BDC

Search
BDC Magazine

October 15, 2020

The Smart Makeover: the Tech Transforming our Buildings and Offices

Smart building technology essentially consists of a system of connected devices which can measure data from your building and transform it into usable insights and automation. Rather than relying on manual control of your facility management and maintenance systems, smart building systems do the hard work for you.  The benefits

Read More »

BESA publishes new Covid health and safety guidelines

The Building Engineering Services Association (BESA) has published new guidance to help engineering and construction firms keep their staff safe in the light of new government restrictions. The Association’s Covid-19 Panel has produced two new guidance documents providing clear and practical information about how to reduce the risk of virus transmission

Read More »

IED becomes official supporter of UK Green Building Council social value programme

The Institute of Economic Development (IED) has become an official supporter of the UK Green Building Council (UKGBC) Defining Social Value Task Group – https://www.ukgbc.org/ukgbc-work/social-value-task-group/ – which is aiming to develop, via consultation, an industry-led definition for social value. In June, the IED published its own research, From the Ground

Read More »

Construction Site Safety Tips

If you manage or work on a construction site, you know that they can be dangerous places. Construction site injuries can be very debilitating and you should take every precaution you can to make sure that they never happen. Negligence at a construction site can result in large medical bills

Read More »

WAVIN LAUNCHES STORMFORCE: A SINGLE SOLUTION TO STORMWATER MANAGEMENT

Wavin, the UK’s leading manufacturer of plastic pipe systems, has launched StormForce – an innovative single-source solution to stormwater management. Developed to streamline the stormwater management supply chain, StormForce will see Wavin handle the entire design, supply and installation of stormwater tanks and their associated infrastructure, from capture and attenuation

Read More »

Improve your pack room equipment

Employee-owned packaging company, Kite Packaging, has recently expanded two of its popular pack room products, their dynamic gummed paper tape machine and glue gun bundles. Efficiency in your pack room is essential to ensure the smooth running of your operation, along with high-quality equipment at your disposal. Kites new gummed

Read More »

Latest Issue

BDC 317 : Jun 2024

October 15, 2020

The Smart Makeover: the Tech Transforming our Buildings and Offices

Smart building technology essentially consists of a system of connected devices which can measure data from your building and transform it into usable insights and automation. Rather than relying on manual control of your facility management and maintenance systems, smart building systems do the hard work for you.  The benefits of a smarter building include: Improved employee wellbeing Operational efficiencies Energy efficiency Reduced maintenance costs Higher productivity The buildings and the construction sector accounts for 36% of global energy demand and 40% of direct and indirect CO2 emissions. Smart technology plays a key role in reducing emissions and helping companies become more sustainable. That’s why it’s vital to find ways to make buildings smarter and more efficient.  But what if you don’t plan on moving premises or building a new facility any time soon? The good news is that there are easy ways to invest in smart technology for older buildings. A building need not be shiny and new to be smart. There are a number of smart solutions that can be retrofitted into existing buildings easily.  Here are 7 examples of how the UK’s estate managers and commercial building operators are developing intelligent offices within existing buildings, making life easier AND saving them money.  1. Smart Lighting A smart lighting solution is one of the simplest changes a building can make to reduce energy consumption and expenditure. Replacing traditional lightbulbs with smart LEDs gives you maximum control of your lighting systems: Choose any colour and lighting temperature Set specific times of operation Set automatic shutdown if the building is vacant Dim lights gradually Add security features like cycling lights on and off  Automatically adjust indoor lighting levels to current sunrise/sunset times and weather conditions All these features can be automated and controlled remotely across your building portfolios, allowing you to improve the quality of life of your building occupants and reduce your energy bill.  2. Smart HVAC According to a 2016 study conducted by the Gas Technology Institute (GTI), a predictive and proactive HVAC system can save a building 30% – 70% more energy from November to March. Smart HVAC systems are a comprehensive and efficient way to curb energy consumption. Sensors and data sources can report on weather, occupancy and more, automatically adjusting HVAC temperatures for optimum results and minimal energy use.  Smart sensors can be retrofit to existing HVAC equipment. They transmit data to the cloud to provide insights and information and allow building owners to immediately identify problem areas and implement real-time temperature control. 3. Automated Legionella Compliance Systems Automatic flushing and temperature testing systems save significant resources when it comes to ensuring Legionella compliance. Instead of having to manually run taps for two minutes and test the hot and cold temperatures, an automatic Legionella testing unit can flush outlets and measure the temperature at predefined intervals automatically. Data is sent to a central management dashboard, and regular reports are generated automatically, removing the need to manually keep testing records for the required five years.  4. Smart Tags Smart tags can be retrofitted to almost any equipment in your building, allowing you to track everything you need to. You can then use this dynamic control and efficient, real-time monitoring and reporting to inform data-driven decisions and promote profitability. 5. Occupancy Monitoring Monitor your building and employees with real-time information on desks, meeting rooms and other facilities. Knowing how many people are using which rooms and when can help you proactively manage your workforce and make the best use of the space in your building, improving energy efficiency and encouraging better collaboration.  With social distancing protocols top-of-mind at the moment, occupancy monitoring technology can also help you ensure that policies are being adhered to.  6. Air Monitoring Air quality and ventilation are key concerns when it comes to limiting the spread of infection. With air quality monitoring technology, you can monitor your air quality in real time to stay compliant with legislation and protect your staff, particularly in insulated buildings where air quality is affected by high occupancy. 7.  Fire Safety Monitoring Manual checks on fire safety equipment are time-consuming and labour-intensive. By retrofitting smart sensors onto this equipment, you can keep your building safe and compliant without the hassle. Smart sensors can monitor your fire doors, fire extinguishers and smoke detectors and alert you immediately in any change of condition. Automatically-generated reports are also available at your fingertips.  Rapid advancements in technology are allowing facility managers to realise a quick return on investment in terms of reduced energy and maintenance costs. Smart building management can consist of a phased approach or a complete overhaul, delivering a sustainable blueprint for the future.

