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October 21, 2019

PLP buys Sheffield plot for speculative warehouse

Specialist logistics developer and investor PLP (Peel Logistics Property), has bought a 17 acre development site at Smithy Wood Business Park in Sheffield from St Pauls Developments and the Norfolk Estate where it will speculatively build a 343,000 sq ft warehouse. The site was sold subject to planning and having

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Work on Bristol Cathedral Choir School Completed

Work on Bristol Cathedral Choir School Completed

Skanska has completed building work to extend Bristol Cathedral Choir School. The extension has created over 200 new places for pupils at the school. Work on the planning and pre-construction phase of the project began in 2017. The first phase, completed in two months, converted an existing listed building from

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GRAHAM Celebrates Completion of Housing Development

GRAHAM Celebrates Completion of Housing Development

GRAHAM Construction has celebrated the completion of a housing development on Liverpool’s iconic waterfront with a “topping out” ceremony. Representatives from Invesco Real Estate, Panacea Property Development, GRAHAM and the design team attended the event on Wednesday 16th October, to mark the key project milestone, and the final construction of

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Croydon Council Responds To Climate Emergency

Croydon Council Responds To Climate Emergency

Croydon Council have commenced a pilot scheme with Kensa Contracting to install a low-carbon fifth generation ground source heat pump system for its residents that will cut the cost to residents and the environment. The ground source heat pumps at the council-owned 10-storey block in New Addington will cut carbon emissions, help

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Tiny Chic: Mastering the Art of Furnishing Small Spaces

Do you always feel like you’re solving an impossible puzzle when you’re trying to furnish your small home? If you want to fit all the items you need, the result will end up looking cramped. On the other hand, if you want to make it unique and filled with personality,

Read More »

Home Office Ideas that Will Make You Want to Work All Day

Even though working from home sounds like a dream come true, the fact is that it can sometimes be a real struggle. The fact of the matter is that, unless you have impeccable self-control, you can easily find yourself procrastinating and doing anything but the work that needs to be

Read More »

Essentials You Need to Set Up a Productive Home Office

Working from home is not only more practical and time-effective, but it also allows you to set up your office according to your needs and desires. If you have a comfortable, well-equipped and personalized office, your work will be more efficient and you’ll experience better work satisfaction. However, working from

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Latest Issue

BDC 318 : Jul 2024

October 21, 2019

PLP buys Sheffield plot for speculative warehouse

Specialist logistics developer and investor PLP (Peel Logistics Property), has bought a 17 acre development site at Smithy Wood Business Park in Sheffield from St Pauls Developments and the Norfolk Estate where it will speculatively build a 343,000 sq ft warehouse. The site was sold subject to planning and having received it, the new owner intends to get started on a speculative build as soon as possible. The facility will be one of the largest warehouses in the Yorkshire region. Construction will commence this year with completion in Autumn 2020. Smithy Wood Business Park, adjacent to Junction 35 of the M1 motorway in Sheffield is a well established commercial location and home to occupiers such as DPD, Cutting and Wear and Arthrex. Matthew Fitton, development director at PLP, said: “Given the proximity of the site to the M1 motorway and Sheffield, PLP Smithy Wood will offer great accessibility and market connectivity. PLP has the confidence here to speculatively build one of the largest warehouses in the region.” “In line with PLP’s long term sustainability policies, we’re installing roof mounted solar panels, multiple electric charging points for vehicles and the infrastructure to augment these post construction.  We are also making a significant investment in the local ecology of the site, improving the biodiversity of the surrounding area.’’ David Newton, MD of St Pauls Developments, said: “We always believed in Smithy Wood’s location, being so close to J35 M1, and this encouraged us to invest in the site to create a fully serviced, strategic land holding. PLP’s decision to purchase and develop 17 acres is exactly the type of deal we felt we could attract, and I am sure it will be a successful project for them.” The PLP platform is owned by MIRA Real Estate, Peel Group, Ivanhoé Cambridge and its senior management team. CPP have been appointed as leasing agents for the scheme.

