Prefabricated Houses and Modularity - Advantages and Disadvantages of Modular Construction






Prefabricated House - History, Construction, Advantages, Disadvantages
Modularity
Modular Construction

Prefabricated House - History, Construction, Advantages, Disadvantages 


History of Prefab Construction
Prefab Method of Construction
Prefabricated Houses Advantages
Prefabricated Houses Disadvantages

The term prefabricated house is generally used to refer to a house that - at least in parts - is prefabricated at the factory and delivered to the site.


According to the Austrian Standards Institute definition, a prefabricated house is a structure built on a prepared substructure consisting of prefabricated, floor-to-ceiling large-panel conversion elements, room cells and prefabricated ceiling and roof elements manufactured in production sites independent of weather conditions.





This standard applies to residential buildings (detached and semi-detached houses, terraced houses, multi-storey residential buildings), office buildings, kindergartens, schools and multi-purpose houses and regardless of the building materials used (wood, concrete, brick). This standard does not cover structures constructed with non-storey but prefabricated single structural elements, such as houses made of brick, aerated concrete, hollow blocks or wooden block house planks, or which do not conform to a specific minimum level of performance.


B10 Prefab House + Garage for Electric Car + Sustainable Energy






Rendering
Floorplans
Construction
About Werner Sobek
About E-Lab Projekt GmbH
About AlphaEOS AG and B10 Future Living Lab
Project participants

Architecture: Werner Sobek, E-Lab Projekt GmbH
Builder: E-Lab Projekt GmbH
Manufacturers: Sky-Frame, CLIPSO, Leicht
Testing and research: AlphaEOS AG and B10 Future Living Lab
Location: Stuttgart, Germany
Year: 2014
Photography: Zooey Braun

Vision

At the beginning of the project was the vision of an innovative and sustainable prefab house, which not only generates all the energy needed in-house from sustainable sources and that can be 100% recycled into the material cycle. The building should also create a link between the built environment and electromobility - and show ways of optimally coordinating energy generation and energy consumption at the local level through a smart grid.

Context

The prefab house is located at Bruckmannweg 10, in the heart of the famous Weissenhofsiedlung in Stuttgart. Built in 1927 within a few months, this settlement on the Killesberg was like a revolution in construction. The designs of various world-famous architects showed how we can build and live in the future. Parts of the Weissenhofsiedlung were destroyed and rebuilt after the war - except for the property in the Bruckmannweg, which lay fallow since 1945. Here, for a period of three years, appears B10, a new forward-looking building that shows how innovative materials, designs and technologies can sustainably improve our design environment.





Project

The research project - named "B10" after its location in Bruckmannweg 10 - is an active house. Thanks to a sophisticated energy concept and self-learning building control, it generates twice as much energy itself - from sustainable sources. With the surplus gained, two electric cars and the listed building of the architect Le Corbusier (since 2006 the home of the Weissenhof Museum) have been supplied. Upon completion of the research project, the prefab house will be completely dismantled, rebuilt elsewhere or 100% recycled. The property is then returned to the city of Stuttgart in its original condition.

In an initial phase of use, interested visitors can find out more about the energy concept and the applied construction technology in B10 prefab house. In the second phase of use, the building will be inhabited free of charge by two students. During the entire project period, energy generation and energy consumption as well as a large number of other highly relevant data for building research are continuously measured and scientifically evaluated at the University of Stuttgart.

Builder

The developer of the project is E-Lab Projekt GmbH, a project company of the non-profit Stuttgart Institute of Sustainability Foundation e.V. (SIS). SIS is a non-profit association. It supports and develops methods and technologies for sustainable construction. SIS combines science with industry and crafts. The association was founded in 2011 and has its headquarters in Stuttgart. Further information can be found at http://www.sis-stiftung.de/verein.php

Modular Construction in Perfection - Modular Homes, Multi-Storey Apartment Buildings and Offices by Variahome, Germany

Modular Construction in Perfection






Variahome stands for sophisticated, architecturally high-quality, turnkey buildings in modular solid wood construction. The future-oriented design of Variahome provides the clients with a wealth of advantages.

