Design issues of using prefabrication in hong kong building construction

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1025-1042
Journal / PublicationConstruction Management and Economics
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


Prefabrication techniques have been adopted for the last two decades in public housing projects in Hong Kong, but the use of prefabrication in the private sector was encouraged only after the implementation of the Joint Practices Notes which promote its use. Although previous studies acknowledge the environmental benefits of using prefabrication, only a few studies have addressed sustainable design concepts (closed-loop) in the adoption of precast construction. A questionnaire survey was administered to experienced Hong Kong construction professionals, and case studies of recently completed building projects were compiled to ascertain the use of prefabrication with reference to life cycle approach. The findings revealed that prefabrication, combined with modular design and standard components, saved time and construction/design costs, as buildings systems were used across projects. However, in some projects, specific site conditions restricted the use of similar prefabricated building systems across projects. Surprisingly only a few participants addressed life cycle design concepts such as design for deconstruction when adopting precast construction. Also, although it is common knowledge that flexible and demountable prefabricated building systems would result in efficient use of resources, their use is seldom practised in Hong Kong. © 2010 Taylor & Francis.

Research Area(s)

  • Hong kong, Life cycle design, Precast concrete, Prefabrication, Sustainable construction