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Work on Bristol Cathedral Choir School Completed

Work on Bristol Cathedral Choir School Completed

Skanska has completed building work to extend Bristol Cathedral Choir School. The extension has created over 200 new places for pupils at the school. Work on the planning and pre-construction phase of the project began in 2017. The first phase, completed in two months, converted an existing listed building from a primary school to offices and a music practice room. Work also involved the reconfiguration of three rooms into two blocks to provide improved teaching facilities. Work on phase two, completed over four months, converted an existing area into teaching space by relocating existing textiles, art and design and technology teaching rooms. They also relocated and increased the size of a cycle store. This phase was completed by demolishing an existing garage to construct a food kiosk. During the final phase, the team demolished an existing structure to construct a new building including a girls’ changing room, science laboratory, two general teaching rooms and a communal room. During this phase the team stopped work for 14 weeks to allow archaeology investigations to take place. To ensure the project was delivered on time for the new academic year, they worked closely with Bristol Cathedral’s archaeologist. Nathan Bowerman, Project Manager, explained: “This has been a complex project from the very beginning and we’re really proud of the end result. We worked successfully in a complex stakeholder landscape, including Historic England, because the school is located close to the Cathedral’s grounds. It was vital to the team that we delivered this project on time, to create extra spaces for pupils to attend this popular school. “The project was delivered over three phases and all of the team worked seamlessly with each other to ensure that disruption was kept to a minimum and safety was at the forefront of everything we did.”

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GRAHAM Celebrates Completion of Housing Development

GRAHAM Celebrates Completion of Housing Development

GRAHAM Construction has celebrated the completion of a housing development on Liverpool’s iconic waterfront with a “topping out” ceremony. Representatives from Invesco Real Estate, Panacea Property Development, GRAHAM and the design team attended the event on Wednesday 16th October, to mark the key project milestone, and the final construction of the concrete frame. Scheduled for completion in late 2020, 21 Strand Street will set a new benchmark for rental living in the city. Discussing the progress of the project, Peter Reavey, Construction Director at GRAHAM, said: “The topping out ceremony is a significant milestone for the project, and we are delighted with the progress and the quality of work completed so far. We have been involved with the Project from pre-construction stage, and we have developed a very close working relationship with Panacea Property Development, Invesco Real Estate and their key partners in order to complete the design development and the construction methodology that has helped us reach this key milestone. Once completed, 21 Strand Street will be a stand-out residential development, and it will undoubtedly complement this iconic part of Liverpool city centre.” Designed by Leach Rhodes Walker Architects, 21 Strand Street is being constructed around a concrete frame structure, complete with off-site bathroom pods, and a system façade designed to withstand inclement riverside weather conditions. The multi-storey development is based around two towers and will feature 383 apartments, with a mixture of one, two and three bed apartments, offering stunning views across the River Mersey, Albert Dock and the city centre. Prospective residents will also benefit from a range of rooftop facilities such as a garden space with flexible and fixed seating, booth seating areas with fire pits and fire tables, an outdoor covered kitchen, and a multi-use central space suitable for events or exercise. This area will be enclosed by 2m high glass balustrading to provide weather protection. Commenting on the next phase of the project, Neil Patten, Managing Director of Patten Properties and Panacea Property Development, said: “It is great to see 21 Strand Street taking shape. GRAHAM is doing an exceptional job of construction and the wider team are working well together to deliver this exciting development. We designed the development to set a new standard for residential accommodation in Liverpool, and we are looking forward to the final delivery of the scheme in October 2020. I’ve no doubt that these apartments will be some of the most sought after in the city.” John German, Managing Director – Residential Investments at Invesco Real estate commented: “We are delighted that the Panacea and GRAHAM teams have reached this key stage in the delivery of 21 The Strand. With topping out having been achieved we are now able to fully appreciate the location of this investment, which enjoys the views of many of Liverpool’s iconic landmarks. We look forward to receiving the completed building in 2020 when we will be able to offer a market leading rental product for the City of Liverpool.”

