Economic Growth

Carillion grabs £10m tunnel repair contract

Leeds Gov

Leeds City Council has selected Carillion Construction to carry out an extensive twenty-month long repair job set to improve the A58 Woodhouse Tunnel and create new trade jobs.

Initially, Carillion will advise on how to best to carry out a £10 million programme of extensive concrete repairs to the roof and walls of both tunnel bores.

The Council says the Woodhouse Tunnel is suffering severe concrete damage and deterioration as a result of prolonged, extensive chloride ingress from winter de-icing salts.

The damage is so severe that the structural capacity of components is now being affected.

The tunnel needs extensive concrete repairs to the roof and walls of both tunnel bores and strengthening for vehicle impact loading to the area of the tunnel supporting the Leeds General Infirmary buildings.

Strengthening work for vehicle impact loading and protection to the rest of the tunnel will be also required.

£58m Islington residential scheme to boost the trades

United House Wharf Road

United House is set to build 327 homes in a £58 million mixed-use residential scheme in Islington, paving the way for new jobs in the trades.

Architects FraserBrownMacKenna and project designers Stephen Marshall are behind the project, which is being developed by A2Dominion Group. The multi-million development

The canal-side scheme will comprise a mixture of private sale, shared ownership and social rent homes.

The apartments will be built in four blocks from seven to ten storeys tall with rooftop play areas and terraces and including almost 6,000 sq ft of commercial space.

The double storey basement to be built beneath the scheme is between listed buildings and within a conservation area.

All apartments will be built to the Code for Sustainable Homes Level 4 and commercial spaces will meet BREEAM Excellent. BIM will be incorporated in the construction.

Nuclear plan to create jobs and boost economic growth

Sellafield nuclear siteThe nuclear industry will play a major role in driving economic growth, securing the nation’s energy suppliers and creating new jobs, Energy Minister John Hayes announced today.

The comments come as a campaign is launched to fill around 500 skilled jobs at the Sellafield nuclear site in West Cumbria.

The roles will include operations and maintenance staff, engineers, project managers and back-office functions.

They will be filled by a mixture of apprentices, graduates, and trainees and ex-military personnel will be specifically targeted in the recruitment process.

Business and Enterprise Minister Michael Fallon confirmed the Government’s commitment to expand its global nuclear market as part of the published Nuclear Supply Chain Action Plan.

He said: “This action plan is an important part of our work with industry to shape a vibrant UK nuclear industry, and to ensure the UK exploits the commercial opportunities that exist and is a leading player in the expanding global nuclear market.

“We are determined to exploit our strengths and believe this is a sector where a partnership between government and industry can help give the UK a competitive edge in the global race. It’s a key sector in our industrial strategy.”

John Hayes, Energy Minister, said: “Energy is central to our economic future and at the heart of all we do as a nation.

“Just as atoms collide in a nuclear reactor, the economic benefits of our nuclear renaissance will reverberate far and wide across the country.

“The announcement of 500 jobs at Sellafield today shows the immense contribution of the nuclear sector to the UK economy, in particular that of West Cumbria.

“Our Action Plan for the nuclear supply chain will set out how the UK can make the most of future opportunities presented by around £60bn of new investment.”

Boost for Scotland’s construction industry

The Scottish GovernmentThe number of new homes started by private sector builders in the year to June 2012 was the highest recorded since the banking crisis started in 2008 according to official statistics.

Over that period, 10,827 new homes were started, a 24 per cent increase on the previous year. This increase follows three years of recorded annual decreases in private sector new build starts.

The statistics reflect new starts by house builders building for private sale, alongside other house building activity by construction companies throughout Scotland such as for RSL shared equity developments and self-build.

There was also a continued increase in the number of council houses across Scotland, with local authorities completing 1,206 new homes in the year to September 2012, the highest number since 1990.

Across all sectors 14,032 houses were started to June 2012, up by 4% compared to the same period last year.

Housing Minister Margaret Burgess said: “Scotland’s construction sector has faced the full force of the economic downturn.

“Times are still very tough, with high deposit requirements and reduced mortgage availability continuing to prove a barrier to recovery in the housing market.

