Today, many hotels are being constructed out of prefabricated steel framing systems rather than traditional wood or expensive and time-consuming concrete.

Originally posted at buildsteel.org

The biggest difference with steel-framed buildings – especially ones constructed off-site to precise specifications – is that they require significantly less manpower and materials, not only for the installation of the structure itself, but also for the installation of other building systems and finishes.

For example, in a wood frame structure, MEP rough-in crews cannot begin work until the full structure is complete and loaded due to the planned ¾” – 1” of compression of the wood frame. This makes the construction process much more expensive, time consuming and less efficient.

With a steel-based prefabricated structure, the rough-in crews can begin working on a floor as soon as the framer has moved to the next level. This makes for a much more cost-effective and timely approach that speeds up the entire project.

In some cases, companies are preassembling framing components, ductwork, electrical assemblies and plumbing to be shipped to the construction site.

With today’s BIM models and structural systems, hotels can be assembled very quickly with parts that are simply bolted together. This means the construction team requires fewer skilled laborers which effectively reduces the risk of labor shortages and related delays.

The stackable and highly repetitious nature of hotels makes them ideally suited for steel framing systems with preassembled parts. The result is a faster, more efficient and higher quality building than would be possible with another material like wood or concrete.

Once the foundation of the building is completed, the use of BIM technology, VDC processes and preassembled components allow the installation of the steel-based structure to be completed in a matter of weeks, not months.

Not only does the use of BIM and a steel-based structure take a great deal of risk out of building, it improves the bottom line.

As 3D building technology continues to improve, we will see an increase in major hotel chains adopting this new method to build, as companies like Hyatt already have. The future of hotel construction is all about a smarter and faster way of building.

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