Blog: SECBE Awards 2022 finalist - Zero-Carbon Social Housing by ZED PODS in partnership with Bromley Council

14 April 2022

Innovation sponsored by RIFT

Zero-Carbon Social Housing by ZED PODS in partnership with Bromley Council (submitted by ZED PODS)

Innovation Constructing Excellence SECBE Awards 2022 finalist

ZED PODS, in partnership with the London Borough of Bromley, has designed and built an innovative, affordable, zero-carbon housing development above an underutilised public car park in Burnt Ash Lane. The self-contained, beautifully designed homes have been erected on steel podium to preserve over 80% of existing car parking spaces for the local community. The car park has been also upgraded with additional 5 CCTVs for the development and two 4.5m pole mounted for the carpark, 15 EV chargers, new 40 cycle storage and new areas of planting.

The project is a pioneering, environmental and socially focused development, providing 25 beautiful homes for people who are in temporary accommodation. It comprises ten one-bed flats and fifteen two-bed flats with latest enhanced energy-efficient measures which includes heat pumps, solar panels, triple glazing so that the residents can enjoy low energy bills.

It is the first development of its kind in the borough after 40 years and the first one in London.

Why the scheme is innovative?

Innovative: The modular scheme offers rapid high-quality, zero-carbon energy housing on constrained sites, not possible with conventional new build and retained 80% car parking spaces whilst providing 100% affordable housing.

Unique built: This project act as an exemplar to highlight the potential applications and benefits of using steel to deliver zero-carbon, affordable residential projects.

Zero-carbon: The scheme has been designed to achieve SAP ratings of over 100. Each house uses solar panels to generate renewable electricity, quiet running heat pumps, controlled ventilation to recover usable heat, triple glazing and LED lighting.

Fire-safety: Each apartment has its own independent structure with no structural bridging elements. This ensures robust party wall construction performance to achieve 60-minutes fire ratings and comply with Part B of the building regulations and fire safety plan.

Speed:  50% faster than any traditional construction. E.g. Steel frame and modules were installed in 4 weeks. Less disruption, noise, pollution and carbon footprint.

Social Value: South-east based Groundwork contractor and steel fabricators have been used to boost local employment & business opportunities. Identification of local suppliers was completed during the early planning stage.

Ful Turnkey service: The team has conceptualised, designed and obtained planning permission. “Hearts and mind” were won from local residents and stakeholders by installing full sized demo unit at Bromley Civic Centre. These early interventions and process innovations are key to this project’s success.

Long-term savings: E.g. Using non-combustible cementitious external claddings, alu-clad windows, powered-coated flashings & long-life standing seam roofing to reduce maintenance.

Data-driven: Use of BIM

The development is helping Bromley and other London Boroughs to rethink the use of land - providing a new and innovative solution that can help solve the affordable housing crisis by the provision of attractive and modern housing on public car parks. This development demonstrates how an innovative solution can create a community for people vulnerable to homelessness and can live securely and comfortably.

Key achievements:

  • Unique: The modular scheme offers rapid, high-quality, zero-carbon housing on constrained sites, not possible with conventional new build. This retains and regenerates existing car parking spaces whilst providing 100% affordable housing.

  • Pioneering zero-carbon development: The scheme has been designed to achieve SAP ratings of over 100. Each house uses solar panels to generate renewable electricity, quiet running heat pumps, controlled ventilation to recover usable heat, triple glazing and LED lighting.

  • Ful Turnkey Delivery: Ful Turnkey Delivery: The team has conceptualised, designed and obtained planning permission. “Hearts and mind” were won by using full sized demo unit at Bromley Civic Centre. Early process innovations helped to obtain go-ahead for council’s first modular project after 40 years.

Client: London Borough of Bromley


Find more about ZED PODS

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Find out who wins at the Constructing Excellence SECBE Awards 2022 Ceremony on Thurs 30th June 2022.


About the Innovation Award (sponsored by RIFT): Innovation is widely recognised as the critical factor for increased and sustained productivity and growth. It demonstrates an organisation’s confidence, capacity and appetite for improved performance and productivity gains. Innovation is most effective as a holistic approach that identifies both demand and ideas and is most successful when supported by collaboration between customers and the supply chain. More info.

>> Find out more about the other Constructing Excellence SECBE Awards finalists here

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