What is modular construction?
Modular building is an innovative concurrent or accelerated construction process whereas a structure is divided into sections and manufactured in a factory-controlled environment, while the building’s site is simultaneously being prepared. Time savings are realized because so much of the structural, mechanical, electrical, plumbing, fire safety, and interior finishes for each module are completed prior to shipping, assembly and connection onsite. Each module is constructed to exceed applicable building codes using conventional materials to meet your specifications.
What are the benefits of building modular?
Modular construction offers numerous benefits to architects and building owners. The speed with which a building is completed is the chief benefit to modular construction. Because site preparation and fabrication of building modules occur simultaneously, the facility is occupied sooner than with stick-built construction (30 percent to 50 percent faster than with conventional construction).
Also, since the module components are manufactured off-site in a factory-controlled environment, modular units are inherently “greener” than similar site-built structures. The modular construction process not only minimizes air and noise pollutions but also material waste and destruction of habitat surrounding the construction site.
Many modular structures have been recognized for their design excellence. Permanent modular buildings can be built as single-story buildings or multi-story structures suited to the client’s needs.
In addition, the modular construction process enhances quality and simplifies logistics on the job site, including scheduling, coordinating trades, and construction sequences. The fact that your modular consultant acts as a general contractor alleviates problems associated with labor shortages on job sites. Because many of the structural components are built in a factory, modules are protected from adverse weather conditions. Fabrication of modules can achieve tighter manufacturing specifications, another factor contributing to both quality and production speed.
Finally, flexibility is maximized because a modular building can be relocated — an advantage conventional construction does not offer.
Are modular buildings as sturdy as stick-built buildings?
Yes. Modular buildings meet and often exceed the same building and fire safety codes as traditionally constructed buildings. In fact, modules are built to withstand transportation from the factory to the site and have been found to meet the requirements for hurricanes, tornadoes and earthquakes with little or no additional reinforcement.
Is modular construction more expensive?
No. Quicker time to occupancy means greater productivity, income generation and improved cash flow for the end-user.
Does modular result in an inflexible building design and a limited choice of materials?
No. Modular buildings are flexible and easily reconfigured to virtually “future-proof” facility investments. And modular builders have access to the same materials used in traditional construction.
What is the cost of a modular building?
An exact cost cannot be offered without a thorough evaluation of the scope of the project. Many variables contribute to the cost of a modular building, including material choices, building codes, installation type, and construction services.
Is there a size limitation with modular buildings?
No, but there are module dimensional constraints that have to be understood and respected to ensure safe over-the-road transportation to the project site. Module size limitations vary from state to state, based on overpass heights and Department of Transportation requirements.
What is typical delivery turn-around for a modular building?
Modular buildings can be built and ready for occupancy weeks or even months ahead of the time required for traditional construction. A 30 percent – 50 percent time savings over conventional construction methods is typical and is accomplished by simultaneously preparing the project site and constructing the building’s modules.
Concurrent construction provides faster occupancy, faster revenue generation, and the avoidance or reduction of expenses associated with conventional building approaches.
The chart below illustrates that the time savings accrue in the site preparation and building construction phases.
Can modular buildings be customized?
Yes. What’s possible regarding customization, materials and details, at the factory or on-site, is limited only by the owner’s constraints and architect’s creativity.
Does Cenbu oversee the on-site installation?
Yes. Williams Scotsman can serve as your general contractor to oversee all onsite installation processes.
Does installation require skilled labor?
Yes. Project Managers and Foremen are skilled professionals. Cenbu can provide a full turnkey project complete with the necessary workforce. Our skilled project managers and craftsmen comply with all applicable codes and can provide turnkey services.
What are the financial advantages of modular buildings?
In addition to the inherent savings realized due to the accelerated construction process, there are many financing options unique to modular buildings. In certain situations, special state and federal tax provisions work to the developer’s financial advantage. Shorter construction time lines also reduce the financing period as well as supervision costs.
Do your buildings come with a warranty?
