Innovation That Matters

TopHat constructs homes in factories off-site | Photo source TopHat

A hi-tech factory for sustainable, modular houses

Property & Construction

A zero-carbon modular home builder is opening a new facility that will build up to 4,500 new homes a year

Spotted: Modular housebuilder TopHat, recently announced that it will be opening a hi-tech home building facility in Corby, Northamptonshire next year. The new factory will be 650,000 square feet in size and will incorporate the latest in robotic technology.

TopHat was founded in 2016 and began production in early 2018 at its manufacturing facility in South Derbyshire. The company builds modular, zero-carbon homes with a sustainable core. The company claims its homes have less than one-twenty-seventh the embodied carbon of a traditionally built home. To achieve this, the company uses low-carbon materials, such as timber, while reducing waste and travel at every stage.

One way that TopHat achieves its low carbon emissions is through the streamlined logistics and lean manufacturing techniques that are made possible by building modular homes in a factory using robotics. The company is also able to tailor solutions to clients, acting as either a supplier, contractor, or developer. The first residential site to use TopHat’s product was the historic Kitchener Barracks in Chatham, Kent, which opened in 2019. The company has also seen a £75 million (around €89 million) capital investment from Goldman Sachs, which has helped to finance the new factory.

There is no end of creative proposals for developing housing that is both more affordable and more sustainable. Springwise has often covered innovations in this space. Some of the most recent have included carbon-neutral tiny homes, all-timber buildings, and the use of tech to maximise efficiency and sustainability. 

Written By: Lisa Magloff



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