Fusion Building Systems has completed its works on three residential housing projects in the south of England for Barratt Developments.
St Mary’s Place, Felpham, West Sussex; New Quarter, Bordon, Surrey; and Cane Hill Park, Couldson, Surrey, are the first schemes to be delivered by the offsite manufacturer since it successfully completed a trial project for Barratt in Angmering, Southampton in 2017.
Across the three sites, working on almost 200 units, Fusion adapted existing Barratt house types as well as developing bespoke multi-storey designs, to make them suitable for use with its light gauge steel panelised system. The work, completed on each site over the past 12 months, was the result of almost three years of ‘intense integration and education’ at all levels across both companies, exploring how offsite systems could be used as a viable alternative to traditional methods of construction.
Robert Clark, Fusion head of business development, said: “Our system was proven to work on a small number of houses for Barratt’s trial 18 months ago, so it’s exciting now for us to see how we can scale up to deliver a much larger number of units.”
The light gauge steel superstructures for each development were designed, engineered and manufactured at Fusion’s factory in Northampton – with its patented, pre-insulated panels being transported to site, ready for immediate installation. Fusion reports that the three sites were very different in their requirements, from two, three and four-bedroom standard house types, to non-standard designs with challenging ground conditions and four-storey apartment buildings.
Robert Clark continued: “Each site put our design and engineering teams to the test with the successful delivery of each, from concept through to installation on site, reliant on effective collaboration and communication throughout the supply chain. The early phases on site once again presented a learning curve for each company, but as each development progressed, all parties worked well together and were ultimately convinced offsite was the future for volume housebuilding.”
Oliver Novakovic, technical and innovation director, Barratt Developments, added: “Fusion has now successfully delivered full scale pilots on three sites with our Southampton and Southern Counties divisions. We have seen a real improvement in speed as predicted and are now continuing to work closely with the Fusion team to roll this technology out further. We believe the work we have done over the last two years on things like standard details and the construction approach really supports the application of the Fusion system into our private housing market.”