Posts tagged construction industry

Mansell starts work on £12m Euston student block

Mansell awarded £12 million Euston Road student accommodation block

Mansell has been selected for a £12 million seven-storey student accommodation building on London’s Euston road that will pave the way for new trade jobs

The scheme involves demolition of part of the existing building behind a retained façade and construction of a 171-bed accommodation block along with associated external works, services, lifts and ancillary areas.

Once complete, the building will be certified with a BREEAM ‘Very Good’ rating.

Construction of the seven-storey project at Bentley House will be completed in time for the 2014 student intake, boosting the trades and people in the building construction industry.

To protect the architectural heritage of the building, bricks removed during demolition will be salvaged, cleaned and reused where possible, with new material matched to the original as closely as possible.

Situated within close proximity to an area of high pedestrian footfall and heavy traffic, sensitive demolition techniques and sophisticated logistics planning will be used throughout the duration of the contract to avoid disruption.

An innovative piling solution, which will complete prior to the start of demolition works, will facilitate the seamless transition between an old and new sub-station.

 

Business Secretary launches new Anglia growing business fund

Business Secretary launches new Anglia growing business fund

Business Secretary Vince Cable has launched a new £3 million funding scheme for East Anglia that will kick-start growth for small firms in the trades.

The New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership is specifically aimed at helping firms that want to grow but have been held back by a lack of finance.

The £3 million fund will provide cash grants to businesses looking to expand their operations

and create new jobs. Funding for the scheme has come from the government’s Regional Growth Fund.

The fund will provide grants of up to 20%, between £25,000 and £100,000, to business that have a shortfall in their investment plan and are able to create at least one job for every £10,000 provided by the fund.

The Business Secretary launched the fund at Redpack in Norwich, a company which hopes to benefit from the new fund and expand its existing operations in the city.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “A lack of finance is one of the biggest barriers facing firms that want to grow. The government is already taking big steps to help companies bridge that gap and now, thanks to this new fund, businesses across East Anglia will get that helping hand they need.

“Through programmes like the New Anglia ‘Growing Business Fund’, the government’s Regional Growth Fund has supported around 1,200 small and medium sized companies across the country, helping them create jobs, increase skills and grow their business.”

What is your reaction to the new funding scheme for East Anglia that will kick-start growth for small businesses and boost the trades? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raise your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages.  

British Land reaches key milestone in London redevelopment

British Land reaches key milestone in the redevelopment of Harmsworth Quays

The first step has been taken to allow the redevelopment of the 14.57 acre Harmsworth Quays printing works site in Canada Water, South East London, to go ahead.

Southwark Council has given its approval for the Daily Mail General Trust (DMGT) to assign its leasehold interest in the site to British Land.

The decision is a key milestone for the development which has the potential to deliver significant improvements to the local area and create new trade jobs.

Cllr Fiona Colley, Cabinet Member for Regeneration at Southwark Council, said: “In addition to new homes, the redevelopment of Harmsworth Quays has the potential to deliver the town centre and jobs that Rotherhithe really needs.”

British Land will now begin working up proposals in consultation with Southwark Council and the local community to realise the full potential of this important site. Vacant possession of the site will be available later this year following the relocation of DMGT’s printing operations to Thurrock.

Southwark Council, which is currently developing policy to guide the redevelopment, will be adopting a preferred option of its Area Action Plan in May for consultation. This will emphasise the council’s and community’s vision to create a mixed-use town centre at Canada Water.

Both Southwark Council and British Land have committed to exploring the potential to create a new campus for Kings College as part of the scheme, to complement their proposals for the adjoining site at the Mulberry Business Park.

Nigel Webb, Head of Development for British Land, said: “We are delighted that the London Borough of Southwark has agreed the assignment for Harmsworth Quays. We can now begin the process of working with the local community, the London Borough of Southwark and other key stakeholders to bring forward a new, mixed use development in the heart of Canada Water.”

Government Approves Northampton Enterprise Zone Site

CPO Powers Secure Enterprise Zone Site

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has confirmed a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) for the development of a 2.4 hectares scheme in Northampton Waterside Enterprise Zone.

The CPO is set to kick-start the transformation of the area, boosting the construction industry and creating new jobs in the trades. Plans include the building of 40,000 sq metres quality office space and six-storey Innovation Centre, which begins construction this summer.

Councillor David Mackintosh, Leader of Northampton Borough Council said: “Across our town we are seeing exciting Northampton Alive projects breathing new life into areas as we unlock their potential.

“There are real opportunities to invest in Northampton and our Enterprise Zone. This is another positive step as we bring together another site for redevelopment and new employment opportunities.”

WNDC now owns all of the vacant land, 5 commercial properties and 10 residential properties in St Peter’s Waterside. In addition, the Corporation is in advanced discussions with National Grid about the potential to include two adjoining Gasholder sites in the development plans.

Government Approves Northampton Enterprise Zone Site

The CPO is one of two that the Corporation has launched in the Northampton Enterprise Zone, with the other Order covering the Avon Nunn Mills site. A decision on that CPO is expected later this spring.

Chris Garden, WNDC’s Director of Regeneration said: “With its central location and transport links, St Peter’s Waterside is a perfect location for high profile office development.  We have been buying land in the area for some time, but this CPO means we have consolidated various sites and can press ahead with our plans.

“There will be cranes in the skyline this summer, with work starting on the first phases of development and demolition. Meanwhile, directly opposite the site, construction will be underway on Northampton’s new railway station. It is a defining period in the regeneration of the town.”

What is your reaction to the Compulsory Purchase Order given by Communities Secretary, Eric Pickles, to pave to way for new businesses as well as boost the trades? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raise your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages.  

Crossrail plans new residential scheme in Camden

Crossrail submits new residential plans to Camden council

Crossrail and architects HOK have submitted plans for a 30,000 sq ft, eight-storey residential development set to create new jobs and boost the trades.

A planning application has been submitted to Camden Council for striking residential scheme comprising 22 one, two and three bedroom apartments at Fisher Street in central London.

The scheme has been designed in consultation with the London Borough of Camden and English Heritage. The plans will incorporate the ground floor Crossrail shaft while creating a unique exterior that offers different views of the building from each angle.

The project is Crossrail’s latest over-site development submitted for planning consent. Another 3 million square feet of office, retail and residential space is planned above new Crossrail stations and sites in London with planning consent secured for nearly 1 million sq ft of development so far.

These developments will help create new business space, jobs and new homes for Londoners on top of the world-class new transport links Crossrail is delivering.

Crossrail’s Land and Property Director, Ian Lindsay, said: “Not only is Crossrail delivering world-class new transport links, it is creating high-quality new development opportunities throughout the capital.

“The Fisher Street plans offer a striking piece of architecture for a unique opportunity to deliver new residential space in a prime central London location.