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Croydon Council Responds To Climate Emergency

Croydon Council Responds To Climate Emergency

Croydon Council have commenced a pilot scheme with Kensa Contracting to install a low-carbon fifth generation ground source heat pump system for its residents that will cut the cost to residents and the environment. The ground source heat pumps at the council-owned 10-storey block in New Addington will cut carbon emissions, help improve air quality, and save up to £300 per home per year on more than 40 households’ heating bills. The project comes after Croydon Council declared a climate emergency this summer, and aims to contribute towards a local target of cutting the borough’s carbon emissions by 34% by 2025. Kensa Contracting will be undertaking the ground source heat pump installations, following on from an award-winning tower block retrofit scheme in Enfield, featured in the Mayor’s London Climate Action Week. The 44 flats are the first in Croydon to have ground source heat pumps retrofitted, replacing the existing electric storage heaters. An individual Kensa Shoebox ground source heat pump will be installed in each flat, connected to an ambient shared ground loop array. The ambient nature of the heating distribution system will prevent overheating of communal areas, whilst the individual heat pump in each flat will provide the tenant with independent control and the freedom to switch fuel suppliers for the cheapest energy tariff. As well as saving each home between £260 and £300 a year off their bills, the ground source heat pumps will cost less for the council to maintain than storage heaters. The replacement of the tower block’s electric storage heaters with Kensa’s ground source heat pump system cuts lifetime carbon emissions by the equivalent of a 242,317-mile car journey; or driving around the world ten times! The average night storage heater produces approximately 2,001kg of carbon dioxide per year, compared to the new ground source heat pump system that produces around 645kg per year. Kensa expect to complete the works by spring 2020, timed to coincide with an 18-month, £3.2 million refurbishment to the block including new insulation, a replacement roof and windows, landscaping and new parking. The £700,000 heating system will be funded through the council’s ring-fenced housing budget and via energy credits from energy regulator Ofgem. Councillor Alison Butler, deputy leader and cabinet member for homes and Gateway services, said: “Many Croydon tenants find paying their winter fuel bills a struggle, so this pilot scheme and wider refurbishment will make a real difference by ensuring their homes are warmer, more energy-efficient and cheaper to run.” Councillor Stuart King, cabinet lead for environment and transport, said: “Making Croydon more sustainable is a key council priority, and by both cutting carbon emissions and residents’ heating bills this project underlines our commitment to improving the environment.”

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Tiny Chic: Mastering the Art of Furnishing Small Spaces

