The software has been developed under AutoCAD® and provides comprehensive features for planning the site, including choosing the best locations for equipment. It takes account of all kinds of site activities, including the use of cranes, earthmoving machinery, trucks, formwork, the permanent works.
Using MethoCAD to plan the layout and operation of construction sites can pay dividends, it ensures that potential problems such as unsafe crane operations or inadequate working space are identified before construction starts, which improves productivity and avoids accidents.
MethoCAD can also boost efficiency and achieve high environmental standards, for instance by developing the best traffic routes, avoiding ground pollution and developing schedules that maximise the reuse of formwork.
Greater emphasis on the need for "clean" construction sites has led Creative Business Solutions to implement new features, which are aimed at helping contractors to meet today’s increasingly high environmental quality standards. Among the aspects covered is the planning of traffic movement in and around the site, covering issues such as the choice of routes that will allow room for large vehicles to manoeuvre.
Features include the automatic generation of turning paths for specific vehicles. It can also be used to simulate the parking required to avoid disrupting local residents. Similarly, the module can be used to plan the locations of site storage areas.
Management of site waste begins with the positioning of tippers, using a library that is built into the MethoCAD system complete with dimensions.
The software also includes measures targeted at cutting ground pollution, including positioning wheel-washing equipment and mechanisms for handling contaminated water. The user inserts the installations into the drawing by looking for the most suitable locations.
Another aspect of the module is to plan the site's visual impact to encourage acceptance by the public. The software helps in deciding on hoarding and gate locations and the optimum location of information panels. It features 3D modelling, which can be used to give local residents information about the project's progress.
Easily-generated 3D crane models illustrate exactly how the site layout will function and enable entire operations to be previewed in 3D. It would be time-consuming to draw a crane in 3D using only AutoCAD.
MethoCAD automatically generates the crane in 3D. With the help of a dialogue box, the user inserts the crane parameters and the software assembles the different 3D blocks to create the crane in 3D. The cranes can be animated in an AutoCAD session.
The 3D modelling of a site is a communication tool between the architect and the customer. The progression of the site can be simulated. Using the solid modelling features of the software, the user can create the building in 3D (walls, slabs, etc.) and automatically generate the tower cranes in 3D. A library of 3D objects (vehicles, batching plants, etc.) are shipped with the software.
Virtual reality is an aid for designers today for a variety of reasons: it allows companies to demonstrate how their projects would unfold to customers, as well as to simulate the equipment used within the framework of a project to illustrate to the customer the exact equipment needed for the construction site. Additionally, a motivation could be safety. In simulating the site one can anticipate unsafe or dangerous situations and find solutions. The simulation can be static, with simple realistic images.
Using the 3D AutoCAD model under the 3DS MAX Autodesk software, the Google Earth location of the site is added to render it more realistic. The user can navigate within the project and visualise various aspects of the site with the help of previously positioned cameras.
After this is processed, the AVI file obtained can be displayed using Windows Media Player.