Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Tapia D., Gonzalez M., Vera S., Aguilar C. (2023)

A Novel Offsite Construction Method for Social Housing in Emerging Economies for Low Cost and Reduced Environmental Impact

Revista : Sustainability
Volumen : 15
Número : 24
Tipo de publicación : ISI Ir a publicación


Offsite construction methods have shown many advantages over traditional construction techniques, especially related to efficiency and productivity during the construction phase. Nevertheless, offsite construction generally involves oversizing the internal structure of the modules due to the internal stresses produced during transport and lifting operations, producing an increase in material usage, direct cost, and carbon footprint. In developing countries, the direct cost of social housing is the most important factor determining the feasibility of construction. For this reason, oversizing the internal structure of the modules can play an important role in the adoption of a modern construction technique such as offsite construction systems. In order to solve this issue, a temporary reusable stiffener structure is proposed to allow an economical offsite construction system using a lightweight steel framing structure used in traditional methods. The reusable structure was designed using a finite element method, and the direct cost and carbon footprint of the structure were evaluated. The results show that the proposed construction strategy allows for a low cost and reduced environmental impact due to a lower usage of materials in the modules and the possibility of a circular economy approach to the reusable structure.