Prefabrication for Lean Building Services Distribution

M.J. Mawdesley1 & G. Long2

1Dr, School of Civil Engineering, University of Nottingham UK
2Mr, School of Civil Engineering, University of Nottingham UK


This paper is concerned with the use of prefabrication for the distribution of building services (HVAC), concentrating mainly on the construction of office facilities. This is a good example of an application of lean construction methods. It assures reliable workflow and predictability in the project, it minimises waste and increases performance; it enables concurrent engineering to occur and delivers value throughout the project’s life. An analysis of the use of off-site fabricated building services as a method of lean construction is given with reference to features of its use such as design freezes, Just-in-Time (JIT) deliveries and predictable processes. However, it requires different procurement processes to be totally effective. The paper compares two procurement routes both theoretically and by the use of two real examples of construction projects. It illustrates some potential problems and shows that the solutions lie not in the technical aspects but in better communication and planning throughout the life of the project.


Prefabrication, Building Services, Lean Construction, Procurement



Mawdesley, M. & Long, G. 2002. Prefabrication for Lean Building Services Distribution, 10th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction , -.

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