Improving Workers’ Jobsite Health/Well-Being

Pepper Construction developed the Net Zero Jobsite Trailer as a part of a larger initiative to positively affect the communities the company serves. Pepper believes that high-performing buildings are the future of the construction industry. By integrating their high-performance expertise into the company’s operational process and raising awareness about the significant benefits high performance construction brings, Pepper is transforming the future.

The Net Zero trailer is efficient from every perspective, leveraging technology to manage a project paperlessly while providing a healthy and high performing environment for occupants.

Jobsites

Construction is a demanding job. The jobsite trailer has the potential to be a place of respite for our teams on site. By thoroughly examining a jobsite, and making improvements, Pepper realized that we can help promote better employee health and well-being, increase worker productivity and create a sense of community.

The number of trucks making deliveries can’t be controlled. However, we are able to insist that when they’re on the job site drivers turn off their engines instead of idling and releasing emissions. This is one small albeit important step. But we wanted to take this further and looked at the jobsite trailer; realizing we can we push the envelope on this and implement the same HPB standards in this as we do in our clients’ buildings.

Net Zero Jobsite Trailer

Most people spend about 90 percent of their time indoors, and that environment has a significant impact on their health. That also applies to the men and women working on jobsites.

When Pepper looked at creating an environment that promotes healthier employees, we realized that traditional jobsite trailers didn’t match our commitment to the environment or our staff. This is where we started in 2017 – with the purpose of redesigning a jobsite trailer to focus on the human experience, productivity and quality from every aspect. We wanted our trailer to match our values – from air quality to basic human comforts and energy consumption.

Superintendents and field team helped determine important features. For example, it was suggested we include ergonomic stand-up desks, a break room, indoor restroom, a kitchen and natural daylight. Added to this list were additional elements that will encourage the crews to use fewer resources, such as write-able walls and desks, and no shelves for binders so that the jobsite is completely paperless.

The Nuts and Bolts

Inside the trailer is a gathering room that hosts up to 14 people and hoteling space for visitors. Furnished with Red List-Free furniture and materials, the modern design is flexible and collaborative. Daylight streams into the space, eliminating the need for candescent lighting. Reclaimed wood cabinets illustrate the team’s solid understanding of where materials are sourced from while bamboo flooring is a durable alternative to the typical vinyl flooring options. Thoughtful details such as locker storage and flexible work space complete with folding meeting space furniture transform previously utilitarian conditions into a modern, functional and healthy work space.

Essentially a tiny building, Pepper’s Net Zero Trailer works holistically as one system to reduce the demand for energy. The average jobsite construction trailer emits 53,712 pounds of CO2 emissions into the air each year through its energy use. That means that each year, a jobsite’s carbon footprint equates to the energy of four residential homes.

Pepper’s Net Zero trailer:

  •   uses 100 percent less energy than a traditional trailer
  •   is clad in cement fiber panels which reduce heat absorption
  •   the envelope features a thermal barrier from 6″ of rigid insulation, doubling the R-

    values for the walls, floor and roof, which now range from R-30 to R-40

  •   atop the structure, 27 photovoltaic panels convert just four hours of sunlight into the

    needed electricity to power the trailer for a full work day

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