August 24, 2020 / ,

8 Benefits of Using Modular Buildings for Disaster Relief

VESTA disaster relief

Rapid deployment of temporary buildings during a time of disaster recovery is crucial in the event of any type of catastrophe. Whether it is a quick response to a natural disaster, such as hurricanes, tornadoes and wildfires, or it is providing relocatable swing spaces for government agencies and healthcare facilities (for fighting against COVID-19, for example), modular construction offers us an essential building solution.

Because it’s nearly impossible to predict the timing of such large-scale disasters, a DRaaS (Disaster Recovery as a Service) discussion should be your first step. VESTA’s disaster response protocols can accommodate your institutional or company-wide disaster recovery planning strategies. Business owners’, community leaders’ and government officials’ plans should include the use of relocatable buildings and infrastructure during their risk assessment.

In this post, we will examine eight key benefits of modular disaster recovery buildings and how VESTA Modular’s disaster relief solutions can bring these benefits to real-world scenarios.

Ready to solidify your plans for emergency temporary buildings for disaster response? Speak with the modular disaster relief housing experts at VESTA Modular.


The Advantages of Modular Buildings for Disaster Efforts

In a time of emergency, even a slight improvement in efficiency or capability can provide the edge your organization needs to successfully respond to the issue at hand. Disaster relief workers, those who are fleeing the disaster situation and supplies all have one need in common: a building in which to find shelter, rest and relief. 

Modular disaster recovery buildings satisfy these needs and provide benefits over traditional emergency construction that can help you react to and recover from any emergency setback effectively. Here are eight benefits of using modular buildings for disaster relief:

benefits of modular disaster relief housing

Download the infographic to take a closer look here.


  1. Temporary Modular Buildings Are Relocatable
  2. Quick Installation for Disaster Relief and Response
  3. Responding to Disasters and Difficult Terrain of Construction Sites
  4. Modular Buildings Are Cost-Effective
  5. Modular Diversifies Emergency Temporary Buildings
  6. Your Modular Emergency Shelter Can Withstand the Elements
  7. Modular Disaster Relief Housing as an Emergency Storage Solution
  8. Easy Access Even in Difficult Times

Below, we take a look at each of these benefits in more detail.


1. Temporary Modular Buildings Are Relocatable

One of the most beneficial features of temporary trailers and modules is their portability. Portable shelter solutions are required in order to provide large-scale modular housing in the safest possible locations for victims. 

This mobility is also important in efforts to keep emergency response teams close to the action to ensure better response times on the frontlines. Additionally, relocatable modular buildings ensure that as environments and situations change, so can the location of your emergency services buildings. 


2. Quick Installation for Disaster Relief and Response

The installation process of modular buildings is much faster and more efficient than traditional construction. Because VESTA Modular owns thousands of prefabricated modular units across the United States that are already available for use, most of the difficult construction has already been completed.

Additionally, modular construction allows for quick changes to floor plans and layouts. Your mobile building is customizable to enhance whichever services are required for housing or office work and are built to code for all municipalities. In a disaster response situation, modular construction ensures that your community receives prompt relief.


3. Responding to Disasters and Difficult Terrain of Construction Sites

Modular buildings can come in a variety of sizes to match your needs. This flexibility in size allows for the installation of modular offices, meeting rooms and housing where space allows. Additionally, the efficient module size adds to the ease with which your modular building can be transported. We have utilized railways, cargo ships and commercial freight to deliver modular buildings to some of the most remote areas in the country and internationally.

During a disaster, it is not always evident or possible to predetermine where an emergency response building or shelter will be placed. Sites experiencing storms may prove difficult to construct permanent buildings for foundation reasons. Experienced construction crews can build up the foundations for modular offices and shelters fairly easily by bringing in outside building materials. Ideal locations can also be determined closer to the installation date to best suit the needs of any particular environmental requirements.


4. Modular Buildings Are Cost-Effective

There are many reasons why we find modular buildings to be cost-effective. They can be leased, allowing companies the ability to utilize them for as long as they need and no longer.

The modular construction process allows for the building of prefabricated modules in an indoor environment. Workers and the structure avoid the challenges of weather and temperature. Building materials and tools are all nearby, and the warehouse is engineered to provide modular building technicians an efficient workspace. The efficiency of time and materials results in a lower and more predictable price.

Long-term permanent modular buildings remain cost-effective when compared to their traditional building competitors. Even a more favorable depreciation schedule might lend its hand to additional tax savings.


