Housing Pattern Books Will Transform Affordable Homes Delivery
Advanced Industrialised Methods for the Construction of Homes (AIMCH), the three-year project to support the sector to tackle the UK housing crisis, has arrived at an answer to the UK’s chronic housing shortage. Following 18 months of intense collaboration and research, AIMCH partners Stewart Milne Group (SMG) and L&Q have developed housing blueprints for developers, housing associations and SMEs to bring affordable homes to market quickly and cost effectively.
The affordable housing pattern books, featuring 24 designs, have been created to facilitate the construction of cottage flats, bungalows, semidetached and terraced houses, all of which offer the flexibility to meet planners needs, and to fit in with local character. Designs from the pattern book can also be pieced together to accommodate a range of elevations and streetscapes.
A central element of the type approved housing collections is their use of closed panel MMC timber technology, optimised to meet 55% PMV (Premanufactured Value), a requirement of Homes England grant funding. Their 0.20 U-Value provides a fit-and-forget, fabric first approach to energy efficient building envelope, set to comply with new June 2022 Part L building regulations.
In creating the pattern books, the developers have leveraged learnings from Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DFMA), Design Standardisation and Product Families (Kit of Parts) and BIM (3D modelling) outputs. AIMCH developers plan to exploit the standard house type pattern books on their own sites, or through strategic partnerships with other developers and clients.
Stewart Dalgarno, Director of Innovation and Sustainability at Stewart Milne Group, and AIMCH Project Director said: “Typically, in the affordable homes sector, design and housing procurement are done on an isolated project-by-project basis, which potentially leads to higher costs, inefficiencies and variability in quality. Because of this, AIMCH sees enormous potential for accelerated use of pattern books in the sector. Furthermore, through endorsement from regulators, funders, and insurers, AIMCH believes that housing pattern books and standardised products will become commonplace in the affordable housing sector.”
Wayne Hill, Production Strategy Director at L&Q added: “L&Q is proud to be leading the way in the adoption of offsite technologies in the affordable housing sector. These developed approaches offer a clear way for housebuilders, housing associations and local authorities to adopt MMC methods, and the efficiencies which come with them, to build homes for those who need them the most.”
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