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March 14, 2017

Root-and-branch review brings tube maintenance back in house

After 13 years, Amey is losing a lucrative maintenance contract with London Underground as the work is brought back in house. Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said he was ‘really proud’ that Transport for London (TfL) was bringing underground maintenance work back into the public sector. The TfL board said

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Construction downturn is steepest for seven years

Latest monthly survey of construction purchasing managers reveals a further decline in activity in July. Anecdotal evidence suggests that economic uncertainty following the EU referendum was the main factor weighing on business activity in July, especially in the commercial building sector. The seasonally adjusted Markit/CIPS UK construction purchasing managers’ index

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Wessex Water launches study to transform Bath's waterways

Wessex Water has teamed up with Bath and North East Somerset Council, the Canal and River Trust and the Environment Agency (EA) for a jointly funded Water Space Study that will identify projects to transform and revitalise the waterways around Bath. Historically, rivers and canals were heavily

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Lower gas prices hit Gazprom profits

©Gazprom Gazprom, the Russian state-run gas group, reported a dip in quarterly profit of more than 5 per cent due to lower gas prices and higher capital expenditure. Net income fell to Rbs362bn in the first quarter, down from Rbs382bn a year earlier, the company said on Wednesday. Total sales

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TP Bennett Appoints New MD’s and Consultant

TP Bennett is the leading architecture and design practice with offices in London’s Bankside Quarter and Manchester’s Northern Quarter. They also have affiliate offices in more than 20 countries. The architecture firm has appointed two new directors. The directors, Kevin Bell and Daniel Dominguez are also joined by a new

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Chartered Surveyors Appointed a New female Director

One of Scotland’s largest independent firms for chartered surveyors has appointed a new female director. Allied Surveyors Scotland announced the appointment of Catherine Clarke on the 9th March. Clarke will be the director of land and development, a specialist division that will focus on the central belt of Scotland. Catherine

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BDC 318 : Jul 2024

March 14, 2017

Root-and-branch review brings tube maintenance back in house

After 13 years, Amey is losing a lucrative maintenance contract with London Underground as the work is brought back in house. Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said he was ‘really proud’ that Transport for London (TfL) was bringing underground maintenance work back into the public sector. The TfL board said that it will now manage maintenance work on the Jubilee, Northern and Piccadilly lines through its own in-house management team. It expects to save £80m over the next 10 years from the switch. Spanish-owned Amey has been contracted to manage maintenance work across the three lines since 2003, in a legacy of the public-private partnership (PPP) contract that previously existed between Tube Lines and London Underground.  However, this arrangement comes to an end at the end of next year, which is the earliest possible point that the current contract allows. The contract covers 200 miles of track, 251 trains, 100 stations, 2,395 bridges and structures, 71 lifts and 227 escalators.  TfL said that London Underground already has experience of managing operations in-house following the demise of Metronet in 2007. Since then costs have reduced and performance has improved compared to the PPP era, it claimed, while reliability had improved by 38% since 2011. London Underground managing director Mark Wild said: “We are carrying out a root-and-branch review of our business to cost less and make transport in London more affordable for our customers.  As part of this, we are using our in-house maintenance expertise to save tens of millions of pounds. There will be no impact on our extremely high standards of maintenance and we will be working closely with Amey over the next 18 months to ensure a smooth transition.” Mayor Khan said: “I’m really proud to announce that TfL will bring underground maintenance work back in-house.” The National Union of Rail, Maritime & Transport Workers (RMT) was equally delighted.  General secretary Mick Cash said: “This is a massive victory for RMT in terms of the fight to end profiteering and privatisation on London Underground. This move helps to bring closer the end to the crazy experiment of tube maintenance privatisation and is another nail in the coffin of the tube PPP disaster. “It makes no sense at all having maintenance work hived off to private operators and RMT will continue the fight across the rail industry for these works, and all other supporting services, to come under the public sector, under direct public control with the staff jobs, pay and conditions protected.”       This article was published on 25 Aug 2016 (last updated on 25 Aug 2016). Source link

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Construction downturn is steepest for seven years

