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Framework for Sustainable Low-Income Housing Projects using Building Information Modeling

M. Marzouk1*, S. Azab2 and M. Metawie3

  1. Structural Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering, Cairo University, Giza 12613, Egypt
  2. National Authority for Remote Sensing and Space Sciences (NARSS), Cairo 19765, Egypt
  3. Structural Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering, Cairo University, Giza 12613, Egypt

*Corresponding author. Tel: +202-35678492 Fax: +202-35723486 Email:


Governments in developing countries serve low income people by constructing low income housing projects. Most of total life cycle cost (LCC) of these projects is incurred during the operational phase, making these projects lose their economic aspect of sustainability. Decreasing the cost of low income housing projects and taking into consideration the available resources are two crucial facets that should be taken into consideration. Therefore, this paper focuses on two aspects of the sustainability of building through its life cycle, which are environmental and economic aspects using environmentally friendly materials in construction. To accomplish this aim, a framework is developed that integrates Building Information Modeling (BIM) with computer simulation, optimization and system dynamics in Low Income Housing (LIH) projects. The developed framework helps in determining LIH project duration and selecting the optimum alternative with to material systems. The sustainability aspects of building are achieved by considering a LCC of these buildings and the number of points that can be awarded under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system. It aids government and/or contractors in adopting BIM technology to minimize life cycle cost while achieving maximum LEED materials credits points for LIH projects. Social Housing project in Badr City-Egypt is considered as a case study to demonstrate the use of the developed prototype and to illustrate its essential features. The results have shown that selection of sustainable building materials for the construction has a crucial role in the formation of a sustainable building as they affect the performance of building. Therefore, the Egyptian government should consider building materials with sustainable properties and a low LCC in the design phase to mitigate the negative impacts of LIH projects.

Keywords: Building Information Modeling, computer simulation, optimization, system dynamics, Low Income Housing

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