No need to sacrifice speed for sustainability

12 April 2016 by Matt Trace in Construction/Architectural

No need to sacrifice speed for sustainability

Metsä Wood’s pre-fabricated components helped Inspired Villages quickly and efficiently erect temporary marketing suites for its new, luxury retirement apartment developments. The recyclability of Metsä Wood’s products also allows the buildings to be dismantled and re-assembled again on other sites when required. 

Two temporary marketing suites are currently the only buildings on green fields in two quite different locations. Each pasture will soon be transformed into 150 luxury apartments for a newly launched venture called Inspired Villages.

The developments - one situated on the edge of the historic town of Warwick and the other located near the picturesque village of Tattenhall in Cheshire, will provide high-end retirement accommodation for people over the age of 55 and aim to be occupied by summer 2016.

Keith Cockell, Chairman of English Care Villages said: “We formed a partnership with Places for People, one of the biggest property providers in the UK, and established a new brand called Inspired Villages. English Care Villages provides 25 years of experience in the retirement sector, while the funding and legal framework is the responsibility of Places for People. The marketing suites are for Inspired Villages and the developments will be the first two under this name”.

To enable potential buyers to see what the new apartments offer, temporary showrooms designed by Leisure Concepts were needed on the sites. In a move away from the conventional Portakabin, Metsä Wood’s Kerto Q, Kerto S and RIPA products were specified.

Kerto Q was used for the 12m long and 69mm thick wall panels. Meanwhile, Kerto RIPA was specified for the floors and flat roof due to its ability to stabilise the whole structure. Kerto RIPA is a combination of Kerto Q panels together with Kerto S beams to provide strength, dimensional precision and stability.

Metsä Wood products were chosen for a number of reasons. The Kerto Q large panel construction allowed for faster construction and all of the products were more affordable than post and beam construction, long spans in the floors and roofs could be achieved with the Kerto RIPA system. The recyclability of the products was another significant benefit.

Simon Cockell, Keith’s son who is also a carpenter and developer, helped to build the single-storey showrooms, which employ Metsä Wood Kerto Q panels on three elevations. The front elevation is glazed, featuring a 2.5m overhang and a decked terrace to the front.  Cockell said it took about seven days to build the first marketing suite, and only four days to construct the second.

“With the Metsä Wood Kerto product, everything was pre-cut and manufactured at the factory so there was no wastage and the speed of erection was very fast and the buildings could be made watertight early on. We also like the fact that we’ve made a building that is demountable and could be re-used,” said Simon Cockell.

The plan is for the 100 square metre buildings to be on the sites for approximately 18 months. They will then be dismantled with 70% of the structure being re-used and the remaining 30% of the materials will be replaced, such as carpets and finishes. The structures will then be re-erected on other sites.

“I think Kerto is a great product and what I like about it is its simplicity and purity. It’s essentially a big timber box and therefore didn’t need to be lined with services and plaster. I wanted a building that was different from Portakabins and was stylish and individual and yet we had a budget to work to. The Metsä Wood Kerto product gave us the opportunity of exposing the structure of the raw material so the texture and grain of the surface could be seen instead of covering it up,” said Keith Cockell.

“We would definitely use Kerto again. We certainly envisage that we will order another couple of suites next year as we want to build more retirement villages, so we will re-use the ones we’ve got, but we will probably need more,” added Keith Cockell.