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Intastor Helps Alleviate SA Housing Backlog A new direction, with enormous beneficial potential for SA housing as a whole, has taken its first tentative steps in the provision of transitional residential accommodation units (TRAs) at Delft, just outside Cape Town in the Western Cape. It opens the way to a tangible improvement for beneficiaries, at affordable costs, to obtain basic living requirements of a more than acceptable standard. This represents a real, tested, fast track solution to addressing the immediate housing backlog in South Africa.

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ntastor Controlled Environments (Pty) Ltd was appointed to provide an expected total of 1,500 family units at Delft in three phases. The first began in September last year and consisted of nearly 800 units including a community hall, spaza shops and security facilities. This first phase was completed and handed over to residents earlier this year. Phase two, which commences during November, is for an additional 300 units for hand over early next year, with the balance due to be erected later in 2012.

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In conjunction with the main contractor, and in conjunction with Citrine Construction, a decision was made to provide a powerful lead in the way industry can apply innovative approaches to the construction of residential accommodation that provides the benchmark for modular structures nationally.The advantages of this type of alternative construction are clearly seen at Delft. Modular construction has proved to be successful in providing affordable accommodation at high volume delivery rates while providing quality homes to some 800 families.

The resident families at the Delft site have responded very positively to the project as a whole as well in particular to the units themselves, going so far as to encourage our local photographer into their homes to take pictures! The biggest advantages given by the occupants were the energy-efficient insulation qualities of the units resulting in reduced heating costs in winter, coolness of the units in summer, ease of keeping the internal walls clean as well as the lack of dust, debris and water entry due to the slight elevation of the unit from the ground. All this whilst enjoying the benefits of a structurally sound home. Intastor’s high-volume continuous laminating machine line facility for modular panels enabled the company to meet and actually improve on the delivery programme far in excess of client expectations at Delft. The application of high volume component production at Intastor’s off-site facility factory in Philippi, Cape Town facilitated local manufacture of the components of the units in kit form allowing quality of product to be controlled, virtually eliminating material waste.

Nov / Dec 2011


news The supply of residential accommodation units in kit form made it possible to utilize work teams drawn from the local community which were trained on site within a few days to enable them to construct a 24m² unit a day. These teams, typically comprising of 6 people per team, had only basic skills and little if any construction experience. Once trained these teams are able to deliver a 48m² unit each day. The simplicity of the fully engineered design and construction allows for minimum use of skilled labour and the almost total elimination of the traditional construction materials that draw out and tend to result in extended delivery timeframes inherent in conventional building methods. The success of the Delft initiative has been built around its innovative application of ideas underwritten by an enlightened engineering approach making use of modern building construction materials: A lightweight structural lattice steel grid platform anchored slightly above the ground on steel legs, requiring minimum soil levelling in most instances, forms the sub-structure. Onto this is applied the damp-proof course and base floor covering of timber or fibre cement boards. Insulated Modular Panels, manufactured by Intastor, are then bolted to the steel sub-structure, providing the walls in the form of pre-painted flat steel skins on a fire-resistant Isolite polystyrene core.

sustainable solutions that go toward meeting part of the country’s need for alternative affordable accommodation. Intastor is currently providing modular insulated structures, panels and components for the construction of class rooms, offices, customs and police force border units, crèches, dormitories, ablutions, clinics retirement villages, community places of worship and mining camp infrastructure. Additional uses outside of South Africa include military barracks and agricultural sector accommodation and ablution facilities. The knowledge that steelclad modular sandwich panels have already exceeded 40 years of operational use within the cold storage sector in SA with little maintenance stands testimony to the durability of products produced by Intastor which is now providing creative solutions to contribute to alleviating the housing shortfall South Africa faces right now.

The use of colour and printed stone pattern on the steel skins externally enhanced the appearance of the units to be more appealing on the eye. Some internal walls were supplied in a steel skin with printed ‘Oregon Pine’ wood grain finish. The roofing panels were provided as a combined pre-painted IBR steel sheet externally with a 60mm insulated fire-resistant Isolite polystyrene core and a flat finished pre-painted ceiling finish internally supplied in 10.8 metre lengths. This provides total roof coverage in a single span reducing water ingress opportunities, unsightly joints and allows a natural roof pitch slope in both directions. It was possible to deliver eight complete units in flat pack kits per truck delivery with all components ready for installation within two hours of factory manufacture! Staying within the modular framework of 24m² units Intastor was able to combine the standard module and provide the larger ancillary buildings associated with all small communities. A crèche, for example, was established in an older part of Delft itself, earlier in 2010 using the same process as described above. By staying within the bounds of the panel modules’ parameters one can, with little difficulty, achieve endless solutions to many of the social and commercial needs centred around buildings today. The modular panel product offers a basic building core that can have any number of finishes applied, from cementitious coatings to mock weatherboarding, to achieve desired appearance. Intastor has invested in its own core technologies to develop and deliver alternative accommodation structures from its experience in providing commercial structures within the insulated cold storage industry. Intastor has utilized its existing facilities and fully dedicated team strengths to find

5 Nov / Dec 2011


Intastor Helps Alleviate SAHousing Backlog