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Relocatable Buildings Report 2019

About the Modular Construction Industry

Unlike the federally-regulated HUD Code manufactured housing industry, the modular construction industry is regulated primarily at the state and local levels by code and agency administrators. As with site-built structures, the modularly constructed facility must meet the local codes where the building is to be located. There is no special “modular building code” or exceptions for a building constructed utilizing the modular construction process. It is simply a different and more efficient manner to assemble the materials and components of a building.

Modular construction can be utilized for commercial, residential, institutional or industrial applications.

Commercial Modular Buildings are non-residential factory-built structures designed to meet provincial, state, and local building codes. Commonly, these buildings are constructed in accordance with the International Building Code (IBC) or some code modeled after the IBC.

The commercial modular building industry is comprised of two distinct divisions, both represented by MBI:

Relocatable Buildings (RB)

Relocatable modular buildings are designed to be reused or repurposed multiple times and transported to different sites. Relocatable Building as defined in the 2015 International Existing Building Code – a partially or completely assembled building constructed and designed to be reused multiple times and transported to different building sites.

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Permanent Modular Construction (PMC)

PMC is an innovative, sustainable construction delivery method utilizing offsite, lean manufacturing techniques to prefabricate single or multi-story whole building solutions in deliverable module sections. PMC buildings are manufactured in a safe, controlled setting and can be constructed of wood, steel, or concrete. PMC modules can be integrated into site-built projects or stand alone as a turnkey solution, and can be delivered with MEP, fixtures and interior finishes in less time, with less waste and higher quality control compared to projects utilizing only traditional site construction.

This report focuses on the relocatable builder sector in North America.