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Off-Site Construction: Becoming more prominent for general contractors, architects and manufacturers

Off-site construction is becoming a building method of choice for commercial architects and general contractors alike, and this growing trend shows no signs of stopping. According to a report by The National Real Estate Investor, over the last five years, the off-site construction business has doubled in size in the US to become an $8 billion industry. It’s evolving into a mainstream process that experts predict could reach $130 billion - in new construction alone - in both Europe and the U.S. by 2030.

One of the main attractions to this method is its ability to boost productivity across building operations. With the capability to accelerate project timelines by up to 50 percent due to less labor and equipment demands and optimized scalability, industry analysts like McKinsey & Company believe off-site construction has the potential to deliver annual savings of up to $22 billion in the United States. At Henry® Company, we recognize the value of this unique, and highly efficient construction process and have had the opportunity to work with leading building contractors on innovative commercial off-site construction opportunities across the U.S., integrating our state-of-the-art air barrier systems into the prefabricated wall systems.

As demand continues to drive building development in the years ahead, there’s no doubt that off-site construction will play a major role within the industry. At Henry® Company, staying on top of the latest innovations in commercial building construction techniques and aligning them with your specific construction development needs, is what we do best. To gain some more perspective on this growing trend, we reached out to one of our industry partners, Rob Wentz, Vice President of Eastern Exterior Wall Systems (EEWS), to get his views on off-site construction and how it’s changing the way we look at building design and structure.

Based locally in the Philadelphia-area, EEWS specializes in the development of exterior enclosure solutions – including prefabricated modules utilized in off-site construction processes. From its inception over 40 years ago, EEWS has worked alongside building professionals – such as architects, general contractors and other commercial building partners like Henry® Company – on projects that have changed the skylines of major metropolitan areas and contributed to the growth of communities in the Northeast region of the U.S. and beyond.

For Wentz, when it comes to off-site construction, it's all about speed and quality control, which might seem counterintuitive as it relates to traditional commercial building practices but is resulting in the delivery of some surprisingly major benefits.

Off-site construction allows us to build each prefabricated module in a safe, protected and controlled environment which greatly reduces any risk toward quality that can be caused by unforeseen weather conditions or unfavorable onsite constraints. It also provides us with the ability to deliver projects much faster than we ever have before!

The cost-saving benefits of off-site construction for both the building owner and installer is also an appealing perk that cannot be overlooked.

It’s an ever-evolving business that offers an array of benefits if implemented and deployed properly. For instance, a 16-story tall brick building would take months to enclose onsite using a traditional stick-built approach, but if the prefabricated modules were manufactured in a factory or warehouse instead and then shipped to the job site and the panels erected on site, the building will be enclosed in a fraction of that time.

Henry® Company offers a complete portfolio of air barrier systems that deliver exceptional performance for off-site construction projects and is an essential element to the sheathing panels that go into building the overall structure. From fully adhered Henry Blueskin systems to the fluid applied Air-Bloc systems, Henry® Company has the right solution to help you proceed with confidence on your next project.

Request a meeting with a Henry representative today to learn more about how we can help you with your next project.

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