World first as Ardingly apartment block will be built in one day

Building with the masonry blocks
Building with the masonry blocks

A one-bedroom apartment block will be built in just one day in a world-first construction demonstration.

The Xella Silka Element Challenge can be seen by visitors at the South East Construction Expo in Ardingly on September 26.

Masonry Frame Systems (MFS), specialist masonry frame practitioners, will be working against the clock, constructing all the structural walls of the apartment, showing just how impressive the latest technology in Xella Silka large-format masonry blocks is, using Lissmac mini-cranes to lay each block in about six minutes.

Norman Hinckes, managing director at MFS, said: “Watch MFS build a whole apartment in just one day – the speed of construction has to be seen to be believed, whilst not losing anything in terms of quality and longevity.

“This state of the art ‘semi’ off-site masonry build system (DfMA) demonstrates all the benefits of traditional construction coupled with the speed, quality and consistency of ‘off-site’ manufacturing. This has to be the way for the future to tackle the housing shortage.”

Leading lights in the construction industry will meet at the one-day Expo at the South of England Event Centre in Ardingly for the second year after a hugely successful event there last year, when more than 2,000 leaders from the region’s construction industry met buyers, explored new projects, networked and sampled the industry’s latest technology.

The trade show will showcase the region’s largest range of construction products and services and is a ‘must’ for anyone in development, property and construction.

The programme of speakers includes Florence Hubert, deputy agent for Central Southern England at the Bank of England giving an ‘off-the-record’ briefing on the outlook for the UK economy followed by a questions and answers session. Heathrow Airport representatives will also be speaking about its expansion and opportunities for construction companies.

Big name businesses involved include Balfour Beatty, Bam, W.Stirland, Morgan Sindall, Glenigan, Countryside, Cheesemur, Wates, Builders Conference, Willmott Dixon, Galliford Try, Sunninghill, Logan Construction and Westridge Construction Ltd.

This year, the Expo is also holding the South East Construction Awards, which will be celebrated at the Expo dinner.