Exploring the expansion of planner’s engagement capabilities via accessing the data from a building information model for public consultation

Doherty, Megan Marie (2022) Exploring the expansion of planner’s engagement capabilities via accessing the data from a building information model for public consultation. Doctoral thesis, Northumbria University.

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A statutory urban planning consultation is the only opportunity to address concerns of the public regarding the shared built environment. However, current methods for consulting the public on urban planning proposals are archaic. They are often uncoordinated and can potentially fail to provide an inclusive forum for all socio-demographics.

Face-to-face consultations are noted as the best method to consult. However, they only provide a means for those with time and mobility to attend the discussions, workshops, and exhibitions regarding the built environment.

Urban planning consultation processes are also limited by stakeholder relationships. It is not often that stakeholders acknowledge each other. This thesis focuses on approaches to stakeholder identification, management, and engagement. Stakeholders can be identified at any stage of project development and addressed as internal (who have a direct hand in changing a project) and external (who are impacted by changes.) Stakeholder management and engagement can vary in theory and practice, and this thesis will explore this.

Internal stakeholders utilise their own communication methods and processes to cooperate and consider risk at each stage of the project. Building information modelling (BIM) is a collaborative tool which shares textual and image data among the building development project team. Planners implementing a consultation with the public do not use BIM, as it is software for internal stakeholders to share information for the project development in a common data environment (CDE). BIM is a technical methodology primarily used to communicate the strategy of the project (including usual details and specifications) but is limited in its further applications for encouraging communication beyond this initial scope.

External stakeholders rely on planners to reach wider audiences, but without mediation from an expert to explain the technical language in layman’s terms, there remains a gap in knowledge making it difficult for the public to understand specific design decisions.

This PhD study aims to understand how 3D Building Information Models (BIM) and associated data can be utilised to facilitate communication throughout each stage of the planning consultation and explores how BIM may be used to address the knowledge gap specifically through an online planning consultation platform.

This is increasingly important as more digital tools are being introduced into the planning sphere and incorporating the views of the public and other stakeholders, should be central to planning consultations in the UK.

This research presents mixed methods in order to identify the requirements for a digital planning portal that best presents BIM data for the use of public consultations.

The visual and textual information of a BIM model is documented and validated with a case study and recommendations are made for using BIM data within a public consultation.

Throughout the study, the concepts of what consultations are in currently in place are considered, in parallel to current policy and best practice. The author presents the impact digital tools and how these might be utilised within the current planning consultation process.

The findings show that, with the incorporation of digital platforms in planning consultations, a greater focus on stakeholder perspectives and relationships can be established.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: urban planning, stakeholder identification, public consultation, community building, placemaking
Subjects: G500 Information Systems
K900 Others in Architecture, Building and Planning
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Computer and Information Sciences
University Services > Graduate School > Doctor of Philosophy
Depositing User: John Coen
Date Deposited: 10 Jan 2023 08:45
Last Modified: 10 Jan 2023 09:00
URI: https://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/51108

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