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模块化建筑如何为经济适用房危机提供解决方案?第1张图片

courtesy of FXCollaborative

How Modular Construction Could Offer a Lasting Solution in the Affordable Housing Crisis

由专筑网李韧,蒋晖编译

本文最初发表于Autodesk公司刊物《Redshift》之中,标题为“如何通过模块化住宅来缓解经济适用房危机。”

“模块化”并不是一种建筑产品,而是一种施工过程,模块化建筑研究所(Modular Building Institute——MBI)的主要负责人Tom Hardiman如是说。该协会包含超过350个公司,主要根据多住户住宅进行模块化建筑的制造与销售。

Hardiman说:“模块化建筑来源于一个一个的方盒子,施工人员在场外制作这些单元体量,然后把这些单元体量运输到项目场地再进行组装。”

但模块化为什么如此流行?其中一个主要的原因便是住房危机。加州大学伯克利分校住房创新中心的研究教授兼校教导主任的Carol Galante说道:“相比起收入,业主与租房者所支付的金额都在不断地上涨。”

Galante认为,低收入家庭的工资与房租之间的差异导致了住房困难。2017年,全国低收入住房联盟(National Low Income Housing Coalition——NLIHC)的报告称,在美国,低收入家庭住房缺少720万套,这说明大概有71%的家庭都需要将至少一半的收入用在房租的花销,联邦的指导建议则是不应超过30%。“为了满足收支平衡,负担很沉重的租房者们只能在其他方面减少开支。”其中包括食物、交通、儿童教育、医疗保险等等。

Galante认为租金的上涨是一次风暴,其中还包括次贷危机,这种危机会刺激租房人士数量的增多。同时,越来越多的受过高等教育的人们来到城市,他们的到来会推动租金的上涨,还有建筑的成本增加,这是由于材料成本的增加,同时,土地与劳动力也变得愈发稀缺与昂贵。

尽管许多复杂的问题都需要解决,但模块化建筑看起来充满希望,因为许多新兴企业都愿意把这种建造理念带到房屋设计之中,因此这将是一个转折点。

This article was originally published in Autodesk's Redshift publication as "How Building Modular Homes can Help Fill the Affordable Housing Gap."
“Modular” isn’t a construction product; it’s a construction process. This is according to Tom Hardiman, executive director of the Modular Building Institute (MBI), whose members include more than 350 companies involved in the manufacturing and distribution of modular buildings, including multifamily homes.
“Modular building is building in boxes,” Hardiman says. “You put materials together at an off-site location to create volumetric boxes, then you transport those boxes to the jobsite, where you assemble them.”
But why modular, and why now? One pressing reason is the housing-affordability crisis. Across the United States, “Housing prices for both homeowners and renters are going up at exponential rates compared to wages,” says Carol Galante, I. Donald Terner Distinguished Professor in Affordable Housing and Urban Policy at UC Berkeley’s Terner Center for Housing Innovation, where she also is faculty director.
The gap between wages and rents for low-income families has created a housing hardship of epic proportions, Galante says. A 2017 analysis by the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) reported that the US has a shortage of 7.2 million rental homes for extremely low-income households. This means that 71 percent of those households are forced to spend more than half of their income on housing; federal guidelines recommend spending no more than 30 percent. “To make ends meet, severely cost-burdened renters make significant sacrifices on other basic necessities,” including food, transportation, child care, and health care, NLIHC reports.
Galante attributes rising rents to a “perfect storm” of conditions, including the subprime-mortgage crisis, which continues to flood the market with renters; the urban influx of educated millennial workers, whose high earnings relative to low-income families have driven rents upward; and high construction costs, which are swelling as materials become more expensive and land and labor more scarce.
Although such a complex problem demands numerous solutions, modular construction looks promising, barreling toward a tipping point with a new generation of startups bringing a manufacturing mindset to multifamily construction.

