INDUSTRY EXPERTS CALL FOR MMC TASK FORCE

The construction industry needs a 'MMC Task Force' or other co-ordinating body to bring all the parties working in this field together and make a major contribution to solving the UK’s ongoing housing crisis.

That was one of the key points made at a think tank discussion on the event held at the offices of Pollard Thomas Edwards.

The practice’s Carl Vann introduced the session as host, noting the relevance of the location for the round table. Diespeker Wharf is Pollard Thomas Edwards’ studio converted from a former terrazzo factory. It was here in the 1920s that Diespeker & Co made innovative leaps in stone technology to develop the first reinforced precast terrazzo. This was, he said, an excellent setting to discuss current advances in Modern Methods of Construction (MMC).

To mark 12 months since the launch of Factory-Made Housing: A solution for London, NLA gathered together some key thinkers in the field to see what progress had been made.

And although the group believed there has been progress made in terms of new joint ventures and the inauguration of new factories to lift production of offsite homes from a number of players, there still remains an education job to be done on the benefits of this sector in terms of speed and cost to both the public and private spheres, if economies of scale can be reached.

The group met under the Chatham House Rule and made a number of points - which have been necessarily anonymised where possible.

They include:

• MMC has the ability to drive consistent quality

• Some firms are looking to offsite construction as part of a wider push towards the circular economy (which ‘needs high level government input’) and diversifying the workforce

• Factory processes allow more choice and customers are getting used to this, just as they have been with buying bespoke Nike trainers online, for example

To read the full article of points made, click here.