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Anyone tendering for government projects or for PFI schemes needs to include a consideration of the Whole Life Costs of that project. Whole Life Costing (WLC) refers to the predicted costs, not just in constructing the building, but in commissioning it, its financing deals, its profitability, maintenance, refurbishment costs and even the cost of demolition.

Yorkon, which has been involved in numerous modular housing schemes over the years, has produced a software package to deal with this complex, timeconsuming and some might say, arbitrary requirement.

The idea is that by flagging up and quantifying issues at the start of a project, the cost effectiveness (or otherwise) of some specification items will be revealed so that design decisions can be amended or fine-tuned.

The programme allows the user to evaluate the implications of design decisions which can be read in cash terms, or converted to energy costs, or even CO 2 emissions. Unsurprisingly, the software relates to Yorkon's own steel-framed modular construction, presumably to encourage more people to buy into the Portakabin dream.

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