Read More »

MORGAN SINDALL CONSTRUCTION NAMED AS PREFERRED BIDDER FOR UNIVERSITY OF SALFORD ROBOTICS CENTRE

Morgan Sindall Construction has been named by the University of Salford as the preferred bidder to build the North of England Robotics Innovation Centre. The new Robotics Innovation Centre is part of the £2.5 billion Crescent masterplan, a 240-acre major regeneration scheme being delivered by the University, Salford City Council and development partner, The English Cities Fund – a strategic joint venture between Muse Developments, Legal & General and Homes England – aimed at driving economic and social prosperity for the whole of the city over the life of the 20-year programme, through the delivery of spaces where people can live, work, relax and innovate. The Centre will enable the University’s robotics and automation specialists to expand their work with SMEs around the country to provide solution development, design, testing and validation of digital innovation. Disciplines covered by the development will include the dynamic and growing sectors of robotics for intelligent infrastructure, digital automation and supply chain improvement, as well as health, wellbeing and integrated care technologies. It was announced earlier this year that the £13 million North of England Robotics Innovation Centre will be part funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The project will deliver a new gateway building to the Innovation District and provides the University with a new and significant presence facing on to Frederick Road. The building is articulated with a z-shaped plan expressing a series of stacked laboratories in turn linked by a central feature stair representing the heart of the building. Externally a simple palette of materials is utilised ranging from precast concrete at lower levels to light perforated metal panels above.  Construction work on the 22,580 square foot building is set to begin in early 2021. The close working relationship between the University and Morgan Sindall Construction has existed for a number of years. It was announced earlier this year that Morgan Sindall Construction is to build the £65 million Science, Engineering and Environmental Building (SEE Building) for the University, and since 2018 the partnership has been driven by a programme focused on enhancing the employability credentials of undergraduates, which looks to combine the latest academic understanding of industry trends and developments with real world experience and learning. This has been delivered through regular site visits, workshops and providing expert advice on project proposals for design, planning, costing and development to multi-disciplinary student teams.  Shaun Jones, area director for Morgan Sindall Construction in Manchester, said: “The University of Salford’s masterplan reflects a bold vision both in terms of developing a transformational future for the city and by supporting the sectors that will drive the wider country forward. We’re proud to be part of that vision through our work delivering the SEE Building and now the North of England Robotics Innovation Centre. “Throughout the build programme, we plan to work closely with students, residents and community groups to ensure our growing presence on campus has benefits for the whole of Salford.” Georgina Harris, director of engineering at the University of Salford, said: “We are really excited about our new North of England Robotics Innovation Centre and the opportunity to work with Morgan Sindall Construction on its development. This new centre, that is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund, is to be the focus of our activities supporting local small to medium-sized enterprises in the development of their robotics and automation capabilities. “This facility could not be more timely as companies look to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 on their industries by making use of new technologies. We are delighted that Morgan Sindall Construction will be working with us to help us realise our ambitions in research, supporting our local businesses and providing opportunities for our students.” Tony Skipper, masterplanner and director of 5plus architects said: “We are delighted to be moving this project forward with Morgan Sindall Construction and the University of Salford. It will be one of the first projects to be delivered by the University within Salford City’s new Innovation District, conceived under the Salford Crescent and University Masterplan and as such the project represents a new chapter in the regeneration of the wider area. “We now look forward to continuing our work with the School of Science, Engineering and Environment and the contracting team to deliver this new exemplary facility.”

