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Software: Toronto seminar reviews Bentley Systems’ ProjectWise tool

Last month, Bentley Systems presented its ProjectWise platform at an Information Management and Project Collaboration Seminar in Toronto. ProjectWise is described by Bentley as "a project team collaboration software platform for the design and...


Last month, Bentley Systems presented its ProjectWise platform at an Information Management and Project Collaboration Seminar in Toronto. ProjectWise is described by Bentley as “a project team collaboration software platform for the design and construction of capital projects.”

At the event, held September 13, John Lusty, CEO of Tidefall Software and Services, a channel partner for Bentley in Canada, provided a detailed look into ProjectWise features. The  platform allows infrastructure project information to be shared and published reliably and securely. Typically, the information includes large inter-related files containing data, drawings and models — information that needs to be communicated between owners, engineers, and constructors, often distributed among various locations with disparate software.

ProjectWise gives multi-vendor support for various formats of engineering and business information, whether they be CAD or BIM data, PDF files or a database, or Microsoft applications. Flexible publishing is another feature of ProjectWise: project stakeholders can be informed of the project status through the production of documents based on user-defined standards. These documents can be generated automatically or on-demand, and are compatible with all types of electronic media and devices.

ProjectWise is now integrated with MicroStation, AutoCAD, and Revit, allowing users of these packages to manage and track their files in a single platform. The delta file transfer method is employed, so that only changes in data are sent. Bentley’s i-models enable team members to view Revit models from a web browser or in Bentley Navigator.

Mike Robertson, manager of the engineering data unit for the Greater Toronto Airport Authority, spoke about the adoption of ProjectWise by his team. The team has used ProjectWise since 2000 to centralize the storage of data and to improve system integration. They have leveraged ProjectWise by creating additional tools to enhance their efficiency. For example, they have automated the generation of their transmittals through the use of the Document Set functionality in ProjectWise.  They developed another tool-to exchange data between ProjectWise and Excel for bulk updates to file attributes.

One of the well-known features of ProjectWise is its functionality for geospatial management, where all project folders and documents are associated with a specific project location on a site map. Robertson’s group has plans to integrate background maps with Oracle Spatial data. 

Robertson said that other ProjectWise features that have been beneficial to the GTAA team  include its custom web-based reports for project managers and contractors. They have successfully monitored 900 projects and 75,000 documents with the ProjectWise platform.

 Rita Wong is with Entuitive, a structural engineering firm with offices in Toronto and Calgary.