Willmott Dixon has awarded two contracts totalling £3.5m to Offsite Solutions to supply bathroom pods for a £78m regeneration scheme in Birmingham. This use of offsite manufacturing will increase time efficiency by 30 per cent as well as maximise the cost, quality, and sustainability benefits.
The development, commissioned by Lendlease on behalf of Birmingham City Council, will create 430 apartments for sale and rent on the site of the former Birmingham City University Campus. The project is part of the wider £500m Perry Barr Regeneration scheme and will provide much-needed homes for local people in two four- to six-storey blocks that are due for occupation by 2023.
Offsite Solutions is manufacturing 692 steel-framed bathroom and ensuite shower pods for the two apartment buildings. Each pod features contemporary grey floor and wall tiles, a wall-mounted D-shaped hand basin, and heated towel rail. The bath has a hand-held shower on a sliding rail. The shower rooms are fitted out with a hand-held rain shower, a large shower tray and sliding glass door. There is also a single bar towel rail adjacent to the shower or bath.
Dan Doyle, Operations Director at Willmott Dixon, said, “The benefits of using offsite manufacturing for a project of this scale are unmatched. In one day, we can install around 20 bathroom pods. Traditionally this would involve a number of trades and take several weeks. For our customers, bathroom pods mean additional project certainty and added programme benefits, along with assured quality. The benefits don’t stop there. The use of the pods helps to reduce the project’s carbon footprint while also supporting the compliance of Covid-19 safety guidance on site.”
Anna Evans, Project Director at Lendlease, said, “We are pleased to see the innovative use of bathroom pods at Perry Barr. This is another excellent example of the work taking place to ensure this development will be completed efficiently, safely and sustainably.”
The development at Perry Barr was designed by Corstorphine & Wright, as part of a wider residential development that will create new activity and vibrancy for the area whilst providing much-needed housing. The steel-framed bathroom pods support the ambitions of the design, offering a premium aesthetic with traditional porcelain wall and floor tiling and a high-quality finish.
Steel-framed bathroom pods offer limitless design options for large-scale residential projects, hotels, and student accommodation. The wet areas to the pod walls and floor are fully tanked for long-term durability, and a composite ceiling panel in a matt paint-effect finish combines low maintenance with an enhanced appearance.
The benefits of factory-built bathrooms include greater certainty of completion on time and on budget, less time on site, and consistently high quality with advanced production processes and a robust testing regime in the factory. In the current pandemic, it is also easier to meet social distancing requirements when fitting out a confined space such as a bathroom in a controlled factory environment.
Offsite Solutions offers the UK’s largest range of pods to suit many different building types and applications. In addition to steel-framed bathroom pods, it offers robust and low maintenance GRP composite pods for student accommodation, build-to-rent, care homes, social housing and healthcare; hybrid pods for specialist projects, and award-winning demountable GRP pods for ease of installation in refurbishment schemes. Offsite Solutions has also developed steel-framed utility pods for apartments or studios for build-to-rent or build-to-sell developments.