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HTA Design wins planning for ‘world’s tallest modular scheme’ in Croydon

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HTA Design has won planning permission for what the practice claims is the world’s tallest modular scheme on a site in Croydon, south London

Proposals for the 41,819m² scheme in George Street include a 38-storey and a 44-storey tower, providing 546 homes to rent, an art gallery and a café.

HTA managing partner Simon Bayliss said: ‘The technological advances made in modular construction mean that projects of this size are possible in London and throughout the rest of the UK.

‘The towers at George Street show that choosing to go modular doesn’t mean you must sacrifice great design. Modern offsite construction has a proven track record and needs to be front and centre of plans to solve the housing crisis.’ 

The project, once built, will usurp two 40-storey towers designed by ADDP Architects in Singapore as the world’s tallest modular development. 

 Work is expected to start on site this month, with a completion date scheduled for late 2019. 

Architect’s view 

As well as reducing disruption for locals, modular construction creates huge value for investors as it means apartments can be rented out much earlier than if they were built using conventional methods. The modules that make up the towers are constructed offsite in a controlled factory environment to ensure a higher-quality finish, with 80 per cent less waste, fewer onsite workers and greater certainty on costs and time.

The scheme will be made from nearly 1,500 modules that are manufactured and installed by Vision Modular Systems from its purpose-built manufacturing facility in Bedford, where the majority of the fit-out is installed, including electrics and plumbing, before the module is transported to the site. This approach saves vital time during the construction process, dramatically reduces onsite waste and lessens the demand for labour onsite.

Tide Construction, its associate company Vision Modular Systems, and HTA Design held the record for Europe’s tallest modular tower with their student accommodation scheme in Wembley, Apex House. With a height of 90m and built using 679 modules, the 29-storey project was completed in 12 months.

Project data 

Location Croydon
Type of project Build to Rent development
Architect HTA Design 
Landscape architect HTA Design 
Planning consultant HTA Design 
Structural engineer MJH Structural Engineers
M&E consultant Vector
Quantity surveyor Cast
Main contractor Tide Construction 
Start on site date December 2017
Completion date Late 2019
Contract duration 24 months
Gross internal floor area 41,819m²
Form of contract and/or procurement Design and Build

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