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The Future of Bathroom Pod Construction Comes to UK Construction Week

Offsite Solutions, the UK’s leading bathroom pod specialist, will be bringing a luxury bathroom pod to this year’s UK Construction Week event.

This exciting development will demonstrate some of the latest advancements in offsite manufacturing which are revolutionising bathroom construction in the UK – from high-end apartments and hotels to affordable housing, care homes, hospitals, and student accommodation.

The unprecedented demand for factory-built bathrooms across the construction industry is being driven by the shortage of skilled labour, issues with consistent quality, cost uncertainty around Brexit, and the construction industry’s poor record of on time and on budget delivery.

One of the key drivers for offsite is to reduce programme. By moving bathroom construction into a controlled factory environment, the programme saving on a large residential project can be as much as 20 weeks. This means a faster return on investment for the developer, less risk for the contractor, earlier occupation for the client – and much greater certainty of completion on programme and to budget.

According to Richard Tonkinson, Executive Director of Offsite Solutions, “Building bathrooms on site is notoriously challenging and often causes issues with delays, health and safety management, and poor workmanship which impacts on quality and defects.”

“By contrast, factory-built bathrooms are delivered to site ready for installation, providing a quality of finish that is simply unachievable consistently on a building site. Cutting-edge manufacturing technology and quality-controlled production ensures each bathroom pod is delivered to site as a complete, fully tested unit – and this is revolutionising the efficiency and sustainability of construction across a host of sectors. We look forward to demonstrating this at the UK’s premier construction event.”

Reducing Risk

The use of an offsite solution for bathrooms and ensuite shower rooms allows a number of trades to be combined under one contract, reducing risk. This simplifies cost management and cash flow forecasting as the cost of factory works is far more predictable and stable than site-based labour and multiple subcontractors.

Labour rates, particularly in urban centres are growing disproportionately to the rest of the UK and the issue is set to become even more critical with further wage inflation predicted post-Brexit. Outsourcing bathroom construction to an offsite specialist can realise cost savings as well as fix costs at an earlier stage in the programme.

Site-based bathroom construction requires around seven different trades and 10-15 operations plus the required drying times. With bathroom pods, this is reduced to a single supplier, which means less risk of delays and far simpler procurement.

Design Flexibility

There have been significant advances in bathroom pod technology and there is now a wide range of solutions for different building types and site challenges. Offsite Solutions offers:

  • Steel-framed pods – a premium aesthetic with ceramic-tiled finishes and a high level of design flexibility.
  • GRP pods – widely used for student accommodation, healthcare, care homes and social housing. Lower capital expenditure and low maintenance.
  • Hybrid concrete/steel pods – a concrete base and steel-framed walls for high specification wet rooms
  • Demountable pods – a sectional structure for projects without access for fully assembled pods, such as refurbishments
  • Hybrid GRP pods – an enhanced finish and improved aesthetics with ceramic tiling and recesses. Applications include build-to-rent.

Improving Efficiency on Site

Site safety is a huge issue for contractors. Moving construction offsite into a safer factory environment is a key benefit and research has shown that preassembly significantly reduces accident rates.

Offsite manufacture also uses lean production techniques and better management of materials. Efficient processes optimise the use of resources and waste can be designed out. These factors combine to help to reduce waste in the factory to below 1 per cent.

Stephen Wade-Palmer, Specification Manager at Offsite Solutions, will be speaking at UK Construction Week on 10th October, advising specifiers how to procure bathroom pods to maximise efficiency.

A luxury bathroom pod | Offsite Solutions Bathroom pod installation | Offsite Solutions Bathroom pod manufacture | Offsite Solutions

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