Lifecycle Cost Analysis of Prefabricated Composite and Masonry Buildings: Comparative Study

Pouya Samani, Jeremy Gregory, Vitor Leal, Adelio Mendes, Nuno Correia*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Lifecycle cost analysis (LCCA) is a tool to assess the costs associated with each phase of the building lifecycle. This study evaluated the lifecycle cost (LCC) of a prefabricated fiber-reinforced composite (FRC) building in comparison with a masonry one. The four lifecycle phases of construction, operation, maintenance, and demolition were taken into consideration, and buildings in the American cities of El Paso, Los Angeles, and San Francisco were analyzed. First, the contribution of different building components to construction cost was defined. Consequently, the operation costs to supply cooling and heating-energy demands and lighting and home appliances were calculated. After determining the maintenance and demolition costs, the total LCC of both building types were compared through net present value (NPV). Finally, sensitivity analyses were carried out to assess the impact of influential parameters. The results highlight the significance of construction cost for both structures and the higher maintenance and lower demolition costs of the prefabricated building. Moreover, the prefabricated building was found to have higher cooling costs despite its lower U-value. The prefabricated building had a higher total LCC in all locations. The results also demonstrate the importance of location by indicating substantial variations in construction, maintenance, and demolition costs among the studied cities. Furthermore, the prefabricated building was found to have lower operating costs in Los Angeles and San Francisco but higher costs in El Paso. The sensitivity analyses show significant impacts of the discount rate and lifetime, moderate influence of the inflation rates of maintenance and demolition costs, and limited impact of the inflation rate of electricity cost. (C) 2017 American Society of Civil Engineers.

Original languageEnglish
Article number05017012
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Architectural Engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Fiber-reinforced composite
  • lifecycle costs (LCC)
  • Masonry building
  • Net present value
  • Off-site construction
  • Sandwich-structured composite

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