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Cubes Issue 89: Pursuit of Productivity

Cubes 89 (Dec/Jan) picks up a number of ‘construction productivity’ threads and seeks examples of projects where a concern for efficiency is paired with an equal concern for the human experience.

  • Cubes Issue 89: Pursuit of Productivity

    On the cover is the extension of Nanyang Girls' High School designed by Park + Associates. Photo by Edward Hendricks (courtesy of Park + Associates)

  • Cubes Issue 89: Pursuit of Productivity

    Kampung Admiralty by WOHA and Ramboll Studio Dreisetl. Photo by Darren Soh

  • Cubes Issue 89: Pursuit of Productivity

    Changi Terminal 4 by Beny and SAA Architects. Photo by Owen Raggett (courtesy of Benoy)

  • Cubes Issue 89: Pursuit of Productivity

    Extension of Nanyang Girls' High School by Park + Associates. Photo by Frank Pinckers (courtesy Park + Associates)

  • Cubes Issue 89: Pursuit of Productivity

    DP Architects: Productive Practice. Portrait by Justin Loh

  • Cubes Issue 89: Pursuit of Productivity

    Funan Showsuite by Lekker Architects. Photo by Darren Soh (courtesy of Lekker Architects)

  • Cubes Issue 89: Pursuit of Productivity

    Weijenberg: Technological Craft. Portrait by Justin Loh



BY Narelle Yabuka

4 December, 2017


Efficiency, optimisation, productivity – these are words we seem to hear increasingly often in the workplace arena, in the construction industry, and even in our social media feeds. There are articles aplenty about ‘productivity hacks’ circulating online, all promoting ways to get more out of life – both at work and at home.

We’re all being held more personally accountable for squeezing the most and the best out of every minute of life, while our employers and workplace designers grapple with how to maximise our output in an environment that needs to balance the possibility of rewarding social collisions with the need for quiet, concentrated work.

And increasingly, the word ‘productivity’ is being heard at greater frequency in the context of construction. In October, Singapore’s Building and Construction Authority (BCA) organised the Singapore Construction Productivity Week 2017, and key points of discussion this year were Design for Manufacturing and Assembly (DfMA), Integrated Digital Delivery (IDD), and the BCA’s ‘Construction Industry Transformation Map’.

It heralds the advent of smart buildings, new (faster and better) construction technologies, digitised work processes, and enhanced green-building expertise.

We pick up a number of ‘construction productivity’ threads in this issue of Cubes – from prefab and modular components, to high-performance timber, to BIM and the deep digital networks being forged by firms such as DP Architects.

We look at how buildings (such as the HDB project Kampung Admiralty by WOHA and Ramboll Studio Dreiseitl) can be productive in ways beyond construction and planning efficiencies. And we seek examples of projects where a concern for efficiency is paired with an equal concern for the human experience.

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