Mainstream Modular: The Engineering Specifics of Modular Construction


DCI Engineers, a structural and civil engineering services company based out of Seattle, Washington, since 1988 partnered with Guerdon on several modular construction projects. Troy Bean, Principal/Director at DCI, spoke with Mainstream Modular on some of the engineering considerations for modular construction.

Bean said traditional and modular building construction are similar from an engineering standpoint. Still, modular offers speed-to-market due to the controlled environment of modular construction building practices.

Bean noted that at DCI, they strive to be the change leaders in the industry and advance new methods and technologies. “We’re spending our R&D time trying to make it easier for the contractor to construct it, for the inspectors to inspect it, and to get a better-completed structure.”

Although DCI is no stranger to modular construction, each project provides learnings that Bean takes with him for future builds.

“A lot of it has to do with the supporting structure that gets site built before the modules are brought in,” Bean explained. “And the construction tolerances that need to be followed, the design criteria that need to be in those members; they can present a challenge. The boxes are stacked so fast the buildings don’t have an opportunity to shim and straighten, so everything needs to be really tight once you start.”

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