Read More »

BESA publishes new Covid health and safety guidelines

The Building Engineering Services Association (BESA) has published new guidance to help engineering and construction firms keep their staff safe in the light of new government restrictions. The Association’s Covid-19 Panel has produced two new guidance documents providing clear and practical information about how to reduce the risk of virus transmission on site and methods for carrying out risk assessments for workers who have to stay away from home. The guidance is freely available and downloadable from the BESA website: www.theBESA.com/covid19. “The new guides are all about prioritising workers and customer/client safety,” said BESA health & safety advisor Becky Crosland. “As we see a rise in the R number across the country, it is clear that the threat of infection from Covid-19 remains very much alive. It is, therefore, vital that businesses have robust procedures to safeguard against the risks employees face on site and in domestic settings.” She also reiterated the warning that the two-metre social distancing restriction remains in place on construction sites. “Some people seem to think the two metre restriction has been reduced to one metre – it has not. Infection risk is between and two and 10 times higher at one metre,” said Crosland. “If it is impossible to remain two metres apart, you should apply other controls like reducing the duration of time you spend together or avoiding face-to-face contact.” The BESA Covid-19 panel has produced a comprehensive suite of guidance documents specifically for engineering and building services contractors since the start of the crisis delivering clear, concise information that prioritises worker and customer safety. “Being able to work safely and reduce the risk of Covid-19 during any work is vital to stop the spread of the virus,” said Crosland. “The health, wellbeing and safety of both workers and customers must be a priority during the pandemic.” All of the panel’s documents have been thoroughly researched, taking into account current government guidance, and providing a series of steps that any employer can put into practice. “In uncertain times, it can often feel that your personal contribution is not making a difference,” said BESA Covid-19 panel member Rosie Newcombe from Royston Group.  “However by working with BESA and our partners across our sector, individual health and safety professionals have been able to collaborate and contribute positively by interpreting the latest government guidance to produce effective guidance notes and risk assessments.”www.theBESA.com/covid19

Read More »

IED becomes official supporter of UK Green Building Council social value programme

The Institute of Economic Development (IED) has become an official supporter of the UK Green Building Council (UKGBC) Defining Social Value Task Group – https://www.ukgbc.org/ukgbc-work/social-value-task-group/ – which is aiming to develop, via consultation, an industry-led definition for social value. In June, the IED published its own research, From the Ground Up – Improving the Delivery of Social Value in Construction, which found that there is a “high risk of social value becoming too diffuse and lacking focus” and called for an immediate step change in procurement, delivery and monitoring impact. It made five recommendations, one of which was to agree a definition of social value, and what activities are within scope, for the construction sector. IED Chair Bev Hurley CBE said: “There is clear alignment between our findings and recommendations, and the work of the UKGBC on social value – https://www.ukgbc.org/ukgbc-work/social-value-programme/ – and it makes absolute sense for us to become an industry supporter of the task group. We are delighted to have the opportunity to collaborate going forwards, working in parallel but also feeding into each other’s activity. The more voices we have cohered around the same table, the more chance we have of delivering a step-change on social value.” As an extension of this relationship, the UKGBC’s Sustainability Advisor Sophia Cox will facilitate an upcoming CPD workshop on measuring social value. The IED has already held or has scheduled a series of roundtables, linked to the recommendations in From the Ground Up – Improving the Delivery of Social Value in Construction, on Improving Community Engagement and Scoping a Centre of Excellence. Meanwhile, Bev Hurley CBE was a guest speaker at a Constructing Excellence South West webinar and the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) Procurement and last month. “Together with the huge media interest in our social value report, the series of roundtables, CPD workshops and external speaking opportunities is giving tremendous momentum to our work,” Bev explained. The full IED report, From the Ground Up – Improving the Delivery of Social Value in Construction, can be downloaded at www.ied.co.uk/insights, where the Executive Summary and case studies are also available.