“This is one of a number of commercial opportunities in the pipeline and we are continuing to seek new development partners to help us deliver a range of future schemes.”

Construction work on the Fisher Street shaft is already well underway and is expected to be completed in 2015.

Chancellor Should Boost Construction to Drive Growth

The Construction Products Association

The Construction Products Association (CPA) has called on the Chancellor George Osborne to recognise the potential of the construction industry to drive economic growth and create new jobs in the trades.

According to the Association, it is vital for the government to spend the multi-billion capital investment boost announced in the Autumn Statement that could provide 0.8% additional growth in GDP.

Chief Executive of the CPA, Diana Montgomery said: “With the general economic outlook continuing to look uncertain, we are urging government to do more to drive growth by building on the recent increase in capital investment for repair and maintenance of roads and extending this to other parts of built environment, such as housing, schools and hospitals.

“We also want to see the UK improve on its current ranking of 24th in the world for the quality of its infrastructure. For the UK economy to remain internationally competitive in attracting inward investment, it is essential that there are significant improvements in its infrastructure.

“Government frequently states it is aware of the importance of the construction industry and its product manufacturers and suppliers. In these challenging times for the UK economy, the opportunities that we provide to drive economic growth and build a more sustainable future for the UK need to be prioritised. We can only hope the Chancellor does indeed recognise this.”

To read the full draft of the letter from the Construction Products Association to the Chancellor, click here.

1,200 new homes and further investment for Cornwall

New homes and further investment for CornwallCornwall Council has committed to working with five different housing associations to deliver 1,200 new affordable homes in Cornwell over the next 4 years.

The Council has re-iterated its commitment to meet local housing needs as well as to create hundreds of construction jobs in the building industry and boost the trades.

Joining residents and representatives of Devon & Cornwall Housing (DCH) Cabinet Member for Housing and Planning, Mark Kaczmarek, said: “The Council works closely with a number of housing associations to deliver affordable homes for local people.

“The Council supports the delivery of new affordable housing through the planning process, and planning permission for this scheme was granted in 2010.  Cornwall Council also provides funding towards the cost of new affordable housing, including a contribution of £55,000 to this specific scheme.

“But this is not the only investment we are making. Given the desperate housing shortage and the Council’s commitment to meeting local housing needs, the Council has agreed ambitious plans to match pound for pound Government investment in new homes.

“I am pleased to announce that the Council is signing contracts with five housing associations to deliver an additional 1,000 affordable homes in Cornwall over 4 years with investment totalling over £20 million. Few councils have made such a commitment.

“DCH is one of the Council’s key partners and today I am endorsing a contract with DCH which will see them commit to deliver 500 affordable homes for Cornwall. This is a Council fund, in addition to their own schemes and programmes funded through Government. The Council welcome DCH’s commitment and the ambition they are showing in working with us to meet Cornwall’s needs.”

Andy Moore, Chief Executive of Penwith Housing Association, part of DCH said: “There is a huge need for affordable housing across Cornwall. The delivery agreement with Cornwall Council is extremely important in providing vital new homes like the homes at St Stephen and we are pleased to be one of the partners working with them.”

The £2.6 million scheme in St Stephen, which was completed in January 2012, provides 18 homes for rent and 4 for shared ownership.

There are 9 x 2 bedroom homes, 10 x 3 bedroom homes, and 3 x 4-bedroom properties. Support came from a £1,350,000 investment from the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) and a grant of £55,000 from Cornwall Council.

The group visited residents’ homes to see how living in their affordable housing has had a positive effect on their lives ensuring they were able to stay within the community where their families were based.

What is your reaction to the new affordable homes that will create jobs and boost the trades? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

St Modwen gets £150m Swansea Uni campus deal

Swansea University New Development 1Swansea University has signed a £150 million contract with developer St Modwen to build new campus that will create jobs and boost the trades.

Work on the first building will get underway in April, with Bam Construction, Leadbitter, Vinci and Willmott Dixon in the tender race to build a £23 million innovation hub centre at the site.

Bill Oliver, chief Executive of St. Modwen, said: “This is an incredibly exciting project and one that complements our extensive experience in regenerating complex sites.

“We are very pleased to have agreed terms and look forward to engaging with Swansea University, Neath Port Talbot Council and other stakeholders to progress the delivery of this substantial and strategic development.”

The first phase of this scheme, which received detailed planning permission in December 2012 from Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council, will comprise 700,000 sq ft of development including 430,000 sq ft of academic space as well as 900 student apartments.

This will deliver world-leading research, innovation and education facilities for Swansea. St. Modwen expects to start on site in April 2013.

Swansea University New DevelopmentThe project on an old BP refinery site in Neath has already been given a detailed planning permission for 430,000 sq ft of academic buildings and 900 student apartments.

The Leader of Neath Port Talbot Council, Councillor Ali Thomas, said: ‘‘This project will provide a considerable economic boost not just for Neath Port Talbot but for the wider region.

“It will support the growth of highly skilled jobs and knowledge-driven businesses and is an exciting and outstanding example of the major new developments which the Fabian Way Corridor is attracting. I look forward to watching it progress.’’

The University has already secured funding from the European Investment Bank and the Welsh Government while St Modwen has secured the investment sale of 50% of the student accommodation to a major institutional investor.

An outline planning permission is already in place for future development phases which will be in excess of £300 million in value.

Super Masterplan for Kings Dock reaches out for new jobs

Kings Dock LiverpoolThe Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) has unveiled a new masterplan for Kings Dock, Liverpool, which development framework could create up to 1,000 jobs. 

The HCA has devised the plan at Kings Dock which will boost the local economy and enhance opportunities for existing and future trade professionals.

The new development will also create a pleasant neighbourhood with attractive public squares allowing access to the water space.

Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Councillor Malcolm Kennedy, said: “This is an important piece of work, which will guide the future development of Kings Dock.

“It supports our recently launched Strategic Investment Framework for the city centre, which includes plans to drive forward the regeneration of the waterfront, increasing visitor numbers, boosting our economy and creating jobs.”

The new masterplan builds on the successful first stage of development of the northern half of the Kings Waterfront site that is home to the world class Arena and Convention Centre Liverpool, hotels, restaurants, multi-storey car park and apartments.

Deborah McLaughlin, HCA Executive Director for the North West, said: “The masterplan has been designed to help continue the transformation of Liverpool into one of the UK’s most business and enterprise-friendly cities and position the city as an international conference and events destination.

“The proposals are wide-ranging to ensure that the emerging development framework is relevant, realistic and deliverable in the current economic climate. As landowner, the HCA is committed to ensuring that the Kings Dock contributes hugely to the prosperity of Liverpool.”

Glasgow College announces preferred bidder for new super campus

McAlpine wins £228m Glasgow campusSir Robert McAlpine has been named as the preferred bidder to build a £228 million college in Glasgow, paving the way for new trade jobs and boosting the local economy.