All products carry a manufacturer’s warranty.
What fire protection options are available?
Non-combustible construction and sprinkler systems are available.
What equipment options do you offer?
For your convenience, Williams Scotsman is the single source for all the options that complete your space, giving you immediate occupancy to your unit. We offer a wide range of equipment options to meet your needs, including:
o Non-slip surface
o Meet OSHA safety parameters
* Ramps and decks
o Non-slip surface
o Welded steel construction
o Complies with ADA, UBC and OSHA guidelines
o Site-built decks and ramps available
o DSA-approved ramps also available
o Enhances appearance
o Reduces risk of damage and liability
o Wide selection of styles
o Delivered to the site
o One-stop shopping convenience
* Security screens and door bars
o Protect building and contents
o Deter theft
o Reduce downtime
* Job site security system
o Completely wireless and portable
o Easy to install and use
o Protects jobsite equipment
o Portable, efficient and secure
o Durable aluminum construction
o Many standard sizes available for immediate delivery
* In-house service staff
o Our skilled service staff can provide on-site service within 24-48 hours.
o Our professional drivers and crews can relocate your office and storage units as your needs change.
* Part sales
o Our large inventory of parts include: doors, siding, trim, wheels, axles, windows and many other hard-to-find parts.
How will you work with me to determine custom requirements?
Williams Scotsman works side-by-side with you in designing and planning your structure early. We act as your general contractor throughout the entire planning process to assure complete understanding of the building’s end use. With that knowledge coupled with our longstanding industry expertise, we are able to meet your requirements for custom features as well as recommend others to you that we believe are a good fit for the project. We offer cooperative purchasing, GSA contract services, and special offers for trade associations.
What building standards do modular buildings meet?
Modular buildings meet or exceed all applicable federal, state and local codes.
What building materials are used in modular buildings?
Modular buildings use the same high-quality materials used in conventionally constructed structures.
Is mold a concern when constructing a building?
Mold is a concern for any building construction method. Whether it is stick-built or prefabricated, efficient quality control processes and building materials must be incorporated to reduce the risk of leaks, excess moisture, or mold resulting from poor building construction. Our modular buildings use the same quality building materials as traditional construction. Also, thorough process inspections are conducted during each stage of the building fabrication to ensure superior workmanship and high quality modular construction, thereby significantly reducing the probability of leaks or mold occurring after the building is completed.
What sort of energy efficiency can I expect?
In custom modular buildings, the energy efficiency is controlled by the same factors that control all building environments. These include design components such as the building’s insulation quality, glazing components (windows) and HVAC system performance. As with any structure, a custom modular building can be designed and built to any energy efficiency specification desired. This includes meeting the requirements of energy efficiency levels for certification by the U.S. Green Council’s LEED-certified buildings.
What’s the difference between modular and prefabricated buildings?
There is no difference. “Modular buildings,” “prefabricated buildings,” and “pre-engineered structures” are all terms for buildings manufactured off-site in a factory-controlled environment that are then installed onsite once the site work is complete.
What are the latest design innovations in modular? Am I limited to “box” designs?
Over the past few decades, there have been great advancements in modular building techniques. Because today’s designers have the flexibility to use the most modern and highest quality materials, they do not have to compromise aesthetics for cost or time efficiencies. Gone are the days when modular buildings were boring, boxy structures with little aesthetic appeal.
Many modular structures have been recognized for their design excellence, as architects and designers often work closely with modular consultants and manufacturers to ensure optimal design outcomes. Permanent modular buildings can be built as single one-story buildings or multi-story structures suited to the client’s needs.
Whether the building is a medical center, school, or government facility, the design can be tailored to your specific needs. The new or renovated structure can be designed to correspond with the surrounding environment and neighboring buildings. Exterior architectural finishes, such as brick, stucco and exposed aggregate architectural panels, can complement those of existing buildings. For the internal space, interior designers and architects collaborate with the client to develop the architectural touches, interior finishes and workflow environments aligned to each application.