Architects: Facit Homes
Photography: Facit Homes / Mark Cocksedge
Location: Hertfordshire, UK
Hertfordshire House is a five-bedroom family home in rural Hertfordshire for Facit Homes‘ clients Celia and Diana. The project was built entirely with the Facit Homes’ D-Process system – the total time taken, from breaking ground to moving in, was just seven months.
This impressive timescale was made possible by a working method that Facit calls the D-Process, which applies the digital techniques usually found in manufacturing to the creation of individual homes. The company has developed proprietary systems that link BIM (Building Information Modeling) to small-scale digital manufacturing tools, allowing them to construct each house from a series of precision-cut timber components. Unlike most prefabricated housing models, Facit’s system enables every project to be entirely bespoke – every design is driven by the context, brief, environmental conditions and local planning requirements.
From the outset, Celia and Diana were concerned that their new home would achieve very high standards of environmental performance. Facit’s building components are highly insulated timber units and the company works closely with the sustainable timber industry to ensure that the raw materials are responsibly sourced. To avoid the complex logistics, expense and standardisation of factory mass production, Facit uses on-site mobile production facilities. These compact units contain all the equipment needed to manufacture the components for each house, eliminating the need to transport large-scale pre-fabricated structures – and carbon emissions.
The timber chassis of the Hertfordshire house, which includes the roof, internal and external walls, was fabricated and erected in just eight weeks. The second construction phase involved using local labour for plastering, finishes and electrical work, which proved a straightforward process as the channels for the wiring were already in place. The final stage in the build was the digital production of smaller furniture elements and stairs in Facit’s London workshop, where they were pre-finished and later installed on site.