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August 13, 2018

Delayed A14 gets green light six years after being scrapped

Highways England confirmed that Patrick McLoughlin’s decision had paved the way for construction to start on the £1.2bn project later this year, more than six years after it was first scrapped by the government. Design work had begun on the A14 scheme in 2008 under the Labour government but became

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Sale of Summerfield Care Home, Cheltenham

A private vendor, advised by Savills, has sold the entire issued share capital of Hi-Hand Limited and Summerfield Medical Limited to Target Healthcare REIT Limited and its subsidiaries (“the Group”) for substantially in excess of £7,000,000. The Summerfield Care Home in Gloucestershire is a substantial purpose-built care facility commissioned in

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New to market rental properties spiked before stamp duty deadline

Property crowdfunding platform, Property Partner, has found that admidst the rush to beat the April 1st stamp duty deadline there was a large rise in new rental properties being listed. Property Partner looked at the number of new rental properties being advertised between 28th March and 3rd April, and compared

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Knauf AMF adds a touch of luxury

Knauf AMF Thermatex Acoustic ceiling planks create a luxurious feel for a new exclusive apartment development in a prosperous area of Newcastle. Knauf AMF Thermatex Acoustic ceiling planks create a luxurious feel for a new exclusive apartment development in a prosperous area of Newcastle. ‘ONE Jesmond Three Sixty’ has been

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Norges Bank to pump £42bn into real estate

9 April 2016 – by Mike Cobb The Norwegian finance ministry has raised the real estate allocation of its sovereign wealth fund from 5% to 7%. The NKr7tn (£598bn) Norges Bank Investment Management fund will now be able to allocate NKr490bn into real estate. Last December the world’s largest

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Wales Requires Zero Carbon Houses

A new proposal from a National Assembly Committee might require all new-build housing in Wales to be zero carbon. The Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee found that Wales has the oldest housing stock in Europe and that the pace and scale of delivering energy efficient homes needs to

Read More »

Explore Offsite North West Event

The first North West regional event in the Explore Offsite series will take place on the 12th of September 2018 in Manchester at the University of Salford. The combined conference and exhibition will bring together a range of offsite technology supply chain specialists and industry leaders to discuss the uptake

Read More »

Big Firms Urged to Grasp 10% Levy Move

Leading apprenticeship provider Develop Training has welcomed news that large employers are now able to transfer their levy funds to other organisations. However, the company cautioned that firms will have to manage the process well to maximise the potential business benefits. It also warned that the move is adding more

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Latest Issue

BDC 317 : Jun 2024

August 13, 2018

Delayed A14 gets green light six years after being scrapped

Highways England confirmed that Patrick McLoughlin’s decision had paved the way for construction to start on the £1.2bn project later this year, more than six years after it was first scrapped by the government. Design work had begun on the A14 scheme in 2008 under the Labour government but became the most expensive approved project to be canned as part of the coalition’s 2010 Comprehensive Spending Review. Balfour Beatty / Carillion and a Costain / Skanska joint venture have been selected as the contractors to deliver the project – the first to be tendered under Highways England’s Collaborative Delivery Framework. Last year, the Costain / Skanska consortium was awarded the £600m contract to carry out the first two packages of works for the road between Cambridge and Huntingdon. It was the second time the team had been appointed to the scheme. In 2008 Costain / Skanska won a £344m contract to build part of the scheme but this was cancelled after the coalition announced the scrapping of the project. The Balfour Beatty / Carillion JV secured the £292m contract to widen the section of the A14 between Swavesey and Milton last September. The JV appointment came after Highways England retendered the package of work due to “concerns over contractors’ ability to meet long-term targets on issues including passenger safety”. A partnership between Atkins and CH2M was awarded the £35.3m detailed design contract for the A14 in June. Show Fullscreen A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon upgrade map A fourth package for the demolition of the viaduct over the East Coast Main Line at Huntingdon will be awarded in 2019. Mr McLoughlin’s decision comes 18 months after the then Highways Agency first put forward its replan for the A14 to the Planning Inspectorate. After a consultation and examination last year, the scheme was submitted given to Mr McLoughlin for approval in February. When completed, the 34 km scheme will include a major new bypass between Swavesey and Brampton and the widening of the existing A14 road between Swavesey and Milton and Brampton and Alconbury. The improvements will also include improvements to Huntingdon town centre and the replacement of the A14 viaduct with a new local access road. Highways England director for complex infrastructure Chris Taylor said: “The scheme will provide much-needed additional capacity to improve journey times and safety. “We are keen to keep the momentum going and will get preparations for construction under way as soon as possible after the end of the six-week statutory challenge period.” Source link

