"Researchers trying to get a handle on trends and benefits of off-site construction say studies are limited by a lack of consensus about what really qualifies as prefabrication. That aside, 93% of 312 responders to a recent online survey indicate they have used, 'to some degree,' off-site fabricated components, with precast concrete the most frequently used. Of the responders, 83% say they will use off-site construction to the same degree or more in the next year."
"Responders agreed that the biggest barrier to off-site is the traditional design and construction culture, with factory-to-site distance as the second biggest. They also rank schedule advantage—and/or speed to market—as the greatest benefit, followed by quality and cost-effectiveness."
"Smith says a significant survey finding is that, to reap PMC's advantages, a building team must consider it early in the design and construction process. 'There are negative cost and schedule impacts if you do not plan early,' he says. The survey also indicates the owner is not the one deciding to use PMC. Rather, designers and contractors typically make the decision to use modular. 'PMC is still being treated as a technique in a traditional process, rather than as an entirely new delivery process,' says Smith."
Published April 15, 2015 by Nadine M. Post (ENR.com - Engineering News-Record)