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    Blog by Tom Bloxham MBE

    Developing new ideas with our colleagues in Japan

    02 December 2019
    A 6 minute read by Tom Bloxham

    I’ve just come back from another visit to Japan, visiting Osaka and Kyoto with our colleagues and partners Sekisui House and Homes England.

    It was a thoroughly enjoyable trip, one which left me inspired and buoyed up; it made me and even more ambitious and got me thinking about what we can achieve working alongside a business as forward thinking and innovative as Sekisui House – one of the worlds leading and most sustainable house builders.

    Our trip started in Osaka

    Our trip started in Osaka where we visited, and learned lots from, a number of housing schemes. Sekisui House build more than 45,000 homes a year in Japan – many of them zero carbon homes.

    We visited a number of housing schemes

    Their success comes thanks to a forward thinking attitude in R&D; they employ more than 1000 people in research helping them maintain this rate of sustainable development.

    Super tidy Sekisui House building sites

    I also noticed a huge pride in everything that Sekisui House delivers – with super tidy build sites such as the one above – to publicly declared dates for the completion of each stage of each and every home built.

    Completion dates for each stage of every home build

    It’s an attitude which extends to their sales suites too – such as this grand, yet temporary, structure we visited on one of Sekisui House’s sites.

    Temporary sales suite

    Their application of MMC also goes beyond just homes; this is a hotel that was built using modern methods of construction.

    Hotel built using modern methods of construction

    As well as a fascinating insight into Sekisui House sites, our trip was also a wonderful opportunity to once again meet with our new colleagues; three of the four main board directors, including President and Chairman of Sekisui House, took time to meet with us, taking their UK investments very seriously

    And it was nice to see at these meetings what my name looks like in Japanese phonetics!

    My name in Japanese phonetics!

    Each of our many working sessions was a learning curve in how we can best cooperate and learn from each other as we grow House by Urban Splash and the acceleration of modular homes in the UK.

    With our colleagues from Sekisui House and Homes England

    But it wasn't all just work… We had plenty of time to bond as a team and immerse ourselves in Japanese culture.

    With the Urban Splash team

    And Japanese foods – though I did resist the octopus eggs on offer here.

    Octopus eggs!

    We visited Sekisui House sites and cultural sites in Kyoto as part of our trip too sampling more great Japanese food and way of life.

    Sampling some great Japanese food

    This was my second trip to meet Sekisui House and visit this wonderful country (you can read about my first trip here).

    Each time I come back even more inspired and full of ambition to do great things with our brilliant partners…

    About the author

    Tom Bloxham

    Chairman and Co-Founder

    Tom Bloxham MBE is chairman and founder of award-winning regeneration company Urban Splash, which has received over 420 awards to date for architecture, design and business success.

    The company is responsible for development projects across the country, including Manchester, Liverpool, Cambridge, Milton Keynes, Birmingham, Leeds, Bradford, Sheffield, Bristol, Plymouth, North Shields and Morecambe. In 1999 Tom was awarded an MBE for Services to Architecture and Urban Regeneration.

    Tom also upholds a number of other positions including; Chairman of Manchester International Festival, and trustee of Tate, the Manchester United Foundation and The Bloxham Charitable Trust.

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