August 31, 2012

New Trade Jobs as Kwoks set to roll in £300m deal

A £300 million development programme, part of an ambitious £8 billion residential scheme for London, is set to start in next year following an agreement between developers.

Capital and Counties Properties (Capco) today finalised the deal with Hong Kong developers, the Kwok family, to build 800 new homes around Seagrave Road in central London.

The investment is set to bring thousands of new trade jobs for the construction industry and encourage economic growth.

Proposals include building new offices, leisure and retail space as well as a new primary school, library and open public areas. The project will include 200 affordable homes that will be offered to tenants in nearby estates.

Ian Hawksworth, Chief Executive of Capco said: “We are pleased to have completed our joint venture agreement in relation to the Seagrave Road project and look forward to starting on site in 2013 to create this exciting new residential quarter for London.”

In accordance with the conditional agreement reached in December 2011, Capco received cash consideration of approximately £67 million from the Kwok family for the 50 per cent interest in the development, which includes the Seagrave Road site and other adjacent assets.

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.

 

£110 million university plan reaches out to new trade jobs

The University of Edinburgh has appointed Balfour Beatty as the preferred bidder to build a £110 million student accommodation and outreach centre that will secure new trade jobs.

Balfour Beatty said that the 50-year consortium contract will include building and maintenance work to improve the University’s accommodation facilities.

The multi-million development will also provide accommodation for 1,160 postgraduate students in the city’s Old Town, as well as an outreach centre for community-based teaching activities.

Ian Tyler, Chief Executive at Balfour Beatty, said today:  “We are delighted to have been selected as preferred bidder for this long-term contract in the student accommodation sector, which is a key area of focus for us.

“We have worked with the University of Edinburgh on numerous projects over the past 18 years and look forward to supporting them in realising their long-term aspirations to enhance the postgraduate student experience.”

Nigel Paul, Director of Corporate Services at the University of Edinburgh, said that this is a key milestone in the development of the project that will improve students’ experience.

Mr Paul said: “Balfour Beatty’s involvement can help us create additional opportunities and enhance the experience and engagement of our growing number of postgraduate students by providing a good mix of state-of-the-art accommodation types with excellent support and social spaces.”

Multi-million ‘village green’ homes plan would create new trade jobs

A multi-million planning application to build 5,750 new homes and create thousands of new trade jobs has been submitted to Ashford Borough Council.

The major development programme will take place at the 415 hectare site at Chilmington Green, building thousands of new homes arranged in three distinctive neighbourhoods with a high street, a secondary school, four primary schools, a park and extensive areas of green space.

The planning application has been prepared for the developer consortium, Hodson Developments, Jarvis Homes, Pentland Homes and Ward Home, to deal with UK’s current housing shortage.

Project manager for the consortium, Ian Bull, said that as one of the largest developments in Ashford, the housing scheme will set benchmark for new communities and increase employment opportunities in the area.

Mr Bull said: “Those well-designed places offer communities a lifestyle of wellbeing through a range of employment opportunities, cultural facilities and services, a mix of housing tenures including affordable housing, well-connected and walkable neighbourhoods, and the chance for people to connect with nature through carefully landscaped streets, parks, private gardens and allotments.”

Richard Hutchings, project director at engineering consultancy WSP, who prepared all the engineering and environmental designs and documentation to support the application, said that that developing effective transport, utilities and drainage strategies to ensure efficient delivery of the major urban extension have been the biggest challenges of the project

Mr Hutchings said: “Perhaps most significant was the development of a sustainable transport strategy that resolved existing capacity problems on the A28 corridor by reducing reliance on private vehicle travel and promoting alternative options such as walking, cycling and public transport.”