Latest monthly survey of construction purchasing managers reveals a further decline in activity in July. Anecdotal evidence suggests that economic uncertainty following the EU referendum was the main factor weighing on business activity in July, especially in the commercial building sector. The seasonally adjusted Markit/CIPS UK construction purchasing managers’ index (PMI) registered a score of 45.9 in July, down fractionally from 46.0 in June and below the 50.0 no-change mark for the second month running. July 2016 thus saw the steepest overall decline in construction output since June 2009 at the height of the global economic crisis. Commercial building was the biggest faller but civil engineering activity also slowed for the first time in 2016. Residential construction also declined at a solid pace in July, but the rate of contraction eased from June’s three-and-a-half year low. Survey respondents noted that uncertainty following the EU referendum had dampened client confidence, led to greater risk aversion, and encouraged a wait-and-see approach to decision making. That said, after taking into account the uncertain business outlook, there were also some reports that overall demand had been relatively resilient in July, especially for house-building and infrastructure projects. Insufficient new work to replace completed projects resulted in a decline in employment numbers for the first time since May 2013. In general, we are not yet at the stage of laying people off; survey respondents mostly cited the non-replacement of voluntary leavers. Subcontractor availability rose at its fastest pace since September 2012 and this weaker demand for subcontractors contributed to the slowest rise in their average charges for more than three years. Materials prices increased at their steepest rate since March 2015, despite lower demand for inputs. This was overwhelmingly linked to the weaker sterling exchange rate. Meanwhile, the latest survey signalled a fall in confidence regarding the year-ahead business outlook to its lowest since April 2013. Markit senior economist Tim Moore, author of the Markit/CIPS construction PMI, said: “July’s survey is the first construction PMI compiled entirely after the EU referendum result and the figures confirm a clear loss of momentum since the second quarter of 2016, led by a steep and accelerated decline in commercial building. Reduced volumes of new work to replace completed projects contributed to a fall in employment for the first time in just over three years. “UK construction firms frequently cited ongoing economic uncertainty as having a material negative impact on their order books. In particular, survey respondents noted heightened risk aversion and lower investment spending among clients, notwithstanding a greater number of speculative enquiries in anticipation of lower charges. “Meanwhile, exchange rate depreciation resulted in sharper input cost inflation and there are concerns that additional supplier price rises for imported materials could be around the corner. “However, it’s not all bad news, at least insofar as the decline in construction output was little-changed from June’s seven-year low. There were also some reports that demand patterns had been more resilient than expected given the uncertain business outlook. Reflecting this, new order volumes and purchasing activity both dropped at a slightly slower pace than in the previous month. “Construction firms generally suggested that clients had adopted a wait-and-see approach rather than curtailed or cancelled forthcoming projects during July. While there is little to suggest an imminent turnaround in business conditions, a relief factor appears to have softened the fall in business optimism among UK construction companies. “Latest data showed that confidence regarding the year-ahead outlook eased further following the EU referendum, but only to a level last seen in April 2013 and one that is still well above the record lows experienced in 2008/09.”   Further Images This article was published on 2 Aug 2016 (last updated on 2 Aug 2016). Source link

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Wessex Water launches study to transform Bath's waterways

Wessex Water has teamed up with Bath and North East Somerset Council, the Canal and River Trust and the Environment Agency (EA) for a jointly funded Water Space Study that will identify projects to transform and revitalise the waterways around Bath. Historically, rivers and canals were heavily used for industry, business and trade, but are now used increasingly for leisure and wellbeing, sports and recreation. The study will gather new evidence about how the waterways are now being used, and look at the diverse range of opportunities along the River Avon between Bath and Keynsham and along the Kennet and Avon Canal between Deep Lock and Limpley Stoke Viaduct. The Water Space Study will also be informed by the continuing work of the council and the EA to investigate options for managing flood risk. The project is due to conclude its recommendations in March 2017. Councillor Martin Veal, cabinet member for community services and chair of the strategic river group, said: “All of the project partners are keen to engage with everyone who has an interest in the river and canal within our communities, including businesses, the construction industry, landowners, sports clubs, boaters and local groups. “This study initiates what we hope will be an exciting enhancement and transformation of how Bath uses its water spaces.” The study will look at all aspects impacting on the river and canal, including boat moorings, river navigation by boats, leisure and recreation opportunities and wider wildlife and habitat enhancements. The project partners will be working with local consultancy firm Atkins, which has been involved in many environmental-based river restoration work and marina developments, including the rejuvenation of the London 2012 Olympic Park canal network. Mark Evans, waterways manager for the Kennet and Avon Canal at the Canal and River Trust, said: “This study will really help us to understand what people want and need from Bath’s waterways, from the needs of boating communities to the tourist trade. “The canal and river are already key features of the city, but there is potentially much more we can do to make the most of them. “This is the first step in working out what those things could be, and it’s great to have partners on board who are as invested in Bath’s future as we are.” Jeremy Taylor, catchment co-ordinator at the EA, said: “This is a real team effort. As well as making full use of the water spaces in Bath, the Water Space Study will assist in the development of a sustainable approach to flood risk management within Bath. We are all pooling our knowledge and resources to identify both large and small projects that will benefit the community, local economy and the environment.” This article first appeared in Utility Week’s sister title WWTonline Source link

