On the 27 March at the QEII in London, the UK Housing Minister Kit Malthouse will address an audience of construction professionals at the Explore Offsite Housing conference.
In February 2018 the Ministry for Housing announced an extra £45 million of funding for community projects that would free up land for local councils to build 7,280 homes. It has been 16 months since the government's 'offsite presumption' announcement and key industry players are still unsure how this will play out and when clarity will arrive - many are optimistic that the Explore Offsite Housing event will provide at least some of the answers.
Kit Malthouse's short time in office has not been without controversy. He recently defended the Better Building Beautiful Commission and called on architects to work with him to resist bland, developer-led housing. He said the point of the government commission has been missed by British architects, who have criticised it for attempting to reignite the divide between proponents of traditional and modern architecture.
The theme of traditional versus modern will continue at this one-day conference but this time the debate will move away from architecture to focus on contemporary delivery methods.
Kit Malthouse was recently quoted as saying: "If I'm going to build 300,000 houses, I need local communities to accept them. And that means they need to like what's being built. We're putting 45 million quid into the house building industry across the piece. We're not short of money to get this out of the door. But it's perfectly possible to produce stuff that looks fantastic that satisfies the purists of the architectural profession and local communities at the same time."
Kit Malthouse then turned his attention to housing developers: "I need the architectural profession to join with me to cajole, propel, and push the developers to allow beauty into their work."
Through exemplary case studies, Explore Offsite Housing will provide evidence that offsite technology can rapidly deliver exceptional and aesthetically appealing residential projects at scale. The conference and exhibition will provide an opportunity for housing developers and architects to hear directly from the Housing Minister. All eyes will be on Kit Malthouse as he discusses the government's plans for investment into offsite technologies and proposals for future potential collaboration and funding.
Explore Offsite Housing will be attended by over 250 delegates from architects, engineers and housing developers to construction clients and building product manufacturers - all interested to be the first to hear new industry announcements.
Offsite solutions provide the technological capabilities to allow the government to build large levels of housing that are needed efficiently, with low costs and unbeatable quality consistency. As the construction world races to resolve the housing crisis, offsite professionals are keen to learn about new government-funded opportunities that are long overdue.