What is Off-Site Construction?

Solutions for Today’s Challenges

The process of constructing buildings or components of buildings in a factory to increase quality, sustainability and job site safety to project completion over site-building projects. The International Code Council helps project teams and communities unlock the potential of off-site construction.

Download the International Code Council’s Primer on Off-Site Construction to better understand the Codes, Standards and Compliance Processes Associated with Off‑Site Construction.


Breaking Ground with Off-Site Construction

The Code Council’s off-site construction solutions confront the multiple challenges that the building industry faces today; from affordable housing to more sustainable practices.

Off-Site Construction Stats

  • Project timelines can be accelerated by 20 to 50%
  • Potential for more than 20% cost savings
  • Lower wastage rates providing both environmental benefits and cost savings
  • Improved project quality

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Develop quality and
safe structures

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Increase the workforce
and job opportunities

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Positively impact
the environment

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Speed to market

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Make housing
more affordable

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Safer job sites
for workers

Design, Fabrication and Assembly

ICC/MBI Standard 1200 provides the off-site construction industry with the requirements for the safe and efficient deployment of off-site construction projects


The ICC NTA Engineering Department can provide you with complete engineering calculations and analysis to ensure code compliance for all off-site construction projects.


IAS offers accreditation for manufacturers and fabricators of metal buildings and shipping containers to verify that these buildings and components meet industry standards and IAS accreditation criteria.

ICC ES provides product evaluations for multiple components used in off-site construction including shipping containers and sandwich panels and can work with other innovative technologies to support wider use in the market.

Compliance Standards

ICC/MBI Standard 1205 provides criteria for the effective and efficient approval of off-site construction manufacturers and projects.

Plan Review and Inspection

ICC NTA’s third-party plan review and inspection services help ensure your structures meet or exceed requirements for quality, safety and performance

IAS accreditation assesses third-party service provider’s policies and procedures for providing quality plan review and inspections

ICC Off-Site Solutions

ICC/MBI Standard 1200 for Off-Site Construction: Planning, Design, Fabrication, and Assembly

ICC/MBI Standard 1205 for Off-Site Construction: Inspection and Regulatory Compliance

ICC G5-2019 for the Safe Use of ISO Intermodal Shipping Containers Repurposed as Buildings and Building Components

What is your role?
Regulatory Official
Third party agency
Regulatory Official
Select your solution
Select your solution
Select your solution
Third Party Agency
Select your solution

ICC Resources

The Code Council and its Family of Solutions have developed or are developing multiple resources to help building safety professionals and manufacturers realize the benefits of off-site construction.


Guideline 5 covers the use of shipping containers as building materials

Guideline 6 covers lessons learned from global approaches to advanced panelization

ICC/MBI Standard 1200: Standard for Off-Site Construction: Planning, Design, Fabrication, and Assembly   ICC/MBI Standard 1205: Standard for Off-Site Construction: Inspection and Regulatory Compliance  

Three standards are also available:
ICC/MBI Standard 1200, ICC/MBI Standard 1205 and ICC/MBI Standard 1210

FAQs, Factsheets, Briefs and More Resources

FAQs on Off-Site Construction (pdf) – also available below

Factsheet: Facilitating Affordability, Sustainability Goals through Standards

Brief: New Off-Site Construction Standards

Off-site Construction Solutions for Today’s Challenges

Factsheet: Building up Safe, Sustainable, Resilient and Affordable Communities

Delivering Disaster Recovery and Resilience Through Offsite Construction


NTA is a respected provider of third party plan review and inspection services for the off-site construction industry

ICC-ES provides evaluation services for multiple off-site construction products.

IAS provides accreditation for inspection agencies and manufacturers/fabricators and assemblers.

ICC Training includes a specialty catalog of courses for code officials interested in off-site construction

Tiny Home Solutions

The International Code Council has the resources and expertise to deliver the solutions needed to ensure safe, sustainable and resilient construction and use of tiny houses.

2021 International Tiny House Provisions outlines the existing codes, standards and compliance mechanisms available for tiny houses.

Off-Site Explained

Off-Site construction is a modular building, modular component or panelized system that is wholly or in substantial part fabricated or assembled in manufacturing plants for installation – or assembly and installation – on a separate building site and has been manufactured in such a manner that all parts or processes cannot be inspected at the installation site without disassembly, damage to, or destruction thereof.

The Different Types of Off-Site Construction

Volumetric is a type of modular construction that assembles fully enclosed 6 sided building blocks at an Off-Site construction location and then joins each block at the final site to create a larger structure. Structures include both residential or commercial buildings.


  • Bathroom or Kitchen pods
  • Tiny Homes
  • Shipping Containers
  • Modules

Non-volumetric is another type of Off-Site constructions that involves the assembly of smaller parts of the structure that help create the main structure of the building.


  • Wall, ceiling and foundation panels
  • Mechanical racking
  • Headwalls

The Benefits

Modular construction can speed construction by as much as


In the right environment and trade-offs, it can cut costs by


Complexity and scale of modular construction


Fully functional with complex fixtures

Limited fixtues in one or more materials

Largely structural (concrete, steel, or wood)

Third Party Approvals

Working with A Recognized Leader

Third party plan reviews save time and money by expediting the approval process. ICC NTA has been doing plan reviews and inspections for the off-site construction industry for over 40 years, ensuring manufacturers and projects meet or exceed state and local requirements.

How can ICC help?

The International Code Council works directly with manufacturers to inspect, review and evaluate modular systems to analyze code compliance. The Code Council partners with the Modular Building Institute to develop standards to support consistency and efficiency in planning, design, fabrication to assembly, inspection, and regulatory compliance.

Off-Site Construction Today

Contact The Code Council to Learn More About Off-Site Construction