If Project Sparks Makes a Revit Model is it Still a Building Information Model?

By Roger Liucci | BIM

What functionality does Autodesk’s Project Spark have? One of my favorite Revit expert & blogger, David Light, posted a great description of Project Spark and listed all of the things one cannot do; Project Spark – quick overview. In this post I’d like to explain what it can do. One can create RVT projects and RFA families. The most important item to discuss before we get started is the file version difference. One cannot open a RVT created in Project Sparks in the current 2012 version of Revit, it’s a newer format RVT. If you try to open a 2012 RVT into Sparks you will be stopped by a dialog offering to link the RVT instead. It will temporarily upgrade the RVT to be viewed within Project Spark. When Spark becomes a full-fledged product, then interoperability with the Revit family of products would certainly be considered.

Project Spark cannot open a 2012 RVT, you can link instead

 With Project Spark one can create levels, grids, walls, doors, windows, floors, rooms and areas. We can do simplified phasing,what time is it? One can create all of the major Revit elements and some Structural elements . . . . but not a single massing object. We can create curtain walls but not massing so, no curtain systems. Remember the day of curtain system by lines? Where did that disappear to? We may not need curtain system by lines in our current version of Revit, but it sure would be nice in Project Spark. Back to what can be created. Almost all types of families other than the massing and pattern based families can be created and will be compatible with the other versions of Revit in the future. We all agree this is where Sparks’s future can shine, allowing content creators to create without purchasing the full version. I’m sure we’re all wondering what will a simplified version of Revit cost.

The main question I am posing to the AEC community is; “Can Project Spark create a proper Building Information Model. Are these tools enough? Project Spark offers designers the ability to create a very rich information model. We can create commercial, residential, interiors and any conceivable form of architecture. Can we create the same quality of space that we can create using a full version of Revit? It seems so. In summary, Project Spark could truly make a mark on the industry if it graduates from the labs. We shall see. How will you use it?

Give it a try then come back and leave your comments.


Published on September 9, 2011 in BIM.

About the Author

Roger, our senior BIM specialist, specializes in all things architecture & construction and has been with Microsol Resources since 2001. He provides technical support for our architectural, interiors, construction and engineering clients.