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April 12, 2024

Bouygues UK Adopts Prefab Innovation for Basement Construction

Bouygues UK Adopts Prefab Innovation for Basement Construction

Bouygues UK has partnered with Belgian precast supplier Prefaxis for the £300 million Oriel contract in Camden. This collaboration aims to revolutionise basement construction through the use of Prefaxis's Uniwall panels, a semi-prefabricated solution that promises significant benefits in terms of efficiency and cost savings.

The Uniwall Innovation

Uniwall panels offer a semi-prefabricated technique that is both watertight and load-bearing. This innovative approach eliminates the need for traditional formwork, which is typically used to contain and shape wet concrete until it becomes self-supporting. By doing so, Uniwall streamlines the construction process, offering several key advantages:

  1. Time Savings: The prefabricated nature of Uniwall panels allows for faster installation compared to traditional methods, significantly reducing the overall construction timeline.
  2. Cost Efficiency: With the elimination of traditional formwork, there are substantial savings in both labor and material costs. This cost efficiency is further enhanced by minimising the need for concrete repairs.
  3. Enhanced Placement and Execution: The precision of prefabricated panels ensures better placement and execution, leading to a higher quality finished product.

How Uniwall Works

The Uniwall system is considered semi-prefabricated because, while the panels themselves are pre-made, the space between the soil-retaining technology and the Uniwall still needs to be concreted. Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of the process:

  1. Installation of Uniwall Panels: The prefabricated Uniwall panels are installed on-site, forming the initial structure of the basement walls.
  2. Concrete Pouring: The core concrete is then poured between the shoring and the prefabricated shell of the Uniwall panels.
  3. Watertight Whole: Once the concrete is set, it creates a watertight and load-bearing structure, integrating seamlessly with the soil-retaining technology.

Benefits for the Oriel Contract

The adoption of Uniwall panels for the Oriel contract in Camden is expected to deliver substantial benefits for the project. These include:

  • Reduced Construction Time: By streamlining the basement construction process, the project timeline is significantly shortened, allowing for faster project completion.
  • Cost Savings: The reduction in labor and material costs translates into considerable savings for the overall project budget.
  • Quality and Durability: The precision and quality control inherent in the prefabrication process ensure a durable and high-quality end product.

The use of Uniwall panels in the Oriel contract is a testament to Bouygues UK's forward-thinking approach to construction. This partnership with Prefaxis highlights the potential of semi-prefabricated solutions to transform traditional construction methods, offering significant benefits in terms of time, cost, and quality.

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