Challenge: Modular Building

Modular Building - Innovative maintenance for social housing
Modifications and maintenance of the social housing stock is a nuisance for the tenants and it requires a lot of financial and organizational effort. Smarter planning of the work on site, the supplies of materials in system in good communication with the tenants is required to change the current laborious work process. Quicker, better and cheaper with the tenant in the driver seat. Can you develop a work process and indicate a smart maintenance tool for thousands of buildings in which the customer is in control? We think you can!​

Social housing and rental residences are maintained by corporations. Modifications and maintenance of the stock require a lot of financial and organizational effort. It is a nuisance for the tenants, because of lots of noise and dust and the house is temporarily uninhabitable. Smarter planning of the work on site and the way of supplying materials in good communication with the tenants can reduce the nuisance and the financial and organizational efforts significantly. A social housing corporation like Mitros takes care of about 30 000 houses and apartments in the Utrecht region. For the next decade improvements must be achieved quicker, cheaper and better. Besides minor repairs, the labour-intensive changes are replacement of HVAC installations or components each 8 years, interior changes (e.g. sanitary) each 15 years and repairs of building envelope elements in 25 years. Instead of tackling all the necessary changes in one time for building blocks, which puts a burden on residents and corporations, a smarter approach with smaller work tasks and prefabricated products is proposed. Innovative maintenance implies creative solutions on the process (logistic) and products (prefabricated elements, smart disassembling methods) in which the consumer is in control. This challenge is to develop an innovative maintenance method. Several teams (5 students per team) are in competition to develop this method.

Evaluation Criteria
For at least two types labour-intensive modifications a maintenance methodology is pointed out to achieve quicker, better and cheaper results. In the presented concepts the customer is in control.

Process Description​
The challenge starts at Friday at 12:00 with a kickoff. Several teams compete for the duration of 8 hrs to develop a logistic or technical concept (work flow, communication plan, conceptual IT-architecture, prefab elements or materials) in which the customer is in control to upgrade its house with respect to the interior, sanitary facilities, kitchen, indoor climate with minimum impact on the customer. Also external renovations of the envelope are included. At 20:00 the final results will be presented by the different student teams.

Technical Information
Experts of Hogeschool Utrecht will be present during the challenge.


​Wilko Planje senior lecturer and researcher Institute Engineering and Design; Yvonne Luiken manager Institute Built Environment; and others


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