Virtual Reality and Live Virtual Modeling Improve Design Decision Making

For over a decade, RDG has been leveraging the power of Revit, SketchUp, Rhino and most recently virtual reality tools to enable clients, designers, engineers and end-users to virtually walk through an environment before it’s even been built.

In the early stages of design, it can sometimes be difficult for users to envision scale and spatial relationships – especially if they are reviewing 2D floorplans or 3D models. By using a VR headset, individuals are immersed in a digital experience of the space that feels as physically real as it looks.

“The use of virtual reality gives our clients the ability to make better, smarter and faster decisions in an industry that continues to grow at a rapid pace,” said RDG Architectural Designer Eric Winkler. “RDG’s use of this technology in a live setting allows ideas to surface and conclusions to be made that may have otherwise been lost in a traditional meeting.”

The technology can play a critical role in creating a design vision and get users excited about a project by engaging them in exercises that are both fun and thought-provoking.

“The VR experiencing provided by RDG was an impressive tool. I was able to see things in our renovation designs that I haven’t before, even though I’ve reviewed our plans many times,” said University of Michigan Director of Recreational Sports Mike Widen. “The feeling of getting inside our facility made the spaces truly come to life. This tool will help us design a better facility and create better spaces for our students and members.”

Initially fuzzy or loose ideas conveyed through conversations, drawings and writing can be made more concrete by virtual models. Manipulating a virtual model in a live setting gives users immediate feedback about a potential design concept. These techniques bring clarity to complex thoughts and add a level of efficiency to the decision-making process. 

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