C&W Services Singapore, the facility management and engineering arm of leading real estate consultancy Cushman & Wakefield, today announced that it is working in partnership with H3 Dynamics Pte Ltd. to offer a “one-stop solution” that leverages technology such as drones and data analytics to conduct thorough inspections of building facades, in accordance with the new Periodic Facade Inspection (PFI) regime, as stipulated by the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) in Singapore.
Under the arrangement, C&W Services and H3 Dynamics will bring their expertise together to offer building owners a comprehensive service and solution that meet the regulatory requirements. C&W Services has depth of experience and know-how as a leading provider of facilities management and building engineering solutions in Singapore while H3 Dynamics has deep expertise in AI (artificial intelligence) technology and platform to accurately analyse datasets and identify common defects such as concrete spalling, cracks, water stains, paint- peeling, and rust. The platform also supports data from other sources such as 360 cameras, thermal, and Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) sensors to provide further insights on buildings. This AI technology has already been deployed across more than 400 assets in Singapore, Thailand, Brazil, and Australia.
Lam Shiu Tong (林兆东), Managing Director, Defence & Research at C&W Services Singapore said, “Partnering H3 Dynamics, we now have expertise and resources needed to perform and certify a complete facade inspection under the BCA’s Periodic Façade Inspection (PFI) guidelines. Collectively, C&W Services and H3 Dynamics have a pool of in-housed CAAS licenced drone pilots, BCA certified facade inspectors and IRATA (Industrial Rope Access Trade & Association) certified rope access specialists to be mobilized to inspect building facades in an innovative, expedient and safe manner. Having jointly conducted a full facade inspection – incorporating 100% Visual Inspection with the use of drones from H3 Dynamics and 10% Physical Inspections by C&W’s rope access specialists at 9 Jurong Town Hall, we have now deepened our knowledge of the PFI guidelines and broadened our capabilities to help building owners carry out inspections at their properties.”
Shaun Koo (邱陶伟), Chief Technology Officer and Co-Founder, H3 Dynamics Pte Ltd, said, “We’re excited to embark on this partnership with C&W Services on this digitalization journey. With our expertise in AI-based solutions for the built environment, we can complement C&W Services’ existing drone team and RASS expertise to provide a practical and scalable solution for building owners. In addition, our competent persons can help validate and endorse inspection reports that conform to BCA’s Periodic Facade Inspection (PFI) standards. The recent inspection of 9 Jurong Town Hall is a testament to the synergies of both companies – an end-to-end managed inspection service, as a heritage building scheduled for PFI. Beyond Singapore, we are also looking forward to international collaboration and expansion.”
Under BCA’s PFI Regime, which takes effect from 1 January 2022, buildings that are more than 20 years old and over 13 meters tall must undergo regimented facade inspection every seven years. Such inspections will facilitate the early detection of facade deterioration and allow defects to be rectified in a timely manner.
The Regime requires building owners to appoint a Competent Person (CP) who can either be a professional engineer (in civil or structural engineering) or registered architect who possesses the Certificate in Facade Inspection to conduct facade inspections. This will involve a full visual inspection and representative close-range inspection of the building facade, leveraging technology such as drones and scanning equipment for more effective and efficient inspections.