Offsite Solutions awarded contracts at Downing’s Square Gardens

Bathroom pod manufacturer Offsite Solutions has been awarded two contracts totalling £5m for nearly 1,500 bathroom pods.

Tile-effect bathroom pod. Offsite Solutions have been awarded contracts for Downing's Square Gardens co-living scheme in Manchester | BTR News
Tile-effect bathroom pod.

Offsite Solutions, the UK’s leading bathroom pod manufacturer, has been awarded two contracts totalling £5m for nearly 1,500 bathroom pods for Downing’s first co-living scheme.

The company has worked on more than 20 Downing projects since 2013, involving the manufacture of nearly 10,000 pods to date in contracts worth over £23m.

Designed by Simpson Haugh and developed and built by Downing, the £400m Square Gardens co-living scheme in Manchester will provide a mix of private studios to five-bedroom apartments.

“Manufacturing bathrooms offsite gives us a huge benefit in terms of programme, reduction of waste on site and certainty in quality. Our demand for pods is high once the internal fit out process starts onsite, so keeping up with our programme is absolutely critical for Downing. Pod technology continues to advance. At Square Gardens we are utilising new higher specification GRP finishes and floorless pods. We are happy with the level of quality and finish that Offsite Solutions achieves with its bathroom pods for Downing and have a good relationship with their organisation at every level.” 

Andy Thomas, Operations Director, Downing

This project is the very first application of Offsite Solutions’ new large format tile-effect finish for its GRP bathroom pods. The company has recently developed an expanded range of finishes to widen the scope of factory-finished GRP shower rooms and bathrooms specifically for the Build to Rent sector.

Offsite Solutions is manufacturing 1,487 GRP shower rooms and ensuite bathrooms for towers A, B and block D up to floor 17. All the pods will be supplied floorless; a highly efficient solution to minimise floor build-up on high-rise apartment projects.

The pods will also feature the company’s newly developed large format tile-effect finish in matt white, which will remove the need for porcelain tiles and grout lines to the wet areas. This option significantly reduces maintenance costs for retained assets.

The larger shower rooms for Square Gardens will have a 1.7m long shower with a sliding door and wall-mounted thermostatic shower. The pods will be fitted out in the factory with a three-door mirrored wall cabinet, bar tower rail, LED lighting, wall hung toilet, and a rectangular wall-mounted hand basin with a pearl white solid surface vanity top above. The ensuite shower pods will have a 780mm shower with a pivot door and a single mirrored wall cabinet.

“Downing is one of our longest standing clients. We have provided GRP bathroom pods which have been rolled out on multiple student living schemes developed by Downing across the UK for more than ten years. We are delighted to now be working on their major co-living development in the heart of Manchester. Over the life of GRP pods, we estimate that the operating cost saving is at least 90% more than in-situ bathroom construction. GRP pod technology continues to advance and we have now developed a series of new aesthetic options and features that developers can specify to further enhance tenant appeal in the shared living space. We can also engineer standardised designs that developers can specify for multiple schemes – as we have done for many years with Downing – further increasing the efficiency of construction and optimising all the benefits of offsite manufacturing.”

James Stephens, Managing Director (MD), Offsite Solutions

Due for completion in 2024, the Square Gardens co-living scheme aims to simplify and improve the residents experience of living in the city centre by providing a quality place to live that is not only affordable, secure and convenient, but one that creates a vibrant new connected community.

Offsite Solutions offers the largest range of bathroom pods of any UK manufacturer and to suit different building types, tenures and market sectors. Options include steel-framed bathroom pods with porcelain-tiled finishes for high-end apartments, PRS, student residences and hotels, and robust and low maintenance GRP composite shower and bath pods for Build to Rent, student living, care homes, social housing and healthcare.

For further information, visit, call 01278 780807 or email

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