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Reaching scale : The opportunity for volumetric modular techniques in the UK offsite manufacturing industry

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The aim of this paper is to explore how modern methods of construction can theoretically alleviate some of the construction industry’s inherent and systemic problems, such as low industry margins, financial fragility and adversarial pricing models. By delving into what we actually mean by modern methods of construction (MMC), I want to emphasise the diversity of modern methods available in our industry and how the pre-manufactured value spectrum works as a basis to steer away from outdated and inadequate delivery models. Case studies from the UK will be used throughout to bolster my argument, highlighting the benefits of using MMC in delivering housing, as well as showing that MMC requires a wholesale rethink of everything from procurement models, to technological or digital adoption. After all, MMC is much more than just a modern form of construction — it is a total rethink of how we conceptualise, design and deliver.
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Keywords: construction; modern methods of construction (MMC); modular; offsite; procurement; skills; training; volumetric

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2018

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  • Journal of Building Survey, Appraisal & Valuation is the essential peer-reviewed journal for building surveyors, structural engineers and other professionals concerned with building condition, defects, valuation, repair and maintenance.

    Published quarterly and guided by an expert Editor and Editorial Board, each 100-page issue – published both in print and online – contains in-depth, practical articles on building condition, defects, valuation, repair and maintenance written by and for leading surveying professionals. The journal provides detailed, actionable advice on the latest thinking, techniques and instrumentation available to the surveyor in the diagnosis and repair of building defects, as well as valuation and legal and regulatory updates - with no advertising.

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