(Seguin) -- A new method for home building is coming to Seguin. Intelligent Building Systems International (IBSI), a global leader in modular home construction, has opened a new production facility in Seguin. The new production line will operate in partnership with the manufacturing capabilities of EPMP, located at 2251 Rudeloff Road.
Utilizing its state-of-the-art technology, IBSI has designed a product line of 21st Century homes that enable on-site home construction in as little as two weeks. The homes can be built on concrete slabs or pier and beam flood restricted areas. According to company officials, natural disasters that have left many parts of the United States in need of housing, and that will be a focus for IBSI, which says these homes can also serve as viable options for rapid response and relief housing.
Michael Smith, the IBSI USA managing director for North America, says the new homes are designed using the renowned fly ash paneling system, one of the world's most technologically advanced composite building materials. He says the new homes come in over 30 different models that range from 350 square feet, single bedroom homes to over 4,000 square feet, five-bedroom homes and "everything in between."
Smith says the homes can be distributed nationwide within 14 to 28 days of ordering. He says this innovative building concept will result in the creation of several new jobs in Seguin.
"What we're looking for is basically -- I'm going to use 50 to 100 homes (as an example). If we get a 50 to 100 home contract, EPMP facility which is our contract and manufacturing facility, you're looking at 80 to 100 jobs right off the bat. For IBSI direct, we're going to go be looking at about 15 to 20 basically what we call project managers on site -- (they'll be) over guys doing the overwatch site prep -- all that sort of stuff. For every one of those jobs that is created, it's .5 jobs are created for jobs. So we created basically call it 100 to 120 jobs between EMPM and IBSI. You're looking at another 50 to 60 jobs that are going to be created, anxiliary jobs for transportation, material handling and all the support we are going to need. That's just for about 50 homes. So do that on the scale of we're looking at. All the counties effected on the coast is about 90,000 homes that are needed. There's probably 150,000 homes in the greater Houston metro-plex area. There's 500,000 homes in Puerto Rico. About 12,000 homes in Florida and take that from there, that's all Seguin, Texas jobs," said Smith.
The "connect and use" methodology for building provides for an environmentally sustainable, robust yet affordable building solution to even the most remote communities in the world.
Smith says all the components for the home are provided to exacting standards that fit together seamlessly, resulting in reduced on-site labor. He says the homes can be personalized with either the builder or the home owner's fixture and fittings, and the elevations can match any local requirements. Plus, he says the homes are extremely efficient with an 8 to 9.5 star energy efficiency rating, "meaning reduced need for heating and cooling."
"What we're actually looking to do for the roll out is two phased. One is actually through permanent solutions for the disaster affected areas. So as that funding becomes available, we're going to be competing for that and we're also simutaneously working with developers and builders primarily in the Austin area to actually roll out communities (to be) eco friendly in those areas," said Smith.
Developers say, not only can the homes be (in most instances) built in a couple of weeks, but they are also water proof, bug proof and fire retardant. Their structural integrity alone can and will withstand most catastrophes -- providing a permanent home solution.
EPMP General Manager Clint Plant says he's thrilled to be part of this future way of building homes -- homes that surpass traditional home building by an additional 50 years.
"I think it's a wonderful opportunity. I'm always looking for the next greatest thing. That's how we built our business, just trying to set new trends and be different. I think it's an opportunity not only just for EPMP but really for Seguin and really the U.S., because this product is not in the United States. It's going to change the way things are done. It really it is," said Plant.
Celebrating this partnership and new production facility in Seguin is Josh Schneuker, director of economic development for the city of Seguin. Schneuker says Seguin is excited to help celebrate this new venture.
"I think it's something wonderful to have in Seguin. It's going to be providing our local area with plenty of new jobs and opportunities. It also has the opportunity to help out a lot of people that are in need right now, especially relating to the disasters that have hit Texas and Florida and Puerto Rico. This is a solution that can get people into a house, who need homes at the moment , while at the same time providing our local economy with new jobs and infusing new dollars into our economy as well," said Schneuker.
Smith says an easy to build, structural home "like this has never been available direct to builders and homeowners in the USA before." IBSI is a global company based in Australia that helps to deliver innovative building solutions for residential and commercial developments, agriculture, rapid response relief housing, student accommodation and government projects.