House project is a term used to describe the type of housing built on a large scale en masse, often by government agencies. These types of housing projects are often referred to as the ‘projects’ in America and are well known for their bland looking brick, apartment towers that are set back from the street. They are also often regarded as less desirable places to live.
The House Project approach allows builders to offer a range of standard designs aimed at different price points and buyer requirements. They are then able to operate from a combined showroom/office with the majority of on-site management conducted by a small number of supervisors who travel between houses, spending an hour or two at each site every day monitoring progress and checking for quality.
This level of on-site management has allowed larger project home builders to commence 20 to 40 houses in a single month! While this type of building may be popular with some buyers, it is important to remember that there are trade offs when choosing a project home. Generally the quality of construction is lower and there are more compromises on both internal planning and external expression compared to a custom designed home.
The biggest trade off with a project home is often the lack of flexibility in design and choice of finishes. Project homes are usually based on a limited range of plans that are ascribed to the average family household. This approach does not take into account that people have different needs and lifestyles that can be very individual. It also ignores the unique characteristics of a particular site such as its climate, orientation and views.
To address this issue, House Project Architects have developed a process that starts with the definition of a client’s goals and expectations for their new house. These are then translated into a series of phases that are broken down into the required tasks, resources, dates and costs. This is then compiled into a project plan.
While it is true that there are many ways to develop a House Project, the basic five steps are the same:
The initial phase in any project involves the foundation and clearing of the site. This can take up to a month to complete and requires the approval of a city inspector. Once this is done the builder can then begin Step 2, the framing phase. This is the stage where the floor system, walls and roof (collectively called the shell or skeleton of the house) are constructed. This stage can be a slow and laborious process as the weather can influence how quickly it can be completed. During this time the builder will coordinate with the foundation contractor, utilities and Basix to ensure that all components are installed correctly and on schedule. Once the frame is complete the next steps are to install electrical, plumbing and gas connections. Then the final stages of plastering and painting can be completed.