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Architect boosts innovation and collaboration with ARCHICAD

Central Innovation 30 November 2018

Architect boosts innovation and collaboration with archicad

ARCHICAD helps award-winning, Auckland-based architects Copeland Associates take collaboration to the next level.

Copeland Associates Architects is an award-winning, New Zealand-based architectural practice with a passion for innovative economic solutions. Copeland Associates was founded by Barry Copeland in 1997 after successful roles in leading practices in Manchester, London and Auckland.

Their projects are diverse: from education, to residential – but with a particular expertise in large sporting facilities. Their most recent award – a prestigious A’ Design Award in 2017 – was for the Three Kings United Football Clubhouse in Auckland. The practice has a strong belief in the power of teamwork and collaboration. Marco Duthie, Associate, says: “There is constant dialogue with the client, and other contributors. Right from a project’s inception through to completion, we work collaboratively with engineers, constructors and other specialists.” That creates a number of challenges. The need to create, export and share complex files across various platforms. Being able to adopt and handle a fast rate of change. How to document such a dynamic process.

After researching the local market, Copeland chose ARCHICAD. “It was clear that in New Zealand, ARCHICAD was far superior in terms of tailored tools to the NZ building industry,” Marco says. The practice was also impressed with the customer support system established by Central Innovation. Importantly, the user experience and interface of ARCHICAD was preferred. “It’s wonderful to use, and easy on the eyes.”


“We can handle more projects without expanding our company and stretching our
resources, and have the ability to do everything under the architecture umbrella
in-house – things like animations and visuals.” 
Marco Duthie, Associate, Copeland Associates Architects


Copeland Associates began using ARCHICAD in mid-2017, along with other tools to enhance the process. “We complemented ARCHICAD with Rhino, using Grasshopper. We are also using Unity – exporting our models out of ARCHICAD into Unity for VR purposes. And, of course, using the BIMX feature for client explanation.” Marco says. The results were almost immediate. “ARCHICAD is now central to our business and company success, as it is our main tool,” Marco states. “We can handle more projects without expanding our company and stretching our resources, and have the ability to do everything under the architecture umbrella in house – things like animations and visuals.”

An early project to benefit was their award-winning Three Kings United project. “Through ARCHICAD, we were able to manage the complexity and various file types needing to be incorporated such as Grasshopper (Rhino).” “The ability in which we are able to adopt and handle the fast rate of changes using the documentation process ARCHICAD provides, and also the 3D capability to translate this information to the client, is impressive.” Marco says the practice has experienced dramatic productivity improvements. “It’s amazing the kind of information you can get from your model if it is set up correctly.”

The switch to ARCHICAD has produced 100% more productivity, and is “100% more enjoyable”. Overall, would they recommend it? “Yes, highly recommend it if you are a first-time user as it is a good way to realise the potential and become familiar with the general work flow process and interface.”