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Robo-chop: robots to cut construction time and cost

A development featuring 350 homes in Worthing hopes to become the first site in Britain to benefit from modular housing using robotic construction.

Sheila Manchester

Plans for Worthing's new Station Square image

A seaside town in Sussex is hoping to swap rock for robots as it bids to address the shortage of new homes in the county.

Developer Mosaic Capital presented ambitious plans to the 60 – strong Sussex Property Alliance, detailing how it has set up an advanced robotic facility to facilitate slicker house building at its Worthing site.

Worthing development team image

Mosaic Capital development team

The Station Square development – a mixed-use town centre site formerly known as Teville Gate – requires 1,000 self-supporting steel-framed pods, which will form a large part of the residential element. The developer is putting its faith in robotics, which will work in tandem with architects renowned for their modular design expertise, to create the pods off site in a designated facility. Once finished in the factory, the pre-fabricated pods will simply be craned into position on site.

While robots are often viewed negatively – think Terminator, Matrix and Blade Runner – automation can improve house building efficiency, fill skills shortages and bring down the cost of construction when harnessed correctly. Aized Sheikh at Mosaic Capital says the robot-led offsite construction will cut on-site time by over 40 per cent (when compared to conventional constriction methods), and will reduce construction costs by up to 20 per cent.

March 22, 2018

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