Modular Construction Advantages in Urban Areas

With 30-50% faster completion time, and less time needed on the construction site, it’s becoming more difficult to ignore modular building. Not only are modular construction practices efficient, but they are also making an impact in urban areas like San Francisco, New York, and major cities overseas. Modular building in urban areas offers builders better quality control, reduces production costs, and due to the cost benefits, it oftentimes provides tenants with more affordable real estate to purchase or rent. Here are a few cities currently using modular construction techniques:

Micro-Apartments, San Francisco

Micro-Apartments: Modular Building and Affordability in San FranciscoWith land in San Francisco a hot commodity, it’s no wonder that builders are doing more with less. Recently, the California College of the Arts leased a modular building to provide students with a convenient and functional living space. Since builders were able to save money as a result of reduced construction time and materials, they were able to pass the cost savings down to the end-user, the college.

The micro-apartments also being built in San Francisco, allow new construction in a desirable and limited space. Along with cost savings to the builders and purchasers, many see the value in utilizing this type of space as it’s often extremely efficient. In fact, Pankow reported that tenants of similar micro-apartments spend roughly $15 per month on utilities. That’s pretty cheap!

Sky City, Changsha, China

In a city of over 5 million people, how do you make the most of your real estate? You build upward, of course!

That is exactly what The Broad Group in Changsha, China is doing. The Broad Group in Changsha, China is doing. The Sky City projectThe Sky City project is the perfect way to display architecture proficiency in a bustling urban area, and doing it in 10 months with modular building practices is extremely ambitious. This skyscraper will host both residents and businesses and will include green space and all the amenities of the city below. This project is the first of its kind and will be the ultimate success of an urban building maximizing its ground space in a city environment.

the stack modular apartments in NYBroadway Stack is a 28-unit moderate-income apartment complex built with 56 prefabricated modules. The modules were assembled off-site in a former subway car factory and then shipped to Inwood, where they are being stacked to form a seven-story tower.

“It’s an exciting alternative method of construction,” said Stack’s architect Peter Gluck. Modular construction is breaking out of its constraints. Developers and architects can see that modular doesn’t have to mean cheap, rectangular buildings.
Why Modular Matters

The modular building continues to enable the construction industry to advance by becoming a great alternative to traditional construction, particularly in urban areas. “A lot of projects that would otherwise be unfeasible or too expensive could now get built,” said Jerilyn Perine, executive director of the Citizens Housing and Planning Commission. As real estate prices remain high in desirable cities, builders are tasked with exploring new ways to create affordable housing and commercial real estate space to assist the local economy. Since cost reductions are a result of many modular construction practices, builders are able to meet the needs of the end-user.

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