Made in the tradition of alpine wood craftsmanship Variahome combines tradition with modernity.

Industrially prefabricated Variahome room modular systems are guarantors for short construction time, highest quality, a particularly aesthetic appearance and offer attractive purchase, financing, rental and leasing models for the commercial and municipal sector.


About Variahome

Modular Construction - Sustainable, Flexible, Turnkey

Shared living of young and old. More space for young families, singles, students, pensioners and the construction of low-cost apartments, this is multi-storey modular housing construction with Variahome.

Affordable housing has become an existential issue for millions of people in Germany. Young families no longer find affordable housing in many major cities. Retirees are forced out of their homes and neighborhoods where they have lived for decades. Who in a big city, for example nurse or bus driver is, who can afford in the city center no more housing. The market demands new flexible living concepts and Variahome has them.





If residential space is to be created quickly, Variahome offers a real alternative to conventional building with ecological, sustainable modular solutions with a prefabrication rate of 98% in the factory.

Benefits

Valuable, sustainable ecological architecture:

Good architecture is permanently valuable. The sooner we get involved in the planning, the more economical and precise the result.

Turnkey delivery and construction with fixed price and term guarantee. Variahome carries out the planning in partnership with client in dialogue in order to best capture client's requirements. So Variahome can implement your room and equipment program precisely.

Of course, Variahome meets all the requirements for fire protection, sound insulation and building physics. All legal standards, regulations and specifications are of course complied with. Even highest energy standards such as Passive or Plus energy modular buildings are possible.

Economical: The short construction time, the high flexibility in use and the adaptability to future requirements make the Variahome modular construction particularly economical. No matter whether you are planning barrier-free living space or are using subsidies for social housing or particularly efficient construction methods. Variahome with its experienced architects adapts the planning 100% to client's needs.

Flexible modular design freedom. With Variahome clients achieve the same freedom of design as they are used to from other building systems. Plaster, wood or brick facades are exactly the same as modern HPL facades. With this freedom in design, Variahome integrates their modular buildings into every urban environment.

Flexible and sustainable: you remain flexible even after installation. Adjustments to changing requirements are not a problem with modular design, as the inner walls are not static bearing and can therefore be moved or removed.

Healthy living with well-being guarantee: By using solid wood, which has a favorable effect on the room humidity and room temperature, Variahome creates a comfortable living atmosphere.

Feel-good apartments: In the interior, modular housing allows for a high degree of flexibility in layouts, since Variahome removes all static loads via the exterior walls. Variahome does not know the limitation of "load-bearing interior walls". So Variahome can realize flexible room concepts. When choosing the ceilings and wall surfaces as well as the floor coverings client has free choice. Variahome realizes living rooms, kitchens and bathrooms in the highest quality and execution.

Prefab Modular Villa, Collonges, Switzerland






Floorplans
About Pierre-Alain Dupraz

Architecture: Pierre-Alain Dupraz
Location: Collonges, Switzerland
Year: 2012
Photos: Thomas Jantscher

Description by the project team 

Located at the base of the mountain overlooking the Geneva basin, the 'house in Collonges', designed by the Swiss office Pierre-Alain Dupraz Architects. Built for a single family, the prefab modular villa is constructed from a series of rectangular prefabricated concrete boxes, paired and stacked one on the side - and on top - of the other, in order to shape the dwelling to the sloping landscape and accommodate programmatic needs.





The south axis rests on a geographic shelf where are the entrance, dining, kitchen, living room and master bedroom areas. The children's bedrooms are found on the lower level, embedded in the slope, overlooking the valley. The neutral gray of the exposed concrete facade is interrupted by light frames and square wooden windows, allowing the prefab modular villa to naturally blend in with its surroundings in green summers and white winters.

