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'Social housing will adopt prefab within 10 years'

The chief executive of housing association giant the Peabody Trust believes most social housing developments will have prefab factories onsite within 10 years. Richard McCarthy told an Urban Summit-themed session that the future of mass social house building lies with prefabrication.

'There is some very good work going on in Scandinavian prefab, ' he said. 'It is highly likely that there will soon be much more in the construction of housing in the UK.'

Modular building manufacturer Yorkon, which gave evidence last Wednesday to the House of Commons Select Committee investigation into affordable housing, reinforced this message. The firm's managing director Keith Blanshard said the government's ambitious affordable housing targets will only be hit if architects and the construction industry adopt prefabrication.

However, Professor Anne Power of the London School of Economics said there was little chance of the widespread use of prefabication, stressing it would be destructive for the future of good design in social housing.

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