模块化建筑如何为经济适用房危机提供解决方案?第2张图片

Courtesy of King County, via Redshift

模块化的优势

就像是乐高玩具或是组装汽车一样,模块化建筑也可以通过这种方式进行建造。将各种零部件在工厂之中制造,然后装配在一起。

其中的优势有很多,例如速度。Hardiman的公司依赖于诸如Autodesk BIM 360以及 Revit等软件工具进行前期模拟,Hardiman说:“我们的施工周期能够缩短30%至50%。在传统的场地之中,你必须完成所有的基础工作,然后开始建造一层、二层以此类推。但是在模块化施工中,建筑基础和建筑的其他部件能够同时进行建造。”

快速的施工方式意味着快速的交付力。Hardiman说:“这种现金流动的优势很多,如果我是建筑开发商,我可以让租户尽快搬进来。”

Modular Merits
LEGO bricks and automobiles are common analogies for modular construction. Like toy structures made with the former, buildings can be configured in virtually any manner; like the latter, the pieces that constitute the structures are prefabricated on an assembly line in a factory.
The benefits are manifold. Chief among them is speed. “We’re talking anywhere from 30 to 50 percent shorter construction schedules,” says Hardiman, whose company relies on tools such as Autodesk BIM 360 and Revit. “On a traditional site, you do all your foundation work, then you start building the first floor, then the second floor, and so on. With modular, the building is being constructed off-site while you’re doing the foundation work.”
Faster construction means faster solvency. “There are major cash-flow advantages,” Hardiman says. “If I’m a housing authority or a multifamily developer, I can get renters moved in sooner.”

模块化建筑如何为经济适用房危机提供解决方案?第3张图片

Courtesy of King County, via Redshift

模块化建筑不仅仅能够提升收入,同时它还能减少成本。FullStack Modular公司是纽约的制造商,其公司位于高层以及中层的模块化建筑之中,该公司的CEO Roger Krulak说道:“当你在不断地重复制造的过程时,其实也是个不断改进技术的过程。虽然这些过程看起来并不是全都一样,或者是有着同样的程序,但是所有的模块化建筑都有着相似的构成形式。所以当你在不断地重复这个过程的时候,也同时是在提高效率、降低成本。”

最后,还有劳动力的优势。Hardiman说:“承包商再不需要寻找熟练的工人了。”在建筑业的萧条时期,许多工人都转行了,而留下来的工人相对年龄较大,并且年轻的工人也对传统建筑的需求持反对态度。

Galante说:“如果将建筑产业化,那么你就会发现谁更适合于这个行业。”Galante是加州模块化多住户住宅制造商住房创新研究室的主要负责人。“在工厂之中,非熟练工人的操作要简单得多,而且对于每天两点一线的工人而言,这样的工作条件也更好一些,而且工厂的结构更加符合人体工程,可以减少对身体的伤害。”

Modular building won’t just fast-track revenue; over time, it might also cut costs. “Whenever you repeat a manufacturing process, you improve it,” says Roger Krulak, CEO of FullStack Modular, a New York–based manufacturer of high- and mid-rise modular buildings. “Although they don’t all look alike or even have the same program, all modular buildings have the same general makeup. Because you’re repeating the same processes over and over again, you gain efficiencies, and that can drive costs down.”
Finally, there are labor advantages. “Contractors can’t find skilled labor anymore—especially in urban areas,” Hardiman says. Many construction workers left the industry during the Great Recession and never returned; those who stayed are aging rapidly and aren’t being replaced, as younger workers are averse to the physical and logistical demands of traditional construction.
“If you industrialize construction, you really open up who can work in the industry,” says Galante, who also serves as director of the Housing Innovation Lab at Factory_OS, a Vallejo, California–based manufacturer of modular multifamily housing. “It’s much easier to take unskilled labor and train people inside a factory, and it’s better working conditions for the workforce—you can commute to and from the same location, close to your home, every day, and factories are ergonomically structured on the factory floor to avoid creating a burden on the body.”

模块化建筑如何为经济适用房危机提供解决方案?第4张图片

Courtesy of King County, via Redshift

制造业的可行性

模块化建筑对于开发商的吸引力也成为了一大优势。

举例来说,建筑的建造速度也意味着模块化建筑能够加速住房的供应,这还能够有效地缓和租金压力。Galante说:“旧金山的这一优势已经十分明显。去年由于一些新建筑的建成,住房的压力因此有所缓和。”

另外,模块化建筑能够有效地在市场上产生连锁反应。供应商会降低租金,便有更多的人能够负担得起房租,这就有效地减少了中产阶级的竞争与开销。“当越来越多的人们能够支付租金时,那么住房的压力就会减少。”

同时,在低端的市场之中,效率的提升能够有效地帮助公共住房部门以更低的价格建造更多的住房。由于这个原因,许多城市都十分信赖模块化的发展前景,其中还包括诸如纽约、西雅图等需求度较高的地区。纽约市住房保护和发展部(Department of Housing Preservation and Development——HPD)在2018年发布了一项模块化施工计划。后来,该部门又发布了一项竞争性请求方案(RFP),主要针对布鲁克林地区混合收入与混合功能的经适房的设计、施工以及管理,这也是历史上城市首次对于公共住房项目的模块化施工需求。Krulak说:“纽约很值得称赞,因为他们已经相信能够用模块化建筑来解决经适房危机。”

