4 Reasons Why Offsite Construction is Ideal for Affordable Housing Projects

5 June 2024AEC, Construction, OffsiteAEC Industry, affordable housing, automate, Industrialized Construction, innovation, manufacturing construction, materials, modular, MWF Pro Metal, MWF Pro Wood, offsite construction, quality, Sustainability

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Written in collaboration with Rishabh Arora

 

Offsite construction is an umbrella term that encompasses modular, prefabrication, panelization, and hybrid processes.

In the modular sector in particular, building modules are produced in a factory-type setting, then transported and assembled onsite. In decades past, consumers sometimes had an unsavory perception of modular buildings because they were reminiscent of the old military style of rapid housing built in the post-world-war era.

In fact, offsite methods use the same materials and are designed to the same standards and codes as traditionally built structures. Under controlled plant conditions, offsite construction enhances scheduling, materials use and safety. After assembly onsite, the finished structure reflects the design intent and specifications of project, requiring no compromise in quality. Thus, offsite buildings are comparable to sophisticated structures built onsite.

sophisticated modular home, offsite construction, industrialized construction

In recent years, offsite construction has been gaining relevance in the AEC industry, especially in North America. As the industry stands today, these pioneering construction methods are open for technological innovation. We can see evidence of this in markets like Japan and Sweden, where the majority of residential construction is performed through modular techniques. These countries are recognized as global leaders in residential modular construction in wood.

News sources report there aren’t enough houses to fill the demand in the US. An April 2024 article by NPR.org described the shortage at between four and seven million homes. Thus, with the need for rapid production to meet that demand, there has been a push for affordable housing.

Following are reasons why offsite construction is ideal for affordable housing projects.

1. Speed of delivery

Offsite construction is a perfect solution for rapid housing projects. According to the Modular Building Institute, they can be completed 30% to 50% faster and occupied sooner than traditional construction. Most of the building’s construction is performed within a factory, then completed modules are shipped ready for onsite installation.


Reach out today to GRAITEC Group to learn more about Strucsoft solutions for offsite builders and get your FREE TRIAL.   


2. Quality

Speed doesn’t necessarily mean a sacrifice in quality. Because components are manufactured offsite in a factory with exacting quality requirements and assembled together in the factory, quality standards can be monitored exceptionally well and maintained.

modular construction factory with modules in process and finished sitting on pallets, sustainability, offsite construction, industrialized construction

3. Cost

There are economies of scale. There is an ongoing debate about how much less expensive offsite construction can be compared to traditional methods. This depends on the type of project. When rapid housing projects are involved, rather than one-off buildings, the builder saves on the cost of construction through economies of scale.

4. Sustainability

Offsite projects enable greater flexibility and the opportunity for reuse. Residential modular construction typically uses LGS (light gage steel) and wood, both of which are sustainable construction materials. When it is harvested sustainably, wood is a renewable natural resource. According to STI/SPFA, steel is the most recycled material in the world. LGS is created with about 25% recycled steel, and 85% of the steel used is recyclable.

 

Digital solutions like Autodesk Revit paired with plugins such as Strucsoft MWF accelerate and simplify the offsite construction process from design to fabrication. Affordable housing projects can benefit greatly from offsite construction and the use of a digital platform that will simplify and automate the design of walls, floors, ceilings, trusses, and other components in wood or light gauge steel.

In the push for affordable housing, offsite processes combined with Strucsoft MWF solutions can help fill the demand for housing, while improving speed of delivery, quality, cost, and sustainability.


Model, coordinate, engineer, and manufacture your offsite projects with Revit-based Strucsoft offsite construction software. Contact GRAITEC Group today to learn more.


 

 

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