Aug 26, 2014

Four ways to streamline your build programme

Achieving the balance of cost-effectiveness and high quality isn’t always easy, but for those who succeed the benefits can be significant.

Despite the range of project types our clients undertake, all of them tend to share the same priorities – namely managing costs, meeting performance standards, and accelerating build programmes.

Helping our clients optimise the efficiency of their build programmes is a critical part of how we plan a project. Our team has years of experience which means they know how to deliver maximum efficiencies in time and cost.

Streamlining a build programme means less waste, lower costs, better safety, and faster sales – and a range of other benefits. Here’s what we’ve learned about doing it right:

1. Collaborate during the planning and design stage: This makes it easier to ‘hard wire’ efficiency into the project. Working together from day one allows both teams to inform the plans for the project, reducing the likelihood of delays, helping to control costs and making the best use of time on site.

2. Use offsite construction to increase volume and reduce waste: Incorporating offsite construction into the build programme means timber systems can be onsite quickly and erected in a matter of days – a home built using timber systems can be ready several weeks before traditional brick and block builds. Offsite construction can also reduce waste onsite by up to 90 per cent, since waste materials produced in the factory is more easily managed and recycled.

3. Build in precise costs and flexible lead-in times: Another advantage of offsite construction, in combination with timber, is factory precision in both quality control and cost certainty. Lead-in times and call-off periods are also much more flexible. Working with BAM Construction on Plymouth University’s BREEAM Excellent student accommodation project, we delivered the timber systems for seven blocks of student lodgings in just 16 weeks.

4. Achieve weather tightness as soon as possible: The UK’s unpredictable weather can result in serious delays for a ‘wet’ build programme. Offsite construction combined with a timber build avoids this problem since the timber frame is manufactured to precision standards in the factory, and can be erected on site whether rain or shine. The building envelope can be fully weather-tight within five days, allowing follow-on trades onsite earlier and reducing delays.

This is one of the factors which meant we were able to deliver a 60 bed Premier Inn hotel and restaurant complex within eight weeks.

Homes For Scotland Home Builders Federation National House-Building Council Royal Institute of British Architects Structural Timber Association Constructionline British Board of Agrement Wood Campus Build Off Site Building Research Establishment WOOD FOR GOOD

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