In 2007, CBI Engineering conducted research into the growing housing shortages in developing countries with the aim of finding a sustainable product that would require minimal expertise, thereby increasing demand and local communities’ involvement. The research included the affordability and portability aspect of housing structures, and also took into consideration life span, stability, transport costs and ease of installation as design parameters.
CBI Engineering found an alternative solution to traditional construction materials, and now specialises in the manufacture and installation of components for prefabricated houses, offices, schools and the like. Houses manufactured using CBI’s Kojomodular system involve panels which offer versatile housing layouts, adapted to the specific needs of each individual specifier. Identical components are premade in a controlled factory environment, and then assembled on site, reducing construction time and ensuring consistent quality standards.
Requiring only three days for erection (for a 50 m² two bedroom house), the panels are insulated and offer a number of benefits. These include durability and weather resistance, fast and easy assembly, high strength to weight ratio, exceptional insulation properties, dry construction requring minimal water usage, low maintenance, and resistance to ultraviolet.
The standard panel core is made of a fire retardant material with a high insulation value. The thickness of the core is chosen to suit thermal and structural requirements, and is usually in the range of 40 mm to 100 mm thick, depending on service requirements.
The facings, which consist of Chromadek sheeting, are bonded to the core by a two-part polyurethane adhesive.
The panel roll formed edges are tongued and grooved and integral to the Chromadek skins. The dimensions are as such that when the panels are pushed together they create a a neat joint line.
Transport costs are minimal – five complete medium-sized houses can be transported on a 18 metre flat-bed truck.
Prices are based on a per square metre rate, and conform to standard layouts as a general guideline.
Kojo Fosu, the developer of the system sees great opportunity in the mining sector for this product and has recently completed and is busy with a number of projects within South and Southern Africa including a proposal for First Quantum in Ndola, Zambia. Other projects include the construction of engineers’offices (900 m²) for South Africa’s Department of Water Affairs & Forestry (DWAF) at the site of the upcoming De Hoop Dam as well as two office buildings (500 m²) for DWAF in Groblersdal.
Othe projects include houses for the management staff of NovaSun Lda (Mozambique- new banana plantation), houses for private clients in Angola and the DRC, and a church for a township in Gauteng.