TriConnex speaks to Housebuilder Magazine about Grid and Connection Challenges

TriConnex director Chris Doré recently spoke to Housebuilder Magazine as part of their article on Squeezing the grid

“The lack of grid capacity is such a threat” Chris commented “it’s risk number one or two for developers. You can get planning but if you have no electricity your viability doesn’t exist,” he stated in a warning to Housebuilders

“Developers have a long process. They have to go through consultations and engage with the public. It could be years before they get to the point where they need electricity. And when they get to the end, they may find the capacity isn’t the same. That goes straight to the bottom line.”

Chris also joined peers talking about Connection Challenges and how utility companies can help housebuilders manage capacity

Commenting in that article he highlighted that “Developers used to be the biggest thing in town in terms of demand for new grid capacity, and it was easy to predict costs. But times have changed, with a number of businesses now eager to snap up capacity before housebuilders. “

Read more of Chris’s insights alongside others in the industry HERE on pages 44-48 and 65-72

The Home Heating Energy Transition has begun

In the 2019 Spring Statement Philip Hammond, then Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced a new Future Homes Standard (FHS).  And now, a little over three years later, we’re at the first milestone in the journey to full FHS implementation in 2025.

The Future Homes Standard will feed into new Part L (Conservation of Fuel and Power) building regulations. For housebuilders, it’s a game-changer.

To meet the required 75%-80% reduction in emissions required by the FHS, gas boilers will no longer be an option to heat homes and provide hot water. So after more than 60 years of gas being the home-heating method of choice for housebuilders, what’s next?

It’s taken a while to understand exactly how the Future Homes Standard will drive change, and even now it’s not entirely clear. However, we know enough. Enough to recognise that alternative heating methods are needed from 2025 and beyond; initially heat pumps and maybe heat networks for appropriate schemes.

Right now, we see that developers are refining their approaches. Deliver the 31% emissions reduction as required by the FHS transitional process (2022 to 2025) by including efficiency-orientated fabric improvements and PV alongside a gas boiler,  or step straight to heat pumps?

As a utility connections provider to most large housebuilders in the UK, we know that more and more housebuilders are planning future developments without gas. And a new challenge has also emerged – the need to secure greater electrical load capacities from increasingly constrained local electric networks as new approaches to heating homes are introduced. This makes early planning and choosing partners who are highly experienced in dealing with DNOs and grid connections an essential step for any developer to take.

Linking back to the first milestone in the FHS journey that I referred to earlier. For developments to be able to be built under the current 2013 building regulations, building notices and plans need to have been submitted this month, otherwise the transitional (31% reduction) requirements referred to above will apply.

The energy transition of home heating is now very much underway.

Author: David Topping, TriConnex Managing Director

Join us at the NHBC Building For Tomorrow events

Our team are looking forward to exhibiting at the upcoming NHBC ‘Building For Tomorrow’ events

  • Wednesday 22nd March – London
  • Thursday 23rd March – Solihull
  • Thursday 31st March – Swindon

Building for tomorrow is the NHBC annual technical conference series, a must-attend event for anyone involved in the construction of new homes.

The events will cover all you need to know about the Future Homes Standard and its implications for housebuilders, as well as other important topics.

Our MD David Topping features in Housebuilder Magazine 'Last Word' discussing the Energy Transition

Our MD David Topping features in this months Housebuilder Magazine, discussing how the industry is working together towards the energy transition

Check out the piece opposite or on p66 HERE

We always welcome the vital conversations around this subject – just reach out to our team if you have thoughts to share, or any questions.

Supporting Great Ormond Street Hospital again with our Christmas toy donation

Last year we ran a ‘donate a toy’ campaign in aid of the Great Ormond Street Hospital which was very well supported and received – so this year, we did it again!

The hospital staff were over the moon with the generous donations which totalled around £2500 of toys and gifts, they are looking forward to sharing them with their patients over the Christmas period.

