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Gov’t target to increase projects using new technologies an uphill tas

Gov’t target to increase projects using new technologies an uphill tas.

Achieving the government’s target to increase the number of construction projects using new technologies would be an uphill task, said industry experts in a report by The Straits Times.

Kenneth Loo, president of the Singapore Contractors Association Limited, said it will take over three years to achieve the target.

“While some of our members are ready, it will take some time to build up across the whole industry,” said Loo.

This comes as the use of new technologies are more expensive compared to traditional methods.

The Wave, for instance, a sports hall at Nanyang Technological University that is mostly made of mass engineered timber costs S$35 million to construct.

The Building Construction Authority, however, said more companies should use the technologies in order for the costs to come down.

“This is a demand and supply problem,” said BCA chief executive John Keung.

“When you have more of such projects, you have an economy of scale and over time, costs will definitely come down.”

Minister for National Development Lawrence Wong on Monday (24 April) announced the government’s goal to multiply the number of construction projects using more efficient techniques – which require fewer workers – from one in 10 currently to four in 10 by 2020.

Describing it as not sustainable, Wong noted that the current methods are labour intensive and could lead to a “far larger pool of foreign workers than we can possibly accommodate in Singapore”.

“The shortage of workers ends up becoming a bottleneck and a constraint in our development – we end up having to defer projects,” he said at the launch of The Wave.

Notably, only 14 workers put together the 72m wave-like roof of the sports hall in about three weeks.

With conventional methods, 30 workers would have needed up to three months to complete the roof, said Kang Choon Boon, managing director of The Wave’s contractor, B19 Technologies.

References from: propertyguru.com.sg