Challenges facing components reuse in industrialized housing: A literature review

Lisco Margherita, Martinez Carlos, Persson Urban

Concerns over the earth’s ability to sustain itself over the long term as a consequence of human consumption of natural resources points towards sustainable development. Since a large proportion of human consumption is linked to buildings and construction, this means managing the construction process in more sustainable ways. Strategies that target greater material efficiency and which promote circular economy concepts are among several approaches that are gaining in popularity. The adoption of life-cycle thinking and practices in design, construction and end of life through the reuse of construction components and materials is one such action to achieve a sustainable built environment. Reuse is not a new concept and technical solutions do exist; however, practical realization is hampered by many interrelated challenges. This review paper is the result of a literature review for an exploratory study that aims to identify obstacles to the reuse of building components and materials. The context is industrialized housing, particularly timber-based construction, as this is a sector where modern manufacturing and onsite practices have become established. The main obstacles identified and corroborated in the literature, along with their potential solutions, are summarized and conclusions drawn on the future direction of research needs.


Design for reuse; building components reuse; industrialized housing; timber; circular economy; sustainable development
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