“However, I welcome these latest statistics and hope this increased activity can spark an economic revival for the industry. Every house started supports jobs for bricklayers, joiners, plumbers and the wider supply chain.

“The Scottish Government is doing all it can to support the industry and boost supply. We plan to deliver at least 30,000 affordable homes during the lifetime of the Parliament, backed by investment of at least £760 million in the next three years.

“We have allocated almost £115 million to local authorities across Scotland, which is helping deliver over 4,400 council homes.

“And we are stimulating growth through the innovative National Housing Trust initiative and our shared equity schemes.

“We have also offered a guarantee to support up to 6,000 new build house purchases through a housing industry-led Mortgage Indemnity Scheme, to help address the banks’ requirements for high deposits.”

Davey calls for clean development at the United Nations

Speaking in advance of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Doha, Edward Davey said urgent actions need to be taken to combat climate change and help the green economy.

The Energy and Climate Change Secretary said that countries around the world had to make their contribution to reach closer to the implementation of the Kyoto Protocol, the Bali Action Plan, and the Cancun Agreements.

Last year, the UN agreed to adopt a universal legal agreement on climate change no later than 2015.

That would mean that each country has to cut its carbon emissions and focus on renewable energy resources, boosting the green economy and creating new jobs.

Energy Secretary Edward Davey said: “A global effort is needed if we are to achieve our climate goals – we need to pave the way for the new global deal while delivering more action now.

“Many developed and developing countries have already come forward with pledges under the UN framework to reduce their emissions by 2020. I want to encourage more to do so at Doha and beyond.

“The EU has led the way in calling for more ambition and in enshrining emissions reductions in law. I want to encourage it to move to a more ambitious 2020 emissions reduction target of 30%.

“Here in the UK we are driving forward our plans to move to a lower-carbon energy mix, and this week we will be publishing the Energy Bill which will enable this.

“I also want to see progress at Doha on achieving the global deal that all countries agreed to work towards in Durban last year. For the first time all countries agreed to sign up to a legally-binding deal to be adopted by 2015, and at Doha we need to agree a plan for these crucial negotiations.”

New Trades Jobs in Darlington

 

Developer Terrace Hill has signed an agreement with Darlington Borough Council to build a £30 million leisure centre that will boost the trades and create new jobs.       

The 140,000 sq ft leisure scheme in Feethams, Darlington, will be anchored by a nine screen multiplex cinema and include an 80-bedroom hotel, as well as a number of restaurants, bars and shops.

Terrace Hill has secured an agreement with VUE Entertainment to operate the cinema, and is in advanced discussions with Whitbread who want to operate the 80-bedroom Premier Inn hotel.

The property group has already received strong interest from a number of national restaurant and leisure chains. At present, the operators are not represented in the town, with the multi-million scheme providing an opportunity to bring their brand to Darlington and help the local economy.

Philip Leech, Chief Executive of Terrace Hill, said: “Having made the strategic decision to increase Terrace Hill’s focus on development, thereby better utilising our core expertise, we are very pleased to have been appointed by Darlington Borough Council to develop this important new scheme.

Councillor Bill Dixon, leader of Darlington Borough Council said: “This is excellent news for the Borough. There has been a lot of detailed negotiation around this development and I believe that the Council has chosen the best scheme for the site.

“The news is clear evidence that Darlington can attract a first class development of this kind and that there is confidence in the business world in what the Borough has to offer. Once complete it will be a welcome addition to the already strong culture and leisure offer in the town centre.”

Jobs in Manchester due to Morgan Sindall £15.9m Network Rail contract

Multi-million bid for rail command centre given the go-ahead

Morgan Sindall has won a £15.9 million contract to construct Network Rail’s Operating Centre in Manchester which will create new jobs and boost the trades.

The development will see around 110 people working on site at the peak of construction, including a number of specialist contractors.

The Operating Centre in Gorton, Southeast Manchester, will provide a base from which all of Network Rail’s operations in the region will be run and will accommodate its personnel and control equipment.

