Home work

Nottingham University and Tarmac have formed a partnership to build two zero-carbon concept homes as part of the university’s research into energy-efficient housing.


NottinghamUniversityand Wolverhampton-based construction group Tarmac have formed a partnership to build two zero-carbon concept homes as part of the university’s research into energy-efficient housing.



The aim of the project is to provide landlords and organisations working in the housing markets with a blueprint for affordable low-carbon buildings that could be built on a large scale throughout the country.


The two semi-detached properties will be the first in the UK to highlight ways in which zero-carbon homes can be built using conventional masonry building techniques as part of large-scale development.


Dr Mark Gillott, who is leading the project, said: ‘The research we are undertaking here at the University of Nottingham is essential due to the massive step changes in design and construction practice required to meet the UK’s Code for Sustainable Homes targets – the post-occupancy evaluation of these homes is important in allowing us to understand how they work in reality and not just on paper.’


Phil Sabin, Tarmac’s business development manager, said: ‘Up until now, zero-carbon homes in the UK have been one-off showpieces that nobody lives in, or they are highly costly “grand designs” that only a small minority of people can afford.


‘We are breaking new ground by building two properties that are affordable, zero carbon and could potentially be built as part of large-scale developments. With government targets for all new homes to be zero carbon by 2016, together with its plans for three million new homes to be built by 2020, it is vital that we use this research project in Nottingham to show the construction industry how this can be achieved.’


The homes will be built on Green Close on University Park and are scheduled for completion by July this year. They will be used for visiting academics to demonstrate energy usage and thermal efficiency.

The project follows the completion of the BASF house that was completed in partnership with E.ON to showcase technology for energy-efficient living. E.ON has also worked with the university in building a 1930s-style home to assess carbon reduction in ageing properties.