What would you like to know?
What type of buildings does Green Unit offer?
We design and build modular buildings for a range of uses across commercial, community and private sectors. We are experienced working in healthcare, education, leisure and hospitality, offices and commercial, accommodation and private residential developments. See our case studies to find out more about some of our recent projects.
What are the sizes of ARC buildings?
The modular design of our ARC buildings means that the widths of the units are fixed (optimally designed for road transport), and the buildings can be built to practically any length.
Our two width building options – the ARC I and ARC II – have fixed widths of 4m and 6.4m respectively (internal footprint). Find more detailed information and more dimensions about our ARC I and ARC II modular buildings.
Why are ARC buildings curved?
The curved structure is a unique feature of our ARC buildings. The curves mimic the beauty of the natural landscape, and creates a unique experience for the people who use the buildings as the curved space creates a wonderful sense of calm and inspiration. An innate human instinct is to be drawn to natural and organic shapes.
How much do ARC buildings cost?
Our pricing structure is based on the footprint of each modular building. Initially, we provide a budget indicative guide price based on the general brief from the client. Later, we engage in a design consultation and site survey to review the particular requirements in detail. It is at the design consultation stage that we can provide an accurate quotation based on the project requirements. See more about our pricing.
Where can I view an ARC building?
Unfortunately, many of our client buildings are not available to the general public, but we have a few options available depending on the type of building you’re interested in. The best thing to do is contact us with information about your interests, and we’ll speak to you about the options.
Where can I see your past work?
What are the design options of ARC buildings?
No two ARC buildings are exactly the same, as our in-house design team works with each client on a design consultation to discuss the different design approaches available.
Can you design for bespoke requirements?
What is the building structure made of?
The ARC is a CNC timber engineered building with timber internal and external cladding. The structures sit on a steel sub-frame to ensure a stable delivery to the customer’s site.
What type of foundations are required?
Our buildings are designed to only require a low-impact, low-cost modular system such as pad or helical pile foundations. We conduct a site survey to assess each building project on a case-by-case basis to determine the correct foundation system. Should the building need to be re-sited in the future these foundations can be relocated too! Green Unit will always specify the foundation system, and this can either be installed by a Green Unit contractor as part of a turnkey service, or instructed by the client to use their own preferred contractor.
How are ARC buildings insulated?
We use a minimum of 220mm of high grade recycled wood fibre insulation in all our walls, floors and ceilings that exceeds building regulations. High levels of insulation are important in maintaining a thermally efficient eco-building.
Can ARC buildings be placed on top of existing buildings?
What is the acoustic performance of an ARC building?
ARCs can be designed and built with acoustically insulated walls and doors to prevent sound transfer between rooms. The ARC buildings are well insulated from external noise and internal noise transfer is minimized by the special profiling of the timber internal cladding.
Materials & options
Do ARC buildings have a green roof? Are there other options?
Our standard roofing option is a green roof. It is a living sedum – a type of succulent – and the colours change from greens to reds over the course of the year. The green roof adds an additional layer of insulation that helps to keep the building cool in summer and warm in winter. It creates a biodiverse habitat for bees and insects, and performs low level carbon sinking. We usually recommend a thorough maintenance of the green roof twice a year (Spring and Autumn), and additional irrigation may be required during hot, dry spells. We also offer a curved solar PV panel roofing option.
How are ARC buildings heated?
Our standard heating option is electric underfloor heating. Renewables, such as air source heat pumps are available where desired. Other options are available, and we discuss in detail with each client during the design process.
ARCs can be heated by different means, but we prefer under-floor electric heating systems and air-source heat pumps (ASHP) water heating. For extra cosiness, we recommend a wood-burning stove if used with clean and properly seasoned dry wood. All electrical and ASHP heating systems are zoned and can be internet-linked with passive ‘smart’ controls and individual room thermostats.
How are ARC buildings lit?
How are ARC buildings ventilated?
Ventilation is assessed on a case-by-case basis based on the usage requirements of each building. We often use mechanical ventilation heat recovery systems (MVHR) to mechanically recover the heat from warm, stale air and deliver fresh, filtered air into the building.
What type of windows do you use?
We offer a range of windows, including glazed ends and roof, wall and picture windows. We discuss all options with you during the design consultation process. All windows, including the glazed ends, are triple glazed to minimise heat loss.
What flooring options are available in ARC buildings?
Are ARC buildings net zero carbon?
Not yet. We are actively working on achieving net zero status for our ARC buildings by 2025 (although we hope to do this sooner). There is a delicate balance between using what are environmentally-friendly or low carbon materials and creating a highly efficient, future-proofed building. We’re also developing standard solutions for renewables (solar PV and air source heat pumps) that will help to pay back the embodied carbon in construction.
Are ARC buildings Passivhaus certified?
No. There are two reasons for that our buildings are not currently Passivhaus certified. Firstly, the Passivhaus certification process is suited to two (or more) storey buildings, and most of our buildings are single storey, which means that the calculations just don’t work out according to the Passivhaus PHPP software system. Secondly, the certification process isn’t compatible with our curved structure as it assumes straight walls in its calculations.
The design of our buildings, however, is based on Passivhaus principles and we achieve extremely high levels of operational thermal efficiency and human comfort levels. See our technical information for more detail.
Is your factory powered by fossil fuels?
Where can I find out more about Green Unit’s sustainability approach?
Delivery & installation
What access is required to deliver an ARC building to site?
We require access for an articulated lorry with an on-board Hiab, or for a mobile crane transporter. A minimum 4m delivery access width is generally required. We can also lift up and over any obstacles such as existing buildings or trees.
How long does it take to install an ARC building onsite?
What does Green Unit do onsite after installation?
We install the road transportable building sections onto pre-prepared foundations and contractors then rapidly make their utility connections to the ARC which are all ready to go! The individual pod sections are joined before the roofing membrane is sealed and greened, and then we hand over the keys! At this stage, some clients also commence landscaping works around the building. In some cases, floor finishing works are completed at the client’s site.
Do you ship overseas?
Planning & funding
Do I need planning permission for an ARC building?
Yes, in most cases you will need to gain planning permission for your modular build project – just as with any building project. Planning consent often favours sustainable development and how the appearance of the ARC buildings fit with the surrounding environment. Planning permission is managed on a local basis, and ultimately is the decision of the local planning authority.
We recommend consulting with a planning consultant whose advice and expertise can be invaluable in navigating the planning process. The Planning Portal has a lot of useful information.
Can Green Unit apply for planning permission on my behalf?
Can I obtain funding for an ARC building?
What is a payment schedule to purchase an ARC building?
Quality & maintenance
How do you ensure quality of build?
Our offsite design and build process is a very high-quality modern Method of Construction. We use precision production processes – such as computer numerically controlled machinery (CNC) – to ensure the highest quality levels within a controlled, factory environment.
Do ARC buildings comply with building regulations?
Yes. All of our ARC buildings comply with and exceed building regulations. We use a national firm of Building Regulation consultants who know and understand our modular building system for building control approval on our projects.
What maintenance do ARCs need?
ARC buildings are no different from other buildings in needing a little maintenance from time to time, for example checking gutters for fallen leaves (which is much easier on a single storey building)! The green roof will require weeding and watering in very dry seasons to keep it in top condition, and we recommend a thorough maintenance of the roof twice a year. Other elements of the building are generally low maintenance. We provide a detailed Operations and Maintenance manual to every client that outlines all maintenance recommendations for every part of the building.