Modular Building Institute
Modular Construction Response to COVID-19 | Modular Building Institute emergency response from the modular construction industry

Modular Construction In The News

The modular construction industry is playing a pivotal role in the response to the COVID-19 crisis. Here are some of the stories we've seen so far.

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Recent News

From The Star (Canada) (05/05/20): It took a deadly pandemic to get Toronto to embrace a faster way to build affordable housing: 250 modular units of supportive housing for shelter users, in a plan approved by Toronto council last week. Full story.

From The Fabricator (05/04/20): Faced with the tall task of constucting two modular hospitals in four weeks, MBI-member BMarko Structures delivered by hiring extra staff and working 17-hour days. Full story.

From The Daily Journal of Commerce (04/15/20): MBI-member PCL Construction has partnered with health care experts, designers, and engineers to create a portable virus testing center that can be quickly deployed across in the U.S. and potentially other countries. Full story.

From The Building, Design & Construction Network (04/13/20): HGA and The Boldt Company devise a prefabricated temporary hospital to manage surge capacity during a viral crisis. A STAAT Mod system can be ready to receive patients in less than a month. Full story.

From The Mercury News (04/08/20): San Jose city leaders are fast-tracking a $17 million plan that will allow the city build up to 500 modular and pre-fabricated homes on public and private property for homeless residents. Full story.

From the Bellevue Reporter (04/08/20): New isolation facilities in Seattle feature six modular units with a total capacity of 23 people. Additional IQRs will open soon at White Center and Harborview. It will feature eight modular units with a total capacity of 31 people. Full story.

From Insider Media Limited (04/07/20): Modular construction company Elite Systems is currently manufacturing a 20-bed isolation ward for a hospital in Surrey. The new facility for Royal Surrey County Hospital is set to be fully completed and ready to accept patients within eight weeks. Full story.

From the Modular Building Institute (04/06/20): MBI Executive Director Tom Hardiman was interviewed live this morning and updated host Dave Cooper about the state of the modular construction industry and its crisis-response capability. Watch the complete interview here.

From The Canadian Press via Yahoo! Finance (04/05/20): Black Diamond, a Calgary-based member of the Modular Building Institute, says it has received more than 100 requests over the past two weeks to set up field hospitals, quarantine accommodations, testing centers, and other temporary structures needed for the COVID-19 pandemic. Of the roughly 100 requests it's received, Black Diamond has been able to move on almost half so far. Full story.

From (04/03/20): The New Orleans Mission soon will open five new buildings where homeless people can spend time during the day, when most shelters are closed. Warren Davie, president of MBI member-company Davie Shoring, a Kenner company that performs building leveling and foundation repairs, donated the five modular cement buildings. Full story.

From The Highlands Current (04/03/20): In Dutchess County, Molinaro issued an order allowing vacant temporary housing units (PODs) at the county jail to be repurposed as emergency homeless shelters. The county and the sheriff’s department partnered with Hudson River Housing and Mental Health America to operate one of the two modular, dormitory-style buildings, which will be divided into male and female sections. Full story.

From ABC (Australia) (04/02/20): Canberra company Aspen Medical, which specialises in delivering medical care in hostile and difficult circumstances, is being contracted to put the field hospital together. "It won't be a bricks and mortar building, but it won't be a tent-city," Aspen Medical chief executive Glenn Keys said. "It will be a series of modular buildings like demountables that are all joined together in a single facility.” Full story.

From (04/02/20): Dăruiește Viață Association, the NGO building the first donation-funded hospital in Romania, has started the construction of a modular hospital in the courtyard of the Elias Hospital in Bucharest. It will treat Covid-19 patients. The hospital is to be completed within four weeks. Full story.

From (04/02/20): The capacity of the Nork Infectious Diseases Hospital in Yerevan has been increased with 42 wards as construction workers have completed installing the modular section of the clinic. Healthcare Minister Arsen Torosyan said the construction of the module was completed in 10 days. Full story.

From Treehugger (04/01/20): Seoul National University has signed the contract with BROAD Group on March 8th. The shipping container-based hospital project was delivered less than 30 days after contract-signing while construction is finished in only 2 days. Full story

From the CBC/Radio-Canada (04/01/20): The Manitoban provincial government is seeking hotels and modular housing to isolate residents during the COVID-19 pandemic through a request for proposals. Full story.

From BISNOW Seattle (04/01/20): King County will soon open its first COVID-19 assessment and recovery center on soccer fields owned by the city of Shoreline. The temporary facility includes two 19K SF tents, each with a 70-bed capacity. A nearby dormitory-style modular facility is also being planned. Full story.

From CP24 Burlington (04/01/20): A new modular structure is being built on the grounds of Burlington’s Joseph Brant Hospital in anticipation of an expected surge of patients with COVID-19. Full story.

From the Las Vegas Sun (03/31/20): The Southern Nevada Health District board today unanimously approved building a $3 million facility to quarantine coronavirus patients. Materials outlined in a meeting agenda indicate the project will employ modular cube pods designed by a Wisconsin company called ModTruss. Full story.

From the Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce (03/31/20): The Army Corps of Engineers has ramped up its contracting process to speed the construction of mobile hospitals across the nation, including the first in Seattle inside CenturyLink Field Event Center. The mobile hospitals are treating non-COVID-19 patients to relieve pressure on permanent hospitals. In some cases, the corps will do the contracting and in other cases it will be handled by the state with assistance from the corps. Ideally, the corps wants contractors with experience in building modular shelters. Full story.

From The Bellingham Herald (03/31/20): Whatcom Unified Command, the multi-governmental agency that’s directing local pandemic response, is working on identifying at least one facility for isolation and quarantine for those experiencing homelessness during the COVID-19 outbreak. Unified Command is also discussing using modular homes or tents as overflow areas if more capacity is needed. Full story.

From KOTA TV (03/30/20): Best GEN Modular, known for building modular structures like hotels, may now add up to 400 new jobs in Rapid City. The company aims to build 5,000 hospital rooms in about 45 days in four locations. Full story.

From the Rapid City Journal (03/30/20): Virtually overnight, Best GEN Modular has shifted from building hotel rooms, college dorms, and other modular spaces to helping fill a growing need in America for temporary emergency isolation hospital rooms. Full story.

From the Las Vegas Review-Times (03/30/20): The Southern Nevada Health District Board of Health took a big first step Tuesday toward addressing an anticipated hospital bed shortage, voting in an emergency meeting to build a $3 million, 40-bed isolation facility for people who test positive for the new coronavirus. The facility will be a modular building constructed by Xtreme manufacturing, according to a source familiar with the project. Full story.

From Seattle Weekly (03/03/20): More than 100 quarantine rooms are planned for King County COVID-19 response. The location will house up to 32 rooms using 14 modular units, which will be used to quarantine and isolate people who are infected with the novel coronavirus. Full story.

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