The multi-million investment is financed with funding support from the Scottish Government via the Scottish Funding Council (SFC) and from the college’s financial reserves.

The European Investment Bank has approved up to £100 million of financing which will kick-start building and construction work in the summer of 2013.

Julia Kennedy, associate director at Scottish Futures Trust (SFT) who has been supporting the college through the procurement process, said:  “Construction is planned to start later this year and will act as an enormous boost to local small and medium enterprises working within the building sector and related supply chains thanks to the preferred bidder’s commitment to supporting local employment and training.”

Douglas Baillie, Chair of the College Board said: “Selecting the preferred bidder is yet another major milestone in our continuing success.

“The announcement is proof of what we can achieve as a beacon of excellence and it is with great excitement and energy that we look ahead to the next chapter in the life of this great college.

“Enhancing our diverse and talented student learning community with brand new, bespoke facilities underlines our passion for learning and desire to meet the needs of Glasgow’s and Scotland’s employers and the wider civic community.”

Both campuses have been designed by Reiach and Hall and Michael Laird Architects. The College represents the single largest estates investment in the educational sector in Scotland and will help transform the city centre landscape for generations to come.

Bradford resource recovery centre will create new trade jobs

A major new resource recovery facility, that will boost Bradford’s construction industry and create hundreds of trade jobs has been given the go ahead. 

Members of Bradford Council’s Regulatory and Appeals Committee have approved plans to build the state-of-the-art centre that will produce enough electricity to power around 20,000 homes.

Construction giant Skanska will be responsible for delivering the project and will work in a joint venture with AECOM, a global provider of professional technical and management support services, to design, build and commission the Resource Recovery Facility.

FCC Environment (formerly Waste Recycling Group (WRG)), a leading UK waste management and energy recovery company, will operate the facility.

The facility will mechanically extract valuable recyclable materials from Bradford and Calderdale’s household waste before using the remainder to produce electricity to be supplied to the National Grid.

It will divert over 90% of Bradford and Calderdale’s waste away from landfill each year, help the councils increase their recycling rates to over 50% and generate enough electricity to power the equivalent of 20,000 homes.

The scheme at Bowling Back Lane will create 80 permanent jobs with a further 300 positions created during construction.

Speaking after the committee’s decision Mark Tribe, Project Director for Pennine Resource Recovery (PRR), said: “Our project will bring great economic and environmental benefits to Bradford and Calderdale and we’re delighted councillors have recognised this.

“No matter how environmentally responsible we are, our society will always generate waste.  The Resource Recovery Facility will ensure we deal with waste in a sustainable way and avoid sending it to environmentally damaging and increasingly costly landfill sites.

“This decision is great news for Bradford and Calderdale.  The scheme has been specifically designed for the area and we will be working very closely with local training and employment agencies to ensure that local people across both districts are able to benefit from the employment and training opportunities on offer.”

Benefits for residents and the economy within the Bradford and Calderdale areas include:

• 300 jobs during construction

• 80 permanent jobs during operations

• 80 apprenticeships

• 124 weeks of work experience for school children

• 1,500 weeks of work experience for unemployed people

• Up to £50,000 a year donated to a Community Fund

• Contracts available for local recycling companies

• £30million in construction contracts

£10 billion fund could build 300,000 new homes a year and create new jobs

The Future Homes Commission has set out plans to fund a three-fold increase in the number of new homes being built every year, paving the way for new jobs in the trades.

The Commission, set up by the Royal Institute of British Architects, has called on Government to use council pension pots to fund a massive housing programme that could see the building of 300,000 homes a year and boost the construction industry.

The Homes Commission argues for the creation of a new £10 billion Local Housing Development Fund, financed by the largest Local Authority pension funds, that would use 15% of their assets to invest in new rental and shared ownership housing.

The new scheme would play a lead role for the government to use localassets to lead the creation of sustainable communities and meet local housing needs as well as create thousands of jobs in the building construction industry.

A similar approach to that proposed is being pioneered by Manchester City Council, which is working with the Greater Manchester Pension Fund to build 244 homes.

The city council will release land into the joint venture at fair market valuation and GMPF will inject £25 million to pay for building work.

Both partners will then receive a capital payment on the sale of houses and an annual revenue return.

10-year multi-million maintenance contract to bring new jobs

Outsourcing company Mitie has been awarded a ten-year repair and maintenance contract that will create new trade jobs and boost building sector.

The contract is worth £70 million over ten years with the potential to rise to £120 million if Golding Homes issue additional works. The multi-million scheme will see the housing association’s upkeep of 6,000 properties across Kent.

The deal is expected to benefit customers with more flexible appointment system and a quicker repairs ordering process. It will generate additional opportunities for skills training and employment in the trades.

Peter Stringer, Golding Homes chief executive, said: “We carefully considered a range of models for providing repairs and maintenance services, based on our customers’ priorities.

We concluded that creating a wholly owned subsidiary company as a vehicle for the contract will best help us meet our goals.

“We are confident that selecting Mitie as our partner will bring the professional and innovative approach our customers deserve and we look forward to working closely with them.”

Mitie will work with Golding Homes and its wholly owned subsidiary Golding Services to deliver gas maintenance, responsive repairs, void reinstatements and planned works.

Commenting on the contract award, Peter Griffin, director for social housing at Mitie, said:

“At Mitie we’re passionate about working with our customers to develop strategic partnerships that can provide long-term investment in both service infrastructure and assets. We’re delighted to be working with Golding Homes and Golding Services to deliver this exciting new contract.”

Land Securities’ boost for UK jobs and the trades

Land Securities has been given the go-ahead to start a £350 million Kingsgate redevelopment that will create 2,500 jobs throughout its construction and boost the trades.

The announcement comes after the Prime Minister, David Cameron, visited the site and showed his support for the project in an attempt to prevent planning levy for local infrastructure being double-charged and cut red tape.

David Cameron said: “Already the changes we are making to the planning system are having an impact, with Land Securities giving the go-ahead to a major multi-million pound investment, supporting thousands of jobs in our construction industry.”

The scheme is designed by Lynch Architects and it comprises of two new buildings: The Zig Zag Building, a 190,000 sq ft office building over 14 floors with a staggered façade; and Kings Gate, a 12 storey residential building comprising 100 apartments.

Both buildings will provide a new and enhanced retail space with 45,000 sq ft of space, together with considerable improvements to the public realm benefitting the wider Victoria area. The buildings are planned to complete in summer 2015.

Robert Noel, Chief Executive of Land Securities said: “It is heartening to know that the Government has listened to the industry and acted to remove some of the uncertainty in the planning process.

“It enables us to progress with developing the former Kingsgate House site and continue to transform Victoria into a distinct and vibrant West End hub where people choose to live, work and visit.

