Modular buildings offer structural stability through well-defined column grids while maintaining a high degree of adaptability in architectural layouts. This versatility is especially advantageous for tenants like M&S or WH Smith who prioritise flexible store layouts and entrance designs. By seamlessly integrating traditional construction elements with offsite-produced modules, modular buildings can effortlessly create expansive, column-free spaces that meet diverse business needs.
Design ID developed an installation sequence to create a 6metre wide entrance to the M&S retail unit, with the installation of a high-level transfer beam to support the columns of first floor modules over. Temporary module columns were removed on site once the structure was tied together providing an entrance to the retail units and office space above.
Further to the complexities in the superstructure, the building cantilevers out at foundation level over an existing basement. Diligent detailing of the modular superstructure was therefore essential to predict incremental deflections of the piled substructure at critical checkpoints during the installation sequence to prevent loading up the existing basement roof post-install. Design ID worked closely with the substructure engineer to plan the expected response at each stage and ensure a seamless module install to limit impact on the live hospital.
The modules were transported to site and craned into place within 5 days as part of a 29-week programme to create a striking new entrance to Basildon University Hospital.
Client: Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust