Search within Atkins website
More specific search? Try these
Angles publication platform
Create PDF document
Add web pages to PDF bundle for download
How to use PDF generator
Pages in bundle
View / Manage bundle
22 Feb 2016
Insert banner title text here
There’s no doubt that for the idea of the Northern Powerhouse to become a reality we need better infrastructure in the North, and we need it fast. But how do we build the schools, houses, hospitals, rail stations and other buildings we need across the region quicker and cheaper, without sacrificing quality?
For me, the answer is simple. We use Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DfMA). If you look at the education sector, they had (and still do have) a similar problem – a lack of infrastructure meant students in some areas were being left behind. So they addressed it by using standardised design and offsite construction to build schools more efficiently.
The collaboration of Laing O’Rourke and Atkins on the Yorkshire PF2 schools project combines Laing O’Rourke’s Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DfMA) capability with Atkins’ design and technical expertise on large build programmes to deliver high quality buildings and infrastructure quickly and efficiently. This partnership shows the need for engineering companies and contractors to work together to deliver the Northern Powerhouse, with early collaboration with all stakeholders to balance the interests between creating an inspiring environment, while maximising the capital investment.
The DfMA approach we’ve taken in schools is based on smart, predefined assemblies that can form any number of arrangements and layouts. Combining these with other pre-assembled components, such as façade panels and stairs, forms a unique building that reflects its end users’ specific needs, as well as its local environment and context.
Once the designs are completed, the specifications for the pre-assembled components are fed directly to Laing O’Rourke’s manufacturing facilities where both standardised, structural and modular components are manufactured in a controlled factory environment. This assures much higher quality, greater design integrity and more reliable and resource efficient delivery than traditional construction.
The social, environment and economic benefits of DfMA that we’ve seen in the education sector equally apply to building the Northern Powerhouse:
Meeting the needs of the education sector so effectively has helped Atkins and Laing O’Rourke become a leader in the field of school design and construction, delivering creative and attractive learning environments that are cost-effective to build and run.
Schools have a vital role to play in building the Northern Powerhouse, ensuring the region’s young people have the qualifications, skills and attitudes to take advantage of this economic and political vision. This includes catching up with the national rate for early years attainment, closing the gap in GCSE attainment and meeting the projected 2.4 million person demand for level 3 qualified workers by 2020.
As I said in my previous article ‘Mind the Gap’, the success of the Northern Powerhouse needs to start with schools. And in some ways, maybe it needs to end with schools, with learning taken not only from the bright young minds of the North, but from the innovative construction methods that could help build Northern infrastructure quicker and better.
Local contacts in our regional offices can be found in the Locations section.
Local language websites exist for Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Asia Pacific. To see a full list of our websites, go to the Our websites page.
In the Sector and Service part of the website, relevant regional contacts have been identified.
Faithful+Gould is a member of the Atkins group of companies.
Register for our news alerts and receive the latest news and events
Connect with us
Most computers will open PDF documents automatically, but you may need to download Adobe Reader.