State of the art building technologies
7 July 2020
Construction is underway on Busby Street in Blockhouse Bay, but not in the way you might think.
The three-level walk up apartments contain 18 two-bedroom state homes, which are being delivered using off-site building technologies.
The project uses Cross Laminated Timber (CLT), a building system which Kāinga Ora, and formerly Housing New Zealand, has been among the first to adopt extensively in New Zealand.
CLT uses timber panels which are factory cut, transported and then lifted into place on site much like precast concrete panels. At Busby Street, further innovations are incorporated by using engineered light timber frame panels and pod bathrooms and laundries.
It is the first of a four-project Kāinga Ora research and development programme which will combine these technologies to enable the delivery of homes manufactured to a factory level quality.
The development is a collaboration betweem XLam, the CLT manufacturer, Concision, who will supply the engineered panels and bathroom and laundry pods, RM Design, the architect, and Miles Construction, the build partner.
Kainga Ora’s Business Innovation, Research and Design Director Tim Campbell says off-site manufacturing has many benefits. “We are working closely with industry to grow our offsite capability because we believe it has a really important role to play in improving productivity.”
The off-site technologies employed at Busby St can be assembled safely and efficiently on site, allowing Kāinga Ora to deliver homes more quickly for people in need. The installation process got underway on 25 June 2020 and is expected to take eight weeks.
The extensive use of timber products enables a long-term store of carbon, making it a more sustainable approach to building. CLT also has a low-energy use in its production and its supply chain can be tracked to ensure the timber comes from sustainable sources.
The factory-built bathrooms and laundries incorporated into the project have the potential to improve quality, while streamlining the design and delivery processes. Initial results suggest it will deliver more predictable outcomes in terms of capital and whole-of-life costs.
Page updated: 7 July 2020