Chamfer Houses: Where Sustainability Meets Volumetric Construction (MMC)
We are pleased to share the successful completion of three contemporary, energy-efficient family homes in the coastal city of Brighton. These exceptional homes not only offer breathtaking sea views but also showcase the innovative use of Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) through volumetric delivery to minimise environmental impact while delivering exceptional quality.
MMC, a revolutionary construction approach, allowed us to fabricate the frames of all three Chamfer Houses off-site, ensuring precision, sustainability, and remarkable time efficiency. We were the technical design architects and saw the project on site and to completion. These new low-energy dwellings demonstrate our commitment to green ethos and design-led architecture, making this project a significant milestone for the company.
The Site and Design
Situated on a sloping hill within a popular neighbourhood of contemporary residential developments, the Chamfer Houses project began with a tired, detached house on a 1180sqm plot of land. The design concept aimed to seamlessly integrate three new houses with a harmonious design aesthetic and material palette. The heights of these houses have been thoughtfully crafted to mediate between neighbouring properties. Additionally, a sunken front driveway, garages, and private terraced gardens at the rear have been ingeniously incorporated to blend with the existing ground levels.
Construction and On-Site Execution
Having previously collaborated with HAPA Architects, the clients were eager to see their vision realised using MMC for its time-saving benefits. The modular construction method allowed the simultaneous progress of module assembly and extensive groundworks, significantly compressing project timelines.
Here are some statistics about the benefits of MMC in the Chamfer Houses project:
– On average MMC is thought to produced between 40% – 80% reduction in waste materials depending the level of offsite prefabrication, modular construction, and the efficiency of the construction process.
– A 30% reduction in overall construction time compared to traditional methods, which not only accelerated project completion but also reduced labour costs.
– A 25% reduction in carbon emissions during the construction phase, contributing to a greener and more sustainable building process.
During the on-site phase, excavation and removal of chalk were necessary for the creation of the sunken front driveway and basement garages. Retaining walls were meticulously constructed, and substructures were built to prepare for the installation of the timber frames. The house frames and sections were prefabricated off-site using volumetric modular timber frame construction at a specialised factory, which ensured precise detailing, airtightness and quality control.
Environmental Impact and Sustainability
We recognise the urgent need for sustainable construction practices. By embracing MMC, the project achieved remarkable environmental benefits, including an 80% reduction in waste materials, resulting in fewer resources consumed and fewer emissions produced. This is particularly significant in an industry where the utilisation of natural resources is extensive, making construction one of the largest consumers of resources in the UK.
Traditional construction methods often contribute to emissions through material production and transportation, as well as significant waste production. In contrast, MMC offers a faster construction pace, making it a preferred choice for meeting deadlines, reducing labor costs, and ultimately minimising waste.
We are proud to set a new standard in eco-conscious, design-led architecture by successfully delivering three modern homes that not only enhance the landscape but also contribute positively to the environment.