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Sep 22nd '10 OmniClass Update


CSCand CSI Update OmniClassTM Tables
Updated tables meet changing information needs of the industry

Nick Franjic, CAE Christine Tanner
(416) 777-2198(800) 689-2900 x4784

September 14, 2010 The Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) and Construction Specifications Canada (CSC) today announced updates to several tables in the organizations construction classification system, OmniClass.

OmniClass is a means of organizing and retrieving information specifically designed for the construction industry. OmniClass is useful for many BIM applications, from organizing reports and object libraries to providing a way to roll up or drill down through data to get the information that meets your needs. OmniClass draws from other extant systems in use to form the basis of its tables wherever possible, such as MasterFormat for work results and UniFormat for elements.

Developed in collaboration with other industry groups, the updated tables meet the need for greater data organization and normalization required for Building Information Modeling (BIM) interoperability. They represent the first revisions in an ongoing process of two-year development cycles.

These OmniClass updates address issues related to harmonization, overlap, and industry advances in BIM, IT, and web-related applications, said CSI Executive Director and CEO Walter Marlowe, P.E., CSI, CAE. All disciplines involved in designing the built environment will benefit from the changes.

CSC President Corinne Golding, RSW said, The use of BIM continues to grow throughout the industry, and these updates to OmniClass will make it easier for the design community throughout North America to integrate BIM successfully.

The updates announced today involve the following tables:

  • Table 13 (Spaces by Function) saw the greatest collaboration of all the updates, with space classifications used by many organizations harmonized into one table.
  • Table 23 (Products) was significantly expanded to support the facility management needs of federal agencies and the classification and terminology needs of leading construction information providers, and now provides a cross-reference with the United Nations Standard Products and Services Code (UNSPSC).
  • Table 32 (Services) now reflects the need for flexibility to support services provided in various project types facility lifecycle stages.

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  • Table 36 (Information) was expanded to support the growing understanding of BIM data and to reflect the types of information required such as owner requirements, site data, and facilities data.
  • Table 49 (Properties), which deals with the classification of objects that have also been called attributes, parameters, or performance criteria, was normalized for use by software vendors.

In addition to the tables described above, two tables will be updated in October to reflect recent changes in other CSI/CSC publications on which they are based. Table 22 (Work Results) will be updated to incorporate changes to MasterFormatTM as reflected in the new MasterFormat 2010 Update, and the new 2010 edition of CSI/CSC UniFormatTM will be addressed in an updated Table 21 (Elements).

To obtain OmniClass tables, visit the OmniClass website,

Anyone wishing to participate in the next round of OmniClass development may contact Greg Ceton at

About CSI
CSI is a national association dedicated to creating standards and formats to improve construction documents and project delivery. The organization is unique in the industry in that its members are a cross-section of specifiers, architects, engineers, contractors and building materials suppliers. The organization has 148 chapters and more than 13,000 members. Monthly Chapter meetings allow members the opportunity to communicate openly with their counterparts and exchange information for successful project management. CSI is renowned in the industry for its rigorous certification programs for professionals seeking to improve their knowledge of accurate and concise construction documents. CSI provides continuing education, professional conferences and product shows. For more information, visit, or call 800.689.2900

About CSC

CSC is a national multi-disciplinary, non-profit association with chapters across Canada. In the construction industrys fast-paced environment, the need for and value of CSC is greater than ever bringing together individuals from all segments of the Canadian construction industry. CSC is committed to ongoing development and delivery of quality education programs, publications and services for the betterment of the construction community. For more information, visit, or call (416) 777-2198.