In March 2010 the company opened Explore Industrial Park, a state-of-the-art precast factory in the East Midlands, built to strengthen the company’s offsite manufacturing capabilities and to support its construction projects across the UK.
By incorporating standard components into a building’s design, even complex structures can be built faster, and at a lower cost for the client. Moving activities from construction sites to controlled factory conditions also positively affects health, safety and environmental performance: processes are more predictable, risk is easier to manage, site congestion is reduced and a lot of waste isnot even produced in the first place. In Explore Industrial Park, Laing O’Rourke now has its own world-class manufacturing facility that can deliver all these benefits to the construction industry.
The layout design process by Prilhofer Consulting and Laing O’Rourke as the most important design input went hand in hand with the analysis of the products to be produced in the new factory. A product profile was set up. It listed all planned products in their typical dimensions as well as min-max dimensions and planned volumes per year according to a production ramp-up plan, which was developed in parallel.
On the basis of the firm input of the product profile and the exactly defined capacity requirements, the factory layout could be refined and the designed processes could befurther evaluated and developed. The developed layout was double-checked by means of a detailed simulation model and various shift patterns and their effects on the productivity of the factory were repeatedly examined.
After the factory layout and all machine and performance requirements had been fixed, a specification document was set up for each part of the factory like carousel systems, reinforcement machines such as the mesh-welding plant, concrete batching plant and concrete delivery system, overhead cranes for the factory etc. These specification documents were an essential part of the tendering process to receive comparable quotations from all relevant equipment suppliers invited to quote for the project. The evaluation of the quotations was concluded in a detailed supplier assessment process and negotiations to fix the contracts with the partners chosen for the project.
Laing O'Rourke was a new entrant into the precast technology. Therefore they wanted a partner for the development of the building system and support during implementation, as well as all the services provided by a master planner.
Laing O’Rourke is the largest privately owned construction solutions provider in the UK. Employing over 30,000 people across Europe, the Middle East, South Asia and Australasia, the company’s operations span five core sectors: lifestyle; business; social infrastructure; transport and mining; and energy, utilities and waste.
- Floor slabs
- Double walls
- Solid walls
- Sandwich walls
- Edge beams
- Custom elements