Built to last

From the green fields of Ireland to the deserts of Dubai, Ian Massey's passion for building has taken him far and wide.

He now finds himself in Western Australia as the director and founder of Ismart Building Group, formerly known as Insulation Systems, with a mission to debunk the preconception all offsite manufactured housing result in unattractive, low- quality, flimsy-looking, donga-type buildings.

Mr Massey said early next year the company would be building the first multi-residential German Passive Haus project in the Southern Hemisphere.

"We have imported some of the most advanced and globally recognised building performance test equipment available on the market and we are the only company in WA that carries out tests on our completed buildings to prove their performance," he said.

"We were in fact brought in to test the only other Passive Haus building in WA.

"The volume of high-performance buildings we plan to build in the coming years will put Perth on the global map as one of the leaders in sustainable building."

Mr Massey started his trade as a boilermaker and welder before undertaking his apprenticeship at Dublin Institute of Technology and then completing a degree in construction management and technology.

Armed with a wealth of knowledge and years of experience, Mr Massey is dedicated to making lasting buildings through a number of products and services, including Finished Wall.

A low-energy residential wall system, Finished Wall is manufactured offsite and erected in days.

"Much of the technical research for our system was carried out by our business partner Daniel Kress at the top German and Canadian universities," Mr Massey said.

"Over 600 simulations were carried out in these universities to come up with this optimal building system for WA."
Mr Massey spent two years designing the system for the Perth climate.

"It is a timber steel composite framing system," he said. "You can have any sized building, from one storey to six storeys; it doesn't matter and neither does the shape or style – we can frame it."

Mr Massey said there were numerous benefits to framing a building, including double glazing and making the building air tight, as well as controlling the environment, getting rid of cold air leaking out and utilising naturally occurring temperatures.

"Your heating and cooling cost is reduced by 90 per cent," he said.

Mr Massey firmly believes as energy costs continue to rise, this will need to be factored in when building a home. As building a home is a long-term investment, it not only needs to be comfortable but economical.

Under the leadership of Mr Massey, Ismart's systems allow the building process to be broken down into a few easily manageable stages and remove the stress of dealing with multiple contractors and complicated building processes. As the building systems are manufactured in workshop conditions in Yangebup they are cost-effective as well.

Mr Massey's passion for building and innovation is clear but he is quick to praise his suppliers, especially CSR for its role in aiding Ismart.

"They're the only big guys doing products for low- energy framed constructions," he said. "They've been really supportive in my company's formative stage when I was working out of my kitchen."


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