Prefab Modular Home in Ocean Beach, San Diego, California





Three on Abbott is a development of three prefabricated, detached homes on the corner of Voltaire & Abbott streets in Ocean Beach. The homes are located near San Diego's best attractions. The project is sensitive to the area's wants and wishes, conforming by-right to all local zoning and ordinances. It was constructed off-site to minimize disturbance to the community and surrounding businesses and are sustainably designed with the area in mind. Large roof decks offer 180 degree views to the water from the channel to the North to the Pacific to the West.


Assembly process
Floor plans
About R&S Tavares Associates
About Champion Home Builders

Project: Three on Abbott
Builders: R&S Tavares Associates, Inc.
                Champion Home Builders
Area: 840 sqf
Bedrooms: 2
Full baths: 3
Year: 2016
Location: San Diego, California
Photos: Pacific Video Productions

Description from R&S Tavares Associates

R&S Tavares Associates, Inc., brings contemporary prefab living to Ocean Beach, a charming beach community close to San Diego's downtown. The project was an effort of Pedro Tavares who started researching the project while attending Woodbury University's Master of Real Estate Development for Architects program in San Diego, headed by Ted Smith, Jonathan Segal, Lloyd Russell, Brett Farrow and Mike Burnett, giants in the San Diego Architect as Developer model. The project was first explored as part of their thesis in that program and continued past graduation where Pedro and a colleague designed, permitted and completed the project as owner-builders.

R&S Tavares Associates, a design and consulting company started by Ralph and Silvana Tavares, also partners in the project, performed the engineering and authored the construction documents for the project. Ralph and Silvana are the country's foremost experts in Modular/Prefabricated building technologies, having worked for various manufacturers throughout the United States since 1987 and branching off on their own in 2000, they have been directly responsible for the design and engineering of thousands of modular projects worldwide from "tiny homes," 100,000+ square foot hospitals and award winning projects such as RADLAB's Quartyard project in San Diego which received a people's choice orchid and Studio E's High Tech High in Chula Vista which won an AIA COTE award. Ralph holds professional Engineering licenses in 42 states currently and Silvana is a New York licensed Architect.





Manufactured and shipped from Champion Home Builders in Corona, CA, the homes were built under extremely rigid constraints imposed by local zoning. They are about 840 square feet each, a block from Dog Beach in Ocean Beach, San Diego. They feature floor to ceiling heights of 13'-0", and are very unique in terms of modular structures in that they contain balloon-framed loft spaces within and overall total module heights of 15'-0" (4.5 meters), utilizing special trailers to keep their overall shipping height under the 17 foot special permit restriction in California. A large roof deck with panoramic views of the water is accessible in each house. Portuguese cobblestone from Porto, Portugal was imported to the Port of Los Angeles along with three Portuguese master masons to create the Copacabana Boardwalk pattern on the driveways by Roc2C.

On-site construction started April 25, 2016 and production of the modules started May 9th. The project was set in one day by Nick Rocco of Rocco Enterprises on May 26th, ahead of schedule to comply with the City of San Diego's Coastal Construction Moratorium which would have not allowed for a crane to be set in the road past Memorial Day.

Prefab Modular Homes by MIMA





MIMA Light - Small Prefab House



MIMA Light floor plans
MIMA Light video

What does it take to own a home? MIMA Light shows that a construction site, 22 weeks time and € 20,000 can already be enough. The idea of ​​a small house, customizable in size and features, is as simple as it is ingenious. The result is a functional design sculpture that also withstands a look behind the façade.

It takes just 22 weeks from personal design, through production and construction, to your own dream home. Whether on the shores of a lake or in the mountains, the basic concept is adaptable and adapts to local conditions. Individual foundation solutions range from concrete floor slabs or supports to special wood foundations. The wooden small modular house has short construction period due to modular system of building elements. At the construction site, the prefabricated modules are only assembled.

