In 2007, construction software platform Zutec was tasked with helping global commercial real estate company Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield build the largest shopping mall in Europe. Today, the partnership is still going strong
In 2008, the world faced one of the greatest economic crises in modern history. Many businesses suffered, and the high street appeared to become a thing of the past.
However, against all odds, amidst a fast-deteriorating retail landscape, one company was able to complete the construction of a mall visited by over two million shoppers in its first three weeks of opening.
Westfield Group’s Westfield Shopping Mall, in White City, West London, became the largest covered shopping development in London in October of that year.
It began with a retail floor area of 1.6m sq. ft, and with additional investment and expansion, by 2018 it became the largest shopping centre in Europe, with an area of 2.6m sq. ft.
To ensure the mall was completed on time despite the poor economic climate, commercial real estate company Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield sought the aid of cloud-based software platform Zutec for Phases 1 and 2 of the project from 2007 until present.
The first two phases
In 2007, Westfield Design & Construction (now part of Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield) procured Zutec to manage the handover and completion process for the first phase of the shopping centre.
From 2017 onwards, Westfield D&C once again procured Zutec for the handover and BIM data management and integration of Westfield London’s £600m Phase 2 retail extension, as well as the URW UK Head Office Building and Newall Court.
Early engagement with Westfield’s management team, via workshop sessions held with key management personnel, was crucial to success during the implementation of the software for this phase of the project, which included adding 740,000 sq. ft. of retail space.
During this time, Zutec evolved from an interactive folder structure for the capturing of handover information to a 3D model management and visualisation solution – as well as a repository for all BIM attributes linked to asset registers and manuals and documents.
The secrets of success
According to Zutec, the project was a success due to the benefits it provides to customers.
The platform – which is used for all project data to be defined, captured, and managed throughout the entire lifecycle of a project – allowed Westfield to gain quicker access to information, enhanced knowledge of built assets, a reduction in existing condition surveys, and a faster reaction time in emergencies.
Zutec continues to be utilised as a single Source of Truth, where the as-built records, changes, and modifications which take place throughout the facility’s life cycle continue to be updated and maintained.
“This project has been one of our greatest achievements, and we are proud to have been involved from the very beginning,” says Zutec’s global head of Digitalisation, Tom Boland.
“It’s thanks to the hard work and dedication on both sides that Westfield was able to open its doors on time and achieve the level of success that it has experienced to this day.
“We hope to continue this more than 10-year-long partnership with Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield and collaborate on equally groundbreaking projects in the coming years.”
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