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Precast System In Malaysia Construction Industry

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Construction
Wordcount: 2261 words Published: 3rd Jul 2018

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The world has currently been alarmed with the issue of environment and sustainability, and indeed the construction industry has constantly been worried by the increasing cost of building maintenance and lifecycle issues. Therefore, in the last decade, IBS was promoted to enhance the importance of prefabrication technology rather than conventional method. Industrialised Building System (IBS) can be defined as a construction system in which components or elements of the structure such as column, beam, slab etc are manufactured in factories, on or off site, transported, positioned, assembled and constructed into structure with minimal additional site work. Malaysian government has adopted the IBS since sixties and underwent great efforts in this field (Thanoon et. al. 2003). The early attempt to apply IBS in Malaysia was the two pilot projects, the first project was Pekeliling Flats in Kuala Lumpur in 1964 and this project was undertaken by Gammon/ Larsen Nielsen using the Danish System of large panels in a pre-fabricated system. The second project was Taman Tun Sardon project, Gelugor, Penang in 1965 and this project was awarded to Hochtief/ Chee Seng using French Estoit System (Din 1984). In Malaysia, Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) has classified the IBS system into 5 categories as Pre-cast Concrete Framing, Panel and Box Systems, Formwork Systems, Steel Framing Systems, Prefabricated Timber Framing Systems and Block Work Systems. The advantages used of IBS such as the reduction foreign workers, less wastage, less volume of building materials, increased environmental and construction site cleanliness and better quality control etc. thus these advantages also enhanced a safe and more organized construction site, and reduce the completion time of construction. Unfortunately, the adoption of precast system in IBS still low in current state of Malaysia construction industry.

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1.2 Problem Statement

Industrialised Building System (IBS) was well known in many developing countries as it provides high level quality construction, more cost competitive, rapidly increases construction period, reduces dependence on foreign labour, reduces wastage environmental-friendly and maintains cleanliness at construction sites. The Government’s IBS Roadmap 2011 to 2015 will increase the existing IBS content to 50 per cent in the private sector Malaysia. Till now, the usage of IBS content in the private sector is less than 10 per cent. The roadmap also plans to sustain the existing momentum of 70 per cent IBS content for the public sector. IBS Survey 2010 highlighted that the use of system formwork such as metal, aluminium, plastic etc. gained its popularity recently due to its flexibility, because it can be used in many projects, recyclable at many phase of construction and can be used in different types of design structure. System formwork is not dependent on economy of scale and commercially viability (Kamar et al, 2011). However, the precast system plays a significant role in IBS, but the use of precast system still low. What is the perception and awareness to the adoption of precast system in Malaysia? What are the problems in the implementation of precast system? The quality of precast system is enough sustainable? Precast system inflexible to change?

1.3 Aim and Objectives

The aim of the study is to analysis the implementation of precast system in current states Malaysia construction industry. To achieve this aim, the following objectives have been identified:

  • To determine the benefits of adoption of precast system.
  • To identify the problems on adoption of precast system.
  • To determine the factors affect the standardized of precast design

1.4 Hypothesis

Adoption of precast system can provides high level quality construction, more cost competitive, rapidly increases construction period, reduces dependence on foreign labor, reduces wastage environmental-friendly and maintains cleanliness at construction sites.

1.5 Scope of Study

The scope of study will focus on the precast system of IBS only.

Data collection will conduct in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor only.

1.6 Research Methodology


100 questionnaires will send by mail or post to developer companies, consultant practices, contractor companies and manufacturers in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor.

The design of survey questionnaire includes several processes such as literature review on survey and IBS (precast system) itself. It is important to enhance knowledge in survey method. The questions provide primarily quantitative data, and are frequently used in confirmatory research. In determining the objective of this research, close-ended question was widely used as it could provide the answer in a scale format.


Follow up interviews also were used in this research as a confirmation or to add more information on IBS (precast system) from the respondents.



2.1 Definition of Industrialised Building System

In Malaysia construction sector, Industrialised Building System (IBS) is defined as construction system which components are manufactured in factories, on or off site, transported, positioned and assembled into structure with minimal additional site work (IBS Survey CIDB, 2003).

IBS also defined as which all building components such as floor slab, column, wall, staircase and beam are mass produced either in factories or at site with well quality control and reduce on site activities (Trikha, 1999).

Warswaski (1999) asserted that an industrialisation process is an investment in equipment, facilities, and technology with the objective of maximising production output, minimising labour resource, and improving quality while a building system is defined as a set of interconnected element that joint together to enable the designated performance of a building.

An IBS is a continuum beginning from utilising craftsmen for every aspect of construction to a system that make use of manufacturing production in order to minimize resource wastage and enhance value for end users (Esa and Nuruddin, 1998).

Lessing et al, (2005) defined IBS as an integrated manufacturing and construction process with well planned organization for efficient management, preparation and control over resources used, activities and results supported by the used of highly developed components.

2.2 History of Industrialised Building System

Nowadays, the implementation of Industrialised Building System (IBS) is not new and not just occurs in Malaysia construction industry. The history of using IBS started in the United Kingdom housing industry on the mid of 1900’s, when IBS and other types of prefabricated construction system or technique were used to solve the shortage of houses due to the problem of widespread destruction of housing stock during the Second World War. The attention and adoption of IBS were getting more concerned in construction sector after the Second World War due to the need to quickly solve the critical shortage of houses.

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In Malaysia, the adoption of IBS began in early 1960s when Ministry of Housing and Local Government of Malaysia visited several European countries and evaluated their housing development program (Thanoon et al, 2003). In year 1964, our government had launched 2 pilot projects by using IBS. The first pilot projects with adoption of IBS in Malaysia was constructed on 22.7 acres of land along Jalan Pekeliling which included the construction of 7 blocks of 17 storey flats, and 4 blocks of 4-storey flats comprising about 3,000 units of low cost flats and 40 storey shop lots. The first pilot project was awarded to the Gammon/ Larsen Nielsen by using the Danish System of large panels in a pre-fabricated system. Afterwards, the government of Malaysia had launched the second project, a six block of 17-storey flats and three blocks of 18-storey flats at Jalan Rifle Range. This project was awarded to the Hochtief/ Chee Seng by using the French Estoit System (Din, 1984).

A performance of comparison in term of cost, quality and productivity has been carried out between IBS and conventional construction method by referring on the two pilot project launched by our government. From the comparison in term of cost, it invented that the first pilot project was 8.1% higher meanwhile the second pilot project was 2.6% lower than by using conventional system for a similar type of building or project. For productivity or time frame, both projects required 27 months to complete, while include of the time needed to set up the recasting factories. In term of quality, the quality of both pilot projects was discovered well and better than the conventional construction method. From the performance of comparison of both pilot projects, it showed that the rival between the IBS and the conventional construction method.

Today in the Malaysia construction industry, complete projects usage of IBS is gradually increasing however it’s still slow and not satisfied as forecasting especially in private sector. Although, the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) has been actively promoting and encouraging the implementation of IBS since a decade. In year 2003, the Cabinet Minister has approved the IBS Roadmap 2003 to 2010 with one of the key elements is to is to enforce the utilisation of IBS content for 30% for any government building project in 2004 and gradually increasing this to 50% in 2006 and 70% in 2008. Afterwards, The Government’s Industrialised Building System (IBS) Roadmap 2011 to 2015 has approved which will replace the IBS Roadmap 2003 to 2010 and this new IBS Roadmap will more pay attention on the adoption of IBS in private sector building project. The main goal of the new IBS Roadmap is to increase the existing usage of IBS content to 50% in the private sector building project till 2015 in Malaysia construction sector which till now the adoption of IBS content in the private sector is less than 10%. The IBS roadmap 2011 to 2015 also plans to sustain the existing momentum of 70% IBS content for the government building project till 2015.

2.3 Classification of Industrialised Building System

Industrialised Building System (IBS) is construction system or technique which components are mass manufactured in factories whether on or off site with well quality control, transported to assembled into structure so that can reducing the site activities. There are five main types or groups indentified and classified by Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) are used in Malaysia construction industry (CIDB 2003):-

Pre-cast concrete framing, panel and box system are the most ordinary type of Industrialised Building System (IBS) among other types in Malaysia construction industry. The elements are columns, walls, beams, floor slabs, 3D elements such as lift chambers, staircases, toilets and balconies, permanent concrete formwork etc. These elements or components are produced or manufactured in factories with well quality control and then transported to site for install or assembly.

Steel formwork system are the most popular group which can to be used in various types of design structural and many phase of construction in our industry because of its flexibility and recyclable. Besides that, steel formwork system is easier for used and installation among other groups and offer a high quality finish. It suitable applied in tunnel forms, columns and beam moulding forms and permanent steel formworks.

The elements of steel framing system are steel beams and columns, roof trusses and portal frames which normally used together with precast beams, column and floor slabs. In addition, this system is suitable for time effective and skyscraper construction project.

Prefabricated timber framing system is normally adopted as timber frames, and roof trusses of a building. This system always has been used extensively in western countries housing developments. Furthermore, it offers a unique and interesting design while the rate of timbers is gradually increasing in nowadays.

Nowadays, many of development building projects are used block work system such as interlocking concrete masonry units (CMU) and lightweight concrete blocks. The element of block work systems normally used as bricks in structures and interlocking concrete block pavement.

2.4 Precast Concrete Framing, Panel and Box System

2.4.1 Introduction

Precast concrete can defined as elements or components are cured and manufactured in factories or plant environments with high quality control and then transported to site for installation and assembled into structure. The utilisation of precast system in Malaysia construction sector is not new, especially for rapid construction project with high accuracy, productivity and quality such as schools, hospitals, Light Rail Transit (LRT), Mass Rapid Transit (MRT), apartments, drain infrastructures etc. However, the application of precast concrete system still low as forecasting while government was actively promoting it. The industry chooses to use the conventional construction method and ignore the benefits of using precast system. The most common types of precast concrete system structural elements in practice:-


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