COMMUNITY and CO-HOUSING
PH15 is ideal for sustainable community housing projects where early cost certainty is important, as is ease of construction method. PH15 will always deliver genuinely sustainable housing that ensures exceptional low energy bills, and meets high environmental aspirations. Pre-cutting the PH15 frame off-site ensures much quicker erection times and requires only standard carpentry skill. If achieving cost savings through the use of sweat equity is key to your project, then PH15 could be a huge help in achieving that goal, without losing quality or performance. We will also deliver construction training to assist you. The demands of organising a group build project, especially finding land and securing finance are sufficient challenges, so let PH15 address these other important aspects of your project.
Assisting group build projects that are ‘affordable’ is part of our core business aim. To achieve this it is extremely helpful if projects are referred to us as early as possible – we can then advise on ways to optimise costs relating to the design. The cost of PH15 currently varies from £400/sqm up to £800/sqm of GIA, for the same range of components. This illustrates that careful consideration of the design, prior to planning, is crucial if you want to achieve an affordable housing outcome.
The community housing network is growing, but it is still an innovative and challenging model in the UK. We want to see this sector thrive. PH15 can take some of the strain, ensuring that you achieve an environmentally responsible and energy efficient housing project. Community housing does challenge the current UK housing delivery model (rooted in volume house builders who build for profit alone), and is therefore important. Adopting PH15 ensures one essential outcome is achieved, freeing up time to address the other significant challenges of successfully delivering a new community housing asset.
The need for more social housing in the UK is more urgent than ever, with estimates of up to 300,000 new homes needed every year, to meet the current UK housing need. This volume has not been achieved since post World War II, when innovative construction and off site solutions were applied to maximum effect, backed up by government legislation and support. Today we are pouring vast sums for social housing provision directly into the pockets of private landlords, because there is insufficient social sector housing supply.
Government has made some commitments to change, creating conditions for Councils to restart building new social housing. Councils such as Exeter, have been forward thinking and made an early commitment to build their new housing to the Passivhaus standard. Many councils are in the process of finalizing their housing strategies. Social housing currently includes affordable rent or sale (80% of market rate), and social rent (50-65% of market rate).
Social housing should be good quality housing. Currently the quality of our housing stock is poor – often damp, expensive to heat & with associated health impacts. Building with PH15 would eliminate fuel poverty in a single step. PH15 would deliver excellent indoor air quality – the benefits for health are noticeable to occupants, especially elderly tenants. An independent study at our project for Lambeth Council has already gathered significant data to support this.
PH15 ensures early cost certainty and de-risks achieving the challenging air-tightness targets for Passivhaus. PH15 projects have not had problems on site achieving well below the 0.6 ach @50Pa air-tightness target required. We believe that constructing with PH15 makes sound economic sense, and could be cost comparable to building to current Building Regulations standards. Supply of the PH15 system for social housing at Akerman Road cost £406/sqm of GIA (gross internal floor area). We advise some adjustment to tender procedures to avoid unnecessary cost escalation, arising from the ‘fear’ factor and the risk aversion that is endemic in the building industry.
PHH are looking for partners that are open to working outside the conventional ‘boxes’ and who are looking for construction and process solutions that suit the challenges of today. Currently architects are being commissioned to continually re-design the wheel, project-by-project, and providers are continually moving between different construction teams and solutions. This is not the answer for delivering consistent, high quality, affordable & sustainable housing. PH15 System is ideal for social housing providers who have decided to deliver new housing to (or near to) Passivhaus levels of performance, and appreciate the need to address the risks of cost escalation, and avoid problems with construction quality on site.