Today Swan / NU living announced the acquisition of a 15-year lease of Basildon 117, a newly built 116,841 sq ft industrial unit, opposite their existing modular housing factory in Basildon, Essex. Unit 117, which was developed by Panattoni, will be used by Swan, through its NU living development subsidiary, to manufacture light gauge steel modular housing and will operate alongside Swan’s existing Cross Laminated Timber volumetric system delivered in its current factory.
This expanded capacity will not only allow Swan to build high quality modular homes for its own secured development pipeline but also will position NU living, in time, to provide additional capacity to support Swan’s partners and other stakeholders in meeting the growing expectation from Government for a proportion of modular housing to be incorporated in their own programmes. With both factories in full operation, NU living will eventually be capable of delivering over 1,000 modular homes each year.
Geoff Pearce, Swan’s Deputy Chief Executive commented: ” The acquisition of our second factory is a key strategic move, which will give us the additional capacity to build at height using a steel framed approach and to increase the use of pre-manufacturing and componentisation which will deliver more high quality homes, more quickly.
We were early adopters of this way of working and we have worked hard since 2017 to realise the opportunities and benefits that modular construction can bring. We are confident that, in line with our Corporate Strategy aims, this expansion will help us deliver the majority of our future developments using precision engineered, low carbon homes.
Factory 2 makes us well placed to support the Government’s growing focus on MMC – including the recent announcement that development programmes funded through the Affordable Homes Programme 2021-26 include at least 25% off-site manufacture and, in time, will enable us to support our partners to meet their modular delivery targets also.”
The second NU living factory is expected, by the time it is in full production, to create over 120 additional jobs in Essex and will see further significant investment by Swan in training and skills at a time when local investment in retraining and new local opportunities is critical to the businesses wider response to COVID-19.
It is expected that Swan’s second factory will commence production in Spring 2021.