Prime minister Boris Johnson has promised to ‘build, build, build’ – with a £5bn programme for more homes, hospitals, schools, roads and more across the UK.
But is build, build, build really the answer? Or, is that what the UK construction industry has been doing for years, years, years?
Is it then more about delivering what is promised and supporting Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) that are not only able to produce the numbers of buildings that we need, but also to deliver that number in a safer, more sustainable way than how they were in pre-Covid-19?
One scalable, safer, tested and still rather exciting method of construction is offsite manufacturing.
Building entire homes, parts of schools, or hospitals in a factory-controlled environment under safety controlled and regulated procedures is a logical solution to a world still reeling from the shock of a pandemic. Being able to construct in a consistent environment will protect construction professionals while delivering a high-quality product. Combining this technique with cutting edge materials will result in part of the solution.
It is a view that timber panel specialists MEDITE SMARTPLY hold in high regard and is an industry its latest products support.
“We see offsite construction playing a critical role in the governments ‘build, build, build plan”, comments Roly Ward, National Account Manager for Frameworks at MEDITE SMARTPLY.
“In order to support advances in MMC and the offsite sector, we have developed specialist products suited to specific applications throughout the entire building envelope. Our latest offsite roofing offer combines SMARTPLY ULTIMA OSB4, SMARTPLY MAX OSB3 and SMARTPLY MAX FR OSB3, panels all available in large scale format and crucially in fire and non-fire rated variants.”
Crucially, all MEDITE SMARTPLY roofing products are made with FSC® certified timber from sustainably managed forests—as is standard across all products manufactured by the company.
“The largescale nature of our panels - up to 2.8m wide by 7.5m long – mean that contractors can construct entire roofs, or sides of buildings with minimal effort and time. Plus, if working with another person, the panels will allow social distancing by their very nature.”
SMARTPLY ULTIMA OSB4, SMARTPLY MAX OSB3 and SMARTPLY MAX FR OSB3 are available in large scale formats and up to 40mm thick.
As part of the wider SMARTPLY range, they also boast a manufacturing formula with no added formaldehyde, increasing safety credentials and protecting those that will work with the products. This, as well as their sustainability credentials are positive factors that can contribute toward environmental building standard credits such as BREEAM, LEED and The WELL Standard, for any project.