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Collida Homes
BRE Innovation Park

Value: £650k

Location: BRE Innovation Park, Watford

Status: Complete

Introducing the Collida Living homes

We’re proud to have delivered the next generation of MMC homes – two innovative, highly sustainable prototype homes that have the ability to redefine affordable housing provision.

Designed to the Passivhaus Plus standard, the houses are research led and integrate R&D, digital technology, and modern methods of construction to deliver substantially lower environmental impact whilst addressing the fuel poverty crisis through a fabric first approach.

Delivered in collaboration with leading industry partners and the Building Research Establishment (BRE), the homes will enable local authorities, registered providers, and developers to respond to the climate emergency and meet the UK’s net zero commitments.

The Collida Living prototype homes explained:

Located on the BRE Innovation Park in Watford – widely regarded as a petri dish for exploring modern methods of construction – we designed the prototypes as a learning opportunity, not only for our team but for the entire industry. 

On site assembly completed in late 2022. The two prototypes, thanks to careful research, design, and testing, are the first steel-framed residential buildings to target the Passivhaus Plus standard to deliver net zero carbon in operation and at least 35% lower embodied carbon than LETI benchmarks.

Each detail has been carefully considered to ensure optimum performance. From a high-quality 60-year lifespan brick cladding system, to a fully volumetric roof, to integrated ‘plug and play’ modular services, the homes have been designed to minimise both time and people required on site to assemble. Finetuned at each step, the homes can be delivered in as little 19 weeks, significantly lower than the 18–25-week industry standard. It also ensures 40% less labour is required traditional construction, resulting in a preliminary savings thanks to its optimised, MMC-led approach.

The Collida Living homes at BRE were assembled using a unique three-stage process. 

The first stage saw the installation of the ground floor slab, light gauge steel frame panels, and the volumetric roof to form the Passivhaus air tightness line and weathertight box.  

In the second stage, façade installations were assembled, and brick cladding solutions were completed.  

The final stage included the interior fit out to complete high quality two-bedroom homes that can ideally suit a family of four.  Air testing was undertaken at the end of each stage to ensure Collida’s rigorous performance standards were achieved.

Some key numbers about a Collida Living home:

0.25

Fabric-first approach, with u-values better than the 2025 Future Homes Standard, and an air permeability of just 0.25

2

Low energy bills – as low as £2 pounds a day. In a two-bedroom semi-detached home, this equates to as little as £783 per year to run, with £338 of this relating to heating

35%

Delivers at least 35% less embodied carbon than LETI benchmarks

40%

Uses 40% less labour to assemble compared to traditional construction projects

60

60-year lifespan for major components, aligned to BOPAS and NHBC Accepts certification

1

One of the first steel-framed residential buildings to target the Passivhaus Plus standard

5

Avoids costly retrofitting to achieve net zero carbon in operation, which has been estimated to cost 5x more than ‘doing the right thing’

19

Assembled in as little as 19 weeks per home

35

Delivers a total Energy Use Intensity (EUI) equal to or less than 35 kWh/m2/year (GIA)

Lorna Taverner, lead architect

“Our homes adopt a fabric first approach, future proofing against legislative changes on the journey to net zero. We also take a flexible approach to the design, with customers able to mix and match floor plans and layouts to suit their end users.

The design includes Collida’s revolutionary ‘Home Zero’ unit, a pre-manufactured solution which houses our air source heat pumps, mechanical ventilation heat recovery units, thermal batteries and electric vehicle charging points outside of the home to improve both internal storage and ease customer access.”

Let’s get technical – what are the key details?

Innovative use of light gauge steel frame ensures a 60 year minimum lifespan whilst also delivering a fully non-combustible form of construction.

Offsite manufactured brick cladding, in conjunction with our pre-manufactured volumetric roof, reduces critical path installation time from six weeks to three weeks – ensuring earlier weathertightness.

Isoquick pre-manufactured ground floor solution installed in less than a day.

Three stage approach to onsite assembly ensures air tightness performance 20x better than the 2025 Future Homes Standard.

Volumetric roof formed from 4 pre-tiled sections installed on site in one day whilst also housing our photo-voltaic panels.

Collida’s external ‘Home Zero’ unit houses key MEP equipment, allowing ongoing maintenance without the need to enter the property.