Manufacturing Affordability
The things that make modular building attractive to developers also make it an ideal solution for affordable housing.
The speed at which structures can be erected, for instance, means modular buildings can increase housing supply quickly, which has a moderating effect on rents. “We’re already seeing this in San Francisco, where rents are plateauing at the upper end of the market thanks to some new buildings that have come online in the past year,” Galante says.
She adds that modular buildings can have a ripple effect throughout the market; when supply pushes luxury rents down, more people can afford them, which reduces housing competition and cost for middle-income housing, and so on. “When more folks can afford to go into the newly built housing, that takes pressure off the rest of the residential market.”
At the low end of the market, meanwhile, increased efficiencies can help public-housing authorities build more homes with fewer dollars. For that reason, many cities are bullish on modular’s prospects. Among them are crowded, high-demand locales such as New York and Seattle. In New York, the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) launched a modular-construction pilot program in spring 2018. It subsequently released a competitive request for proposal (RFP) for the design, construction, and management of a mixed-income and mixed-use affordable-housing development in Brooklyn, marking the first time in history that the city has required modular construction for a public-housing project. “New York deserves a tremendous amount of kudos because they have leaned in and said that they believe in modular as a solution to the affordable-housing crisis,” Krulak says.

模块化建筑如何为经济适用房危机提供解决方案?第5张图片

Courtesy of King County, via Redshift

在西雅图,King County社区和人类服务部(DCHS)同样也发布了模块化计划,其中包含有3个独立的经济适用房项目。首先,城市与华盛顿沿海城市合作,其中包含80至100个住房单元,这些单元会在场地之外制作,然后运输到现场的混凝土平台之上进行组装。

第二部分则包含了20个单身迷你住宅(SRO),这些住宅能够堆叠在一起,并且方便移动,主要是放置在传统住宅无法放置的场所。每个单元的成本大约为15万美元,而King County传统住宅的造价则是35万美元。最后一个部分则是西雅图的收容所项目,其中包括9间宿舍、72个床位,围绕中央庭院而布局,另外还有洗衣房、厨房、管理用房等设施。

住房项目管理者Mark Ellerbrook说道:“King County的经适房大约短缺9万个单元,而现阶段已有的住房单元数量为37万。因此我们的住房需求十分巨大。我认为我们所面临的问题应该从各个方面进行评估,如果你把时间、实际施工成本看做是住房的成本驱动因素,那么我们就能把模块化看做是潜在的发展目标,这样能够减少施工的成本与时间。”

模块化是否能够成功还有待商榷。但是为了低收入家庭的发展,政府与开发商应当给它足够的机会,Hardiman说:“这不是某种新科技,但是我只是希望能够帮上点忙。”

In Seattle, the King County Department of Community and Human Services (DCHS) likewise launched a modular pilot, comprising three separate affordable-housing projects. The first, a partnership with the city of Shoreline, Washington, will comprise 80 to 100 housing units that will be constructed off-site and craned onto a concrete podium built on-site.
The second will consist of 20 single-room occupancy (SRO) “micro-dwellings” that will be stackable and portable, occupying small parcels of land on which traditional housing projects would not fit. Each unit will cost an estimated $150,000 compared to $350,000 for a typical unit in King County. The final project will be a campus-like homeless shelter in Seattle, featuring 72 beds across nine dorms, distributed around a central courtyard along with hygiene facilities, laundry, a kitchen, and case-management offices.
“Our shortage of affordable housing in King County is around 90,000 units—and that’s in a county that has about 370,000 housing units,” says Housing Program Manager Mark Ellerbrook. “So we are dramatically short on what we need to have available. I think it’s incumbent on all entities to evaluate all options to address the problem we’re facing. And if you look at time as a cost driver for housing, as well as actual construction costs, we see modular housing as a potential place to force down costs or reduce their rise over time.”
Whether modular will succeed remains to be seen. For the sake of low-income families, however, Hardiman says governments and developers must give it a chance. “We’re not a silver bullet,” he concludes, “but I’d like to be at the table saying, ‘We can help.’”

模块化建筑如何为经济适用房危机提供解决方案?第6张图片

Courtesy of King County, via Redshift

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