“Our experience with our current developments demonstrates that Victoria is proving attractive to potential occupiers. This project will further add to its appeal.”

The scheme will also provide an affordable housing contribution of £11.6 million which will be directed towards the provision of affordable development in the Westminster area.

What is your reaction to the multi-million development that will pave the way for new trade jobs? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Europe approves £3bn funding for UK’s Green Investment Bank

EU regulators have approved the creation of the UK’s £3 billion Green Investment Bank which will pave the way for investments in the low carbon economy and create new jobs.

The European Commission found sufficient safeguards to avoid “crowding out of private investment” and ensure fair competition whilst the bank is offering funding to accelerate the development of the UK’s green economy.

The bank’s mission is to invest in innovative and environmentally friendly projects for which a market failure has been identified. It is set to help offshore wind, waste and non-domestic energy efficiency sectors.

The Commission said the Green Bank will be capitalised with £3 billion and will intervene by syndicating and underwriting junior, mezzanine and senior debt, by taking equity stakes or granting guarantees.

According to the Commission, the new initiative will allow green projects to materialise while minimising potential distortions of competition.

The bank is seen as a crucial element in funding the country’s transition to a low carbon economy and it began investing directly in projects earlier this year.

Green Investment Bank chairman Lord Smith said: “This is excellent news and a very important milestone as we transition to a low carbon economy and work to boost investment across the industry.

“We have already made significant progress in building our teams and the necessary infrastructure for the bank and we expect to be fully operational in the next few weeks.

“We clearly have challenges ahead but we have the people, the expertise and the capability to deliver on our priorities and create the foundation for a new climate of green investment.”

What is your reaction to the UK’s £3 billion Green Investment Bank that is set to boost the green economy? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages. 

£22m school expansion programme reaches out for trade jobs

Enfield Council has unveiled plans to spend £22 million on a building programme to expand 11 schools across North London which will provide 2, 400 extra school places and boost the trades.

Most of the building work is expected to be completed by September next year and could create hundreds of jobs in the construction industry as well as boost the local economy.

The Council has chosen Cornerstone Property Assets for its delivery partner of the scheme.

Cornerstone, which is led by former Partnership for Schools’ chief executive Tim Byles, welcomed the school expansion programme that will see the construction of much needed school places and improve the existing facilities.

Mr Byles said: “Enfield is taking a highly innovative approach to addressing their shortfall, and subject to the consultation, we very much look forward to working with them to create the additional places in safe, secure facilities in time for the new school year in 2013.”

Enfield Council’s Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, Cllr Ayfer Orhan, said: “This £22 million project will provide hundreds of extra primary school places in the areas they are most needed and improve our educational facilities ahead of the 2013 school year.

“We want parents and our partners to tell us what they think of the proposals so Enfield Council can be sure we get this project right and provide enough school places for Enfield’s pupils for years to come.

“We need to accommodate the expected increase in primary school places so we can address parent’s concerns that their children don’t have to travel excessive distances to school.”

What is your reaction to the £22 million school expansion programme in Enfield? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

£1 billion campus expansion to boost the trades

The University of Manchester has announced an ambitious £1 billion plan that will see the construction of a world-class campus and pave the way for new trade jobs.  

The Estates Master Plan, which was approved by the University’s Board of Governors last week, will create a single campus which will involve the construction of teaching and research buildings as well as new student facilities.

The first phase of the plan, costing around £700 million, will be delivered over the next six years and will throw a lifeline to the building industry and boost the trades.

Plans include building of a new engineering campus, new centres for the school of law and Manchester Business School, a major refurbishment of the university library, a bigger students’ union and new medical school.

Outline plans have been drawn up for a second phase which is expected to cost a further £300 million and is set to begin in 2018.

The second phase of the plan would create a Biomedical Campus around the existing Stopford Building along with other major developments for staff and students, including refurbishments in the Schools of Computer Science.

Vice Chancellor of the University of Manchester, professor Dame Nancy Rothwell, said: “Our long-term aim, as restated in our Manchester 2020 Vision, has been to create a world leading university that would compete with the best universities in the world and would occupy a single, outstanding campus, where some of our beautiful old buildings would stand alongside the very best in modern facilities for our research and our students.”

Boris gives the go-ahead for London jobs boost

Mayor Boris Johnson has approved plans to redevelop a historic building in East London which will create 2,300 new jobs and boost the trades.  

The plans will see the demolition of the London Fruit and Wool Exchange which will make the way for a six-storey building for office and retail use to be build.

The Mayor believes the site and its location are vital to the prosperity of this fast developing part of the capital and to London’s wider economy.

Mayor Johnson used powers granted to him in 2008 to support the application, which had previously been refused planning permission by Tower Hamlets Council.

He said: “The historic London Fruit and Wool Exchange, in the heart of London’s East End, is a former commercial epicentre to which producers and buyers flocked from miles around to do business.

“These plans will not only restore the façade to its former glory, but regenerate the Spitalfields area with thousands of new jobs, and brand new commercial opportunities.

“It will also make a vital contribution to the wider London economy and have a significant impact not just on Tower Hamlets but on surrounding boroughs as well.

“I can find no reason to refuse permission and am of the firm view that this ambitious and important redevelopment should go ahead.”

£33m Essex College Scheme to Boost the Trades

South Essex College has signed a £33 million contract with Skanska which will see the building of a new 2,500 place student campus in Essex.

Construction of the scheme is set to start immediately with the new learning campus being ready to open in the summer of 2014.

Skanska will be responsible for the construction of three and four storey buildings covering around 150,000 sq ft. It has the target of achieving BREEAM excellent rating and the facility will incorporate rainwater harvesting, air source heat pumps and roof level PV installations.

The project is expected to create hundreds of new jobs in the construction sector.

The new college aims to boost local construction skills and will teach welding, brickwork, carpentry, engineering, mechanical, electrical and plumbing skills.

Following the completion of the new facility, Skanska will undertake landscaping and associated works which will include car parking, cycle storage and external landscaping.

Paul Heather, Managing Director of Skanska for London and the South East said: “We have successfully delivered a number of world-class education facilities across Essex in recent years and this has enabled to bring together a wealth of experience, skills and expertise to this project.

“The development of the new Thurrock Campus will provide excellent facilities for the students, teaching staff and the wider community and we are proud to be part of creating this key learning environment”.

Construction of New Power Plant Gets Approved

The Government has granted planning consent for the building of a 60MW power plant in Cheshire which will create 500 new jobs during its 3-year construction period.

The Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Edward Davey, has given the go-ahead for E.ON Energy and Tata Chemicals Europe to build a new power plant at Northwich which will generate enough power to supply 80,000 homes and boost the local economy.

