In the future, the design of buildings shall have to take into account not only the direct costs for construction and exploitation, but also the deferred costs for adaptation or demolition. In other words, the designer will have to consider the whole buildings’ life span, from cradle to grave. In this context, owners will opt less for demolition of entire buildings, but will rather choose for renovation. The different building components – load bearing structure, floors, façades, services and finishes – will have varying life spans. Consequently, everything apart from the main structure and the floors, should be designed in such a way that it is replaceable and renewable within a normal building lifecycle, to avoid early termination and to allow reconfiguration of spaces and services.
One of the strong points in modern prefabrication is the combination of large free floor spans with slender construction depths. It is nowadays quite common for middle-rise office blocks to have floor spans up to 17 m from façade to façade, with a floor thickness of only 400 mm, and without internal columns. This concept suits perfectly in the modern market demands for flexibility and adaptability, even after a long period of use.
Source: Why Hollowcore – Echo