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Need of certain new developments in construction technology in Pakistan

In the real estate market of Gulberg Islamabad, technology has contributed to changing the purchase process quite significantly. Technological development can also be seen on site with a view to improving the construction process and delivery.

In Gulberg Islamabad real estate, technology has contributed to changing the purchase process quite significantly. Technological development can be seen on site with a view to improve the construction process and delivery. While other real estate companies have recently and easily adapted to the shift in consumer behavior to the digital spectrum, the adoption of construction technologies on-site is relatively lower.

The government’s added thrust on urban development, Smart Cities and on accomplishing the ‘Housing for All’ agenda further enhances the need for construction technology to build quality at a significant scale. The onus is on the developer to deliver quality on time to avoid penalties and limit any defect liabilities.

The impact of construction technologies can be seen in the following areas: construction planning and project management, building construction, quality, and safety. At the construction planning and project management stage, using the following technologies is recommended for organized development:

• Integrated scheduling to make design, procurement and contract a part of the master schedule.
• 3D to 7D models from existing condition mapping to scheduling to estimating to monitoring sustainability to facilities management applications.
• Project management tools such as RIB- ITWO, Candy and Build Smart, Oracle Primavera, among others.

At the building construction stage there have been a number of advancements at various stages:

• At the excavation stage, while the conventional drill and blast method is high impact and noisy, EPI Pulse Plasma Rock Fragmentation is non-explosive and safer to use.
• Segmental homes that are often factory built, system built or prefab help in saving time, positively impacting quality and service, whilst addressing the issue of building for scale.
• Other building construction developments include hybrid formwork, plastic formwork, voided slabs and MgO wall panels (drywall panels)
Improvements or substitutes in the realm of construction materials include rice husk hulls/ash as a partial cement substitute, CLC block work which is a version of lightweight concrete, block jointing adhesives that offer higher bond strength than conventional block jointing mortar, ready-mix plasters and new developments such as tile fixing adhesives that provide better workability, better adhesion and longer service.
• In the finishing stages, pre-hung doors that are fully assembled at the factory have architraves that conceal uneven joints to improve visual appeal by evening the gaps between frames and doors and limiting cracks between the frame and the wall.

At the quality checking stage, some new developments include:

• Moisture meters.
• Leak detectors.
• Land level detectors.
• Shock resistant meters.

An effective snagging process that is discussed early on with the contractor and monitored through the use of mobile technologies while ensuring quality and timely delivery is essential for a developer, it is equally incumbent on them to ensure adequate health and safety provisions on construction sites. From investing in elevated working platforms to mobile hydraulic platforms and other safety equipment’s is imperative and should not be compromised on.

While the adoption of site-based construction technology has been limited across the sector in Pakistan there is growing awareness and applicability. Developers will need to weigh the pros and cons of building quality on-time at scale while managing the per unit cost implications.

DISCLAIMER: The views expressed are solely of the author.

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