Slot and breakthrough planning – an exceptionally time-consuming task

To all the architects, structural engineers and building services engineers out there: How do you do it with the breakthroughs?

The Revit User Group DACH – the link between Autodesk Revit users and the manufacturer. Who is this? A user group that is in direct contact with the software developers and submits requirements in the form of a Wishlist. In doing so, they are listened to on the part of Autodesk.

In 2021, it provided the framework for a working group focused on slot and breakthrough design. The results of the team of about 50 people were recorded in a guideline. Classical, model-based and openBIM working methods were brought together. This guide provides a good overview of the recommended approach to slotting and breakthrough design in the open-BIM methodology. This document is one of the few practical guides on the subject and will help planners from all disciplines, regardless of the planning tool they use. For Autodesk Revit users, of course, it is of further help as it also includes a detailed how-to guide.

Why do we need such instructions?

Slotting and breakthrough planning is an extraordinarily time-consuming task in the planning process, which is also very prone to errors. Frequent iterations are the result. Or, once again, firefighters play on the construction site when the planning doesn’t fit at all. Building planners, structural engineers and building services engineers must jointly plan and coordinate penetrations and represent each in their plans / models. That being said, there is a smooth transition into fire safety topics. This “mother of all interfaces” requires a great deal of coordination. The process can be partially supported by tools. It becomes more difficult when different software packages are used in open-BIM projects.

This is a very complex planning process in terms of technology and coordination, so the framework conditions, processes and responsibilities should be fixed at the earliest possible stage of the project. The process should be run through uniformly and be model-based as early as the design phase in order to be able to document decisions consistently and conclusively. In the best case, in a database that accompanies planning.

You can download the guide as well as mindmaps on processes and a selection of apps for Revit that can be used to automate S+D planning. Among other things, our ProvisionForVoid (Breakthrough Planning in Autodesk Revit with OpenBIM and IFC ( – Manager was put through its paces 😉.

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