Prefab building construction

One looks for something better. A great modern alternative to dusty old bricks and concrete, is what the building industry has been longing for. Throughout history, the way we built structures has never changed that much with exception of the last few decades. More complex layers and more different types of refined materials are combined to work efficiently and produce energy efficient buildings. With more spectacular designs becoming in demand, the old techniques are no longer suited. A whole new approach is therefore welcomed with open arms by a great deal of clients and constructors. Allowing for increased creativity, prefab buildings can be constructed fast and in far more of an exotic fashion when compared to traditional brick and concrete type buildings.

The revolution in construction world is unfolding as we speak. Finding new techniques helps us to develop new methods faster than ever, hence a revolution in construction. Prefab buildings have always been subject to criticism, but not any longer as the mainstream is jumping on it. This trend has great consequences for the entire industry, as more automation is possible in building structures. Less heavy labour is needed and safety standards have already made a huge leap forward from a few decades ago. Large projects used to cost lives, luckily we can state that this is no longer the case. Factory type of workplaces offer better ergonomic features, safety standards and allow for better structural supervision from health and safety departments. Processes can be simplified and efficiency will be boosted. Saving pollution on the way is a great benefactor too, as raw materials can be processed much cleaner and with far more precision than ever before. Calculating closely and standardizing the procedures helps us to make most out of every little bit of material that comes into the factory. The benefits are countless, and therefore this way of working is marching straight to the top.

More efficient in every way

Where most structures used to be built on site, we can now construct within the safety of a dedicated facility where very high standards can be achieved with great efficiency. Being able to create standardized modules for a great variety of purposes, the efficiency is boosted to unseen levels cutting labour costs and material waste by a great deal. Significant changes can be seen in the amount of traffic around a construction site, as less material needs shipping and less specialist are needed on site. As a single company can now take care of the complete building process, the overview and responsibility are centralised and therefore too maximum efficiency can be achieved. Then there is the benefit of site preparation and construction that can now be executed simultaneously, shaving off up to fifty per cent from the total project time line. Generally speaking, it is unheard to do ground work during the construction phase with the goal of site preparation or foundation placement. Now that off-site construction is gaining popularity, the average lead time for a complete building project drops rapidly. More people are jumping on this method every year now, so we predict an increase in speed of development when it comes to these exciting new building methods. Competition in this field will make for interesting novelties, and a more rapid pace of innovation.

prefab buildings

Typical process of prefabricating a building

In many cases, steel framing components carry the load of the building itself, supporting the entire weight by forming a very rigid foundation. Anti-rust paint is used to protect the steel, and a moisture blocking layer is added against leakages. The next step is again framing, but this time wood is often preferred. Supporting the floors and creating spaces for the isolation material, the wooden frames serve many purposes at once. This layer in the construction also includes pipework for utilities like bathroom and kitchen, electrics and plumbing. More wooden framing is added to outline the walls and ceilings, windows and doors. The isolation material and glass is fitted next, after which the utilities and doors are fitted. Now the walls and floors can be finished, as well as the ceiling and roofing components can be added to the structure. Extensive testing of all utilities is carefully executed to ensure the proper functioning of every feature.

In the final phase of the project, the placement of the structure is prepared and executed. Delivering the main structural component or components to the building site can happen in a single day, making it appear like magic. This step nearly finalizes the project, and can add to the overall possibilities in the design phase. Very little space and traffic is needed around the construction site for placement, making this step crucially different from traditional building methods. The impact on the close vicinity is minimal, making for easy coping by direct neighbours.

prefab buildings

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