Do you always feel like you’re solving an impossible puzzle when you’re trying to furnish your small home? If you want to fit all the items you need, the result will end up looking cramped. On the other hand, if you want to make it unique and filled with personality, the space will end up looking cluttered. Either way, you lose. Well, you don’t have to lose anymore! No matter if you’re designing a smart studio apartment or you just downsized to a cheaper and more practical home, you don’t have to sacrifice style and comfort. Here are some of the best tips that will help you master the art of furnishing and create a tiny yet chic space. Don’t overburden the floors While you certainly need to fill your home with the essentials, even a perfectly thought-out room can look small and uncomfortable if you don’t have space to walk around. So, open up your floors and let them breathe—it will instantly create an illusion of bigger square footage. In order to still get all the pieces of furniture you need, opt for floating designs, especially when it comes to nightstands, bathroom cabinets, shelving and lighting. With floating pieces you’ll not only make the ground clear of obstacles but also free up some space for extra storage beneath and make cleaning a breeze. Choose double-duty If a small home, every piece needs to earn its spot in your space and ones that certainly pull their weight are double-duty pieces. Beds with built-in drawers, benches and ottomans with under-the-seat storage for blankets and books and daybeds doubling as sofas or guest beds will always have space in your home and come in very handy. Keep bigger items at hand Just because you don’t have huge square footage, it doesn’t mean you have to give up all your larger furniture items. Items like gorgeous King Living sofas are modular which means you can combine different elements and adapt your seating to your needs. This is certainly handy for people who lack space yet enjoy the comfort of large furniture.  Also, make sure to put larger items against the wall—this will allow you to keep the depth of the room and enjoy all the comfort of big and comfy furniture. Combine your sofa with a chunky recliner placed in the corner and you’ll love your cozy yet uncluttered design. Go for practical folding pieces Sure, you might need a work desk or a dining table, but you don’t need them all the time. So, grab a few practical furniture pieces that fold when not in use. If you fold your piece and remove it, you’ll both free up floor space and prevent clutter from occupying your surfaces. Do you have a small kitchen with only one wall? You can invest in folding doors that can conceal the mess until you do the dishes. Don’t be scared of bold Just because your space is small, it doesn’t mean you have to adopt an extremely minimalist lifestyle and paint everything white or gray. Bold colors and accessories are always welcome, no matter the size of your home. Darker walls and ceilings can make the space feel super cozy and safe. Also, bold statement furniture can distract people from noticing your lack of square footage. Combine your simple aesthetics with a statement Seymour chair in blue or cinnamon or a timeless Eames chair in oak and it will attract all the right attention while providing you with much-needed seating and comfort. Boost lighting Small spaces often have tiny windows that don’t exactly shower the space with sunlight. So, you need to make up for the lack of light by turning to electricity. If you combine ceiling fixtures (no matter if hanging pendants or sleek flush mounts) with task lighting like lamps and sconces, you’ll brighten up your atmosphere and avoid that feeling of claustrophobia. Mirrors can also help your lack of natural light. These great décor elements serve a double purpose: they make the space seem bigger and they disperse the light all over the room. So, consider adding a large mirror to your wall or opt for a gallery-style mirror display if you want something more unusual. Just because you’re not blessed with a huge mansion, it doesn’t mean you can’t have a chic and stylish home. With these furnishing tips, you’ll not only achieve comfort, but also harmony that we all need in our lives.

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Home Office Ideas that Will Make You Want to Work All Day

Even though working from home sounds like a dream come true, the fact is that it can sometimes be a real struggle. The fact of the matter is that, unless you have impeccable self-control, you can easily find yourself procrastinating and doing anything but the work that needs to be done. There are a few reasons why this tends to happen often. Aside from the fact that you don’t have anybody monitoring your progress and micromanaging you, you can easily get distracted if you don’t have a designated working space. That is why creating a home office is of the utmost importance for anyone working from their abode. Here are some interesting tips on how to create a working space that will get your creative juices flowing and make you want to work all day. Find the right area First of all, you will need to locate the best area of your home to set up a home office. This doesn’t have to be an entirely separate room if you don’t have that much space at your disposal. Rather, you can find a quiet little nook in your house and choose to use it for this purpose. On the other hand, if possible, choose a room that’s somewhat isolated from the hustle and bustle that’s going on in the rest of the house. Decide on the color scheme The next thing you should do is decide on the color scheme you want to implement in your home office. Light and neutral tones are always welcome, but if you want some pop of color, consider going for the ones that are known to boost productivity. Red, blue, yellow and green are the most common choices but if you personally don’t like these shades, you can opt for whichever hue motivates you personally. Choose the right style Deciding on the style you want to implement in your home office is another thing you need to pay attention to. Simply filling your office with random furniture pieces to serve a purpose they’re not quite meant to serve will create an environment that will more likely hinder your efforts than boost them. That’s why you need to pay attention to the style of the pieces you choose to make a part of your design, as well as their practicality. So, try to get your hands on an Eames chair that not only looks sleek and blends seamlessly into any design but also offers the right type of support. On the same note, browse office desks that look stylish are made of high-quality materials and offer great functionality and customizable options. Make it bright Moreover, the area you choose for your home office needs to be bright as poorly illuminated areas won’t benefit your productivity. Not only that but the areas that don’t have opulent lighting will contribute to eye-strain which will make doing your job significantly more difficult. That’s why, aside from making sure you have plenty of natural light and that it can penetrate into your home – choose light curtains instead of dark, heavy ones – you’ll also need to install additional artificial lighting sources. An overhead fixture, although necessary, won’t be enough to support all of your needs. Create a break area All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. This is something you definitely don’t want happening to you. As much as staying concentrated on the work at hand is important, it’s also important that you implement a nice little break area in your home office design. Once again, depending on the amount of space you’re working in, you can either go big or small. If your home office is a separate room, add a sofa and a nice little coffee table so that you can take 5 whenever you feel like you need it. On the other hand, if there’s simply not enough room in your home office for an entire sofa, consider adding a nice armchair or a bean bag and a small coffee table that will provide you with the same level of comfort. The fact that you’re working from home doesn’t mean that you can simply turn your dining room table into an office desk. Having a beautiful home office will encourage your productivity and motivate you to dedicate the necessary attention to the job at hand.

