With the web-based platform SPT4Site, Züblin Spezialtiefbau GmbH sets new standards in the collection and processing of project information in ground engineering.
Mirna Mamar Bachi
Mirna Mamar Bachi
ZÜBLIN Ground Engineering
Diego Bellato
Diego Bellato
ZÜBLIN Ground Engineering

The subsoil in Lohsepark in Hamburg’s HafenCity is coloured completely red on the map for suspected explosive ordnance sites. Wherever drilling is carried out here, munitions could be encountered. For this reason, special precautionary measures apply here for the installation of 300 foundation piles for a new multi-storey car park: Before each pile is set, an exploratory hole is first drilled so as not to encounter any unexpected obstacles in the ground. To ensure that all workers on the construction site maintain an overview during this process, the team uses a new platform for ground engineering: the SPT4Site.

The application was developed by the digitalisation team of Züblin Spezialtiefbau GmbH based on the group-wide IRIS platform. Site managers can see in a 3D model by means of different colours where the subsoil has already been checked, which boreholes have been completed, and where foundation piles have been installed, or how many cages are currently stored on the construction site.

The BIM viewer and the corresponding data
view on the SPT4Site show the current status
and information on all components.

Cloud-based and logically linked

With SPT4Site, Züblin Spezialtiefbau GmbH has developed a comprehensive and innovative web-based platform for the administration, evaluation and visualisation of project data according to the specific needs of the parties involved. The main objectives are a documentation system, optimised access to project information for multiple users, the linking of project data and use cases, and the management of data during the entire project lifecycle, as well as being able to track the construction progress in the BIM model in real time. Drafts, 2D plans, photos and comments, and resources assigned to the
projects such as personnel and equipment, production and machine data are stored in the cloud and logically linked to one another.

For example, the SPT4Site equipment data module can be linked to other modules such as personnel and equipment scheduling. It also links to the operators’ server at predefined intervals and automatically loads, filters and sorts this data according to project name, equipment identification number and name of the elements built. All available information is structured as time series, displayed in diagrams and evaluated.

The platform is open to all trades involved in the construction process. Users can select pre-set filters and adapt the service to their specific needs. In the future, the platform will work even more automatically, for example sending emails at the end of the day with to-do lists for the next day or the current construction progress.

Smart by linking data — the concept of the SPT4Site platform can be compared to a neural network.
“Users can reach all relevant information with just a few clicks.”
Mirna Mamar Bachi
BIM Expert, ZÜBLIN Spezialtiefbau GmbH

Three site managers report on their experiences with the new tool.

Site manager Sebastian Kock supervises the installation of 300 foundation piles for a new multi-storey car park in Lohsepark in Hamburg’s HafenCity.

“On the SPT4Site, you can see at a glance where soundings have already been taken and where the team is allowed to continue working. This information is also reliably documented for the client. In addition, we can assign files to each individual element, for example construction plans, photos, comments and other information. In the past, things were quite different: in the office, we manually marked the status of each foundation with coloured highlighters on construction plans printed out in A0 format. If you made a mistake, you had to print out the plan again and add all the information.”

Armin Reinartz, site manager on the airport tunnel project in Stuttgart, checks the daily drilling performance on SPT4Site and compares target and actual values with the planning.

“Previously, the target data for all trades had to be gathered from construction plans and a field book had to be filled out by hand for every detail. Now all the target data is stored in a database and can be viewed via an app on the tablet. On the construction site, the colleagues constantly enter current information, the construction progress can be tracked meticulously, compared with the plans and no one has to transfer data for reworking. I can also see if material has been on site too long, if a delivery is missing, what quantities were used at what time or if concrete needs to be reordered. This makes it easier for us to calculate, keep track of costs and organise the construction site, because we can plan ahead. In this way we avoid mistakes, but above all we gain time – and that is the most valuable commodity in construction.”

Johannes Oldeweme manages a construction site at Klosterwall in Hamburg. He uses the dashboard on SPT4Site for accounting.

“With one click, we can see what percentage of the total work has been completed. Previously, we had to go to great lengths to count boreholes and piles in the plans in order to create the invoices for the progress payments. Special services not recorded in the order can also be easily documented via the platform. If we come across an erratic block while drilling, we can assign documentation to this element showing how long work was done to remove it from the ground and also document this with photos. We can also transfer current data from the digital logs into the BIM model and in this way compare it with all the planning data from the drillings. Until now, our offices were often wallpapered with construction plans with crosses and ticks in different colours. Sometimes one person was busy with nothing but writing protocols. In future, SPT4Site will take over these tasks and thus significantly optimise the processes on the construction sites. We can now have just-in-time deliveries even more efficiently: For reasons of space, we can’t store large components such as reinforcement cages on the construction site; they have to be installed immediately after delivery. This logistics is much more precise thanks to digital planning. In addition, there is a digital incoming inspection for each element, and the people responsible on site can see immediately for each component whether it can be installed.”