The housing sector is in need of radical change in the ways houses are designed and delivered. Andy Bellerby, Associate at shedkm, illustrates how offsite manufacture can provides a fresh and direct approach to building homes and communities.
In response to a brief being driven by the current housing supply, designers and developers are being challenged to create well designed mass produced modular housing. Within this industry however, developers are reluctant to commit the time and money necessary to achieve this. Thankfully for shedkm we have been approached over the years by those developers, such as Urban Splash, who have been prepared to take up the challenge.
Within this industry however, developers are reluctant to commit the time and money necessary to achieve this. Thankfully for shedkm we have been approached over the years by those developers, such as Urban Splash, who have been prepared to take up the challenge. Collaboration with both clients and consultants is a key component to establishing unique and forwardthinking solutions to such briefs and challenges. Over the years shedkm has provided new concepts for various housing typologies through the implementation of radical and innovative design strategies and construction techniques. With regards to offsite construction we pioneered the first modular apartments for the private housing sector with a project called Moho, short for modular homes, using a groundbreaking method for delivering residential homes back in 2005. Each apartment formed a factory built module craned onto site within months. Since then we have moved on to a new concept in volumetric family housing with Urban Splash called Town House. As a direct challenge to the established typologies of the major UK housebuilders, Town House is a new concept for mass housing. It exploits clever modular planning to create spacious, flexible and modern customer-designed homes and is factory-built to order, before being delivered to site fully finished. To achieve this, over four years of research and prototyping have gone into developing the product, now in full production. Factory manufacturing offers the control required to deliver consistently higher quality results. Higher standards can be achieved through meticulous construction precision that are near impossible to match on-site.
Conditions are secure and controlled whilst most building sites are plagued by the issues associated with more traditional, linear construction methods. Such as inconsistent labour recruitment and performance, exposure to the elements and restrictive programmes. From our involvement with Moho and Town House we have experienced the many facets of establishing a successful, cost-effective delivery of offsite modular construction. From innovative design and effective prototyping to an efficient production line, considered delivery and a succinct programme between site infrastructure and factory manufacturing. We have learnt that to be successful and reap the rewards of offsite construction you have to exploit its inherent advantages and benefits to their maximum potential, something which Town House is striving to achieve. In doing so, offsite manufacturing can become a valuable asset in answering the call for any form of housing typology demand. The product we have been showcasing over recent years would not have been realised without the time and commitment of all involved. Like any product Town House will continue to evolve to suit market demand, customer feedback and respond to the refinement of building technologies and materials. This continues now the product is in full production with a continued improvement programme and the research and development of new typologies. As production increases and the process improves, the rewards will follow.
For more information visit:
To view this article in Offsite Magazine please visit: Offsite Magazine