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What does the Generative Design Tool in Revit 2021 represent for the AEC industry's future?

The idea of implementing some sort of generative design is far from new in Architecture. If you are a fan of Gaudi or Frey Otto, you may have already noticed that they were already using natural phenomena to inform the geometry of their buildings as a means of structural and material optimization way before computers where really a thing. More recently, with the arrive and advancement of computerized machines and robots generative design has been slowly becoming more and more known and explored, but it is still a faint dream and discouraged field for the vast majority of designers around the world. This reality may be fast to change in the near future and one of the big reasons is the arrive of the Generative Design Tool in Revit 2021.

We at EvolveLAB have been dedicating this month of our 5 year anniversary to Generative Design and, as you may have already seen, we discussed and demoed some cool scrips in our last LABlive.

In the session we demonstrated how powerful the Revit's Generative Design tool is to help designers produce multiple design alternatives. For the demo, we devised a simple Dynamo script, that subdivides a wall face into tiles and applied a randomization algorithm in order to select 1 of 2 colors for each tile. We then ran the script on all 4 methods within the GD tool to check the differences and see multiple options being created almost simultaneously.

Optimize Method

Cross Product Method

Randomize Method

Like This Method

Further than generating multiple options to be picked by the designers based on aesthetical criteria, the GD tool also brings optimization closer to Revit users. As we showed, it is not complicated - for those familiar with the Dynamo environment - to modify a script created by others - like Autodesk's Workspace Layout. On this example we altered the original script to accept a different furniture family and added an extra spacing for a restaurant layout, which in turns, could also be used to study ways to increase social distancing in public spaces as one of multiple response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The GD Tool in Revit is a big step towards the next big revolution in the AEC industry. Since Revit has already consolidated itself as the major BIM software, having the GD tool in it means generative design becoming more visible, popular and accessible to a larger circle of designers, architects, engineers, contractors and so many other players in the industry.


About the Author:

Clara is a design technologist coming from an architectural background and a drive to use the available technology tools to its fullest enabling a more efficient process that leaves more room for the creativity and the fun part of design to flourish. Clara also has a long history of fascination for topology, origami, complex structures and geometries which inevitably brought her to the computational design world. Since her days at school, back in Ouro Preto Brazil, and while studying abroad in Dessau, Germany, she has strived to implement technologies such as Grasshopper, Processing, Arduino and 3d Printing in her academic and side gig projects. While in the professional architecture industry she has often been the voice in the office advocating for the use of Dynamo and strategizing on ways to use the computer and Revit to cut the time spent in repetitive and tedious tasks.

Meanwhile, in her free time, Clara can be found attached to some Mountain around Boulder rock climbing, covered in clay while doing pottery at home, watering her ever-growing collection of plants or trying to figure out her next hobby.




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