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Essentials You Need to Set Up a Productive Home Office

Working from home is not only more practical and time-effective, but it also allows you to set up your office according to your needs and desires. If you have a comfortable, well-equipped and personalized office, your work will be more efficient and you’ll experience better work satisfaction. However, working from home doesn’t come without cons! Homes are distracting environments and getting back on track after an interruption can be very hard. So, in order to minimize distractions, boost efficiency and ensure comfort, here are a few essential design tips for your home office. Start with lighting Plenty of light, both natural and artificial, is crucial for your office productivity. First, make sure to place your desk in a way that will make the best use of your sunlight (yet avoid glare). The wrong placement can cause eye strain, screen glare and boiling temperatures, so be strategic. For some artificial light, make sure to ensure the same intensity as daylight. This will be most comfortable for your eyes and ensure a good circadian rhythm. Separate your work life from your private life When you can work in your pajamas, go grab a snack and chat with your kids whenever you want, it can be hard to keep your professional and private life separated. So, make sure to place your office in an area that’s a little isolated to ensure better focus and uninterrupted workflow. If you can’t find a secluded spot, ensure good sound insulation, place Do Not Enter signs and even invest in noise-canceling headphones. Additionally, make sure to use your home office only for work. Set up a speedy connection If you want to have a productive workday and a home office that runs smoothly, you need speedy internet connection. In case you often lose connection or suffer from slow internet, consider changing your provider or investing in a more powerful line. Having fast and reliable internet will ensure you always stay in contact with your clients, get things done quickly and spare yourself a lot of headaches and nervous breakdowns. There’s nothing as annoying as a broken internet connection just when you need to send an email or check something online ASAP. Get essentials When it comes to setting up, start with essentials—the things you can’t do your job without. You can always rely on quality Winc stationery and find everything from desks to post-it notes, all in one place. Make sure to pay attention to things like storage, filing cabinets, practical furniture, electronics and a cozy client meeting areas (if you regularly see people). These essentials will be enough for the start or until you assess your needs are realize what else could make your work faster, better and easier. Splurge on your chair When it comes to getting your chair, make sure to be careful. Invest in a sturdy, ergonomic chair that will reduce the negative effects of sitting and provide you with a no-distraction workday. If you can, hit a showroom and try out a few chairs—this is much better than getting a random one online. You can also accompany your chair with a practical footrest and even grab a standing desk extension for your laptop of you spend a lot of time on your computer. Personalize your space What most people hate about modern offices are minimalism, grayness and that uncomfortable, overly-corporate feel. But, if you work from home, you can take over the creative control when it comes to the look of your home office and personalize your space. Filling your office with decoration is a great idea, especially if you do something that requires alertness and creativity. Think plants, motivational posters, art you like—these can all work towards achieving a totally chic, unique yet efficient office. Treat yourself to a coffee machine This is as much of a luxury as it is a necessity. For many of us, coffee is the main source of fuel for a successful workday, so make sure to grab a good coffee maker and enjoy a fresh cup whenever you need a little hand. This handy guide from the unclutterer will help you to find the right coffee maker for your needs.​ Keep it at arm’s reach and you’ll see your productivity grow with each new sip. Start designing your home office today, and you’ll soon enjoy a comfortable, private and completely personalized workspace that will allow you to reach your maximum potential and show everyone who’s boss.

