Is this the future of construction? In New York, a factory in Brooklyn's Navy Yard is pre-assembling the 450- to 950-square-foot apartments apartments that will soon make up B2, the largest modular building in the world. Like assembling a Lego tower, developer Forest City Ratner says this is a faster, more environmentally efficient and affordable way to provide 32 stories of urban housing. The developer says that B2 will be built in 18 months, or two-thirds the time it would take for conventional construction.
B2 will be taller than the 24-story student dorm erected in Wolverhampton, England, in 2009, then hailed as the tallest modular building of its kind. B2 will dedicate 50% of its 363 rental units to affordable housing, and will eventually employ 125 union tradesmen during construction (it currently has 72).