Blog: Digital Construction SECBE Awards 2020 finalist - Golden Thread Implementation through Digital Construction

01 June 2020

sponsored by Clearbox

Digital Construction SECBE Awards 2020 finalist - Golden Thread Implementation through Digital Construction (submitted by JJ Rhatigan)

Over the past 12 months, JJ Rhatigan has implemented a ‘Golden Thread’ of building information through digital construction on a project ‘No.26 Carolyn House, Croydon’. They believe that this initiative, which uses Autodesk BIM360 Construction Management software to adopt the principles set out in the Hackitt report, demonstrates best practice and expands on the boundaries of BIM/digital construction. 

No. 26 Carolyn House involved the refurbishment, conversion, rooftop extension and recladding of an existing 1960s office block into 183 residential private rented sector (PRS) apartments and modern amenity spaces. The project commenced in June 2017, the same time as the Grenfell disaster. JJ Rhatigan took the recommendation of the resulting Hackitt Report to establish a ‘Golden Thread’ of building information as a key initiative to implement digitally. The initiative implements the principles set out in the Hackitt report, providing an accurate digital record of fire safety/installation and ensures the safety of end-users. 

The No. 26 Carolyn House redevelopment involved a major facelift to a prominent site in Croydon. Early works involved strip-out and partial internal demolition of an existing 1960s, 17-storey office block. Once structural works were undertaken, 6 new storeys were added to the existing building and recladding commenced. Though it wasn’t required in their contract, JJ Rhatigan undertook processes and procedures on this project which were aligned with their BIM Level 2 accreditation and systems, implementing a detailed BIM Execution Plan from the commencement of the project.

The use of BIM360 as a Common Data Environment (CDE) to record ‘conforming issues’ enables them to be at the forefront of using digital technology in construction effectively. For example, they recorded the location, detail and pictures of every item of fire stopping completed on this project as a ‘conforming issue’. For years, fire-stopping companies have done this via paper records and now using specific fire stopping apps and programmes. The difference with their approach is the collaborative recording environment where all information is recorded in one place and available for all project stakeholders to see. Their system ensures that if an element of fire stopping is damaged after it is completed and a conforming issue is raised, a second conforming issue is created to show the before and after of the damage caused.

BIM360 promotes increased collaboration by providing all members of the design team easy access to the latest information, stored in one central area. With the use of the BIM360 Docs app, JJ Rhatigan team members can access all documents that are available on the desktop on site via mobile devices. This permits the creation and sign-off of RFIs and submittals in the Project Management section on the CDE. Team members can use the markup tools through the app on site, this can be further assisted by using the offline option. This facilitates a seamless collaborative environment for ideas and feedback with all internal and external parties resulting in the speedy provision of construction documentation to the site team. Additionally, all subcontractors and suppliers were trained and digital area sign-over sheets were used as a means of recording at pre-determined hold-points.

JJR is maximising the value from producing an information-rich model for: 

  • building component & material scheduling
  • planning; cost estimating
  • logistical reviews
  • sustainable analysis
  • asset management. 

The benefits of adopting a digital approach to this project were:

  • Providing over £1m in savings back to the client through Value Engineering which did not sacrifice on quality but then allowed the client to allocate this additional capital to improve other areas of the design which we were able to quantify through BIM.
  • Tackling complex construction challenges with innovative solutions, such as a 6-storey structural steel rooftop addition and a major recladding package in the wake of the Grenfell disaster, mitigating for major building regulation changes which occurred as a result.
  • Safely managing a logistically challenging site in a busy urban location and shared access with a Premier Inn hotel and Co-op supermarket for deliveries, refuse and emergency escape routes.
  • Handing over a 183 apartment build-to-rent scheme with zero snags.


  • Digital Construction initiatives on this project have been shortlisted for multiple awards including the Irish Construction Excellence Awards 2020, London Construction Awards 2019, British Construction Industry Awards 2019 and most recently winning International Project of the Year at the 2019 Irish Building & Design Awards.
  • Digital Fire Safety Record Handover for the in-use stage of a major office to residential conversion for the PRS.
  • Implementation of a collaborative working environment with a single CDE and managing major recladding package in the wake of the Grenfell disaster, mitigating for major building regulation changes which occurred as a result.

About the Digital Construction Award: 

Digital Construction embraces BIM, GIS, Big Data and other evolving technological advancements.  Technology has transformed the world we live in and has potential to revolutionise the construction industry. This category rewards organisations, projects or initiatives that have adopted, advanced and achieved excellence in Digital Construction.

> Find out more about the other finalists here

Recent Blog Posts

SECBE Awards 2021 finalist - Bicester Heritage
13 May 2021
sponsored by Artelia Group
Read More

SECBE Awards 2021 finalist - hub by Premier Inn, Shoreditch
13 May 2021
sponsored by Artelia Group
Read More

SECBE Awards 2021 finalist - Long Curtain Moat
13 May 2021
sponsored by Artelia Group
Read More