TriConnex and our team are so pleased to be able to bring a smile to the faces of children who are not able to be at home this Christmas.

TriConnex presents 2021 Medium Housebuilder of the Year award to Hill

The Housebuilder Awards returned live to the InterContinental London-The O2 on November 24th, and we were there!

The awards is a black-tie event held each year to celebrate achievements within the housebuilding community.

Over 500 people attended, with this year’s event hosted by the comedian Tom Allen

Once again, TriConnex had the pleasure of presenting the prestigious “Medium Housebuilder of the Year” award, which for the second consecutive year went to Hill. We’d like to congratulate Hill on their achievement. The picture shows the Hill team having received the award from TriConnex MD David Topping.



TriConnex & EO Charging to offer fully integrated EV charging for new build residential housing

Helping developers respond to changes in building regulations and demand for off-plot charging

TriConnex has announced the launch of a residential electric vehicle (EV) charging product in partnership with EO Charging.

Our comprehensive residential EV charging solution will meet current and future requirements with industry leading technology, offering the supply, design and connection of EV chargers between 7kW to 350kW, depending on the size and scale of a developer’s project.

As part of the UK government’s aim to further incentivise UK drivers to choose an electric vehicle, it has signalled a change in building regulations to ensure a charge point is installed on every home with parking. The proposed changes would require developers to provide active charging provision in all new build residential developments. This would mean additional costs, operational challenges with regards to the management of charging points, and the requirement to select a solution that is reliable and complies with new regulations.

Whilst it is easy to fit a charging point to a single dwelling, there are inevitable complexities in shared developments or spaces such as with billing, maintenance and repairs of the equipment. TriConnex’ partnership with EO Charging resolves this by installing smart equipment that is market leading and can distinguish the cars and energy used each time for smart billing as well as providing unparalleled customer care and service should there be any issues. It is the first independent multi-utility provider to include a full EV supply and installation proposal within its quotations.

EO designs and manufactures industry-leading EV chargers and supplies hardware-agnostic cloud-based charge-point management software. Their products include the smallest smart fast chargers for individual homes, as well as larger units for charging in communal and public parking areas.

Benefits for developers
Meeting the growing customer demand for electric vehicle charging can increase the value of residential developments. As an independent residential specialist, TriConnex supports and advises developers on the extra capacity required to provide household and shared EV charging facilities. Through its partnership with EO Charging it now offers a fully inclusive product that also provides an innovative lifetime adoption option for long-term ownership and management of off-plot, shared and community chargers, removing this burden from management companies. Ensuring that the network capacity precisely matches the predicted charging demand provides certainty, both with regards to cost and delivery. TriConnex only specifies compliant, reliable equipment that offers homeowners the best experience.

On-plot EV charging can now be achieved with no increase in electrical loading, saving money and time through reduction in the number and size of cables required on site. Considering the current high prices of primary materials, such as aluminium and copper, that’s the right choice for both the environment and developers’ budgets.

Given the complexity of the technology and how rapidly it is evolving, the TriConnex team invests extensively in researching and creating products that help developers meet shifting planning and regulatory requirements and growing customer demands for EV chargers. This involves working closely with government, technical and industry organisations such as the Home Builders Federation (HBF) and developers. As a result, TriConnex is constantly reshaping its proposition, not just to meet the imminent building regulations, but also planning ahead for future technological developments and electricity demands.

Tackling inequity
Electric vehicles are cheaper to run and operate than petrol or diesel cars, even for drivers on a low income. But ease of use is just as important as affordability. Unfortunately, 62 per cent of households in British cities and urban areas don’t have their own parking space or garage. These EV owners have to charge at a charging station, or at the side of the road.

TriConnex’ new offering will deal with this problem in new build residential developments. Building regulations mandate chargers on plot, beyond which it’s a lottery of what the planners will be asking for on behalf of the occupiers.

