Guide to Using 3D Models for Construction Inspection

Many state departments of transportation (DOTs) have implemented three-dimensional (3D) models for project planning, design, and construction; however, field inspection staff need to develop the requisite skills for using digital inspection procedures. Some state DOT staff have limited exposure to or proficiency in using 3D models for uniform inspection processes and procedures. Three-dimensional models provide detailed information, efficiency, and visualization capabilities. These models can replace the current standard two-dimensional (2D) plan sets and offer effective tools and streamlined practices. Construction inspectors are expected to use data from 3D models to measure, verify, and accept construction materials and payment quantities. Many inspectors access this information through PDF or paper plans. Digital 3D models eliminate the need for some portions of 2D plans since details and visualizations are in the models. Identifying what construction inspectors need for optimal use of data from 3D models is an area of opportunity for state DOTs who can potentially develop digital solutions for construction contract documents. Some states are piloting the use of 3D design models as the primary contract document. Other states adopting 3D models plan to continue to make 2D plans available for a limited time. There is a need to prepare staff for the migration to 3D models and to develop a 3D model use guide and training for construction inspectors. The objective of this study is to develop a guide for construction inspectors that (1) describes what information construction inspectors need to utilize data from 3D models and how to best document construction activities, and (2) identifies and catalogs the business needs and core competencies of construction inspectors using data from 3D digital models.


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $210000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 10-110A

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Crichton-Sumners, Camille

  • Start Date: 20240502
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01910798
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 10-110A
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: Mar 4 2024 7:58PM