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What is modular construction?

Look up the term ‘modular’ in the dictionary and you’ll see that it relates to “separate parts that, when combined, form a complete whole”. This gives us a good starting point, but what does modular mean in relation to construction?

In this post we break down modular construction in more detail to cover:

  • What is modular construction?
  • Why modular construction is so popular
  • The benefits of modular construction
  • Green Unit and the modular sector

What is modular construction?

ARC I modular section leaves Green Unit's factory for delivery to client's site.

Modular – or offsite – construction is a Modern Method of Construction that means designing and building buildings in modules (or sections).

Modular construction can apply to component parts – such as modular wall systems – or entire sections of a building that are constructed offsite (in a factory) and then brought to site for assembly. The terms ‘modular’ and ‘offsite’ aren’t strictly the same thing but are often used almost interchangeably because modular construction usually takes place offsite i.e., in a factory away from the building’s site.

Our modular construction approach at Green Unit aims to keep time onsite to a minimum, meaning that we design and build 95% of the entire building offsite before transporting a virtually-complete building to site in sections.

How it works

Why is modular construction so popular?

The concept of prefabricating offsite is not new, but modular construction has grown so much in popularity that it is now considered a mainstream construction approach.

It brings together the best of innovative design, production, and engineering standards to push the boundaries of what is possible in modern-day construction.

The modular segment of the UK construction market is valued at over £100bn. Public and private sectors have voted with their feet in support of modular construction, with new investments regularly being made in the sector.

There are several reasons why the modular construction market is continuing to grow. We explain some of these benefits below.

What are the benefits of modular construction?

There are several benefits of modular construction such as speed, efficiency, quality, and sustainability.

  • Speed – streamlined and efficient production processes in a factory ensure fast build times
  • Predictability – the predetermined modular approach reduces unpredictability of cost escalations and project delays
  • Disruption – manufacturing most of the building offsite means that the time required to install the building onsite at the Client’s premises is minimal, therefore limiting the disruption of maintaining a live construction site
  • Lower carbon – offsite construction ensures efficient, environmentally-friendly processes and with one single factory site it vastly reduces the transportation of deliveries to site
  • Quality – design and build accuracy is guaranteed thanks to the precision-engineered parts and the controlled factory environment
  • Waste – traditional construction accounts for high wastage due to overordering and damaged materials – but precision engineering and factory controls of modular construction ensure waste is kept to a minimum
  • Health and safety – health and safety standards are tightly controlled within a factory environment
  • Year-round construction – traditional construction often experiences delays and disruption due to poor weather, which is not an issue with offsite construction.

So where does Green Unit fit into the modular sector?

Green Unit is a provider of quality, modular buildings, and is a leader in the supply of green modular buildings in particular.

Unlike other companies that offer a very functional modular solution, Green Unit offers beautiful buildings that are not only incredibly functional but are also unique in providing calm and inspiring spaces. Green Unit’s modular experience spans education, healthcare, offices, retail & leisure, holiday retreats, and residential.

Page last updated: 12/10/2021

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