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Sale of Summerfield Care Home, Cheltenham

A private vendor, advised by Savills, has sold the entire issued share capital of Hi-Hand Limited and Summerfield Medical Limited to Target Healthcare REIT Limited and its subsidiaries (“the Group”) for substantially in excess of £7,000,000. The Summerfield Care Home in Gloucestershire is a substantial purpose-built care facility commissioned in 2010, totalling 1.96 acres (0.79 hectare). The building has been designed to a high specification by award-winning architects DWA and features 66 bedrooms with en-suite wet rooms and an abundance of light day areas, four dining rooms, a cinema, a library and  a lounge bar. Upon purchase the care home was let to a subsidiary of Caring Homes group, the UK-wide care home operator.  Craig Woollam, head of healthcare at Savills, comments: “Target Healthcare REIT Limited is the only listed specialist investor in UK care homes, and this deal demonstrates that there is still a good appetite for investment in the UK healthcare market. In addition, Caring Homes group will make an excellent tenant for this prime property.” Kenneth MacKenzie, Managing Partner of Target Advisers LLP, comments: “We are delighted to announce the completion of this acquisition which adds another high quality asset in a location of strong demand.  We are excited to add Caring Homes to our growing list of tenants.  This transaction is the fifth to be announced since our recent successful fundraise, and we continue to progress other opportunities.  We expect to make further announcements in due course.”   Source link

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New to market rental properties spiked before stamp duty deadline

Property crowdfunding platform, Property Partner, has found that admidst the rush to beat the April 1st stamp duty deadline there was a large rise in new rental properties being listed. Property Partner looked at the number of new rental properties being advertised between 28th March and 3rd April, and compared it to the period 21st March to 27th March in more than 90 towns and cities across the UK. In 85% of those locations, there was an increase in the number of new rental listings over the past week compared to the previous week. In many areas, there was a significant increase in new rental properties advertised. Telford in the West Midlands saw rental listings up almost 160% in the week of the stamp duty deadline, compared to the previous week, and in Stevenage new ads almost doubled. While five out of the top ten areas in terms of a rise in rental properties being advertised, were in the North of England. Of the major cities, London saw new rental property listings up 19.4% between 28th March and 3rd April, compared to the previous week. While, in Manchester and Birmingham, new rental ads were up 28.7% and 49.9% respectively. The following table shows the UK towns and cities that saw the biggest increase in new rental property listings between 28th March and 3rd April, compared to the previous week, 21st March to 27th March. Dan Gandesha, CEO of Property Partner, comments: “Inevitably there was a final rush by investors to complete on property purchases ahead of the 1st April stamp duty surcharge deadline. More rental properties on the market is good news for tenants, but sadly this looks like a temporary blip. The savings landlords have made may turn into losses further down the line. Future cuts to mortgage interest tax relief and likely interest rate rises, could wipe out profits and force many landlords to sell up. Longer term we’re likely to see the supply of rented properties dropping and rents increasing. The pressing issue is to get Britain building more homes for tenants, as well as buyers. The Government has changed the whole structure of the UK buy-to-let market and made it less attractive and viable for amateur landlords. Once the dust has settled on the stamp duty hike, anyone looking to invest in residential property would be wise to consider alternatives to traditional buy-to-let, which do away with the hassle, expense and tax implications.” Source link

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Knauf AMF adds a touch of luxury

