A trio of housing projects across North Norfolk have been selected for the next stage of Ingleton Wood’s ground-breaking ACCEPT project.
Workers at our sites in Bodham, Trunch and Great Ryburgh have been testing the very latest technology to help them manage construction and reduce the performance gap – the difference between the quality of a building on paper compared to reality.
The vision is to lower the risk of something going wrong on site, allowing real time access and updates to plans and other paperwork.
ACCEPT, which stands for Assistant for Quality Check during Construction Execution Processes for Energy-efficient buildings, is a €4.4 million research and innovation project funded by the European Commission.
The sites we have selected are all projects that we are completing on behalf of Broadland Housing Association.
Edward Godden, Ingleton Wood’s European Project Coordinator, who is based in our Norwich office, recently addressed 250 delegates in Brussels.
He said: “Our work has been selected from more than 50 other research projects across Europe as an example of how game-changing technologies can be developed by working closely with small and medium sized businesses that are directly involved in the construction industry.
“We are currently trialling several apps on a number of sites and we’re already finding that this emerging technology is helping to improve communication between designers and builders, aiding the delivery of more thermally efficient construction.
“We have engaged with more than 500 construction professionals as part of the apps’ development, and their input has been critical to our research. It could completely revolutionise the future of building sites.”
One key focus has been the development of a Site Manager App (SiMaApp), which aims to help managers access the large amounts of design data created in consultants’ offices.
This includes the BIM Explorer which makes use of next-generation Google Tango technology to accurately present 3D design models in the correct location on the construction site.
Another piece of technology under review is the Construction Operative App (CoOp App) which runs on smart glasses to provide live data to construction workers, including health and safety warnings, design notes and delivery schedules. This is primarily being tested in Belgium and Spain, but initial trials in Norfolk have been positively received by the industry.
Broadland Housing Association has been pioneering energy efficient design for its new housing developments in Norfolk for many years. Whilst it’s development team and designers have been able to learn best practice from across the UK and abroad, main contractors have faced difficulties in delivering new homes to their intended high standards.
Ed Mumford-Smith, Head of Development at Broadland Housing Association, said: “We are delighted to be involved in the ACCEPT Project. Working with our consultant and contractor teams, Ingleton Wood and their European partners have developed technologies that allow designers to convey up to date and more complex information to site managers and construction workers on the ground.
“Site managers are becoming more connected to architects back in their offices than ever before. Site managers can also better understand design intent and support subcontractors, getting it right first time.”
As well as helping builders and surveyors on site it is hoped the technology can be turned towards sales, showing potential buyers what their future home will look like, as well as allowing developers to better plan their proposals – ultimately leading to cheaper and more environmentally friendly homes.
Ingleton Wood, which is working alongside local building firms John Youngs Ltd and Smith of Honingham on the project, expects to present its prototypes to the European Commission in December 2017.