The plant will be built and operated by EEW. It will use pre-treated waste from economically recyclable materials that would otherwise be destined for landfill.

A spokesman from the Department for Energy and Climate Change said: “It is essential we have a balanced energy mix in the future to provide low cost, efficient energy to households and businesses.”

Commenting on the development, Director at E.ON, Nader Bahri said: “This decision is a milestone for EEW in the UK as it is our second UK plant to be granted planning consent.

“As a result, many tonnes of waste that would otherwise have gone to landfill could now be used to create sustainable energy.”

Tata Chemicals Europe Managing Director, Martin Ashcroft, welcomed the decision by Government to approve construction of the plant which will bring more competitiveness in the energy market.

Mr Ashcroft said: “As an energy intensive business, we are faced with ever-rising gas prices which are increasingly difficult to absorb. The new plant will give us fuel price stability which will allow us to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and to plan our long-term future.”

Jobs boost in Leeds Thorpe Park expansion plan

Scarborough Development Group has submitted plans to build a £400 million development at Thorpe Park, East Leeds, which could create up to 6,500 new jobs and boost the trades.

The mixed-use development scheme is designed to meet the needs of business occupiers as well as provide a valuable hub for local communities in Leeds.

It comprises 1.2 million sq ft of office space, 130,000 sq ft food storage area, 177,000 sq ft leisure area for hotels and additional 33,000 sq ft for dining outlets.

The project will also bring the delivery of a 113-acre Green Park and Leeds’ first significant new public park in over 100 years.

Commenting on the plans, Mark Jackson, Managing Director of Scarborough Development Group said:  “Our new plans will present a step-change at Thorpe Park with a new offer for established businesses, growing businesses and fledgling business.

“We want Thorpe Park to be an engine for economic growth in the immediate area, and a benefit to the whole City Region.”

Mr Jackson outlined the wider benefits of this development for creating new jobs and boosting the local economy.

He said: “Thorpe Park has the potential not just to boost the economy of the city region and help cement Leeds’ position as a regional capital, but also to provide thousands of new job opportunities for local people built around a more diverse economy and range of uses on the park.”

Ed Balls Goes For New Affordable Homes

Shadow chancellor Ed Balls has called for the building of 100,000 affordable homes that will boost the economy and create hundreds of thousands of new jobs in the construction industry.  

Today’s announcement comes as the shadow chancellor used his keynote speech at the Labour Party Conference in Manchester to demand radical measures to kick-start the economy and increase infrastructure spending.

Ed Balls said that a windfall of up to £4 billion is to come from the sale of the 4G mobile phone spectrum. This money could be used to fund the building of more affordable homes which will boost the trades and help people get on the property ladder.

Mr Balls said: “Let’s use that money from the 4G sale and build over the next two years 100,000 new homes – affordable homes to rent and to buy – creating hundreds of thousands of jobs and getting our construction industry moving again.”

According to the shadow chancellor, plans to boost long-term investment and skills are the only way to rising living standards and getting people into employment.

He said: “Conference, a clear and costed plan to kick-start the economy and get people back to work is to build the homes  that we need now and for the long-term, building our way out of recession and re-building Britain for the future.”

What is your reaction to the proposal by the shadow chancellor Ed Balls to use the £4 billion from the 4G mobile phone network sale to build 100,000 affordable homes and boost the economy? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

London Mayor Unveils £100m Housing Boost

London Mayor Boris Johnson has launched a £100 million fund to help a range of housing projects across the capital and boost the trades.

House builders will have the chance to put their bids forward to deliver major building work which could boost the London economy by £2 billion and create new jobs in the construction industry.

According to the Mayor, injecting such significant investment in the housing market could contribute £1 billion worth of construction projects across the city.

The Mayor has said that all ‘reusable investment’ from this funding boost will be reinvested for the building of more affordable homes over the next decade.

Motor Johnson said “To improve the housing choices of those who work to make this city the fantastic place that it is, I am opening up the market, cutting red-tape and injecting £100million  worth of investment to stimulate supply.

“The programme we are announcing will not just unlock the door to home ownership for thousands more Londoners, it will give a welcome shot in the arm for jobs in the capital’s construction industry and spur wider economic growth too.”

The first homes are expected to be available for sale in early 2013 with completions ranging up until March 2016.

Go Ahead for Building £58m Kensington Academy

Plans for building a £58 million academy and leisure centre in the North Kensington area of London have been approved, paving the way for work to start next month.

The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea granted yesterday a planning consent for the development which will see the building of a new school, state-of the-art leisure centre and hundreds of new homes.

Developer Leadbitter has been selected to deliver the scheme which will create new jobs in the construction industry and boost the trades.

Building of the leisure centre will run in parallel with the academy which will allow for both buildings to open together in 2014. The existing Kensington Leisure Centre is expected to close this December.

Leader of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, Merrick Cockell, said: “This is a landmark day for the North Kensington community and represents our ongoing commitment to investing in great facilities for our residents.

“Despite the challenging economic climate we are proud to be able to build a new academy and leisure centre which are going to make a vital contribution to local life for decades to come.”

Solent Enterprise Zone Reaches Out For New Trade Jobs

Plans to invest £25 million in the Solent Enterprise Zone that will create 1,200 new jobs have been finalised by Communities Secretary Eric Pickles.  

The proposed investment would also support the development of a new 25,000 sq ft manufacturing business centre which will pave the way for new employment in the trades.

Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Eric Pickles, who visited the Enterprise Zone at Daedalus yesterday, revealed that £15 million of the investment will be used for building new homes and a community centre.

Hampshire County Council and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, which are funding the project, have forecast that the development could create 1,182 jobs, of which 828 will be permanent.

Secretary of State Eric Pickles said: “This over £25m boost for the Solent Enterprise Zone will unlock its huge potential to deliver growth, homes and jobs and make a real difference to Gosport.

“It is local business and commerce that creates the growth and jobs this country needs and it’s this Government’s job to foster the conditions for those businesses to thrive.

“That is why through the Government’s Growing Places Fund and the setting up of Enterprise Zones, we have empowered local enterprise partnerships to drive forward their own local economic development.”

Colin Molton from the Homes and Communities Agency said: “This package of investment is great news for the local economy, which stands to benefit significantly from the ripple effect of new jobs and businesses coming to the Solent Enterprise Zone.

“This has been the result of partners working closely together to devise an innovative package which will maximise the use of the funds available to have a real positive impact on the ground.”

£200m housing development reaches out for new jobs

Crest Nicholson and the Homes and Communities Agency announced today the commencement of a £200 million housing scheme which will build 1,100 homes and pave the way for new trade jobs.

The mixed-use housing scheme at Oakgrove, Melton Keynes, is set to stimulate economic growth and meet high demand for new homes in the area as well as boost employment in the construction industry.

