Although I’m a strong advocate of off-site manufacture (OSM), I have to take issue with your Offsite supplement (1 October). OSM will only succeed if it can match the design quality and cost effectiveness of traditional building. Few of the featured projects showed any of John Prescott’s ‘wow’ factor, and some (Our Lady of Lourdes School and most of the residential schemes) are, to put it bluntly, a blight on the landscape.
OSM needs a truly integrated design, production and construction approach if it is to give us great buildings that enhance our environment. Otherwise, the next 18 months may well show it is the end result, and not the means to the end, that is really important to customers.
John Murphy, director, Alchemy Projects