MTX fast-track “project speed”

modular building construction

In a year that has been marked by challenges beyond our imagination, there were also moments to celebrate for MTX. The fast-track “project speed” was an initiative to build hospital wards for Hereford County Hospital better, greener, faster. If you recognise this mantra, you may have heard it spoken by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who made a visit to the construction site earlier in 2020. “Build better. Build greener. Build faster” was the demand made on the building sector by the Prime Minister.

Project Speed is part of an initiative by the current Government to provide £3 billion of capital investment into the NHS. For the MTX team, it was exciting to greet the Prime Minister who came to inspect the £12 million project. Johnson was keen to see the progress made on the project, which will provide three state-of-the-art wards in just 11 months for the Hereford hospital. This is a total of 72 extra beds at a time when the NHS needs all the resources it can get.

The Conservative Government call Project peed the most radical reforms to the country’s planning system since the end of the second world war. It seemed that PM left having acknowledged that modular building methods can deliver high-quality construction in 50% of the time.

How MTX build better

The old days of prefabricated huts are long gone. When you have a modular building delivered to site, you are gaining a highly engineered solution that has gone through exceptional factory Quality Control processes. A team of architects and designers have worked to refine the design, and constant reflection and improvement of factory processes mean a top-quality end-product.

Not only is the building of a superior design, but the construction methods are also better. As much of the work is done off-site, there is much less vehicle movement around the site. You can imagine that on a live working site like a hospital, there are considerable advantages to the health and safety of this reduction in traffic. Indeed, there are also fewer workers on-site cause potential congestions issues on a site that needs to run smoothly.

In short, MTX modern methods of construction (MMC) delivers the build better agenda because it offers a safer construction site and minimised disruption.

How MTX build greener

The buildings are constructed from a set of components stored at the factory. There is limited wastage, as the same parts are used on most projects. Therefore, the estimate is a 60% reduction in waste from construction activities ending up in the landfill.

The buildings themselves can also be deconstructed in the same way they are constructed. The parts can be decommissioned and then recycled into future products. This fits within a sustainability agenda, as there is no need to use energy to manufacture components that will be discarded in the future. It also means that there will be no need for demolition and therefore again a reduction in waste landing at the rubbish dump.

However, the environmental credentials of modular construction extend beyond the building phase. The end facility will also perform much better, improved energy performance, natural light intake and air quality. Although there must be reduced carbon emissions during construction, the long-term impact of the modular buildings on emissions will be lower too.

How MTX build faster

However, above all else, modular construction is quicker. There are common-sense and straightforward reasons for this. The groundworks and the construction of the superstructure can happen at the same time. Therefore, rather than wait for the hole to be dug and the foundations to be laid, the building itself can be constructed off-site. It is delivered complete, ready for the Mechanical and Electrical fit-out. This MEP fit-out can also be sped up, as pre-manufacture can be used here, as can building finishes.

The average modular build time is a 50% saving on traditional construction methods. The end date is also much easier to guarantee. The chance of delay due to weather and scheduling of subcontractors are largely eliminated. The factory is staffed with a team of skilled craftsmen to work on each part of the build as it flows along the “conveyor belt”. Therefore, there is also little need to plan for contingency, there is often no overrun in the budget either.

In short, MTX modern methods of construction (MMC) delivers this agenda to build faster with ease. Long before the Prime Minister felt an urgency for capital build projects in the NHS, MTX have been delivered facilities to a tighter deadline than other construction methods.