- Nearly 90% of respondents to a recent Dodge Data & Analytics study said modular building and prefabricated single-trade assemblies improve productivity, quality and scheduling as compared to traditional construction.
- For prefab and modular construction, at least 80% of the contractors, engineers and architects also reported that they saw higher cost predictability and client satisfaction and reduced waste when compared to traditional construction. About 48% of respondents employing modular construction said they utilize panelized products, such as walls or floors.
- Use of both methods is expected to increase in the next three years, with the percentage of respondents leveraging them on 10% or more of their projects up nearly 15 points as compared to present use.
“The lack of adequate housing and the shortage of skilled labor, coupled with chronic cost and schedule overruns, are leading more people toward this process,” said Tom Hardiman, executive director of the Modular Building Institute, in a statement about the survey.
The Dodge report said health care, hotel, multifamily and dormitory projects lend themselves to modular and prefab work.
Using modular construction for hotel projects works well, as there is a high demand for new developments but a shortage of skilled labor for those projects. Pre-made modules for rooms speed up construction time and provide noise reduction for hotel customers, which are attractive attributes for developers.
Overall, using modular and prefabrication techniques benefits projects that use BIM, according to the Dodge report. Respondents from companies using BIM on at least 50% of their construction projects reported improved schedule performance 60% of the time and improved budget performance 50% of the time.
Just under half of the respondents who use BIM on less than 50% of projects found prefabrication and modular building improved schedule and budget performance. Companies not using BIM on any projects reported around 30% improved schedules and budgets.
The Dodge study also measured the obstacles preventing future use of prefabrication and modular construction. The top three most commonly cited obstacles for prefabrication were:
- Project delivery method prevents effective prefabrication planning.
- Prefabrication not part of project’s design.
- Project type not applicable for prefabrication.
The top three most commonly cited obstacles for modular construction were:
- The owner doesn’t have interest in the modular approach.
- Lack of availability of modular component manufacturers.
- Project type not applicable for modular.