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Good Offsite Guide

The PrefabNZ Good Offsite Guide: a compilation of regulatory perspectives on building consenting to assist in getting your great offsite projects off the ground.

PrefabNZ Members told us that dealing with building consent regulation was one of their top-three bug-bears, so we took action.

The team at PrefabNZ scoured the country searching for solutions - we spoke with: 

  • the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE)

  • the Building Officials Institute of New Zealand (BOINZ)

  • Auckland Council (AC)

  • independent consultants such as Louise Swann at the Building Business and John Gardiner at Building Confidence

  • and our Members through mini-hui in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

We were more confused at the end of consultation than when we started, so we decided to rhrow it all together in the Good Offsite Guide, launch it at CoLab 2018, and let you decide the path of your own adventure. 


We were inspired by the work across the ditch with the collaborative effort that manifested in the Modular Design Handbook - PrefabNZ and Engineering NZ members can download their copies for free. See more here .

We work collaboratively, so are continuing to liaise with different Building Consent Authorities and in coordination wtih MBIE to search for a level of consistency in the way building consents are administered for offsite constructed pieces and parts. We will continue to liten to you, our Members, and welcome your engagement in this process. We will work with all these parties (as listed below) to smooth regulation and improve the consistency of messages to that your innovative offsite projects can be built. 

Please keep your eyes and ears tuned for more information about the 2018 Roadshow which will feature a keynote presentation from Professor James Murray-Parkes (an interdisiplinary engineer), an update on the Good Offsite Guide, and update on teh Timber Design Guides development, and a fabulous interactive buit-piece from the bright minds at Unitec with friends at CarterHoltHarvey Wood Products. 

Contact us with your questions, comments or thoughts. 

Good Offsite Guide Background: 

The Good Offsite Guide (2018) was developed to be used as a complementary resource to the Modular Design Handbook (2017). Thi sis the starting point: 


Australia released the world-first Modular Design Handbook at the prefabAUS conference in September 2017.


The Handbook is freely available to NZ paid-up members of PrefabNZ and EngineeringNZ from November 2017 - see Member Resources.


James Murray-Parkes led the development of the Handbook through the Modular Construction Codes Board (MCCB) and under the University of Monash.


Monash University holds the copyright which has been handed to Holmes Group to administer in NZ with rights to PrefabNZ and EngineeringNZ as above. 


James Murray-Parkes presented the Handbook to the PrefabNZ CoLab (8 March 2018 in Auckland).


The 2018 Roadshow will follow in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch (May 8 - 10, 2018) in collaboration with BRANZ.


The Roadshow will be a way to initiate consultation on the PrefabNZ Good Offsite Guide that will sit alongside the Handbook and provide much-needed best practice guidance to assist design and development, as well as clarify the pathway through the consent and compliance regulatory process.

With thanks and acknowledgement of collaborative parties involved to date: 

  • Professor James Murray-Parkes, Brookfield Scientific Solutions / Monash University

  • Holmes Group - Tim Porter (Holmes Solutions) and Luke Williams, plus Holmes Farsight - Rob Tierney and Steven Peng

  • EngineeringNZ - Susan Freeman-Greene (CE), Bridgit Sissons and Laura Stockton

  • SESoc

  • Building Officials Institute NZ (BOINZ) - Nick Hill (CE), Dan Scheibmair (Technical)

  • The Building Business - Louise Swann

  • Building Confidence -John Gardiner

  • Auckland Council - Penny Pirrit, Ian McCormick

  • MBIE - Anna Butler, Seth Campbell, Anna Clark, Gleb Speranski. Multiproof and codemark clarification with Seth Campbell and Kirsty Wallace and Auckland Council liaison with Dave Robson

  • BRANZ - Margaret McLaughlan, Richard Capie

  • PrefabNZ folks - Pamela Bell and Olly Townend, with Board Deputy Chair Tim Porter (Holmes Solutions)

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