Curtin University in Western Australia promotes itself as Australia’s largest university, with multiple
national and international campus locations, including Perth, Bentley, Kalgoorlie, Sydney, Malaysia and Singapore.
Originally established in 1966 and becoming a university in 2011, it takes its name from John Curtin, the prime minister
of Australia between 1941 and 1945.
The Building and Services Data (BSD) team supports Properties, Facilities and Development (PF&D) Portfolios, Project teams, key stakeholders and external consultancies to deliver around 120 projects annually, with a Capital Works expenditure for 2015 Calendar year alone equalling $109 million. BlueCielo Meridian was selected as the Drawing Management System to facilitate the effective management of their Drawing Data & Project Documentation and integrate with existing business systems, such as Archibus Facilities Management.
In addition to delivering the managed change environment essential to the CAD team, one of the primary benefits of Meridian
is the web based availability of pre-filtered content to the wider audience of staff across Properties Facilities & Development (PF&D),
and the wider University. The Explorer web provides tailored views, such as Evacuation Diagram soft copies (1137 drawings) and Floor Plans (534 drawings),
for shortcut access to specific groups of drawings and technical documents such as Building Manuals, based on individual roles.
The Master drawings represent a key asset of the university and the current as-constructed status of all buildings and facilities (source of truth data). Categorised by Campus/Building/Discipline, updates are applied to the Masters from As-Constructed drawings received. The Master drawings are made available to all users via the web based Explorer Client where users have the ability to redline (mark-up) drawings for change. Editing of Masters within Meridian is restricted to the CAD team – either in place via Quick Change or by assignment to a Projects folder.
The Projects area of the vault provides a controlled working environment for the update of Master drawings and manipulation of received As-Constructed drawings without impacting the received consultant drawings within the As_Constructed branch. Project drawings are edited and released via workflow. Master drawings updated within a project are locked until the Master update is complete and released. Other project drawings are moved to the Archive area upon project completion, as they are not official records.
In addition to archiving Project documents, the Archive area also caters for drawings related to inactive Campus and Buildings. Access to Archive drawings is generally restricted through the use of Meridian Scopes.
The As_Constructed branch is for the receipt of drawings and project documentation from external contractors - stored without change and as an historical record of all works agreed to and conducted.
AutoCAD external reference file linking is utilised extensively for the generation and maintenance of the Master drawings.
Floor plans and site plans, in particular, are referenced by multiple disciplines, such as a single Architectural floor plan
referenced into Electrical plans, Fire service plans, Evacuation Diagrams.
Support for Xrefs was an essential element of Meridian’s selection and the retention of existing links during migration from the previous Windows share environment was critical for the success of the project. Meridian’s ability to ‘Resolve References from File’ was automated during the import process to reassociate reference links with drawings in the Meridian vault.
AutoCAD title blocks and their contained attribute fields, based on the university’s standard templates, are also linked to Meridian metadata properties for the synchronization of title information. In addition to simplifying batch import, this also delivers a consistency for document search.
The Projects register for the university is maintained in Archibus and this project information is made available for the creation of project folders within the Meridian vault. Project metadata, such as project number, description and Project Manager Name, is presented to Meridian users from Archibus via lookup lists when generating new project folders. This level of integration ensures consistency between the core business systems and avoids duplication of data entry.
The Archibus space plans are also stored in Meridian as a specific discipline and subjected to controlled version change while interacting with the Archibus database.
The BlueCielo Publisher is used to automatically render all Master drawings to PDF as a background process. When Master drawings are Released from workflow, an updated PDF is triggered for viewing via the Explorer web client. The Publisher scripts the generation of these PDF in AutoCAD to achieve the best possible quality, including application of AutoCAD fonts (SHX) and plot styles (CTB). Making PDF available to the broad audience of consumers simplifies document viewing and delivers a level of consistency in relation to format and line weights. Using Meridian Explorer, the entire organization has access to Master documents as PDF, whilst the native drawings are tightly controlled by the CAD team in Meridian.
The main campus, in the Perth suburb of Bentley, went live with Meridian in October 2014. With an initial roll-out of 47,000 documents managed by the Building and Services Data (CAD) team, this was followed immediately with 30 staff coming on-board to view these documents via the Meridian Explorer web interface. 16 months later Meridian hosts almost 74,000 documents and has additional web views, such as DBYD (Dial Before You Dig) in-ground services drawings, to publish this content across the university.
"Curtin University, Properties Facilities and Development, believes that world class facilities allow world class teaching, learning and research, while delivering exciting and enticing environments for the community. Data accuracy and availability is a core challenge to delivering this vision. Implementation of BlueCielo Meridian Enterprise, with the support of Onset Design, in 2014, has greatly improved our work processes, multiplied our data control abilities, and increased trust of the ‘source of truth’, reducing people ‘hoarding data’. BlueCielo Meridian Enterprise not only empowers our business via excellent document control processes and easy to use web based user access, but it has enhanced collaboration between portfolios. The success of this implementation and ongoing operation of BlueCielo Meridian Enterprise is attributable to the great work and support of the team at Onset Design".