The use of pre-cast technology for building urban infrastructure, like the Metro Rail project or drainage system, is not new. But, the technology appears to be used for construction of apartments in the city as well.
Builders are considering the use of pre-cast technology, which avoids the hassle of masons placing bricks and erecting walls of concrete at construction sites.
Although an ongoing residential project of the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) on 12 acres of land in Alur in the city is said to be using pre-cast technology on a smaller scale, private builder Brigade Enterprises is using the technology for a set of 3,500 value, semi-luxury and luxury 2 and 3 BHK apartments at is project coming up on 130 acres of land at Devanahalli.
How far is the quality retained in pre-cast panels? Market experts say reinforced concrete, a higher grade mix used in pre-cast, makes it better than conventional brick work and plastering.
Reinforced blend provides better sound insulation and water absorption (during rains) is much lesser. Also, experts say factory finishes bring in quality of surface, increasing longevity.
“We are using the pre-cast technology for houses that are 1,000 sq. ft and 1,200 sq. ft where wall panels have electrical conduits and switch boxes embedded into them while being cast at the plant. The roof of the apartment, cast off-site, will be erected using heavy duty cranes, cutting down labour costs. There are eight floors of apartments at theproject, which has load-bearing wall panels in pre-cast unlike conventional column-beam structure built on-site. Pre-cast helps have a tighter control on time over-runs,” explains Amar Mysore, vice-president, BCV Developers, a joint venture of the Brigade Enterprises. Finishing work such as tiling, plumbing, painting and fixing electrical and window frames are handled on-site.
“Our pre-cast work at the site amounts to producing and erecting two apartments a day and the first phase will be ready next year,” he said.