Affordable Housing Precast Construction

Introduction

Bob Van Gils
Bob van Gils, Director, WBK Engineering Services Pvt. Ltd., Van Boxsel Engineering Pvt. Ltd., Gurgaon
India is facing a housing shortage which is currently estimated to be more than twenty five million homes in the country, out of which, EWS (economically weaker sections) and LIG (lower income groups) account for 95%. In 2015, the Indian government launched the Housing for All mission with an aim to provide affordable housing to urban poor. It is proposed to build twenty million houses for the urban poor by the year 2022. To achieve this goal, the government and private real estate developers have to launch large scale affordable housing projects all over the country. However, the construction industry is facing issues with manpower shortage and rising cost of construction materials. The cost of labor has gone up significantly and availability of construction workers has become problematic. Furthermore, the pressure on developers has increased as customers are demanding on-time delivery of their homes with good quality construction work. Conventional construction methods will not be able to exploit the advantages of mass housing and in the current scenario, it is evident that new construction technologies should be utilized to deliver homes fast with minimum labor and zero wastage of materials. Especially in Europe, after the Second World War, the housing shortage was solved by implementing new technologies like precast concrete construction. Precast concrete construction is a building method where building components are prefabricated off site on an assembly line using advanced tools and equipment and thereafter transported to the building site where they are erected using building cranes. Precast concrete construction has evolved over the past five decades towards a flexible building technology which is used in many infrastructure projects and building projects throughout the world. This article describes the technical details and specifications of three different housing projects in India which are being constructed with precast concrete technology. The first project is an affordable group housing project with medium-rise apartment towers located in Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh. The second project is also an affordable group housing project with medium-rise apartment towers but located in Bangalore, Karnataka. The third project is consisting of low-rise villas located in Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh.

NBM&CW February 2017