Posts tagged infrastructure investment

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.

New jobs as Hammersmith Palais gets £26m boost

Hammersmith Palais, a venue which for generations of Londoner’s meant music and dancing, will be transformed into a £26 million student accommodation development set to bring new trade jobs in the building industry.

Infrastructure group Morgan Sindall will replace all buildings on the site, with the exception of a wall adjacent to the train tracks which still displays some of the original paintings relating to the Palais’ former entertaining history, which includes The Rolling Stones, The Who, The Police, and other music titans throughout its unique 100 years.

Peter Jacobs, managing director of Morgan Sindall’s London office said: “The historic wall which runs the length of the site and contains the building’s iconic artwork is part of the city’s heritage and will remain in place to commemorate the cultural significance of the Palais.

“This will also provide a great reminder of the exciting events that have taken place at this site over the years.”

Construction of the new facility is scheduled to begin this month and reach completion in 2013. It will provide accommodation for 418 students, while the ground floor will create 23,000 sq. ft. of leisure space that will be used by the local community.

The new building has been sustainably designed by Make Architects which have included a central ‘energy centre’ that will provide hot water to all the occupiers of the development as part of a community heating scheme.

This primary plant will comprise of gas fired high efficiency boilers with the facility to connect in the future to a Combined Heat and Power (CHP) Unit.

Peter Jacobs said that Morgan Sindall is delighted to be part of the project team giving this key site in London a new lease of life in a contemporary as well as sustainable development.

PLANNING MAJOR CHANGES TO CREATE NEW JOBS

The Government is planning to re-write planning rules to boost “nationally significant” infrastructure projects and build new homes, Chancellor George Osborne unveiled yesterday.

The Chancellor said that developers would be allowed to build on the Green Belt around towns and cities if an equivalent area of land is safeguarded elsewhere.

Mr Osborne said: “I think we can speed up planning. It is absolutely ludicrous that it takes years to get planning decisions in this country. The country, in the current economic environment, cannot afford to wait years for development.”

A £10 billion Treasury package will guarantee the debt of housing associations and private developers in bid to create jobs and revive housing market.

The Chancellor said that the Government will do more in order to make it easier for local authorities to grant planning permission for developers in the future.

Mr Osborne announced a Small Business Bank to bring together what he called an “alphabet soup” of Government schemes to help small firms and encourage economic growth.

What are your thoughts about George Osborne’s announcement? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Green Industry Offers Jobs Growth

The scale of green employment and low-carbon infrastructure investment has been rising, employing a significantly larger workforce than other UK industry, a major report by the Green Alliance think tank revealed today.

According to the report, the current state of the Green Economy, which is worth £122 billion, has been consistently growing by 5 per cent since the beginning of the financial crisis in 2008.

The Green Economy currently forms almost 10 per cent of the total economic activity in the UK, employing 939,600 people in low-carbon and environmental jobs.

The Green Alliance said the UK’s top 20 infrastructure projects in 2012-13 will deliver a £23 billion investment which will bring further employment opportunities for people in the trades.

Speaking to Business Green today, report author Alastair Harper, said that some of the biggest projects in the pipeline are in the offshore wind industry as well as in public transport, nuclear and other renewable programmes.

He said: “All you are going to get with more road, gas and airport infrastructure is the same level of capital investment we’ve been bumping along with since the 1970s.

“In contrast, the green economy is about new projects that can attract new investment, and provide a source for exports.”

Mr Harper said that despite negative language from some ministers, the green industry has been able to get major international investors “to open up their wallets” and invest in the low-carbon sector.

What is your reaction to the low-carbon investment which led the green economy to succeed in crating hundreds of thousands of green jobs? Do you agree with the current trend which is forecast to continue in future? 

Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook and Twitter page.

The Manufacturing and Service Sector Grows despite Slow Economic Recovery, says the BCC

The newest survey published today by the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) has found that the manufacturing and the service industry are continuing to grow, despite the UK economy remains weak.

BCC suggests in its Quarterly Economic Survey that businesses are growing but the the pace of activity is too slow for a sustainable recovery. Director General of the BCC, John Longworth, urged the government to take a bolder approach to boosting economic growth. He recommended measures including the creation of a state-backed business bank, and investment in infrastructure as critical to get the economy growing.

Mr Longworth said: “Growth cannot wait. The government must take an imaginative and brave approach to stimulating the economy and helping businesses thrive.”

The survey found manufacturing home orders has edged up two points, to +8%, the strongest level since the second quarter of 2011.  The service employment balance increased six points, to +10%, representing the highest level since the recession began in 2008.

The report indicates a surprising growth over manufacturers’ intentions to invest in training which rose to +18%, the best level for the last four years.

Although, business confidence is still below its 2007 level, manufacturers’ profitability is reported to have increased three points, to +24%, also the strongest level since the last quarter of 2010.

What’s your reaction on the findings by the BCC which suggest the manufacturing and the service industry are growing in times of austerity? If you are working in one of those sectors, share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook page. 

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