5. Modular Diversifies Emergency Temporary Buildings

The nature of modular construction allows it to be fully customizable. The ability to customize your disaster recovery buildings is key in emergency environments that tend to throw unexpected curveballs. Often, disaster response teams have to quickly replace most institutional facets of what was once a fully functioning area, and they can do that with modular construction. 

How? By taking advantage of the wide range of applications for modular buildings. In disaster situations, modular buildings can be and have routinely been used to temporarily replace the following buildings, services and institutions:

A modular building can quickly and affordably come together to fill the void left when a disaster hits.


6. Your Modular Emergency Shelter Can Withstand the Elements

Disaster response workers must often travel to dangerous locations that have just experienced a disaster — and sometimes, that disaster is ongoing. Whether it’s flooding that may continue to rise, wildfires that may continue to spread or another disaster that is expected to continue through seasons of extreme temperature, you need your disaster recovery buildings to withstand whatever is coming.

Among disaster relief solutions, modular buildings lead the pack in their ability to withstand the elements. Their quick construction sacrifices no degree of internal temperature control. These buildings are fully insulated and can be outfitted with HVAC systems that maintain livable — even comfortable — conditions. And the ability to quickly move these buildings to a new location allows officials to avoid impending disasters caused by climate change, such as a spreading wildfire, worsening droughts and localized food insecurity, that could impact ongoing recovery efforts.


7. Modular Disaster Relief Housing as an Emergency Storage Solution

An element of disaster response that is often overlooked is storage. Enormous influxes of emergency supplies and donations can create a mini-disaster inside of the ongoing disaster when workers have nowhere to safely store these goods. The tragic result that can unfold is a huge amount of waste exactly when that’s the last thing the situation needs.

Enter modular emergency temporary buildings. Although these buildings can fill almost any role that a traditionally constructed building would fill in times of disaster, they can also serve a dual purpose as storage. The low cost, easy transportation, controlled environment and compact nature of modular buildings makes them a perfect place to store supplies and goods in emergencies. 


8. Easy Access Even in Difficult Times

If you were trying to build temporary housing for disasters through traditional construction methods in 2020 or 2021, you would likely have suffered the following setbacks:

  • Extremely high material costs
  • Long delays

Why? Because the world was in the midst of an unprecedented shortage of building materials and skilled labor. Material shortage or not, delays and high costs are unacceptable in the field of disaster response. 

Modular construction solves the problems that a material shortage can bring about. That’s because it is easy to use different materials in modular construction, and the entire process requires less labor than traditional construction. For example, if lumber is hard to find and lumber costs are skyrocketing, modular disaster relief housing can bypass that issue by using an entirely different building material, such as the steel used in shipping containers


Permanent Modular Buildings for Disaster Recovery

Part of recovering after a disaster is the process of rebuilding your infrastructure. Replacing homes, offices and commercial buildings can be expensive and take a lot of time. Permanent modular building solutions might be the wisest recovery plan moving forward for a number of industries. 

Temporary emergency modular buildings serve a key purpose, but particularly in areas where further disasters due to climate change and similar factors are likely to continue, these buildings may be able to serve a long-term purpose. Some of the most common permanent modular structures used in disaster recovery include the following:

Our experienced modular building contractors would be happy to deliver you a modular building that represents your brand or organization with pleasing aesthetic styling, high-quality materials and high-end features. 


VESTA Modular Disaster Recovery Case Study

Many modular construction contractors claim to have the skills, resources and network to provide disaster relief solutions in emergency conditions, but very few have actually been put to the test and succeeded. VESTA is one of those few, and our Camp Lejeune project illustrates that credential perfectly.


Camp Lejeune Modular Swing Spaces

When Hurricane Florence hit North Carolina, we partnered with Poettker Construction to create highly specialized, custom government swing spaces. One of the designated modular buildings was a high-security building. With swift action, we were able to complete this project quickly for the disaster response teams and people of North Carolina.


Leading the Way in Modular Disaster Relief Housing

The team at VESTA Modular is proud to be one of the leading providers of modular emergency temporary buildings. Having the ability to contribute to and facilitate the essential work of disaster response is an honor and a privilege, and it’s something we work hard every day to do perfectly.

Ready to partner with the modular emergency shelter experts at VESTA Modular? We’re ready to hear from you. Give us a call at (817) MODULAR or contact us online to get started.

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