For the design of the small units MIMA was inspired by different artists. The sculptural cube seems to float above the ground. It owes this impression to an all-round mirrored pedestal. The other materials shine with noble restraint: Noble metal coating or simple color, every owner can give a MIMA Light a personal touch.





Depending on the customer's requirements, 1.2 meter modules will give a total length between seven and eleven, with a fixed height and width of 3 meters. This results in floor areas of 21 m2 for the smallest, and almost 33 m2 for the largest unit. The individual modules are clearly visible to the outside and act like chain links. A flat roof and internal gutters complete the pure geometry.

The interior is also reserved. Floor and walls made of plywood boards ground the innovative project. While large glass fronts provide a friendly ambience on the front side, it is also possible to make individual façade modules as glass surfaces. Depending on the location, for example in extremely warm conditions, the glass is made thicker and with higher level of protection.

Not only architectural design, but also energy technology puts a lot in this small prefab house. Solar panels are used for the electric boiler, which guarantees the hot water supply.

Kitchen and bathroom form a compact module that can be placed centrally or at one end of the MIMA Light small prefab house. Their position is decisive for the shape of living room and bedroom.

The compact home opens up new perspectives in tourism as well as in the holiday home market and with prices between € 20,000 and € 40,000 is not only affordable for high earners.

Small Prefab Floating Home by KODA





KODA Light Float integrates the small prefab house in floating pontoons enabling extended waterfront properties


About KODA
About TopMarine OÜ

The KODA Light Float opens up the opportunity of using urban or countryside waterfront space. The architecture, design and engineering skills combined enable living near a favourite yacht harbour, on a private lake or on an urban canal.

The versatility of prefab modular housing concept makes the KODA Light Float either a harbour café, artist’s studio, not to mention a summer retreat or a fisherman’s dream.

With its spacious comfort and high ceilings, the fully equipped small prefab floating home has a facade-sized illuminating window. The floating KODA house gives an atmosphere of a mediterranean villa.

Sustainably finished with plywood inside, the KODA Light is as minimalist as it is cosy. The floating terrace creates even more luxury space to be blend into the favourite surroundings.





KODA is a factory-built house and delivered as turnkey.

A standard equipped KODA Light includes an openspace living room, a full-size sleeping area, a shower room with toilet, a kitchen and a wooden terrace – all that on spacious, yet compact 25.8 m2.

The KODA Light has maintained its insulation and strength for year around living in heat and frost, while enabling stacking two units of its own kind on the roof.

The small prefab floating home KODA Light Float offers the opportunity of choosing the most suitable exterior finish as well as the terrace and border materials to your environment. The first being either plywood or timber, the latter offering options between spruce terrace and pine border, or larch terrace with glass border.

Technical details

Dimension of platform6.0 × 12.0 m
Floats 2pcHD Pontoon 1.07× 2.4× 12m
Freeboard with decking0.7m
Tanks 2pc3.3 m3
Weight of platform31 tons
Load capacity4.1 kN/m² (30 tons)
Allowed max wave height0.3m
Allowed current speed1 m/sec
Allowed ice conditionAllowed static ice load, ice moving is not allowed
Massca. 10 tons
Net area25.8 sqm / 277.7 sqft
Area of building perimetre28.8 sqm / 310.0 sqft
External dimensionsL 7226 mm / 23.7 ft
W 3930 mm / 12.9 ft
H 3990 mm / 13.1 ft
Internal dimensionsL 5858 mm / 19.2 ft
W 3416 mm / 11.2 ft
H 3323 mm / 10.9 ft





Structural

Timber frame structure
Mineral wool layer of insulation
200 mm/0.66 ft in walls; 250 mm/0.82 ft in ceiling and floor
Three-ply tempered glass
Snow load 400 kg / sqm
Interior finish plywood 12 mm / 0.039 ft
Exterior finish timber cladding or plywood

Engineering

Electric floor heating
80 l electric boiler
VENTS ventilation system
Water connection DN15
Sewage connection 110mm / 0.36 ft
Electrical connection 20A 3F