18 housing associations form northern alliance to deliver off-site homes
The Off-Site Homes Alliance (OSHA) currently consists of 18 registered housing providers across the north of England: Bernicia, Bolton at Home, Gentoo, Great Places Housing Group, The Guinness Partnership, Irwell Valley Homes, Jigsaw, Mosscare St Vincent’s, One Manchester, Ongo, Riverside, Rochdale Boroughwide Housing, South Yorkshire Housing Association, Stockport Homes, Thirteen Group, Together Housing, Trafford Housing Trust, Wythenshawe Community Housing Group, Your Housing Group and Yorkshire Housing Group.
The group, along with other supporting partners, are collaborating to deliver “high quality affordable homes across the north, using 2d and 3d MMC (Modern Methods of Construction) /Offsite technologies.”
What is off-site construction?
The term is used when the whole or part of a build is done away from the location of the site, usually in a specially designed factory. Modules or components are then transported to the site.
The alliance plans to work with off-site technologies and the off-site supply chain to deliver its target of circa 9,000 homes per annum from 2023 onwards across the north.
OSHA says this “coordinated approach will provide sustainable options, at low risk and with a controlled mass customisation catalogue of designs for alliance partners and for a review of a JV opportunity as and when required in the latter phases of the programme.”
The alliance is being lead by project director Mike Ormesher, previously head of innovation and technical at modular housing specialist, Top Hat. Coordinated by Ormesher, the alliance is currently focused on completing a business case and setting up operational governance and road mapping.
Speaking with website Inside Housing Ormesher said: “The first objective of the alliance is to understand the robust systems out there, to stress-test them on sites and to aggregate the demand across all of the registered providers involved, so that suppliers aren’t looking to come in and do five houses or three houses because pilot projects are a nightmare for manufacturers to manage within their environment.”
In an interview with Construction Manager magazine, Pete Bojar, executive director of growth and assets at Great Places said: “OSHA provides the opportunity for housing associations to drive and support the development of the off-site homes industry, leaving behind the endless ‘pilot projects’ culture to secure strong supply chain partnerships for the future.”
OSHA currently have 75 supply chain partners registered on their purchasing system and are evaluating 36 off-site technologies.