The £4.7m contract for Clanmil Housing Association will also be the first offsite housing scheme to be built in Northern Ireland.
The use of the McAvoy offsite housing system is expected to reduce the build programme by around 60% to 40 weeks.
Designed by Knox Clayton Architects, the Joymount development in Carrickfergus will provide 40 new homes for the social and affordable housing residents.
It will have eight one- and two-bedroom apartments for couples and families, 17 two-bedroom apartments for older people, and 12 two-bedroom houses. There will also be three detached bungalows for families with complex needs. The scheme is due for completion in spring 2019.
The homes will be manufactured and fully fitted out offsite at The McAvoy Group’s production centre in Lisburn, Northern Ireland.
McAvoy will manufacture 111 steel-framed building modules and the homes will be installed on site, complete with bathrooms, kitchens, partitions and glazing.
It was only last week that McAvoy announced that it was moving into modular housing, although it also said then that it could get from foundations to moving-in day in just seven days rather than the 40 weeks it will take at Joymount.
Clanmil Housing Association development director Carol McTaggart said, “We have been exploring different delivery models for social housing to help address the rising cost of building materials, the shortage of skilled labour in the construction industry in Northern Ireland, and the uncertainty created by Brexit. There are currently 24,000 households in housing stress in Northern Ireland. We want to be able to deliver new homes more quickly for people on the housing waiting list whilst still maintaining our high standards of design and build quality. We also need a solution that will deliver a range of energy-efficient homes with affordable running costs for our tenants.”
She continued: “Significant time savings can be achieved with offsite construction. Offsite manufacture avoids delays caused by poor weather and it improves both quality and health and safety – with less impact on the environment. By partnering with McAvoy on this pioneering project and using advanced offsite construction technology, we believe we can reduce the build programme for these 40 new homes by around 56 weeks which is crucial to reducing waiting lists.”
McAvoy Group managing director Eugene Lynch said: “This scheme is the first to use our new modular housing solution and successfully demonstrates its application for apartments, detached and semi-detached homes. It also illustrates our capabilities as a principal contractor. We are not just supplying building modules on to a pre-prepared site but are responsible for the full range of services for Clanmil – from site preparation and clearance of this brownfield site to design, manufacture, factory fitting out, building installation, landscaping and infrastructure. We look forward to creating a much needed and vibrant new community for this area.”