Q:

What is cross wall construction?

A:

Cross wall construction is a technique of building using pre-cast and custom built concrete components and fabrications in specific projects. This technique of construction is faster and suited for building cellular structures, such as hotels, offices, apartments, prisons and barracks.

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Cross wall buildings are durable and easy to set up and expand. The pre-cast components are built off-site, adhering to quality control measures, and brought to the construction site ready for installation. This raises on-site productivity and lowers the costs of labor and building materials. Cross wall buildings also have a higher degree of sound insulation.

The popularity of cross wall construction began in the late 1950s, and the technique was based on a pair of load bearing side walls with an infill frame clad in tiles forming the front and back. Cross wall construction buildings deteriorate across the front if the weatherboarding is poorly maintained. Leaks also occur where the thin walls connect with the brick sides, and these require prompt resealing. If sealing is not done, condensation occurs and mold grows.

Cross wall buildings also require internal and external insulation in case the cavity wall insulation is not working. Frequent repairs are also needed to prevent water penetration if the hanging tiles are missing or timber cladding is rotting on the exterior.

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