Knauf AMF Thermatex Acoustic ceiling planks create a luxurious feel for a new exclusive apartment development in a prosperous area of Newcastle. Knauf AMF Thermatex Acoustic ceiling planks create a luxurious feel for a new exclusive apartment development in a prosperous area of Newcastle. ‘ONE Jesmond Three Sixty’ has been transformed from a 1960s office block into a landmark building with striking architecture and contemporary interior design. Briefed to design a warm and chic interior for 80 apartments, GT3 architects were attracted to Thermatex acoustic ceiling planks for the reception and circulation areas which set the tone for the rest of the building. “We wanted an alternative to the standard square ceiling tile and liked the white unperforated surface which gives the planks its unique appearance. We also liked the repeat pattern the planks form on the ceiling.”The smooth, white elegant appearance of Thermatex Acoustic planks help give the interior a welcoming ambience for residents and visitors. The building’s public spaces have a light, airy, open feel, thanks to the ceiling’s high light reflection (85%) and low air permeability. Thermatex Acoustic planks do not need regular cleaning; the surface can resist dust which helps retain its bright appearance. This bright appearance combined with the ceiling’s high light reflectance reduces the level of artificial lighting required.Thermatex Acoustic ceilings offers excellent acoustic control and are ideal for busy areas. The planks improve privacy for residents by ensuring unwanted noise does not travel from the external hallways to the apartments.At ONE Jesmond Three Sixty, the ceiling planks were fitted using Knauf AMF’s Bandraster grid system. The Bandraster system allowed the architect full creative expression in ceiling design creating a linear look to the ceiling planks as an alternative to standard 600 x 600mm tiles. The parallel suspension sections of the Bandraster grid system can be adapted to the architecture of any building. The ceiling’s versatility allowed the architect to realise their vision for the finished interior. “We wanted plank sizes of 300mm on a suspension system with semi-concealed grid, with a shadowline to the perimeter and a plasterboard upstand edge which we were able to achieve. We also wanted light fittings to be centred to the width of the plank which we were also able to achieve. We would specify Knauf AMF products again.” Fire protection is a key requirement for all public areas. The materials installed in ONE Jesmond Three Sixty had to meet high standards. Thermatex Acoustic planks are classified A2 fire performance (non- combustible) to prevent flame spread with no contribution to the development of a fire.  Source link

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Norges Bank to pump £42bn into real estate

9 April 2016 – by Mike Cobb The Norwegian finance ministry has raised the real estate allocation of its sovereign wealth fund from 5% to 7%. The NKr7tn (£598bn) Norges Bank Investment Management fund will now be able to allocate NKr490bn into real estate. Last December the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund said it wanted to take the allocation to 10% by including infrastructure in its real estate business. However, that move was vetoed this week. The alternative, an increase to 7%, excluding infrastructure, extends a plan to reduce the sovereign wealth fund’s exposure to low-yielding bonds and move towards the better returns that real estate has delivered. In 2015, real estate returned 10% on investments after currency fluctuations, compared with just 0.33% for bonds and 3.83% for equities. So far Norges has invested NKr180bn in real estate across key cities in the US and Europe. All the content from this weekís magazine, including this article, is available in the new app. Norges Bank real estate management chief executive Karsten Kallevig leads the sovereign fund’s drive into the sector. Its biggest single market has so far been the US, centring on New York offices and logistics with partner Prologis. The UK has been Norges’ second-biggest market with NKr48bn of investment in luxury retail and logistics. The UK was Norges’ first destination for investment following the fund’s move into real estate in 2010. In 2011 it bought a 25% stake in the Crown Estate’s Regent Street, W1, scheme. Source link

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Wales Requires Zero Carbon Houses

A new proposal from a National Assembly Committee might require all new-build housing in Wales to be zero carbon. The Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee found that Wales has the oldest housing stock in Europe and that the pace and scale of delivering energy efficient homes needs to be increased “urgently”. A ten-year low-carbon housing strategy was called by the Committee and it will involve the construction of all new-build homes to zero carbon standards, as well as retrofitting existing housing stock. The strategy also includes: a complimentary planning and building system with low-carbon and energy efficiency at their centres, and supported by rigorous, independent inspection regimes; financial incentives to encourage buyers and owners to buy low-carbon housing and invest in retrofit measures; funding interventions that maximise the impact of Welsh government investment in low-carbon housing; and a fully-trained workforce, ready to construct and improve homes using the latest technologies. The Committee found that the possibility of meeting the Welsh government’s commitment to reducing carbon emissions by 80% by 2050 was “some way off”. “There are many reasons why we should improve the energy efficiency of our housing stock. The most pressing is the need to deliver on legal obligations to eliminate fuel poverty and reduce the emission of greenhouse gases,” said Mike Hedges AM, chair of the Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee. “The Welsh Government is required to reduce emissions by 40% by 2018 and by 80% by 2050. Challenging targets need challenging solutions. Reducing the amount of energy we use in our homes will substantially accelerate progress towards these goals. Achieving the targets will require a considerable ramping up of ambition and must span the whole of Wales’ policy levers. We are calling on the Welsh Government to bring forward a ten-year low-carbon housing strategy, including milestones and targets to kick start housing development now and for the future,” explained Mike Hedges.

