Recycled Buildings: The Future of Construction.

The construction industry is facing a new era of change. Demountable construction is innovating small level projects including school classrooms and show tents, however many are looking to target large scale buildings.

Demountable structures are becoming so popular due to their easy disassembling at the end of a buildings life.

Professor Brian Uy from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) School of Civil and Environmental Engineering says large scale demountable buildings with longer lifespans is a feasible proposition.

The material which is being suggested as a feasible option is steel. Steel is a common building material for large scale production in Australia. Currently, steel is the world’s most recycled product with 65 percent of existing steel in Australia is used to make new steel. Meaning that existing buildings can be recycled for new projects.

Professor Uy does say that although steel is recycled, it still impacts the environment significantly.

“The benefit of using demountable steel structures is that waste can be significantly minimised, both during construction and at the end of a structure’s life,” says Professor Uy. 

“Structural steel also has the potential to harbour some residual value which could encourage reuse.

“Implementing re-used steel could be a game changer for the construction industry by reducing the environmental and cost impacts of using steel in new buildings.”

However, before any of this can be made a reality there must be some adjustments. The market and suppliers would need to adjust their marketing plans and objectives, and building and industry regulations would need to be changed.

It will only be time before Australia jumps on board. Malaysia and the UK are already taking steps in adjusting regulation.

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