Modular Construction: What is it?
Modular Construction is the process of constructing a building off-site in a factory setting. The same materials are used while building codes and standards are followed as usual. The method is known as “modular construction” because structures are built using repeated sections called modules that reflect the design of the building when put together. Once a structure is prefabricated off-site, it is assembled on-site. Modular construction is not new and has actually been popular at times in the past. After World War 2, the construction method gained momentum as there was a need for a quick recovery as well as steel and labor shortages. Over time the momentum died out and traditional construction took over again, but there is a new wave of popularity coming for modular construction that people are paying attention to.
Advantages of Modular Construction
As a result of modular construction being a controlled process, less waste is produced and materials are able to be disassembled and reused.
Modular construction allows structures to be completed faster due to the tighter process it entails. Assembling the prefabricated structure on-site takes significantly less time than traditional on-site construction.
Safety concerns that come with heavy equipment and dangerous heights are not involved during the modular process. The less time a project takes place on site results in less chance of accident and injury.
Disadvantages of Modular Construction
There is the opportunity for customization with modular construction but it is limited due to the amount of components that are available. For highly personalized and customized projects, modular construction may not be the best fit.
Extended Communication is Necessary
On-site and off-site workers must keep in contact to ensure expectations are met. This disadvantage is becoming an easier obstacle to deal with as technology allows us to communicate more efficiently.
Restrictions in some areas are outdated and don’t allow modular structures to be built. Make sure to check your zone restrictions before planning a modular construction project. There are no such restrictions in Canada but some still exist in the United States.
Growth of Modular Construction
The market size of modular construction was USD 75.89 Billion in 2021 and is projected to grow to USD 114.78 Billion by 2028. There is a bright future for modular construction especially in certain sectors such as commercial, healthcare and educational/institutional since these structures are not highly customized. Countries like India are experiencing a large rise in commercial construction and will likely implement modular construction to efficiently achieve their goal. The construction method is gaining momentum and could become a more traditional practice as the world continues to evolve.