The three-storey, steel-framed building is designed to achieve a BREEAM Very Good rating and is due to be completed by December 2013.

The building is a composite structure and includes a variety of specialist design and construction methods and techniques. These include the use of laminated, strengthened glass panels and curtain wall cladding.

A key feature of the building will be its attractive and sustainable ‘green roof’, which will be planted with sedum vegetation to absorb rainwater and provide insulation. The building is also highly insulated to avoid energy wastage.

James Morgan, area director at Morgan Sindall, said: “We are delighted to have won this significant contract which is a testament to the combined expertise of our Rail and Construction teams.

“Our collaborative and full Building Information Modelling (BIM) level two approach will deliver a bespoke solution to Network Rail and provide them with a state-of-the-art home for many years to come.”

£40M BARKING HOUSING PROJECT GETS THE GO-AHEAD

Bouygues Development has secured financial close of the first phase of the Abbey Road Creative Industries Quarter scheme in the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham that will see the building of hundreds of homes and commercial properties.

The overall redevelopment will take place in two phases and will see the construction of four new blocks providing 272 residential dwellings and 1,500 sq m of space for creative and commercial uses on the ground floor.

Phase one comprises the construction of two of the new buildings which will collectively provide 134 residential units, 34 allocated car parking spaces and 900 sq m of creative and commercial space.

Bouygues Development signed the development agreement with freeholders London Thames Gateway Development Corporation (LTGDC, now GLA) in June 2011 prior to selling the entire first phase to LBBD, who will rent the residential units on the affordable market.

The site is only a short distance from leading supermarket chains, hotels, primary schools and transport making it a convenient and accessible location for residents.

Nicolas Guerin Managing Director of Bouygues Development, said: “This is an important and exciting step in the wider regeneration of Barking’s town centre.

“We are really pleased to be working with London Borough of Barking and Dagenham towards enhancing this area of East London that holds potential for growth and that is set to become a destination of choice for residents and professionals alike”.

Cllr Phil Waker, Cabinet Member for Housing, London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, said: “The London Borough of Barking and Dagenham looks forward to the start of construction on this important town centre location.

“The development will provide attractive affordable homes for local people and commercial space taking forward the regeneration of Barking Town Centre and the Creative Industries Quarter in particular.”

Construction of phase one is set to commence by the end of 2012 with practical completion scheduled for quarter three of 2014.

New incentives to drive Green Deal uptake

The UK Green Building Council (UKGBC) has announced the launch of a new project that will kick-start the Green Deal and creates new jobs.  

Speaking alongside climate change minister Greg Barker at the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham, UKGBC’s chief executive Paul King welcomed the implementation of the scheme and outlined its potential for stimulating economic growth.

Mr King praised the Government’s commitment to the scheme, but warned that it needed adequate support to accelerate the level of uptake and implement its objectives.

He said: “The Green Deal still has the potential to be truly revolutionary in driving mass home retrofit. This new market could, if nurtured properly, create jobs, stimulate economic growth and protect consumers from ever-rising energy prices”.

Among those taking part in the UKGBC task group are Saint-Gobain UK, the Association for the Conservation of Energy, the CBI, Sweett Group, L&Q, Marks & Spencer, Willmott Dixon and Travis Perkins.

Diana Montgomery, chief executive of the Construction Products Association, which is supporting the new project, said that despite the strong industry support for the Green Deal, more needed to be done to encourage households to take it up.

Dr Montgomery said: “Collaborating with the UK-GBC on this Green Deal Task Group project will help us to ensure that we can help Government effectively navigate the options they have available to them for capitalising on that opportunity.”

Incentives to be included:

  • Stamp duty banding/rebates
  • Council tax banding/rebates
  • Energy efficiency feed in tariff
  • Subsidised interest rates for Green Deal
  • Low interest loans (outside Green Deal)/ Green mortgages (underwritten by Government)
  • Lump sum grant/payment (cashback/vouchers)
  • Progressively tightening minimum standards, inc. extending to owner-occupied sector
  • Salary sacrifice (tax free scheme) through work/tax credits
  • VAT cut extension to a wider range of measure