Chris Doré, Business Development Director at TriConnex Ltd, said: “As the transition to electric vehicles gathers momentum, we expect to see an increasing demand for reliable, competitively priced charging installations from EV owners who don’t have access to on-plot parking. By providing a full range of residential EV charging solutions we want to add value to our customers’ developments and enable drivers to switch to electric vehicles.”

Charlie Jardine, CEO at EO Charging, said: “The majority of electric vehicle drivers find it easiest to charge their vehicles at home, and overnight when electricity is often cheaper. By analysing where domestic vehicles spend the most dwell time, often at home, it’s clear that investment needs to be made in both private and public charging infrastructure to support the green revolution. With the Government set to mandate chargers in all new developments, this partnership is ahead of the curve in helping to deliver this service for residents who want to embrace the EV revolution now.”

Virgin Media added to TriConnex fibre broadband offering

We are pleased to announce that Virgin Media is now available through our fibre broadband solution.

Our teams will install fibre for both Virgin Media and Open Fibre Networks Limited across shared infrastructure.

This approach and the recent technical and design upgrades to in-plot equipment will reduce housebuilders and developers street furniture and groundworks costs.

With 1GB ready fibre networks being a must-have for new homeowners, we support housebuilders by installing fibre solutions that offer customers an extensive choice of phone and broadband providers and ensure that there is no digital exclusion on developments.

Our solution also allows us to guarantee the connections on time, as we control the entire process in-house; design, installation and connection.

TriConnex’ fibre connections bring a fully integrated multi-utility design and delivery service, which includes a huge range of providers, including Virgin Media and Sky, available on day one.

TriConnex continues supporting Edith Borthwick special day school

As a major employer in the Braintree area, at TriConnex we recognise and support opportunities to give something back to the communities in which we operate.

In recent years we’re delighted to have developed a strong relationship with the Edith Borthwick special day school in Braintree, which has led to TriConnex supporting various improvement projects at the school.

In 2020 TriConnex purchased items of new playground equipment, which learners at the school are very much enjoying. Now, TriConnex has drawn on the construction expertise within the business to build a new pathway.

This new pathway connects the main playground area to some of the most popular pieces of play equipment. Before the construction of the path, learners needed to walk across the grass – fine in the summer months but muddy and difficult for wheelchair users at other times of the year. Now the learners can enjoy simpler and safer access to play equipment like the trampolines!

David Topping, Managing Director of TriConnex, said:
“Once again we’re delighted to support the Edith Borthwick school with the construction of a new pathway. We knew that access to some of the most popular play equipment could be difficult in certain weathers, so I’m really pleased that TriConnex has been able to help”.

Vicky Faulks, chairperson of the Friends of Edith Borthwick commented:
“We are enormously grateful to our wonderful friends at TriConnex, their ongoing support for our school is incredibly valuable to us. Regular use of the play equipment enables our learners to get exercise and fresh air, regulate their sensory needs, build social development into their recreation, and most of all have FUN!

The new pathway will make a massive difference enabling safe and easy access all year round, in particular for those who have mobility challenges. We very much hope to continue to develop our relationship with TriConnex into the future. On behalf of everyone at Edith Borthwick School, thank you!“

£10k Charity donation following 10 million steps challenge

With TriConnex celebrating its 10th anniversary this month we planned a few activities to mark the occasion.

One such event was the “Power of 10”, a challenge for the business to collectively accumulate 10 million steps over a 10 day period, which if achieved would result in the business making a £10,000 donation to charity.

Monday the 26th April was judgement day, with the 10 day period having ended on Sunday the 25th. And after lagging behind the necessary run-rate (or walk-rate!) earlier in the week, a determination to achieve the 10 million target coupled with glorious spring weather over the final weekend meant the teams were inspired. The final result? Nearly 11 million steps being completed in total – 10,939,674 to be precise.

So well done to everyone who took part and we’ll now make the £10,000 donation to charity. The “Power of 10” is clearly a powerful force!

David Topping, Managing Director