Leading timber frame designer, manufacturer and supplier Oregon Timber Frame Ltd is currently supplying structural timber frames to a new brownfield site development for CALA Homes Ltd by the Albert Dock of Edinburgh’s historic port of Leith.
Ocean Drive, Leith is a development of 32 three and four bedroom, 3-storey townhouses and nine flats, built in four distinct blocks. In keeping with this lively re-generated Port area, the architecture of the development has a nautical theme, with the design of one of the apartments representing a ship’s prow.
The nature of this brownfield site was such that piling was required, making timber frame an ideal choice for the construction.
Oregon’s Technical Director Robin Dodyk explains:
“Timber frame’s lightweight nature ensured that the size and design of the piles could be kept to an absolute minimum, avoiding any damage to the historic dock walls.”
As always with Oregon, a fabric first approach was taken to the design, ensuring that the completed homes are highly energy efficient and that no renewable technologies will be required to achieve a high performing, highly sustainable development.
Leading timber frame designer, manufacturer and erector Oregon Timber Frame Ltd has adapted its processes to deliver accelerated, energy efficient build programmes for its house builder customers.
Oregon is currently rolling out this new, accelerated system on a project in Edinburgh where it is building several show houses for a major client and will be able to deliver a saving of between six to nine weeks on the client’s standard build schedules.
Sales and Marketing Director Elaine Wilson explains:
“For many years, by its very nature, timber frame has been the ideal construction method to use when a fabric first route is wanted, delivering well-documented energy efficiency advantages in terms of low U-values, air-tightness and thermal performance.
“But while energy efficiency continues to be vital, the recent improvement in available credit for mortgages and the introduction of Help to Buy means that speed of build is once more king in terms of house builder’s profitability. We recognized this early in the year and by working closely with key customers we developed an accelerated, cost-neutral build process which is contributing significantly to performance on site and speed to marketplace – without compromising on quality of product.”
This maintenance of product quality means timber frame continues to be ideally placed to help developers meet new and improved energy efficiency targets.
Ms Wilson says:
“At Oregon we see the recent introduction of FEE as a positive step as it encourages the use of a high performance fabric first approach, which we at Oregon have been delivering for years through our OregonIP™ insulated panel system.”
Oregon Timber Frame Ltd has successfully completed a £5m PFI project for leading contractor Wates Living Space, based across several sites in Kirklees District, West Yorkshire.
Comprising the supply and erection of 340 units, over no less than 24 sites, ranging in size from 4 to 40 units, the project was delivered to programme with no major problems or delays, and no accidents.
The project represents Oregon’s largest insulated panel project to date and was constructed using Oregon’s IP™ Intelligent Panel system: key to the company’s brief was that CfSH Level 4 should be achieved on a “Fabric First” basis – and it was.
Some 90% of the units were two-storey and, in response to their location across a variety of sites throughout the district, a variety of finishes were required, ranging from rendered panels to natural stonework.
Asked about any major challenges on this significant project, Oregon’s Technical Director Robin Dodyk said:
“Without doubt the variety and location of sites, many of which were small gap sites surrounded by tightly built up areas, was the brain teaser for this project. This meant that site management and Health and Safety issues were paramount and had to be particularly carefully factored in to our construction and delivery programme. However these are areas where Oregon has well established and robust systems in place, so we were able to achieve this very effectively.”
Testament to Oregon’s success is the fact that the company was nominated in two categories for Wates Annual Awards – Health and Safety and Sub Contractor of the Year – going on to win Highly Commended in the latter.