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Create a Peaceful Home with These Relaxing Decor Elements

Are you wild at heart or a serene spirit? Perhaps you have a bit of both, depending on the situation. We all live hectic lives from time to time, but we like all the drama to happen outside of our home. Our own house should be a safe haven where we can rest our soul and feel true inner peace. Of course, there are many factors that impact our serenity at home, but one of them surely is interior design. By that, we don’t mean you should now redecorate your entire home with expensive furniture from some catalog, but there probably is room for improvement. We’re here to give you some ideas on how to contribute to making these conditions just right. Use your experience It’s sometimes hard to know what exactly is that you need. Instead, you can think of your favorite places and think about what they have in common. If it’s just one place, think about its ambiance and what it is that makes you happy when it comes to the interior. It can be something obvious and large or something completely minor, just a detail. Think long and hard and try to decide which elements relax you in your favorite place. It may be about the dominating color of the room or just a tiny piece of furniture like a lamp or some scented candles. Nevertheless, you should get yourself some of those. Make it cozy Coziness is an essential prerequisite for a peaceful place. This is why comfort comes first when it comes to decorating your personal space. Make sure you change any uncomfortable furniture you have. In order to be able to relax, you need to have comfy couches. Once this condition is fulfilled, you can focus on getting soft pillows in warm colors and patterns. Some small rugs and adequate drapes can fulfill the atmosphere. You can also consider getting a few plush toys if they’re your cup of tea. Moreover, smells cannot be omitted, they’re an important part of the atmosphere which is why you can get some lavender-scented sticks or candles. Green therapy Another calming factor definitely is plants. If you don’t have any greenery, it’s high time you got some. Large flower pots made from natural materials will contribute to the inside of your home. Make sure you have something green and leafy to put in those pots. Research suggests that color green really has a therapeutic effect on people, so there’s no such thing as too much in this case. However, you should consider how demanding maintenance of these plants is and if the conditions inside your house, such as the amount of light and room temperature, suit them. Of course, once you do get them, you need to nurture them and be very gentle and attentive. You won’t regret it as you’ll enjoy the love you get in return. Lighting People often forget about lighting when decorating. However, it’s an extremely important aspect. One can have a perfectly decorated space, but if it’s poorly lit, the whole impression rapidly deteriorates. This is why dimmer switches and lamps are important parts of any room where people spend most of their conscious time. Dimmers will enable you to control the amount of light in different situations, while various lamps will create the dynamics of lighting which is very appealing to the human eye and you can definitely find the right combination that is going to feel soothing. Separate areas People often find that the source of their stress is actually not being able to separate their work life from their private life. Believe it or not, a great deal of these cases occurs due to people working and relaxing in the same room. This is why you should definitely limit all your technology and working area to just one room, while there’s a completely different room designed for relaxation. It will definitely help you separate the two in your mind once they’re physically disjointed. If you only have one room, you can use creative ways to physically separate your desk and the couch by some auxiliary walls or giant plants. All in all, a peaceful environment definitely doesn’t arise overnight. It needs work, both on the content of your home, as well as your own mental efforts. However, once you take care of the aesthetical and practical sides, the mental one will soon follow.

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