3. It takes a developer who’s willing to embrace risk
Creative solutions are instrumental to navigating risks. Some people look at modular as a way to build higher-quality projects, some as an urban density strategy, and others to realize significant potential cost savings. But the promise of modular comes with some very real risks. Most developers are not set up to pursue this option because it requires “outside the box” financing and contracts and they are not able to navigate those risks. Developers with an appetite for imaginative solutions along with higher risk and reward are better suited for modular.
4. A collaborative design can be a more sustainable one
Modular requires an integrative design process. To succeed, project teams must collaborate from early on, and this becomes an opportunity to also integrate sustainability, health and resilience strategies into the project. Modular has other sustainability benefits. Because materials are bought at scale and a large part of the project is constructed in one place, waste can be drastically reduced. Tighter construction tolerances and more control over material sourcing can also lead to significant improvements in energy efficiency and indoor air quality.
5. It could mean a fairer deal for the workforce
Although factory-built projects will be disruptive for the construction workforce, modular has the potential to benefit employees and improve social equity. It offers better health and safety during construction and opens up the industry to non-traditional employees — in one factory in Phoenix, Arizona, women make up 40% of the workforce, compared to 9% in the wider industry.
Narada Golden is vice president and leads WSP’s Built Ecology team in New York City. Chris Edmonds is sustainability consultant on the Built Ecology team and led the EPA Affordable Modular Housing project
Article originally published on www.the-possible.com