Oakgrove will form a new community with varied sized homes in a parkland setting clustered around a new neighbourhood centre, which will include retail and restaurant facilities.

The development is designed to Code for Sustainable Homes Level 4 and it will deliver achieve energy efficiency of a modern home. It will also include affordable housing for those unable to get onto the housing ladder.

Crest’s Executive Board Director, Chris Tinker, said: “Crest Nicholson is delighted to be commencing the delivery of this landmark and much anticipated development at such a critical time in the economic cycle.

“We would like to pay testimony to the officers and members of Milton Keynes Council who have worked hard with the Crest and HCA project team to bring this scheme forward.

“I have no doubt that through the jobs created and quality new homes it will both stimulate growth and meet pent-up housing need.”

Former factory site to be transformed into new homes

Plans to regenerate a former factory site into the building of affordable housing and a social care home have been submitted to Leeds City Council.

Home Group, one of the UK’s largest providers for social housing, is planning to build more than 50 new homes and a 64-bed care home in the Armley area of the city on Theaker Lane.

The site sits on a former tannery and soft drinks factory which hasn’t been used for a number of years and is now run down and overgrown. The building work will be carried out by Mansell and LNT Construction.

The £10 million regeneration scheme has been partially funded by the Homes and Communities Agency. It is expected to create hundreds of jobs in the building sector and boost the trades.

Home Group’s head of development, Teresa Snaith, said: “The current site is overgrown and hasn’t been used for a number of years. At a consultation event we held with local residents they have said that they are keen to see the area regenerated and put to good use.

“We hope to build 51 homes which will be available for affordable rent and our partners Ideal Care Homes will also build a 64-bed care home specialising in residential and dementia care if the planning is approved.”

Craig Houston, Regional Director for Mansell’s Yorkshire Business Unit commented “We are excited to be involved with this major regeneration scheme, hopefully one of the first of many site-led opportunities to come to fruition in the coming months.”

Liverpool accommodation scheme reaches out for new jobs

Two student accommodation schemes at the University of Liverpool have been submitted for planning approval, paving the way for developers to start building work.

The £50 million project, part of an overall £600 million campus investment announced last year, will build 621 en-suite rooms and create new jobs in the trades.

Mayor of Liverpool, Joe Anderson, said that this regeneration will not only improve the facilities at the University of Liverpool, but will also provide economic boost to the city and bring new employment opportunities for local people.

Mr Anderson said: “This development will increase the appeal of the University of Liverpool to potential students right across the country and the world, contributing to Liverpool’s growing status as a distinctive global city.

“It will also provide a much needed boost to the city in terms of jobs and training opportunities for local people.”

Preston based developer Worthington Properties, which was selected as a building contractor for the two sites in Liverpool city centre, is planning to demolish five accommodation blocks in Philharmonic Court and construct two six-storey buildings which will contain 354 student rooms.

The second proposed development in Great Newton Street will see Worthington build on a former car park and disused university property. The building will be between four and seven storeys and is expected to have 267 student rooms. Architect on the scheme is Manchester-based Leach Rhodes Walker.

Development director at Worthington Properties, Russell Worthington, said: “We are proud to work in partnership with Liverpool University and Liverpool City Council to design a product that will help the university attract national and international students to the city.

“In addition, the investment by Liverpool University will help to create employment as we will be looking to work with suppliers and recruit from the area.”

What is your reaction to the student accommodation scheme at the University of Liverpool which will boost the local economy and create new jobs? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Government approval for Edinburgh Royal Hospital to boost the trades

Plans to build a £150 million replacement for Edinburgh’s Royal Hospital for Sick Children have been approved by the Scottish Government, paving the way for new jobs in the trades.   

Negotiations over the site for the new building have delayed the project, but now tenders will be invited to build the hospital next to the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh at Little France.

The project is scheduled for completion in 2017 and is part of a national initiative supported by the Scottish Futures Trust, which will see £750 million of investment in health facilities across Scotland.

The new site’s owners agreed to give the health board the land, currently a car park, in exchange for another site.

Health Secretary Alex Neil said: “There have been delays with the new Sick Kids Hospital in the past, due to land and commercial issues with an inherited PFI contract on the proposed site.

“I am pleased to say that there is now a framework in place to resolve the legal and commercial issues that arose in the original contract.”

Mr Neil said that the Scottish Government has already invested £1 billion into the building of new hospitals across the country. He committed to invest another £1 billion over the next two years.

Commenting on the announcement, chairman of NHS Lothian Charles Winstanley said: “The benefits of having children’s, maternity and adult services on the same site are well documented.

“This new building will add to the existing facilities at Little France to create a centre of excellence, bringing paediatric care, specialist neonatal care, neurosciences and A&E together.”

Olympic Investment Event to Create Jobs and Bring Economic Boost to Britain

Speaking today at the largest trade and investment event ever held in Britain, Prime Minister David Cameron said that the £8 billion development of the Battersea Power Station in South West London will create 20, 000 jobs during its construction.

The mixed development will contain homes, office space, a hotel and retail space and will see the Northern Line extended with a new transportation hub at the Power Station site.

The Global Investment Conference, launched by the Prime Minister, is the first of a series of global business summits being held in London to showcase the UK during the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The event is expected to generate hundreds of thousands of new jobs for people in the trades.

The conference kicks off the largest and most ambitious set of trade events held in Britain. During the six weeks of the Games, the British Business Embassy will host 17 global business summits that will bring over £1 billion of deals and projects.

These events will allow more than 4,000 business leaders and politicians to exchange views and ideas, discuss local and international economic challenges as well as develop strong global partnerships for future growth and showcase the best of British business to the world.

Chancellor George Osborne said: “Britain has always been a country that is open to the world. In hosting the Olympic Games, we are showcasing that openness. As we welcome the world’s best athletes, we also welcome the world’s best companies – so that they can succeed, invest, and create jobs in Britain.”

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “Tomorrow we welcome the world to London as the 2012 Olympic Games get underway. This summer is more than just a great sporting spectacle – it is an unrivalled opportunity to promote the best of British industry and make the most of our openness to foreign trade and investment.”

This month, the UN’s World Investment Report showed that the UK had retained its place as the number one destination in Europe for inward investment. The report showed that there were almost 60,000 new jobs created last year as a result of inward investment.

 

What is your reaction to the Global Investment Conference that could bring billions of pounds to the UK economy?  How much of an impact will the Olympics have on your business? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook and Twitter page.

Construction Industry Legend revises profits UP!

Barratt Developments PLC is today issuing a trading update for the Company and its subsidiaries (the “Group”) for the year ended 30 June 2012 ahead of its annual results announcement on Wednesday 12 September.