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Explore Offsite North West Event

The first North West regional event in the Explore Offsite series will take place on the 12th of September 2018 in Manchester at the University of Salford. The combined conference and exhibition will bring together a range of offsite technology supply chain specialists and industry leaders to discuss the uptake of offsite construction within the region. Explore Offsite North West will focus on the key themes of offsite technology, supply chain resources and opportunities within the sector. Through informative case studies and presentations from industry pioneers, the event aims to attract construction clients, architects, engineers, specifiers, building product manufacturers and suppliers. Offsite manufacture is a progressive step that helps to challenge outdated assumptions about the construction sector and encourage more young professionals into the industry. The sector will generate savings in the long term, but the overwhelming message has been, that companies at every level of the supply chain should invest in offsite manufacture and construction processes sooner rather than later, or risk being left behind. Tom Bloxham MBE, Chairman for Urban Splash, explains the rationale behind acquiring SIG’s modular factory and assets in his presentation ‘Urban Splash Modular and why we bought the Factory’. Meanwhile, Osco Homes is all about making a positive social impact and in her presentation, Gwen Beeken, Managing Director, discusses how their successful affordable housing projects are employing a different workforce. A wholly owned subsidiary of Procure Plus, Osco Homes’ objective is to deliver affordable houses constructed offsite at a factory based in HM Prison Hindley, Greater Manchester. Within three years Osco Homes hope to reach an output of 1,000 homes a year. The model is for the prisoners to be trained and then supported into full time employment upon release. EOS Offsite Solutions design, manufacture and bring fully tested solutions to market which drives specification in UK construction. Peter Burchill from EOS Offsite Solutions will be presenting ‘Lightening the Load for the Residential Sector’.

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Big Firms Urged to Grasp 10% Levy Move

Leading apprenticeship provider Develop Training has welcomed news that large employers are now able to transfer their levy funds to other organisations. However, the company cautioned that firms will have to manage the process well to maximise the potential business benefits. It also warned that the move is adding more complexity to a system that many employers have had difficulty in understanding. From May, large employers who pay the Apprenticeship Levy will for the first time be allowed to transfer up to ten per cent of their annual funds to other organisations. It means firms can use some of their unspent levy funding, which would otherwise go to the exchequer, to support smaller employers to take on apprentices. “There are potential business benefits for larger businesses to support firms in their supply chain to take on apprentices. I would recommend working with your chosen supplier and an apprenticeship provider to align the scheme with your own training programmes and to focus the money where it will benefit you both the most. You should be aware that apprenticeships can cover management training as well as the kind of trade-based training traditionally associated with apprenticeships,” said Chris Wood, CEO of Develop Training. “Putting some thought and effort into this process will pay dividends all round, for the large employer, the supply chain business and the apprentices who go through the scheme. As with everything to do with the levy, it makes sense to get expert help and advice from specialists such as ourselves,” he added. Initially, firms will only be able to transfer funds to one organisation. After user feedback from the first phase, they will likely be allowed to split their ten per cent funding into several smaller payments across multiple organisations. The ESFA has advised those transferring the funds to be aware of “the funding rules around transferring apprenticeship funds, which will be published at a later date”. Once a transfer is made, it cannot be refunded. Apart from their own supply chain, levy-paying employers who want to transfer funds can find companies who want money for apprenticeships in a number of ways. These include making contact with an approved Apprenticeship Training Agency such as Develop Training or working with regional partners. After Develop Training’s Industry Skills Forum in November revealed concerns among major employers about the levy, it has been offering advice on the levy process and guidance about the kinds of training that can be provided under the scheme.

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