Thursday, 19 January 2017

L&G to test offsite construction on 30-home site

An institutional investor that plans to launch a £500m investment in offsite construction is planning to build its first 30 units within the next few months.

Legal and General (L&G) intends to build a test site in an unnamed location this summer, with production expected to take two weeks.

At a conference in London on Thursday, Tom Ground, chief executive at L&G Homes, said: “The test site that we haven’t yet announced is about 30 houses, it will hopefully take us two weeks to build.”

It is understood developers have agreed to build samples of the homes which are likely to be onsite in May ahead of the factory’s launch in June.

Mr Ground would not be drawn on the location of the site and a spokesperson for L&G said no contracts had been signed.

Inside Housing revealed last month that L&G is set to invest £55m into the construction of a factory near Leeds which will be able to pump out 3,000 houses or 4,500 flats per year.

It then plans to invest £500m in building more factories across the UK.

The factory will be able to deliver complete homes with full internal features and modifiable designs.

Offsite construction has long been a priority for government, which sees it as a potential solution to the housing crisis, but has lacked the financial backing and capacity to catch on at scale.

L&G is setting up a new arm known as L&G Homes to manage the new development. It has £7.9bn earmarked to invest in housing and infrastructure.

Peter Quinn, business development director at house builder Lovell, last month said the establishment of the factory would be “an absolute game-changer” for the industry.

In January, L&G also announced a tie-up with Dutch pension fund PGGM to build 3,000 private rented sector homes.

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