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Architects combine with Jewson on ‘design-and-deliver’ homes

A network of energy-conscious architects is being planned to ‘design and deliver’ flat-pack homes across the country

The initiative is the brainchild of BedZED architect Bill Dunster, principal of ZEDfactory, who has teamed up with builders’ merchant Jewson to supply off-the-shelf homes to what they believe will be a mass-market of self-builders.

The modular scheme, called RuralZED, features a biomass boiler, solar thermal heating, a 3.6kw solar panel and passive house-standard insulation. Last year at Upton, Northampton, a prototype achieved level 6 in the Code for Sustainable Homes, making it officially zero carbon.

Dunster said: ‘We wanted something that would appeal to a large-volume housebuilder or white van men. You have to remember, architects don’t design most mass volume housing; [this scheme] is trying to get a look-in where we usually don’t.’

The practice is looking for a further 12 architects to design variations of the home. ‘The idea is to have a kit in parts, so you could have a street with 12 houses that are completely different but built with the same supply chain,’ added Dunster.

Construction materials are delivered on-site in two shipping containers, both of which can be used for dry storage before being returned, after completion, to Jewson, where they are restocked for the next client.

A three-bedroom unit costs from around £126,000 and the four-bedroom unit from £136,000. The construction cost is estimated at £50,000.

AJ understands that brighton architect Alan Phillips is one of a number of architects in talks to establish a country-wide network.

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