New report quantifies benefits of offsite construction

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offsite construction,
© Aleksandr Volkov

CIRIA, Laing O’Rourke Centre for Construction Engineering and Technology and the University of Cambridge, have launched a new report quantifying the benefits of offsite construction

The new guidance report entitled ‘Methodology for quantifying the benefits of offsite construction’ proposes a framework for comparing construction approaches, making it possible to keep consistent records across projects and identify all the possible benefits available.

Offsite construction offers the potential to deliver a number of benefits including better quality construction, improved health and safety, a faster construction programme as well as predictability of cost and time on any given project.

Despite this, uptake of offsite construction is slow as there is no industry method for assessing the benefits of offsite techniques.

The guide highlights the challenges that can be expected when assessing the performance of construction projects and developing robust benchmarks for comparison. It provides a framework for evaluating project performance that can be used by clients, construction management teams and designers to assess the value and benefits achieved on projects.

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The offsite construction guidance is set to support decision-making and facilitate wider industry collaboration across different sectors in the construction industry.

The proposed methodology is tested through the analysis of project data received on case studies in the educational sector, demonstrating how the metrics could be used to assess performance. It provides a template for evaluating project performance that can be used by clients and construction management teams to assess the value and benefits achieved on projects. This could be applied across different building sectors in the construction industry and adapted for infrastructure projects.

An invaluable guide for industry professionals

Professor Lord Robert Mair, Emeritus Sir Kirby Laing Professor of Civil Engineering and director of research at the University of Cambridge, said “There is compelling evidence for more widespread adoption of offsite manufacture in construction. Yet a methodology for quantifying its benefits is much needed.

“The process outlined in this excellent report provides an invaluable guide for industry professionals, such as contractors and project managers, as well as those who are influential in decision-making on construction projects, including clients, advisors and policymakers.”

The guide is available to download freely from www.ciria.org/c792.

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