Continuing our leadership in prefabricating building components, Skanska will build the tallest U.S. modular building in New York City, a pioneering development that will help advance efficient, safe and sustainable off-site construction. To do this, we have established a new modular building partnership to serve not only this first project, but eventually other buildings for other clients.
The 32-story building - named Atlantic Yards B2 Modular - is the first residential tower that is part of New York’s 22-acre Atlantic Yards project, developed by Forest City Ratner Companies (FCRC). Construction on the 348,000 square-foot project will begin this December, with completion scheduled for the summer of 2014. Skanska’s contract value is $117 million, and this will be our first modular residential building in the United States.
Along with this project, Skanska and FCRC have created a new company called FC + Skanska Modular. This new company will build B2’s 930 modular components in a 150,000 square-foot factory located in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, one-and-a-half miles from the project site.
“Construction is by definition about building,” said Bill Flemming, Skanska USA Building’s president and CEO. “With this project, however, and with our partnership with Forest City and the construction trades, we are also building a new industry that has potential to become New York City’s newest export, a product and process that can transform how construction is done in this century. We are proud to bring our expertise in prefabrication – which we have used extensively on our healthcare and data center facility projects – to the residential market for the first time in New York City.”
Working with FCRC, architects from SHoP and engineers from Arup, the project team created new techniques and systems that will allow the 930 modular units to be assembled by skilled workers at the Navy Yard facility and trucked to the construction site, where they will be raised by cranes, stacked on each other and attached to the building’s steel frame.
Union workers will fabricate the modular units in a controlled, efficient environment while protected year round from the weather. Skanska will train the union workers in lean manufacturing methods so teams complete the fabrication process consistent with detailed work instructions using precision tools and templates.
Given much of the work will take place off-site, there will be significant reduction in truck traffic, noise and dust in the community surrounding the project site. It is also estimated that modular construction will result in 70 to 90 percent less waste than traditional construction. B2 is expected to achieve LEED® Silver certification.
Modular buildings built in New York City must meet the NYC Building Code as well as all fire and life safety codes. Modular construction is also safer to build than conventional construction: this work method reduces work at heights and removes environmental factors (including snow, ice, water and mud). On-site workers are also safer as they are primarily working within finished, enclosed portions of the building, away from the typical risks of an open construction site.
B2 will have 363 residential units, 50 percent (181) of which will be low, moderate and middle-income homes. The remaining 50 percent (182) will be market rate. The units will be evenly divided throughout the building and all will have the same quality appliances and access to the same public spaces, including a fitness center, bike storage, a resident lounge, game room, yoga/dance studio and roof terrace. Each unit will have a washer and dryer.