Last edited 31 May 2016

Advantages of temporary buildings

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Temporary buildings are often pre-fabricated, portable buildings that are typically required for a very short time. The term 'temporary' refers to the amount of time they remain on any one site, the building itself may be re-used and can have a life span of up to 30 years.

Temporary buildings are often lightweight structures made up of modular components designed and created in factories and then assembled on site. Examples include grandstands, marquees, stages, and so on.

Planning permission is required if the building will be in position for more than 28 days. However, this is reduced to 14 days for some uses, and only certain temporary uses are permitted at all without planning permission. See Temporary use for more information.

Schedule 2 of the building regulations defines a temporary building as, ‘A building that is not intended to remain where it is erected for more than 28 days’. Temporary buildings may be exempt from some parts of the building regulations, see Building regulations exemption for temporary buildings for more information.

Temporary buildings have a number of advantages over conventional buildings. These benefits are listed below:

  • Temporary buildings generally take less time to construct as they may not require foundations, and components can be quickly manufactured. After the modules are constructed and transported to the site from the factory, they can be assembled rapidly, sometimes within hours.
  • They can be cheaper to construct and install.
  • Flexibility - One of the benefits of modular buildings is that their configuration is easy to change.
  • They are less affected by the weather because they are manufactured within the confines of factories.
  • They may produce less waste because the same designs and parts can be used over and over again.