Highlights

  • Group revenues up by c. 14% for the full year to c. £2,320m, with total completions of 12,637 units
  • Group operating profit before exceptional items for the full year expected to be up by c. 41% at around £191m
  • Operating margin expected to increase to c. 9.5% in the second half and c. 8.2% for the full year, up from 6.6% in the prior full year
  • Full year profit before tax and exceptional items expected to increase by c. 158% to c. £110m
  • Net debt almost halved against the prior year to c. £170m as at 30 June 2012, significantly lower than previous guidance
  • Private forward sales up 34.6% to £378.4m as at 30 June 2012

Mark Clare, Group Chief Executive commented,

“This year has seen a rapidly improving performance across the Group and shows that our strategy is delivering, with profits up more than 150% and an almost halving of our net debt. We expect to make further good progress in the year ahead thanks to a strong forward order book, with private forward sales up 35% and more higher return land

The Future
Barratt Developments has made significant progress in both rebuilding profitability and reducing indebtedness during the year just ended.  Despite continued uncertainty surrounding the outlook for the wider UK market and constrained levels of mortgage finance, the industry has enjoyed a period of relative market stability.  Looking ahead, we expect the Government’s housing initiatives, in particular its mortgage indemnity scheme NewBuy, to continue to provide the industry with support.

In the current financial year we expect to make further good progress with more than half of completions forecast to be delivered from our more recently acquired higher margin land.

What do you think of the positive performance by one of Britain’s largest housebuilders? Share your opinion by commenting here or raise your voice on our Facebook page.

A Skilful Workforce is Vital for Economic Growth – Says the CBI

Business leaders at the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) have called on the government to bring forward a higher level of investment to the construction sector in a bid to stimulate the building engineering industry and create hundreds of thousands of new jobs.

In a report published by the CBI, it has become clear that construction businesses want to see more funds for repair, maintenance and improvement works which will create jobs and stimulate economic growth.

The report says: “The government has a ready-made mechanism to tackle the current activity gap and create jobs in the immediate future by stimulating repair, maintenance and improvement (RMI) work.

“RMI work can deliver jobs quickly on the ground across all regions, including creating openings for unemployed young people as its nature offers ‘hands-on’ jobs suitable for school-leavers.

“In addition, RMI projects generally have the advantage of shorter procurement timescales.”

The CBI is also calling on central and local government to “ensure that existing and planned RMI schemes such as the Priority School Building Programme and Green Deal are swiftly and competently delivered.”

The report states: “Developing more specific pipelines of construction work (for three to five years ahead for example) would help attract private sector investment locally and support the creation of local construction jobs.

“Knowing what’s around the corner in any given location would enable firms of all sizes across the supply chain to better identify, prioritise and plan their investment, striking up constructive dialogue with local stakeholders early on.”

The CBI’s Action for Jobs Progress Report also calls the government for fresh action on:

  • Aligning school funding with employment as well as academic outcomes
  • Boosting school-business links in every local community with local organisers in every area making it easier to get involved in leading schemes
  • Making work experience a statutory right for 14 to 16 year-olds
  • Investing more in apprenticeships – both at a higher level and in pre-apprenticeship courses which help young people without skills get on high-quality training schemes
  • Introducing a comprehensive ‘readiness-for-work’ assessment at Job Centre Plus, to help people focus on returning to work.

What is your reaction to the CBI’s call for a further investment in the construction industry which will prove vitally important for the creation of new jobs? Do you agree with UK’s top business organisation?

Sovereign Unveils an Ambitious Plan to Build 3, 000 New Homes in England

One of the largest providers of affordable housing in the South of England, Sovereign Housing Association, has announced it will build more than 3, 000 new homes over the next four years, paving the way for jobs in the building construction industry.

The ambitious plan will see 1, 064 new homes built by the end of this financial year, 865 of which have been already identified, the housing association confirmed last week. Under Sovereign’s new development strategy at least 276 of the new homes will be for affordable home ownership, forecasting a similar number of homes to be completed in 2013/14.
Development and Commercial Director at Sovereign, Phil Stephens, said: “The top priorities of our development strategy are to ensure that we deliver the HCA Affordable Homes Programme and to play our part in achieving Sovereign’s aim of reaching 50,000 homes by 2015,”

“Our recent successful bond issue has given us the financial strength and flexibility to continue delivering a substantial programme of new homes in our core operating areas in the coming years.”- added Mr Stephens.

It was revealed that Sovereign’s development will include a significant number of shared ownership homes as well as a growing number of market rent properties in key locations.

Mr Stephens commented that there is a definite gap in the market rent properties due to the rising demand from people unable to buy their own homes.

He said: “We will be looking to build on the positive experiences we have had so far letting homes at market rates in the West Country, and not only develop a broader portfolio of properties, but also diversify our revenue streams to enable us to continue providing affordable homes into the future.”

 

What’s your reaction to Sovereign’s announcement to build 3,000 new homes in the next four years? How do you think this revelation could help your business? Let us know by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook page.  

Housebuilder Redrow to Boost the Building Construction Industry

As reported by BBC News today, homebuilder Redrow has announced plans to raise £80 million of new shares to fund its expansion plans, which will create growth opportunities for the building construction sector.

Redrow has secured planning for more than 3,000 plots across the UK and acquired new sites totalling £50 million which are likely to create more employment opportunities for trade professionals. The housebuilder told the Financial Times that it intended to acquire more land ‘as and when opportunities arose’, as well as developing land bought cheaply during the recession.

Steve Morgan, Executive Chairman at Redrow, outlined the significant growth opportunities for the London area and other regions by saying that the firm will continue to follow its existing strategy for growth.

Mr Morgan, who is also the owner of Wolverhampton Wanderers Football Club, said Redrow has made good progress in selling high-quality family homes and that the firm will continue to pave the way for more work in the future, increasing confidence in the housing market.

He said: “We now believe the time is right to accelerate that strategy by taking advantage of the development opportunities we see.”

What is your reaction to the announcement by housebuilder Redrow to raise significant investment and boost the housing market? How do you think trade professionals could benefit from this?  Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below:  

EU: Millions of Jobs Could be Created in the Renewable Sector

Business Green reported today that a new job plan estimated to create 20 million jobs across Europe will boost the renewable sector and make low-carbon industries central to the 27 EU member states.

The proposed job package could create millions of new jobs in Europe’s construction, recycling and renewable industry. The scheme has been launched to deal with high level of unemployment in countries across the European Union and is expected to create long-term job opportunities.

European Commissioner for Climate Action, Connie Hedegaard, welcomed the proposals saying that energy efficiency measures could lead to 2 million jobs in the renewable industry by the end of 2020, Business Green reported.

Commissioner Hedegaard encouraged EU member states to comply with energy-efficiency targets set in the Energy Efficiency Directive which was introduced to improve energy efficiency by helping consumers using energy more efficiently at all stages of the energy chain.

