First carbon neutral accommodation buildings in Scotland to support operational training
28 November 2023
Breaking Down Barriers for Women’s Dual Careers in Construction and Football
21 February 2024

Construction completes on new sustainable Single Living Accommodation building on the Army estate

A major infrastructure project has been completed at Imjin Barracks in Gloucestershire to provide modern, sustainable accommodation for Army personnel based at the Headquarters of the Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC).

  • Part of the Army Single Living Accommodation (SLA) Programme, the newly completed SLA building at Imjin Barracks, Gloucestershire is one of the most advanced buildings in Europe for SMART building control.
  • The three-storey building was constructed via Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) with units arriving on site up to 90% complete.
  • The SLA comprises 69 single en suite bedrooms, communal living and dining facilities, kitchens, drying rooms and utility rooms.

Imjin Barracks is the first site to benefit from a new wave of Net Zero Carbon construction, which is delivering major improvements to the design and delivery of the Army’s SLA.

The three-storey building, which includes a Counter-Terrorism Measures (CTM) level 2 compliant roof, was constructed via Modern Methods of Construction (MMC). Using 3D volumetric construction, units arrived on site up to 90% complete, allowing for significantly faster programme delivery, increased security measures thanks to fewer personnel needed on site, little disruption to an active military location and heightened quality assurance.

The new SLA comprises 69 single en suite bedrooms, alongside communal living and dining facilities, kitchens, drying rooms and utility rooms. The bedrooms have been equipped with full-size double beds and designed to maximise storage space provided for their occupants, while shared kitchens are fitted with state-of-the-art hobs and combination microwaves, bespoke fridges with individual coded compartments for cold food storage and lockers for dry food storage.

During the design phases, Reds10 produced a sample bedroom and invited senior Non-Commissioned Officers and Head of Infrastructure Plans (Army), Brigadier Richard Brown, to Reds10’s East Yorkshire factory to walk through the physical space and provide feedback on its layout and design based on how the spaces will actually be used. An exercise that allowed for tangible design changes, with storage space and its reinforcement for Bergens and other kit high on the agenda, all of which were implemented at speed, without disruption to the project programme.

Speaking directly to some of the points outlined in DIO’s 2020-2030 strategy, sustainability was also at the heart of the project. The SLA is a cognitive building, which complies with a BACS Class A system (BS EN ISO 52120) and scores over 95% in the Smart Readiness Indicator (SRI), making it one of the most advanced buildings in Europe for SMART building control. In other words, an integrated approach has been taken to how the building is monitored and controlled to improve occupant experience and provide actionable insights that optimise energy and maintenance.

The building, which has achieved Defence Related Environmental Assessment Methodology (DREAM) ‘Excellent’ rating, is currently generating over 21,000 data points (including humidity, door and window contacts, sound levels, temperature, and more) because of an enhanced sensing and metering strategy. These points, which are all accessible via a single SMART building technology platform, are being used to control systems such as heating, lighting and ventilation in order to minimise the energy consumption spent from human error. Large volumes of real time data will allow the facilities management team to understand the occupant experience and evolve these control strategies.

Each bedroom is equipped with a fully programmable touch screen, that allows the occupant to customise their heating preferences, increase ventilation and identify operational issues such as leaks in their bathrooms. The screens also provide the occupant with information on their monthly electricity and heating consumption, which is also ranked on a building-wide leaderboard. Using gamification strategies, the hope is to incentivise and motivate occupants to make conscious changes to improve their consumption and move up the rankings.

The system also presents a fault console to the facilities management team, allowing dynamic maintenance based on equipment usage and the generation of meaningful schedules to check and replace equipment where needed.

The building also includes photovoltaic panels on the roof and connected walkway, air source heat pumps for heating and hot water and Nano Crystal Cell Battery technology, which can hold up to 1327 kWh of energy. The system will always maintain a minimum energy level to ensure the resilience of the building in the event of any grid failure. It is also anticipated that the battery will enable the building to go entirely off grid during the summer months.

The £13M project was delivered for the Army by the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO), contracting to off-site construction specialist Reds10 and design and engineering consultants Arcadis.

“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.”

Mike Green, Chief Executive, Defence Infrastructure Organisation

“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.”

Major General Richard Clements CBE, Director of Army Basing and Infrastructure

“It has been a pleasure to work on this first SLA alongside 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.”

Phil Cook, Defence Sector Lead & Director at Reds10

The Army SLA Programme is investing £1.4Bn and delivering 8,500 SLA bedspaces over 10 years to enhance living conditions for serving personnel. In addition to this, 8,000 SLA bedspaces are being delivered by the Defence Estate Optimisation (DEO) Army Programme, through new build SLA blocks and refurbishing works, bringing the combined total of SLA bedspaces being delivered over 10 years to 16,500.

Ready to discuss your next project?

Get In Touch

We use cookies

We use cookies and other tracking technologies to improve your browsing experience on our website, to show you personalised content and targeted ads, to analyse our website traffic, and to understand where our visitors are coming from. By browsing our website, you consent to our use of cookies and other tracking technologies.
Read more