How Modular Design is Changing the Architecture World

Whether it’s a large project or a small one, modular design offers an efficient and sustainable approach to building.

Those who have seen the construction industry closely will know that it suffers from inefficiencies and is prone to delays. From incompetent planning to unexpected weather conditions and high labor costs to extensive bureaucratic requirements, construction projects can get hindered for various reasons. Outdated engineering and architect practices lead to material waste, longer construction times, and arduous levels of maintenance. It is detrimental not only to clients’ time and money but also to the environment’s well-being.

No wonder the newer eco-friendly building techniques, such as modular construction, are gaining traction more than ever. With technological advancements in the architecture world and more critical evaluation of the environmental cost of construction, modular architecture and design have proved to be an increasingly attractive approach for architects and contractors. According to AMA Research, modular construction is set to grow by 14% between 2020 and 2024. The seemingly endless possibilities for modular construction promise even greater growth for years to come.

It is a popular belief that modular architecture is a modern housing trend, however, the techniques used in modular design have been around for a while. The modular design was born and became popular between the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century. After World War II, its popularity grew in the United States as an efficient and cost-effective way of rebuilding civil and residential buildings at pace.

What is modular architecture?

Modular architecture basically involves constructing separate elements of a building in isolation in a production facility, which are shipped to their project locations and assembled on-site by a builder to create a new unit. Each module is independent of the other. The modules integrated or combined to produce a complete structure include walls, ceilings, cabinets, windows, doors, and so on. A modular home is also called a prefab, system-built, or factory-built home.

The concept of modular architecture can effectively tackle the limitations of traditional construction projects and provides flexible design, personalization, durability, sustainability, and much more. It makes sense to choose modular construction when time is of the essence or space is at a premium.

Unique advantages of the modular architecture and design

This type of architecture and design has a series of advantages that we have come to know:

Easy transportation.

Modular structures can be disassembled, and the independent modules relocated or refurbished for new use. This reduces the demand for raw materials and allows construction in places where conventional construction would present more complications.

Shorter time to completion.

Modular building construction could be completed on-site up to 50% quicker when compared to traditional home construction. It also saves a lot of time as you don’t have to worry about uncontrollable variables, such as inclement weather or any local disturbances that might otherwise cause delays or cost overruns. It results in fewer delays and increased schedule certainty.

Faster return on investment.

Since modular construction occurs concurrently with site preparation, it can dramatically reduce the time to build a unit. A modularly-built commercial building can start welcoming customers and generating revenue much sooner (30% to 50%) than traditional construction.

Flexibility in design.

Modular designs allow for additions and modifications even during the advanced or finished stages, thus increasing the scope for customization to the construction building. This ensures the end product will have no wasted space.

Structural strength & quality management.

Modular buildings are structurally stronger than site-built construction as each module is engineered to independently withstand the rigors of transportation and craning onto foundations. Thus, offsite modular construction ensures better building quality management at every step.

Less material waste.

When building in a factory-controlled setting, waste is reduced through recycling materials, monitoring inventory, and sheltering building materials.

Greater worker safety.

Offsite construction eliminates a large part of ongoing construction hazards when building new projects. Since the labor force will be working in a safe, controlled construction environment versus working at dangerous heights and/or in less controlled environments, modular construction significantly reduces on-site activity and the risk of mishaps and related liabilities for workers.


Modular architecture offers several sustainability benefits too. The streamlined method utilized to build modular homes can ascertain the materials used have a minimal environmental impact. Furthermore, significantly less on-site activity and disturbance and improved quality management throughout the construction process promote sustainability.

Advanced BIM technology.

Modular design and construction rely on advanced Building Information Modeling (BIM) for visualization to evaluate energy performance and recognize the most cost-effective efficiency measures.

Modular architecture and design – It’s everywhere!

If done correctly, modular architecture can revolutionize the building process with factory-controlled quality, reduced construction times, and smarter use of materials. 

Built to meet or exceed the same building codes and specifications as conventionally-built facilities, modular buildings, once assembled, are virtually indistinguishable from their “on-site” counterparts.

The demand for modular architecture and design to facilitate our changing needs in this post-pandemic world is more evident than ever! Modular building techniques are revolutionizing construction by providing a quick and cost-effective approach to home construction. However, the biggest drawback with modular designs and architecture is the architect or engineer you choose for your construction project. Most architects or engineers available for hire are either poorly trained in different aspects of modular architecture design or highly overpriced.

If you are planning to grow your business, you should outsource engineering and architect services from India. Virtual Employee is one of the leading engineering and architect services providers that can help you hire skilled engineers and architects online who stay abreast with the latest international codes and standards. VE’s offshore architectural design services encompass everything from designing, drafting, and modeling to plumbing, layering, and conversion.

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