FutureHAUS’s “integrated modularity is a win,” says Hanley Wood Editorial Director John McManus in this article in Builder: ProjeKt Runway – Five key take-away learnings from the KB Home ProjeKt initiative and its impact on the 2016 Greenbuild International Conference and Expo.
“Lesson No. 2, integrated modularity is a win. We worked with Joe Wheeler and his team of architecture and design students at Virginia Tech on the engineering and assembly of one of the home’s most magnetically popular features–a highly scaleable, high-tech embedded, moving mechanical wall that both retracts and converts living, working, and sleep space back-and-forth as homeowners needs morph in real-time. Kitchens, bathrooms, moveable walls–any software-rich bundle of homeowner benefits that involve integrated electric, plumbing, mechanicals, or other systems–can now be developed and produced as plug-and-play units that drop into place like Lego-system pieces.
“The added benefit here is that for a remodeling some years later, these same modular components can be removed and swapped out for an upgraded and expanded set of features and functions.
“Lesson No. 3, some form of hybrid construction model–site-built and offsite pre-fabrication–seems almost inevitable in the next several years, especially as consolidation plays out through the current cycle. Labor capacity constraint, climatic disruption, need-for-velocity (a blend of speed, accuracy, and economic productivity), and increasing risk around warranty and repair liabilities, not to mention advances in packaging and shipping of pre-fab components and cartridges all suggest that as larger players reset their supply chains, the on-site-off-site workflow model may emerge in the next few years.”