The first of 406 homes arrived in Urban Splash’s development in Northstowe, Cambridgeshire’s new town. The homes arrived on lorry’s having been constructed off-site, including internal kitchen and bathroom fit-outs, as well as windows and doors, with only final touches and external cladding, carried out on site.

The homes come as the first-ever precision-built ‘modular’ homes and are situated in a new neighbourhood known as ‘Inholm’ and is located next to the new education campus and near to the town centre.

The homes are built using modern methods of construction (MMC), which reduce waste on-site by up to 90% and require 67% less energy to build compared to a traditional build and can be delivered straight to the site. They are all energy-efficient, insulated, use LED lighting and use emission-free electric heating.

Customers are able to choose their internal fit-outs before they are built, then they are constructed, fitted out and delivered in a few days. The method combines an interactive customer design experience and high levels of control by passing multiple manufacturing checks before leaving the factory.

Project lead for House by Urban Splash at Northstowe said “From a construction point of view, the speed largely comes from the timing of the groundworks and the factory works happening at the same time rather than in sequence like they would on a traditional building site. The benefits for residents being that by the point at which the homes arrive on-site for finishing touches a lot of the major groundworks and messy work has completed.  The homes are also delivered in batches of around six to nine homes, so we can also complete a street scene much quicker for when homeowners start to arrive and occupy their new home.”

Housing minister Rt Hon Christopher Pincher MP said “Building the homes the country needs is a priority for the government and this development, using modern methods of construction, will not only accelerate this work but deliver better quality and more energy-efficient homes too. These homes showcase the most promising housebuilding innovations around today and will provide a blueprint for the years to come.”

South Cambridgeshire District Council’s lead cabinet member for planning, Cllr Dr Tumi Hawkins said “I’m pleased our Greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service is continuing to work with partners like Urban Splash to bring forward the right homes in the right places. Homes built using modern methods of construction are quicker to build, better for the environment and will help keep energy bills for residents as low as possible – resulting in homes that are genuinely affordable to live in. This is one of our key Business Plan priorities and I’m looking forward to seeing the modular homes become established in our district.”

Northstowe is the largest new town being built since Milton Keynes was built. When complete, it’ll have more than 10,000 new homes, eight schools and a town centre.

The first 43 homes on an area known as ‘the peninsula’ are on sale now, with the first residents expected to move in later this year, with the whole peninsula being completed by the end of 2021.

​Photo source: Urban Splash

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