Modular Building Benefits and Opportunities
From the Modular Building Institute: “FMI Corporation (one of the nation’s largest providers of management consulting, investment banking and reserach to the engineering and construction industry) recently released their fourth quarter 2010 Nonresidential Construction Index (NRCI) stating that modular construction is considered a growth opportunity for the industry.
The NRCI report indicates that in light of the long recession, more contractors are thinking lean and looking for ways to build for less. FMI asked about one trend that could help make the construction business leaner and more efficient, the growth of prefabrication and modular construction. Although the trend for greater use of off-site construction has been growing slowly for years, the recession and new technologies are set to increase the use of manufacturing processes and environments for construction.
Only 11% of the panelists surveyed expected growth for the next three years to be less than 1%, or less than expected GDP growth. Thirty-seven percent expect growth to be between 1% and 5%, but 49% expect growth to exceed 5%. Panelists expect this area to grow faster than the market in general due to the growing use of BIM, owners wanting projects faster and for lower cost, safety, quality and the shortage of skilled labor once markets return to more normal growth.
“This report confirms what we’ve believed for a long time, that modular construction is poised for take-off,” said Tom Hardiman, Executive Director of the Modular Building Institute. “Over the past five years there has been a growing interest in the commercial modular construction market from building owners and investors alike. We expect to see continued growth for our commercial building providers as the modular construction industry continues to adopt innovative and efficient construction techniques.”
The NRCI is a quarterly report by FMI which is a sampling of construction industry executives voluntarily serving as panelists for surveys about industry trends. The responses are based on their experience and opinions, and the analysis is based on FMI’s interpretation of the aggregate results.”
Modular Medical Buildings and Modular Healthcare Buildings
Healthcare Facilities symposium
Whitley Manufacturing has just returned from the Healthcare Facilities Symposium in Chicago, IL, one of the nation’s premier venues for showcasing innovative products, companies, and processes serving and supporting the healthcare industry with regards to facility design and construction. Thank you to all the material vendors, contractors, architects, and facility managers for their interest in custom permanent modular medical facilities built with our sustainable modular construction system.
There is increasing awareness of the benefits of modular construction, particularly in the healthcare sector where the accelerated timeline to completion represents significant revenue and is important for patient retention. Whitley Manufacturing’s modular healthcare buildings offerings span a broad range of facility types, including:
- Relocatable or permanent modular clinical space & modular physicians’ offices
- Medical Office Buildings
- Modular Surgical Centers
- Modular Emergency Rooms / Modular Acute Care Facilities
- Modular Radiotherapy and Oncology Clinics
- Modular MRI / CT / PET Imaging Facilities
- Modular Dialysis / Renal Treatment Facilities
- Modular Hospital space / Hospital additions / Patient Suites
- Dental Facilities
- Modular Administrative Space
In addition to custom-designed permanent and relocatable modular buildings
, Whitley Manufacturing also offers prefabricated components
to be used in a hybrid approach that utilizes the efficiencies of off-site modularization / prefabrication in combination with conventional site construction to help reduce contractor and sub-contractor traffic within the building, accelerate timelines to completion, and control quality and costs.
We can custom design and manufacture prefabricated components outfitted with custom systems, finishes as selected by the client or project architect, that is prepared for ease of transit at the site and quick hook-up to the buildings structural, utility, and electrical systems. Whitley Manufacturing designs with BIM
, allowing architects to easily collaborate with our in-house design team, model the component within their larger facility plan, insure seamless integration of systems, and enable clash detection early in the design phase.
Common prefabricated components for the healthcare sector include:
- Patient Restrooms (sometimes referred to as restroom “pods”, or “wet cores”)
- Equipment Enclosures
- Operating Suites
- Patient Suites
The benefits of Whitley Manufacturing’s prefabricated components include:
- Reduced timeline on the jobsite
- Reduced congestion / traffic by trades at the jobsite
- Efficient modular construction systems reduce costs
- Off-site construction in a modern modular manufacturing facility insures a high standard of quality and rigorous inspections
- Our custom design and fabrication capabilities and experience allow for broad design flexibility
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) is looking to do for builders, architects, and developers what Match.com has done for the dating scene. This service has a similar goal to the dating service: to connect well-matched parties who otherwise might never meet.
The new site aims to connect developers of stalled construction projects and “real estate investors searching for opportunities” through a searchable online database. AIA officials believe the service could provide a boost for the construction industry.
Paul Mendelsohn, vice president of government and community relations for the AIA says, “We’ve learned from our membership that access to credit is one of the major hurdles, so through this mechanism we hope to help find some of that funding.” The database will categorize projects by type, location, energy efficiency, and other features.
Preliminary estimates are targeting a mid-September launch for the site with an expansion of features in the following months. Mendelsohn states “Getting the building sector back on the streets will not only help architects and others in the industry, it will help jump-start the entire economy.”
For modular builders and distributors with potential clients whose projects have stalled due to lack of funding, this may be a beneficial resource to help clients re-start dormant projects. Whitley Manufacturing’s sustainable modular construction system also offers an opportunity to developers with stalled projects.
If a project cannot be fully funded, a custom modular building solution can be designed for future scalability as capital becomes available. Custom modular buildings feature accurate costing due to the modern production method and factory setting, allowing developers to control costs and minimize contingencies. Hybrid approaches using conventional construction and prefabricated components can accelerate timelines and control costs as well.
A new PDF is available for download detailing the sustainable aspects of Whitley Manufacturing’s modular construction / prefabrication process in comparison to conventional construction methodology.
There is increasing awareness amongst architects, engineers, general contractors, facility managers, and the public as a whole, of the sustainable aspects of modular construction.
These include improved efficiency in material usage, reduction in the percentage of material wasted, reduced solid waste generation, reduction in transit miles in total and throughout the supply chain, and the reduction in lifecycle global warming potential (as measured in emissions of CO2).
Download the report on Green Modular Buildings.