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Lower gas prices hit Gazprom profits

©Gazprom Gazprom, the Russian state-run gas group, reported a dip in quarterly profit of more than 5 per cent due to lower gas prices and higher capital expenditure. Net income fell to Rbs362bn in the first quarter, down from Rbs382bn a year earlier, the company said on Wednesday. Total sales increased by 5.4 per cent to Rbs1.74tn. More On this topic IN Oil & Gas The global oil slump has created uncertainty for Gazprom, which sells much of its gas to Europe at rates linked to the price of oil. Prices on the spot market in Europe, Gazprom’s key source of revenues, have more than halved in the past two years. Many analysts predict that slumping demand in Russia, Ukraine, and China, as well as a potential rise in exports of liquefied natural gas from the US, will push prices down further. The company said on Wednesday that it did not intend to cut its capital expenditure or turn to debt markets to head off the problem. Gazprom’s budget for 2016 is based on an average price of $199 per thousand cubic meters — which would already be the lowest in a decade — when expected prices are even lower at $167-$171 per thousand cubic meters. “We can see that the prices on the market today are lower than those we set out in our budget,” Alexander Ivannikov, Gazprom’s finance director, said on a conference call with investors. “But we have half the year still to come and the weather factor is more important.” Total sales of gas by volume to European countries increased by 49 per cent. But with prices at $187.5 per thousand cubic meters nearly $100 less than a year earlier, the rise only translated into a 22 per cent increase in sales revenues. Sales by volume went down by 16 per cent in the former Soviet Union, mostly driven by Ukraine’s attempt to wean itself off Russian gas since the annexation of Crimea in 2014, and 6 per cent in Russia. Operating expenses rose 24 per cent, which the company mostly attributed to an asset swap agreed last October with German firm Wintershall. Gazprom’s falling revenues may affect its plans for several major new investment projects. The company said it still intended to finance Turkish Stream, a new gas pipeline that was put on hold last year after Turkey shot down a Russian Su-24 fighter plane. Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in St Petersburg to meet his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on Tuesday, said that Ankara intended to finish the project, which entails a pipeline supplying gas to Europe through Greece that remains subject to EU approval. Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2016. You may share using our article tools. Please don’t cut articles from FT.com and redistribute by email or post to the web. Source link

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Mortgages4Life join Savills in taking new space at Stuart House, Peterborough

CEG,  advised jointly by Savills and Lambert Smith Hampton, has let office space at Stuart House on City Road, Peterborough to Mortgages4Life Ltd. The innovative mortgage provider has agreed to a new 10-year lease for 3,534 sq ft (328 sq m) on part of the third floor of the building ahead of its launch in the autumn. This follows the recent letting to Savills, who relocated to the newly refurbished office building from Trinity Court at the beginning of the year, occupying 11,798 sq ft (1,096 sq m) also on the third floor. Currently 50,000 sq ft (4,645 sq m) remains available to let at a rent of £13 per sq ft (£140 per sq m). Paul Farrow, director of business space at Savills Peterborough, comments: “Stuart House is in the process of undergoing a comprehensive refurbishment and upon completion will offer some of the only available Grade A space in Peterborough city centre. We, along with Mortgages4Life, are very happy with our new home and due to the property’s strong credentials expect to receive considerable interest in the remaining available space.” Simon Little, Mortgages4Life’s chief executive officer, adds: “We needed very little convincing that Stuart House was the right premises for our new business. It is without a doubt the most prestigious office development in Peterborough city centre which offers excellent transportation links for both staff and key suppliers. It will be an integral part of the success of the business as we look to grow and expand.” Mortgages4Life was represented by Talkspace. Source link