Ms Hedegaard emphasised the importance of the renewable industry for creation of jobs and future economic growth.  “If Europe does not step up its green economy efforts, we risk losing an immense source of quality jobs,” she said. “If we water down our efforts on energy efficiency, we water down the job potential as well.”

What is your reaction to the new job plan likely to create millions of jobs in the renewable sector? Are you more optimistic about the future of the renewable sector? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below:

Significant Investment to Boost the Manufacturing Industry

The pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has confirmed an investment of £500 million across its manufacturing sites to increase production of its products whilst providing a major boost for the UK’s construction and manufacturing industry.

 

The company announced today it will build a new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Cumbria, North of England. An investment of £350 million for building the new facility would create hundreds of jobs and provide work opportunities for people in the building sector.

Building construction work is anticipated to begin within the next two years depending on obtaining the necessary planning consents. It is likely to take up to 6 years before the new facility is entirely completed.

The significant investment comes after Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, confirmed yesterday in Budget 2012, the government’s commitment to introduce a lower rate of corporation tax on profits generated from UK-owned intellectual property.

Chief Executive at GSK, Sir Andrew Witty, said: “The introduction of the patent box has transformed the way in which we view the UK as a location for new investments, ensuring that the medicines of the future will not only be discovered, but can also continue to be made here in Britain.”

Prime Minister David Cameron welcomed the investment as “excellent news” for businesses saying that cutting business tax will attract further investment to the British economy.

“It shows why we are right to cut business tax and focus on making the UK a dynamic and competitive place that can attract exactly this type of high tech investment.”- Mr Cameron said.

Additional investment of more than £100 million was also confirmed for GSK’s two manufacturing sites in Irvine and Montrose, Scotland. The company also said that it will invest in sustainable green energy production and environmentally friendly manufacturing technologies in the future.

What is your reaction to the significant investment to build new manufacturing facilities across the UK? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment on Train4TradeSkills’  Facebook and Twitter pages:

Construction Industry Proud of Building the Olympic Venue for London 2012

The man in charge of building the Olympic venue for London 2012, John Armitt, has told Reuters News that this summer’s Olympics will be a great advertisement for Britain’s construction sector.

The Olympic venue was successfully completed both on time and within the £7 billion budget. This serves as an excellent stimulus for boosting British construction and as an example to building companies around the globe.

Armitt, who is a chairman of the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) and responsible for the Games infrastructure, believes the Olympic Park in East London will be a great showcase for courtiers around the world to look at the knowledge and the skills of Britain’s building engineering construction industry.

Talking about the legacy of British construction and pointing out the great achievements in the building sector, Mr Armitt said: “British contractors and consultants have been delivering infrastructure around the world for the past 200 years.”

“What this enables them to do is reinforce those credentials in the overseas markets. The Olympics is an opportunity for us to build our self-confidence as a country.”- added Mr Armitt.

What is your opinion on the successful completion of the Olympic Park for London 2012? Do you think it will help British construction businesses to get work abroad? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below:  

 

Bright Future for the Construction Sector

One of the UK’s largest building distributors, SIG, has reported a rise of 3.9% in sales of building materials for the construction industry. The positive news comes as the demand for contractors, builders and construction companies continues to rise due to a return in confidence in the housing market.

Growth figures are considered to be a result of improved trading conditions and recent government investments aiming to boost the building construction sector.

The government made the announcement this week to help up to 100,000 people in England buy their own homes. The recent scheme,‘NewBuy’, will further increase demand for new build homes and unlock the housing market, Prime Minister, David Cameron said on Monday.

SIG’s pre-tax profits reached £81.7 million when the group is planning to open more than 15 new branches in the future. The current housing shortage in the UK is expected to encourage building of more new homes as well as increase employment across the construction sector.

Chief Executive at SIG, Chris Davies, thinks that despite the current uncertainties in the macroeconomic environment the company will continue with its positive performance.

Mr Davies said: “We enter 2012 as a much leaner, stronger and more focused organisation. Sales per day in constant currency so far this year were around 1% ahead of strong prior year comparators, despite the impact of severe weather across mainland Europe in February this year.”

What is your reaction to the improved sales figures of SIG, suggesting that the construction sector is better now off than it used to be a few years ago?  Share your thoughts by leaving a comment on Train4TradeSkills’ Facebook and Twitter pages:

NewBuy Scheme to Help the Building Construction Sector

Prime Minister, David Cameron, has today launched a new housing scheme for England which will boost demand for newly built homes and increase employment in the building construction sector.

Under the new loan guarantee programme, NewBuy, the government is investing £1 billion into an affordable mortgage guarantee scheme which will help up to 100,000 people across England to buy their own home by paying a lower deposit rate.

Andy Gray, head of mortgages for Barclays, said: “We believe this will boost housing market confidence and support the flow of new housing, providing positive consequences for jobs and the economy as a whole.”

Speaking at a construction site in South London today, Mr Cameron said that the government will do everything it can to help those who want to buy their own home. The Prime Minister believes the new scheme will boost the construction industry and unlock the housing market.

Mr Cameron said: “The problem today is that we have lenders who are not lending, so builders cannot build, so the buyers cannot buy and it needs the government to step in and help unblock the market.”

The NewBuy housing scheme will boost the supply of properties, increase employment opportunities for people in the construction industry and provide affordable mortgages to those with lower incomes. The scheme is also expected to boost the national economy by the construction of additional homes.

What is your reaction to the NewBuy scheme announced by Prime Minister Cameron today? Do you think it will help home buyers with lower incomes to secure their first home? Share with us what the benefits will be for the construction sector by leaving a comment below: 

Chancellor Osborne Urged to Help UK Businesses

The Chancellor George Osborne has been urged by business leaders to allocate more investment on capital projects rather than on the current expenditure which will give boost to the construction industry and encourage economic growth.

Improved access to government funds, cutting red tape for businesses and giving greater investment to infrastructure projects are the key demands by business leaders. The call comes ahead of the Chancellor’s budget statement next month which is expected to make significant announcements for creating new jobs and boosting the national economy.

The Construction Products Association (CPA) has urged the Chancellor to cut VAT for domestic projects that will improve energy efficiency for thousands of homes across the UK.

Chief Executive at CPA, Michael Ankers, said that the Chancellor needs to allocate in the budget more capital spending for housing and infrastructure projects because it will give confidence to businesses and provide sustainable investment for growth.

Mr Ankers said: “The 2012 Budget provides the Chancellor with the opportunity to introduce a package of measures to stimulate the economy and deliver growth. This should include a further rebalancing of public spending away from current expenditure and into capital investment, as this will not only generate economic activity and employment but will increase long term productivity as a result of improving the infrastructure of this country.”

What would your suggestions be to the Chancellor Osborne to help businesses across the UK? Is capital investment the best way to create jobs and sustainable development for growth? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below: 

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