3D Modeling Guide for Construction Inspection

Various advanced technologies have been adopted in the transportation industry to improve the accuracy and efficiency in design and construction, including global positioning system (GPS), LiDAR, and 3D/4D modeling. Transportation design and construction processes have been gradually improved with the emergence of these technologies. Many state DOTs and their contractors and consultants have been using 3D models for various applications in project planning, design and construction phases. The design and survey communities are advancing 3D/4D modeling and design (also referred to as Building Information Modeling (BIM) for infrastructure). The specific goals vary by state; however, the common goal is to eliminate 2D plan sets and make the 3D model the design of record. Construction contractors have been utilizing 3D models to increase their efficiencies utilizing Automated Machine Guidance (AMG) and developing BIMs for applications such as bridge beam erection plans and crane optimization. However, field Inspection staff have very limited exposure to this technology, and inspection processes and procedures using 3D/4D BIM have yet to be developed on a national level. Some states who are piloting 3D modeling generally have 2D plans still available. Eventually 2D plans will be eliminated as a deliverable so guidance and training for field inspectors is needed. Design models contain more data than is represented by 2D plan sheets. Conveying the model to field engineers and inspectors presents an opportunity to leverage this data in the inspection process. However, there is little research into how the exposure to this data, when combined with new technology, can make inspection more efficient or more complete. The objective of this research is to identify technologies used by DOTs, inspectors in the vertical construction sector (i.e. BIM), or other technologies available that allow element location and dimension information from the model to be viewed, modified, or otherwise consumed by inspection staff. The research should identify the pros and cons of each and explore opportunities for inspectors to use data from the model rather than snapshots of the design plans. Managers, engineers, and field inspection staff from Departments of Transportation will benefit from this research, as it will identify potential technologies that may be used by field staff inspection staff, to leverage advancing technologies being used by designers and contractors.


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $300000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 10-110

  • 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: 20200519
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01739628
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 10-110
  • Files: TRB, RiP
  • Created Date: May 18 2020 3:06PM