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TP Bennett Appoints New MD’s and Consultant

TP Bennett is the leading architecture and design practice with offices in London’s Bankside Quarter and Manchester’s Northern Quarter. They also have affiliate offices in more than 20 countries. The architecture firm has appointed two new directors. The directors, Kevin Bell and Daniel Dominguez are also joined by a new consultant, John McIntyre. The new appointees join from the custodial sector of Capita Property and Infrastructure Architectural team. It is thought that the new directors will be able to support the practice when further improving its expertise. TP Bennet’s have elected new appointments in order to expand the firm’s sector knowledge. The architectural firm already has experience dealing with residential, Health, education, and security as well as public sector and hospitality.  The two directors Bell and Dominguez and McIntyre the consultant have worked together for over 18 years on a variety of projects in a slightly different sector to TP Bennet’s main focus. This experience is in prisons, rehabilitation facilities, courts, police stations and immigration centers. The mixture of experience will come together to provide even more support to TP Bennet’s already strong portfolio of social architecture. Kevin Bell and Daniel Dominguez were leaders in the designing of the Justice Design sector located at Capita. The two new directors will be bringing a combined experience amounting to over 40 years. During this time the pair have successfully been able to deliver projects working with the Ministry of Justice and the private sector. John McIntyre was formerly he director of the Capita team. McIntyre joins TP Bennet as a consultant alongside Bell and Dominguez. This team aim to work together in order to create prison spaces that are educational and engaging in order to increase the chances of rehabilitation. TP Bennet share the same principles as the new appointees and look forward to expanding their expertise and pool of clients.

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TH Real Estate Announced its Ambition to Cut the Energy Intensity by 30% By 2030

TH Real Estate has announced its ambition to cut the energy intensity of its portfolio by 30% by 2030. Based on its 2015 baseline, the affiliate of Nuveen commits to improving the sustainability of its 134 million square foot portfolio worth $68 billion in global equity. Energy Intensity is the assets use of kilowatts per hour, per square foot. Therefore reducing this rating will reduce the amount of energy TH Real Estate’s portfolio uses. This will in turn lower the amount of pollution created by the company. This announcement is an advancement on the company’s previous efforts to increase sustainability and to reduce the risk as well as the impact of climate change. This new announcement comes after the Paris Conference of Parties in September 2015. The 21st annual Conference set ambitious goals for more sustainable real estate. Real estate is estimated to be responsible for 40% of the world’s carbon emissions. Examples for emissions being so high includes fuel usage, for boilers etc., and also electricity and other energy sources. In order to reduce carbon emissions it if vital to start using energy more efficiently. Reducing the amount of energy used I a household will also reduce bills for the consumer, so there are several advantages to TH Real Estate’s plans. TH Real Estate is one of the world’s largest institutional real estate investors. The company has almost 900 office, retail, residential and industrial assets worldwide. Therefore, employing these sustainability measures could make a massive difference to the environment. This could also lead to positive results for the economy as well as benefits for individual tenants. TH Real Estate has a ‘Tomorrow’s World’ philosophy which actively seeks to improve the sustainability of the company. This allows the company to keep preparing for the future, as well as increasing the value of their assets fo their clients by investing in more sustainable products.

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Chartered Institute of Building Aiming to Promote the Science and Practice of Building in New Ways

