Methods of Non-Traditional Construction

Non-traditional buildings were mainly built during the post World War2 period in the United Kingdom. This type of construction is mainly of four categories: Pre Cast Concrete, In Situ Concrete, Timber Frame and Steel Frame. The Pre Cast and the In Situ concrete system comes under the heading of Concrete Panel System. Sometimes these different methods are implemented together, taking different advantages from different methods. It is usually then known as Prefabricated. Steel frames are really common form of the non-traditional construction system. There is also a tradition of building houses using straw as a basic construction material.

Buildings are constructed following the Building Act 1984. As the Building Act 1984 Chapter 55 says it is an “An Act to consolidate certain enactments concerning building and buildings and related matters”. As per this act of regulation, construction of buildings is done following certain standards. These standards are like what type of construction can be done in a certain area, what type of power supply it should have, under which situations special conditions can be applied, how the building process should be categorized etc. Breaching the act of building and executing a building process would render the building in question statutory defective. There is no rule whether a non-traditional building should or should not be statutory defective. Some are bound to follow while some just don’t require them to follow.

As mentioned in the beginning concrete panel system is classified into pre-cast and in-situ concrete system. Building having and also made using concrete panel is quite regular not just in UK but the whole world. In case of pre-cast concrete, as the name indicates it is precast in a controlled condition rather than on the site. In-situ on the other hand is the type of concrete made in the construction site and then poured in the pre arranged formworks in liquid form. These formworks are connected by channels so that concrete can flow in proper rate and thickness remains the same for all the slabs. In-situ concrete is used mainly for making building foundation and is usually re- enforced using steel frames.

The system of Prefabricated Building is actually quite modern and realistic. In this case, most of the building material is produced in a manufacturing company, carried on site and then just assembled together. But the whole process is not just that simple. In case of a prefabricated house the base is actually constructed on site and then the other parts are put together on top of it. But there are also buildings which do not require any base foundation. These houses are portable and have wheels.

Then there is the steel frame technique. Steel frame is the father of skyscrapers. Basically the form or the skeleton of the building is made using vertical steel columns and horizontal steel I-beams. The whole lot is attached to the main frame of the building to support its walls and floors. Depending on the height and construction method, different graded steel rod or beams are authorized.

Non-traditional construction also includes building or houses made with just wood panels and straw. Sometimes mud is also used. This type of construction method is mainly followed in the rural areas since the cost can be cheap. Sometimes straw roof is placed on prefabricated walls with concrete or no concrete base.

Non-traditional constructions offer verities in buildings both inside and outside UK.

About

Having served 16 years in the army Colin re-educated during the early 1990’s including two years at the Camborne School of Mines reading Mineral Surveying and Resource Management achieving a first class Diploma (Dip CSM). This allowed direct entry to the second year at The University of the West of England, Bristol reading Valuation and Estate Management. Training and experience was gained with Exeter City Council Estates Department and Sheperds Chartered Surveyors qualifying as a Member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors in June 2003. Colin set-up the company in May 2009 and covers the complete range of services.

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