Blog / BIM & Construction Management

Infraworks - When and Where to Use It?

Overview of the Program

Infraworks is one of the most used software in a BIM environment for the planning and design of infrastructure projects. This Autodesk tool is a great ally in BIM workflows, offering collaborative work options in the cloud, process automation and collaboration with other platforms.

Figure 1: Initial screen

In the planning and design stages, the integration between project designers, managers and clients becomes essential for decision-making. It is in these steps, that a wrong decision can have a high cost for the execution of the project. That's why Infraworks excels before other software, allowing messages to be conveyed with much more clarity and more conveniently. To show what Infraworks is capable of, let's take a look at the example of Dubai.

Figure 2: Saved project views and comparison of conceptual and project views.


Its interface, easy and intuitive, offers the user a macro view of the project. The modeling of the objects is very easy, allowing us to define the concept of the project with just a few clicks. One of the most interesting aspects of Infraworks is the possibility to use it as a database, by receiving a lot of information and providing its visualization in a very efficient manner.

Figure 3: Layers and the view of the city

In the following image, we can see an example of how to use architectural models with roads and become able to analyze the infrastructure around the buildings.

Figure 4: Integration of architectural and road projects


Infraworks is able to carry out several types of projects simultaneously, such as roads, drainage, earthworks, batching and special works of art. It is true that for these applications there is other software that allows a greater degree of detail than Infraworks, but as mentioned above, Infraworks stands out especially in the planning and design stages.

Figure 5: Drainage and containment of slopes on the bridge at a Metro station

When you finish the first modeling with Infraworks, you have already saved time since its processes for creating the initial elements are considerably better. Infraworks allows you to export roads and drainage systems to AutoCAD Civil 3D and structures to Revit. After detailed modeling, these models can be returned to Infraworks so that we have the detailed models integrated into the city. 

Figure 6: Infrastructure of a city


Knowing how and when to use a software is extremely important for the success of a BIM project. Many offices don't use Infraworks in their day to day activity because they simply have started a project directly in AutoCAD Civil 3D or Revit.  In fact, Infraworks does not provide the final result but goes directly to a dedicated and detailed view of a project through the very important steps of the BIM workflow. Steps in which we are most likely to save on the enterprise's lifecycle.

Figure 7: McLeamy curve - How can you save with BIM? 

Therefore, knowing when and how to apply them is much more important than the programs and technologies used. The introduction of Infraworks in the workflow of your office can be a great investment in which it will be possible to bring more benefits to everyone involved in the project. Author: Guilherme Lobo BIMEXPERT    

Zigurat Global Institute of Technology