Shelter Modular

One of our first introductions for prefab construction was Shelter Modular from British Columbia. It was the official opening of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ new Coast Guard and Fisheries station on Denny Island, near Bella Bella on BC’s central coast.

Shelter pre-fabricated this attractive new residential and office complex, consisting of one office, one duplex residence and two three-bedroom, single-family residences, providing more than 10,000 square feet in total. The complex is designed to serve as the permanent residence for four Fisheries Conservation and Protection officers and their families, and as an office for Fisheries and a rotating shift of four Coast Guard Search and Rescue officers.

New resident and Fisheries Conservation Officer Derek Chung says, “These new buildings are top quality. They are warm, comfortable, and well-designed with a number of attractive features like lots of windows, an extended veranda and wooden accents that make it feel like home. I would never have guessed that this was a modular-built home. It is much better than I expected. I’m very impressed!”

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans specified modular-built construction namely because it enabled them to overcome two main challenges: the short building season of BC’s tempestuous central coast climate and the remote location of the site. Choosing pre-fabricated buildings enabled them to start construction immediately while foundations were being laid. It also made logistics for coordinating trades, materials and inspections much more efficient, and therefore more economical. When the construction was complete, the completed sections were barged to the site for final assembly.

Fisheries Project Manager, Gregg Morris, P. Eng., says, “Working on this project has changed my perception of pre-fabricated buildings. I used to think that a modular building was an ‘enhanced trailer.’ This project has convinced me otherwise. With the building being constructed indoors, I am convinced that the quality of pre-fabricated buildings is in fact far superior to on-site construction, particularly in a remote area. And with the help of an architect who was experienced with modular construction, we were able to create attractive buildings that rival any site-built structures.”

“You can do a lot more with modular construction than most people think,” says project architect Bill Evans of Russher & Evans Architects. “Of course, we have to design with shipping considerations in mind, but with some creative design we can construct some very attractive buildings.”

“Modular construction is ideal for remote locations that don’t have immediate access to trades and materials,” says Shelters President Harold Clifford. “It is also ideal for repetitive design applications, such as in schools and motels; and for stores, offices and workforce housing since they can be relocated and reused when needs or market conditions change. With creative design and versatile applications, modular construction can be a more feasible option.”

This page will soon be updated with the best of Shelter Modular builds...

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