Offsite Manufacturing: A Survey on the Current Status and Risks of Offsite Construction in Iran
Iran needs around 1.5 million residential homes to be constructed annually to answer its cumulative demand by 2025. Given the current situation of the Iranian construction industry, it seems almost impossible to achieve this objective by using traditional methods of construction alone. Offsite manufacturing (OSM) can potentially increase the housing output in Iran thanks to its advantages over traditional methods of construction. However, OSM imposes a different set of risks which should be studied in the Iranian context. This study aims to investigate the readiness of the Iranian construction industry if offsite methods were to be introduced to the country in large industrial scales. To this end, a questionnaire survey was conducted to identify the risks and required actions in order to achieve successful application of these methods. Several subjects including costs, practicality, design and construction processes, demand, governmental policies, technology, and sustainability issues were investigated as the core research areas. The results revealed that, considering the current situations, it would be highly risky to introduce offsite methods of construction to Iran. Research findings highlight some key areas including design and construction processes, economies of scale, governmental supports, and education, which should be addressed to mitigate the identified risks.
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