALA  – rilievo
MARIA MASEKI – tirocinante
YULIE HISI – laureanda

Modelling of the appartamento di Troia in Palazzo Ducale from Laserscanner pointclouds with Archicad (+Pointcab). Comparison between final model and original point cloud

palazzo ducale

Analysis of the design process

PAPERS at 3D ARCH 2017

L. Fregonese, L. Taffurelli, A. Adami, S. Chiarini, S. Cremonesi, J. Helder, and A. Spezzoni, Survey and modelling for the BIM of Basilica of San Marco in Venice , 3D Arch-2017, Nafplia, Greece in Int. Arch. Photogramm. Remote Sens. Spatial Inf. Sci., XLII-2-W3, 303-310

A. Adami, B. Scala, A. Spezzoni,  Modelling and accuracy in a BIM environment for planned conservation: the apartment of Troia of Giulio Romano, 3D Arch-2017, Nafplia, Greece, in  Int. Arch. Photogramm. Remote Sens. Spatial Inf. Sci., XLII-2/W3, 17-23, 2017


Poster download



Presentation pdf download


A. ADAMI, S. DELLA TORRE, L. FREGONESE, A. MAZZERI, B. SCALA, A. SPEZZONI, Conoscenza e gestione del patrimonio costruito storico. Le nuove frontiere del BIM, in atti di 33° Convegno Internazionale Scienza e Beni Culturali – LE NUOVE FRONTIERE DEL RESTAURO. – 27 al 30 Giugno 2017


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Hammam and BIM restoration project of UNESCO heritage Israelian building in Akko.

Architect: Andrea Elias Castelli
Supervisor: Andrea Adami, David Palterer

A1 - Hammam & BIM Restoration project of Unesco heritage Israelian building in Akko - AEC - Panels -_Pagina_02

Synagogue in Pomponesco. From Survey to adaptive reuse using Building Information Modelling

Student: Hisi Yulie
Supervisor: David Palterer, Andrea Adami

A1 - Hammam & BIM Restoration project of Unesco heritage Israelian building in Akko - AEC - Panels -_Pagina_02 Boards 1 to 5_2