There is a strong push to adopt Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) and realise the huge potential benefits to productivity and building safety. Unfortunately, this is seen by sections of the UK construction market as a need to grow the use of lightweight and lightweight modular forms of construction despite their inherent lack of resilience, especially regarding fire safety and climate change adaptation. This shift in material choice is unnecessary and could lead to a generation of building stock which lacks the longevity and inherent benefits of concrete construction, potentially resulting in a proliferation of stranded assets. This is unnecessary because a strong mature offsite concrete sector exists in the UK which delivers the benefits MMC with the resilient properties of concrete.
Here we set out 6 benefits of concrete MMC.
1. Concrete is at the cutting edge of modern methods of construction (MMC) through new technology, including innovative offsite factory manufacture and advanced onsite installation techniques.
2. Significant time savings on construction programmes can be achieved through the use of concrete MMC solutions, from just-in-time delivery on site through to delivering faster build programmes.
3. Thanks to sophisticated manufacturing and quality control procedures, concrete MMC techniques deliver a high-quality, robustness and reliable product every time that is not always possible in less resilient lightweight materials.
4. Concrete MMC provides additional safety benefits both during production and installation, reducing the need to work at height and in confined spaces. After construction, concrete protects people and property because it is A1 fire rated and does not burn.
5. Modern digital construction practices deliver predictable, reliable, and traceable concrete products that project teams can easily track from factory to site.
6. Concrete MMC can create assets that deliver value, have long life spans and can be designed with change of use, disassembly, and element reuse in mind – helping to play an important role in a circular economy.
Options exist to allow sustainable design decisions that are low carbon both upfront and throughout the whole life of an asset
MPA Precast is part of the Mineral Products Association, the trade association for the aggregates, asphalt, cement, concrete, dimension stone, lime, mortar and industrial sand industries. www.mineralproducts.org
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