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RIBA Launches New Smart Building Overlay

RIBA Launches New Smart Building Overlay
28 February 2024

The Royal Institute of British Architects has developed a Smart Building Overlay to the 2020 RIBA Plan of Work. 


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The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), alongside ScanTech Digital, Glider Technology, Kier and Hoare Lea, has developed the free resource to support anyone involved in the design of new build, retrofit or refurbishment projects to implement smart building technology.  


Early Adoption


The main objective of the overlay is to prompt discussions of smart building technology at each work stage and in the process of briefing, designing, constructing and operating building projects. It encourages users to consider how the technology might support their desired project outcomes and helps them define “how smart” they want their project to be.

The overlay introduces smart building terminology and outlines the benefits of embedding smart building technology from the outset. In the guidance, RIBA states that developing the business case for smart building systems early on avoids potential compatibility issues at a later date.

One of the co-authors, Glider Technology’s Head of Product, John Adams, explained: “Glider has worked on a number of projects where smart technology has been an afterthought and it’s much harder to adopt later in a project. By fostering collaboration among stakeholders from the start of the project, it can proactively address interoperability issues and leverage integrated User Interface Platforms for seamless operation.”

RIBA President Muyiwa Oki added: “Our research shows that, too often, the decision to include smart technology in a project is often made too late. So, this guide prompts the client and project team to integrate smart technology discussions at every stage of design and construction. It recommends involving specialists at the earliest possible stage to ensure successful project outcomes.” 

Picture: a graphic showing a house, with a hand using a smartphone next to it. Above are icons representing capabilities of smart technology in buildings, such as lighting, temperature and CCTV. Image Credit: Pixabay

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 28 February 2024


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