The Chartered Institute of Building is globally the most influential professional management body for construction. With an aim to promote the science and practice of building in a way that is beneficial to society by was of a Royal Charter. Established in 1834, the members of the Chartered Institute work in order to provide development, conservation and improvement within the built environment. The Institute also accredits degrees as well as other educational courses and training as a seal for competence and professionalism. The widely recognised and respected institute has appointed a new Managing Director. Terry Watts will report to the Chief Executive of the Chartered Institute of Building Chris Blyth. Terry Watts has a large amount of experience in the skills, construction supply-chain and technology sectors. Watts’ experience also covers small and large business change management. Terry will starts in the newly created position of Managing Director position this month. Terry Watts’ roles will include promoting the Chartered Institute’s influence within the construction sector, as well as promoting the improvement of standards, skills and professionalism within this industry. The Chartered Institute of Building has created this new Managing Director role in order to accommodate the growth of the institute and the increased breadth of the CIOB’s influence within construction as well as improving standards, skills and professionalism within the growing sector. Terry has joined the CIOB as Managing Director following the set up and running of Proskills, of which he was the CEO. Proskills is the Sector Skills Council for the construction supply chain. More recently Terry Watts has had a variety of different roles including Principle of City of Oxford College, the Group International Business Director for a major training company that works in India, Vietnam and Egypt. Terry started his career at IBM and worked for several years with technology start-ups. Watts has a broad range of managing skills from many different roles and will also offer skills to help with CIOB’s change, project and marketing aspects.

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Awards for Hospitality Experience and Design has Revealed their Winner

The Awards for Hospitality Experience and Design has revealed the winner for its Asia classification. The Ceremony was held at The Capital Theatre in Singapore. These awards are a continuation of the success of the Asian Hotel Design Awards. The AHEAD awards intend to celebrate design in all its many forms as well as how designs can change the guest experience within the hospitality industry. The Awards looks at these designs from all over the world and the judges for the AHEAD are renowned hoteliers, architects and interior designers. The entrants are assessed on their guest experience and commercial viability as well as their aesthetic excellence. The winner of the AHEAD Award was a luxury hotel named Hoshinoya. The winning hotel is located in Tokyo and took home three awards on the night. The Hoshinoya won awards for The Asia Hotel of the Year, The New Concept of the Year and the Urban Hotel category, which made the luxury hotel AHEAD’s Asia’s Hotel of the Year. With competition for the awards being tough, the judges chose winners whose design really contributed to the guest experience. Also worthy of note are the winners of the other thirteen categories. Amongst them Kerry Hill was awarded the Outstanding Contribution award for his 40 year career which contributed to Asian resort design. The winner of the Bar, Club and Lounge category was the Akademi which is in Seminyak, Bali; praised for its ingenuity in their lobby design. The Guestrooms category were won by the Thai Akyra Manor  Hotel in Chiang Mai; said to have clean lines and use of combining the indoors and outdoors as part of their guest experience. The Hotel Renovation & Restoration category was won by The Edison George Town in Penang; a hotel that has been renovated to maintain the classic building characteristics with added flair. The Landscaping & Outdoor Spaces category was won by Keemala in Phuket Thailand; with the landscaping naturally enveloping the hotel in its surroundings and integrates the rooms with the jungle environment.

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Chartered Surveyors Appointed a New female Director

One of Scotland’s largest independent firms for chartered surveyors has appointed a new female director. Allied Surveyors Scotland announced the appointment of Catherine Clarke on the 9th March. Clarke will be the director of land and development, a specialist division that will focus on the central belt of Scotland. Catherine Clarke will be the head of a soon to be expanding division in reaction to the increased demand in the Scottish property market. The division will aim to offer funding and development advice that will be applicable to the for-sale, and rent, private and social housing market. This appointment occurs after a positive change for the Scottish property market. Hopefully Catherine Clarke will be able to continue to push the business forward and as a result improve the Scottish market further upwards. The first female director has had more than 18 years’ experience within the international surveying industry and has a detailed knowledge of the industry on an international scale.  Catherine Clarke will work alongside the existing team looking at a variety of different areas including residential land and development valuations, investment and red book valuations, pricing study reports and market commentary. These different areas are looked at across a wide market of developers as well as private landowners and local authorities. Before working at Allied Surveyors, Catherine Clarke worked as part of Colliers International, located in Dubai. In this previous role Clarke was in charge of a team of 12 and focused on the launce of the Colliers International House Price Index. Catherine has a Bachelor of Science with Honors in Estate Management. He graduated from Napier University and is also a qualified APC Assessor and Chairperson. Catherine Clarke started her career with Allied Surveyors in 2004 before moving to her role in Dubai. Catherine will provide Allied Surveyors Scotland will expertise that will hopefully enhance the company’s capabilities and allow for expansion.

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