Why Modular? The next factor I will refer to as the experience factor. This is the one and only factor that I wish weren’t included in the list and hopefully will not be for too much longer. However, the fact is that if the design and contracting team don’t have experience with off-site modular construction, this may be reason enough not to choose it.
Given modular is still considered an alternative project delivery method, which is relatively new in its current forms, I’m afraid this proverbial box will be checked more often than not until more have experience with it. Not to worry for us modular fans, the speed to occupancy factor is up next, and that is always checked in the favor of modular!
The speed to occupancy factor, the ruler of the construction domain. Modular allows up to 50% of the time to be saved when compared to conventional on-site construction. This is the slam dunk, use a Sharpie pen this time and check the box for modular every time! Speed, schedule reliability, fewer sequencing delays, productivity and efficiency is why we have the conversation at all.
A related factor is, quite simply, the labor factor. Like speed, this one is very straightforward. If labor hours on-site are going to be large, building the structure to substantial completion in a factory can save a lot of money. Factories are quite efficient in hiring skilled and unskilled labor. If labor costs on-site are high, the modular box gets checked more easily at the planning stage.
Stay tuned for When and Why Modular Part Three: The Financial Factor