By: Russ Ward
During the long flight from San Diego, I had time to consider all of the information presented during the previous four days at the 2016 World of Modular Annual Convention and Tradeshow. The Modular Building Institute was the host for the event that ran March 17 – 20, 2016, and they filled the convention with several opportunities to dive headfirst into the modular construction business. As the premiere modular elevator company, Phoenix Modular Elevator straddles the fence between elevator and modular with feet firmly planted in each category, so it was refreshing to be surrounded by people who are 100% serious about modular construction.
Participants were able to learn about intricacies that set modular apart, what concerns there are in the industry and where experts in the field see modular going in the future. For instance, Lad Dawson, CEO of Guerdon Enterprises, spoke about recent developments between modular building and the hospitality industry. Modular elevators could be a great fit with the hotel business, particularly the burgeoning modular hotel business. Phoenix Modular Elevator is currently engaged in a modular hotel project, and the future could hold dozens of additional opportunities.
In another session, Kalyn Rothaus, host of Lifetime’s Office Space, exuded the optimism of a reformed skeptic. She explained how modular building principles created a big win for her as a designer with time and resource challenges. She partnered with Allied Modular Building Systems to get the look and feel she wanted in less time than she ever expected. Her project was a two-story office building with an industrial look that Phoenix Modular Elevators could easily provide. So who knows? Maybe you will see us featured in an upcoming episode!
Policy was the center of many of the breakout sessions dealing with education, code interpretation and energy.These sessions revealed how the industry tries its best to stay current, informed and ready to be a safe, green alternative. For example, consider the “little house” trend. Why are these considered modular if they have wheels? Doesn’t that make it an RV? Thank goodness deep thinkers at every level of governance are pondering the implications of the “little house” phenomenon.
Phoenix Modular Elevator was invited to give a lecture on the viability of business-to-business social media marketing. The presentation was well received and led to dozens of new contacts and friends. We also exhibited in the trade show and explained the numerous ways modular elevators make a positive difference for many construction projects.
At the end of four days of concentrated discussions, breakout sessions and lectures, the conference was summarized by keynote speaker Anirban Basu, economic and trends expert and CEO of Sage Policy Group. Basu spoke about current economic trends, the long-term outlook for the modular industry, and whether there would be sustained growth in the construction sector. He concluded by offering an optimistic view of the future of modular building, as he views this as a positive trend overall.
What Basu said makes a great deal of sense. If there is to be building in the future, isn’t it better to build with a method that is environmentally conscious and increases safety, speed and efficiency? The future is bright for modular and Phoenix Modular Elevator.