£13m project at Imjin Barracks is the first on British Army’s SLA Programme
Vertically integrated off-site construction specialist Reds10 has completed work on the first project to be delivered as part of the British Army’s Single Living Accommodation (SLA) Programme at Imjin Barracks for the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO). The SLA is the first site to benefit from a new wave of net zero carbon construction, and has become one of the most advanced buildings in Europe for Smart Building Control.
Located in Innsworth, Gloucestershire, the three-storey building provides modern, high quality and sustainable accommodation for Army personnel based at the HQ of the Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC), comprising 69 single en-suite bedrooms, alongside best-in-class communal facilities.
The SLA is a true example of an innovative, digitally-enabled, intelligent building. It generates and analyses over 21,000 data points (including humidity, door and window contacts, sound levels, temperature, daylight, power metering, water and more), whereas a typical Building Management System (BMS) only hasaround 220 data points feeding into it. Large volumes of real time data are processed and accessed via a platform powered by Reds10’s SMART building technology, ThriveTM, optimising operational performance and maintenance. Advanced monitoring and control drive significant energy and cost savings, provide actionable insights, and enhance user engagement, comfort and experience.
The £13 million project has sustainability at its core, in alignment with the DIO’s 2020-2030 strategy. It has achieved a Defence Related Environmental Assessment Methodology (DREAM) ‘Excellent’ rating, scored more than 95% on the Smart Readiness Indicator (SRI) and complies with a BACS Class A building (BS EN ISO 52120). Compared with Class C, its integrated approach generates savings of:
- 39% in heating
- 24% in electricity (lighting)
- 22% in electricity (auxiliary energy)
- 20% in domestic water storage/circulation
Each bedroom is equipped with a programmable touchscreen that allows the occupant to customise their heating preferences, increase ventilation and identify any issues. Moreover, the touchscreen provides tenants with information on their monthly electricity and heating consumption, which is ranked on a building-wide leaderboard. The use of gamification helps to incentivise and motivate occupants to make conscious sustainable changes in their everyday lives.
With sustainability measures including the installation of photovoltaic panels and air source heat pumps, there is also an adjacent Nano Crystal Cell Battery holding up to 1327 kWh of energy. The battery ensures resilience and continuity in the event of grid failure and is anticipated to enable the building to go entirely off grid during summer months.
Mike Green, Chief Executive, Defence Infrastructure Organisation, said: “The new accommodation being delivered by DIO and its partners at Imjin Barracks reflects DIO’s continuing commitment to providing the best possible accommodation for the Armed Forces.”
Major General Richard Clements CBE, Director of Army Basing and Infrastructure said: “It is excellent to see the result of significant investment in new modern accommodation for Imjin Barracks, as part of the enduring commitment across Defence to enhance living conditions for our people.
“I am delighted that this building is now ready for occupation. The facilities and interior have been completed to an impressive standard and the design will contribute to local efforts to reduce the Army’s carbon footprint.”
Phil Cook, Defence Sector Lead & Director at Reds10, said: “It has been a pleasure to work on this first SLA alongside the DIO, the British Army, Arcadis and the rest of the project team, improving the lived experience for Armed Forces personnel. Thanks to true collaboration and agility throughout the project team, we have been able to deliver a SMART, sustainable space which reflects the way its occupants live and work in today’s modern society.”
The project was delivered for the Army by the DIO, contracting to off-site construction specialist Reds10, Technical Service Providers Arcadis and HLM Architects. Reds10 employed 3D volumetric construction with units arriving on site up to 90% complete, allowing for significantly faster programme delivery, increased security thanks to fewer people needed on site, minimal disruption to a live military site and stronger quality assurance.
The Army’s £1.4 billion SLA Programme is delivering 8,500 SLA bed spaces over ten years to improve living conditions for serving personnel. Additionally, 8,000 SLA bed spaces are being provided by the Defence Estate Optimisation (DEO) Army Programme.