LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is the most widely used green building rating system in the world. Available for virtually all building, community and home project types, LEED provides a framework to create healthy, highly efficient and cost-saving green buildings. LEED certification is a globally recognized symbol of sustainability achievement. 1
LEED takes into consideration the overall project, including the building AND the site. To obtain LEED certification on a project, there are certain prerequisites that must be met for the building design as well as the site. A building alone cannot achieve LEED certification; however, it can contribute LEED points to the overall project. IMS can assist your design team in providing the necessary documentation for the modular building to include in your LEED application. You can view more details about the LEED process and categories at www.usgbc.org.
While LEED is the industry standard for recognizing green buildings, there is a cost and schedule impact associated with applying for LEED status. IMS can assist you in designing and building a sustainable building, even if you elect not to pursue LEED certification.
Whether a project pursues LEED or not, Modular construction is inherently green and sustainable. Constructing rooms, wings and buildings in a factory setting naturally contains contaminants that might otherwise be released into the environment during onsite construction. In addition, modular buildings go up faster than traditional buildings, reducing the carbon footprint and noise pollution on the site. The modular building process also decreases the time required for restoration of surrounding green spaces.
Reducing waste due to construction in factory
Modular buildings are designed and constructed as individual sections, called “modules.” Each module is fabricated in a controlled facility environment; saving time and additional resources that cause waste on traditional construction sites. The modules are then transported to your site and assembled according to the design that was created for your project.
Limiting site disturbance
The factory construction process can also produce fewer site disturbances due to the limited time on-site. With the shorter construction schedule, there is a reduction in vehicle traffic as a majority of the work has been completed in factory. This minimal onsite disruption can be highly desirable for buildings that have a high amount of traffic going to and from their sites on a daily basis such as schools, hospitals, and government buildings. The streamlined process used during modular construction allows for these types of facilities as well as other facilities with routine schedules to have fewer labor hours needed onsite and fewer trips to the site needed by construction traffic.
Ability to use portable buildings and relocatable buildings
Modular building can be constructed to be permanent or relocatable. For situations where temporary space is needed, modular is the best choice; it allows an entire building to be reused. When deciding on long-term or short-term solutions, budget is taken into consideration. Financing and leasing options are available for that short-term space to alleviate over-crowding and increasing growth in your school or facility.
Reducing overall construction time
With modular construction, site preparation occurs at the same time the modules are being constructed in the factory. This allows for the buildings to be completed 30 to 50 percent sooner than conventional construction, which in turn generates a faster return on investment.
Incorporating green materials
Modular buildings utilize the same materials as site built structures. IMS can custom build to meet your requirements for a green building. Any sustainable or recycled content building products can be incorporated into your modular building design.
Designing an efficient building
IMS can work with your design team and budget to incorporate sustainable features into your modular building. Modular buildings can include high efficiency mechanical systems, including digital controls and on demand ventilation, to reduce overall energy consumption. Low flow plumbing fixtures with automatic sensors can be included to reduce water consumption. A white roof can be installed to reduce the heat island effect. Insulated, low E windows can be provided to allow natural light while also keeping out the elements.
The controlled process used in modular construction not only offers quality buildings that meet or exceed the same standards as traditional construction, but also benefits the environment to meet green standards through reducing and reusing.