Worldwide adoption of IBS

 United Kingdom

In the UK, Latham and Egan report emphasised on the advantages of standardisation and preassembly and stressed the importance of modular and industrialised systems to improve construction performance. In impetus of Egan and Latham, the Modern Method of Construction (MMC) and offsite construction were used to address the under supply, skills shortage and poor build quality of housing. The offsite market in the UK makes up 2.1% of the whole construction market including new build, refurbishment and repair, and civil engineering projects. The market share when only new build projects are considered and civil engineering works are excluded rose to 4.1%. In total, the market has achieved a growth rate of 7 % between 2000 and 2005 and forecast to grow at the rate of 12 % per year in 2005 onwards. The research by Buildoffsite in 2006 has indicated that the total offsite sector valued at £6 billion which include both innovative and mature technology. The innovative offsite technologies which are only readily become available in the last few years valued at £1.53 billion.   


In Finland, single-family housing made up in a factory represented 70% of total building construction. The growth of residential construction using IBS is 20% annually. The predominant form of IBS is small and modular panelised system. It offers effective and rapid site assembly and improving the quality and productivity of construction.


Japanese housebuilding industry has developed the most advance manufacturing techniques in construction. The automation and robotic applied in both manufacturing floor and onsite construction for better quality, minimum onsite duration and better value for customer. It started in 1960s and since then the market share has change dramatically in the use of IBS. Construction of prefabricated houses in Japan represented 20% of all houses in 1999 with steel framing system dominated the market with 73% of market share. 


The IBS in Germany is well established and its internal competition is fierce as a result of technological advancement. Industrialised construction in housebuilding industry in Germany has improved quality and provided a better value with considerable variety and flexibility in design. It also helped the developers to overcome strict standard of quality control imposed by local authorities in their building industry. It was reported that 10% of the 250,000 dwellings in 1998 used precast concrete with represent a total market share of 24%. Albeit the value for precast concrete has increase by 10-15% the profit is marginal partly due to competition. 


Singapore through the Housing Development Board (HDB) has produced advanced prefabricated components and systems for quality housing since 1980s. The Singapore government took a brave initiative to implement pre-fabrication or IBS in view of the need to accomplishing the 100,000 dwelling units in the Fifth Building Program target. It proved successful in term of quality and speed of construction. The HDB has introduced major innovation in the area of novelty building system which includes ferrocement cladding system, prefabricated bathroom, pre-cast prestressed composite floor system, architecture precast façade and pre-cut and pre-bend reinforcement bars.

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