POTENTIAL OF HBIM TO IMPROVE THE EFFICIENCY OF VISITOR FLOW MANAGEMENT IN HERITAGE SITES. TOWARDS SMART HERITAGE MANAGEMENT
Providing public access to heritage promotes a social interest in its conservation but, at the same time, it poses a risk to the conservation of resources. The biggest challenge in managing public use of heritage is to establish a sustainable relationship between heritage and tourism. The multidisciplinary teams involved in visitor flow management generate and exchange information about the heritage property without an integrative vision. The lack of a reliable, unified and up-to-date source of information generally hinders decision-making, causes errors and leads to inappropriate practices in heritage visitor flow management, thereby putting the conservation of resources at risk because of the impacts derived from visitation while the quality experience is also affected. Building Information Modelling (BIM) provides a collaborative framework where multidisciplinary teams share geometric and documentary information about the building in a coordinated way. This tool applied to heritage (HBIM) is demonstrating how it is able to improve efficiency in documenting, intervening and managing heritage. Beyond these aforementioned skills, the objective of this study is to identify the potential of HBIM to improve the efficiency of the visitor flow management. The methodology includes a literature review, qualitative data collection and technical documentation analysis. The results indicate that the use of HBIM can optimise the planning and management of visitor flows, by virtually foreseeing the possible risks derived from visits. It can also calculate recreational carrying capacity and analyse alternatives to itineraries that minimise the deterioration of the most fragile spaces.