Building Smarter at Syntec Projects.

Building Smarter at Syntec Projects.

At Syntec, we’re passionate about construction; about building solutions. New projects excite us, and we’re equally committed to each – whether it’s high-end residential or a social housing development.

We also invest in people, recognizing key strengths in our workforce and rewarding their efforts. As a company, we enjoy many social occasions. We know we’re doing something right when many of our staff describe working for us as ‘not really like being at work’ – more like part of a family.

We build good relationships with architects and industry partners too – eager to solve design problems and build better spaces. That’s why we were keen to explore a different method on one of our latest projects, The Woodsman in Feltham, west London. This is a 1,800sqf development in partnership with A2Dominion – a range of 2 to 4-bed accommodation for affordable/intermediate rent, due for completion this autumn. It comprises 4 houses and a 4-storey block of 20 flats, housing up to 82 people.

The contract offered us a perfect opportunity to introduce a different building method – ICF (Insulated Concrete Form). We were already familiar with this product as it’s been used by self-builders in the UK for 40-odd years – the product is now coming into the forefront due to a need to protect the environment. Fundamentally, it’s a system that uses insulation instead of formwork, allowing the builder to lay modular lightweight blocks that are then filled with concrete and reinforcement.

So, it’s a highly insulating and environmentally friendly product that is used as standard on large and small-scale developments in the US and Northern Europe. This type of housing is the norm in these places and the tenants reap the rewards. Not only are their energy bills lower but they enjoy even temperatures with filtered air, so are generally experiencing a better quality of home than their counterparts in the UK.”

It’s not a system that’s commonly used on large developments in the UK, however – and even more rarely in social housing. Yet it’s people most commonly associated with these developments – people with greater needs – that stand to benefit the most from ICF. Combined with triple-glazed windows, solar panels and a heat recovery ventilation system they can expect up to 70% savings on their energy bills.

The advantages for us as builders is that ICF takes only one trade to erect and uses just three materials – Polystyrene, concrete and reinforcement. So the build is incredibly fast and less reliant on skilled labour. There’s less materials waste too, so the building site is cleaner. It’s good news for us, but even better news for householders, who can enjoy ambient temperatures with no draughts, condensation or mould. It’s also incredibly well insulated against outside noise – a reduction of 50db – which becomes a particular advantage when building near busy roads and airports.

Our ethos is simple: we believe there’s no reason why good-quality low-energy homes can’t be available to everyone, not just a privileged few. We really want to make a difference. It’s just changing the mindset, moving away from traditional brick building to a faster, modulated method that, in the long term, is more cost-effective. And with air pollution a hot topic right now – it’s the fourth biggest public health risk in the country after cancer, obesity and cardiovascular disease – this system goes some way towards alleviating the problem by filtering incoming air. We’re also investigating how even finer filters could be used in the heat-recovery ventilation system to block out toxic particulates such as those emitted by diesel fuel.

Now, if social housing of the future could promise cleaner air inside the home than in the polluted streets outside, we could be looking not only at greatly reduced energy bills, but possibly even greater benefits for the nation’s health.



Find out more about the masterplan for Feltham, it covers housing, developing business opportunities, creating a better pedestrian experience and a greater use of open spaces in Feltham.

#SyntecSocialHousing #NewHomesinFeltham #Feltham #HouseBuilders #LBHouslow #FelthamMasterplan

Syntec complete on more new homes for Londoners! Another development on Commercial Road E1.

A Design & Build conversion of commercial units into a 700sqm residential development of nine flats, comprising 1 studio; six 1-bed, and two 2-bed units.

The previous use of the units was commercial, we faced a design challenge when creating the residential units as the site was littered with concrete columns. After careful consideration many of the columns disappeared into walls and cupboards. Our client A2Dominion, who we have partnered on many previous occasions were pleased with the finished results including the specification our high level workmanship.  #NewHomes #NewHomesLondon #CommercialRoadDevelopment #A2Dominion #HouseBuilders #SocialHousing


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