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The problems with traditional construction hoarding systems

Marco Pitt, Senior Travelers, Italy

22 March 2016

Construction hoarding is important to any construction site, due to its vital role as a safety barrier, debris protector and ultimately, as an advertising billboard for the project. However, while traditional plywood and drywall hoarding are most commonly used in the construction industry, they are not necessarily the premium, most economical alternatives on the market. From safety, costs and waste, we’ve outlined the problems with traditional construction hoarding systems made out of plywood and drywall.

  1. Construction Hoarding is not safe enough. While the idea of having the construction site enclosed with an 8 ft. high plywood construction hoarding system might seem like the obvious choice for security, plywood hoarding presents major safety risks for both workers and pedestrians. Installing and uninstalling the hoarding is a heavy, labour intensive process which requires safety standards of its own. Not to mention the hazardous, sharp edges of plywood and the metal nails that can injure both workers and pedestrians. As for drywall, the process of installing and uninstalling is wasteful, unsanitary and even toxic due to the large amounts of dust produced. Metal drywall studs are often sharp and present additional risks.

  2. Plywood and drywall construction hoarding is not cost efficient. Installing and uninstalling plywood and drywall hoarding takes a significant amount of time and requires specially trained workers to install it. As a result, the labour costs for putting up the temporary hoarding are significant. Additional costs include materials which have only a one time, single use before ending up in landfill.

  3. Construction Hoarding is time consuming. Installing plywood or drywall hoarding takes significant amounts of time to install and can even extend to after-hours installation. As the installation hours increase so do the costs. In cases of work site accidents or vandalism, the amount of time and costs invested in repairing hoarding can also add up. Consider common graffiti issues and the hours of labour that go into cleaning it up.

  4. Construction Hoarding can be difficult when it comes to applying advertising graphics. Once the hoarding is up, the job is not yet complete. The drywall needs to be painted before applying the graphics causing additional delays, potential unpleasant odours and additional labour and cost. Plywood on its own looks esthetically unpleasing. To beautify the appearance of plywood, crezon panels are typically applied on top. Crezon itself is heavy and very costly and the additional installation labour is cumbersome.

  5. Plywood and drywall construction hoarding is wasteful. “Reduce, reuse, and recycle” – an important guideline in today’s environmentally conscious world. Unfortunately, it can’t be applied to either plywood or drywall hoardings. Once the construction hoarding is torn down, it ends up in the landfill and cannot be re-purposed.

    Although plywood and drywall hoardings have been the popular choice in the construction industry, it’s time to take a step back and analyze the inevitable problems with this traditionally used application. Time and money are two of the most valuable resources in any construction project and, realistically, using plywood and drywall hoarding consumes both of these essential assets. The problems with traditional construction hoarding are evident. Is it really worth spending hours of labour and thousands of dollars in a solution that can only be used one time?

Which issue regarding traditional construction hoarding concerns you the most?

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