Read More »

Construction Site Safety Tips

If you manage or work on a construction site, you know that they can be dangerous places. Construction site injuries can be very debilitating and you should take every precaution you can to make sure that they never happen. Negligence at a construction site can result in large medical bills and even permanent disabilities. Even if you are not permanently disabled, it may be quite a while before you can work again. There are a few things that you can do to make sure your construction site is a safe one. Pick the Right Equipment When equipment is not used properly it can cause injuries, not only to construction workers but to those who will eventually use the structure you are building. Make sure your equipment is in good condition as well. A ladder that is bent or scaffolding that has a broken guardrail can cause a worker to take a serious spill. Keep the Job Site Clean It is both important and challenging to keep a construction site safe from debris. When many people work together it can be hard to stay clean and organized. Remember to keep enough dumpsters on the site so you can throw away used materials. You should throw away trash right away and never leave items around where workers might slip and fall. It is a good idea to use chutes for moving the trash from one level of a project to another level. This is a good way to keep trash contained. Security and Surveillance is a Must Surveillance on construction sites is becoming an increasingly popular way to improve safety and security. Construction sites are often sprawling, open areas with many potential hazards. By installing surveillance cameras, construction site managers can closely monitor activities and identify potential safety concerns before they become accidents. Spectur video surveillance cameras are the perfect choice for construction sites, offering industry-leading features and ease of use. You will have 24/7 monitoring capabilities, which will allow you to keep a close eye on your workers and equipment. Put Temporary Protective Walls Around the Job Site Temporary walls will make a good shield from dust and debris. Pollution from the street can get into the worker’s lungs it can also cause damage to any instruments you are using at the site. Walls will also protect people walking by the site from debris that can get into the air whenever construction is going on. If You See Something Say Something If you notice any kind of safety violation on the site, you should immediately tell a supervisor. Even if the violation is very small it is better to be over-cautious than under cautious. Make Sure Workers Wear PPE It is important to review OSHA guidelines before you begin a project. Construction workers should always wear face shields if they are going to saw wood or work around toxic chemicals. Slip-resistant boots are very important at any construction site as are hard hats. Workers should always have gloves that fit them, so be sure to keep several different sizes on hand. Eye protection is also crucial for anyone who is working around chemicals. Maintaining a safe construction site will help to prevent the possibility of accidents. Safe workers are productive workers and your project will get done in a timely fashion if you just exercise a few simple precautions. What to do if You are Injured on a Construction Site If you are injured on a construction site, you should make sure to notify your supervisor, see a doctor right away, and file a worker’s compensation claim. Insurance companies will often not want to pay injured workers what they deserve, therefore, you should have a consultation with an attorney. It is also a good idea to find out more about construction accident law yourself, so you will be better equipped to deal with an insurance company. Authoritative Sources:

Read More »

WAVIN LAUNCHES STORMFORCE: A SINGLE SOLUTION TO STORMWATER MANAGEMENT

Wavin, the UK’s leading manufacturer of plastic pipe systems, has launched StormForce – an innovative single-source solution to stormwater management. Developed to streamline the stormwater management supply chain, StormForce will see Wavin handle the entire design, supply and installation of stormwater tanks and their associated infrastructure, from capture and attenuation to dispersal. With StormForce, Wavin aims to simplify project management, increase efficiencies and minimise risk for developers, contractors and civil engineers when it comes to implementing quality sustainable drainage systems (SuDS) within essential infrastructure. As part of the end-to-end service, Wavin will first consult and advise on site, identifying and resolving site-specific issues and ensuring compliance with statutory and environmental regulations and best practice, before value-engineering the optimum design. The required products and components will then be manufactured by Wavin to the highest standards and then finally installed by fully trained and accredited StormForce partners. The installation will also be underpinned with a five-year warranty. BBA-approved stormwater systems available as part of the StormForce service include Q-Bic Plus, the most accessible, inspectable and cleanable attenuation tank on the market, compliant with Ofwat’s new Design & Construction Guidance; AquaCell, the ultimate modular solution for a variety of applications, from landscaped to heavily trafficked areas; and a range of inspection chambers and accessories. Martin Lambley, product manager for stormwater management at Wavin, said: “The industry has needed a solution like StormForce for a long time, and we’re delighted to now offer a turnkey solution for customers when it comes to stormwater management. With every detail managed by Wavin under a single contract, developers no longer need to coordinate multiple providers or worry about elements not being completed on time or to the right standard. “By handing the responsibility over to Wavin, customers can have total confidence that the project is being taken care of by stormwater specialists, and that, from start to finish, all aspects will be taken care of efficiently, to the highest quality and in accordance with industry regulations and best practice.” Stewart McKechnie, site agent at Nationwide Engineering, an initial StormForce client, said: “StormForce really does deliver. One-source supply and surface water management is totally sorted, so we can get on with the build. It’s fast, compliant, sustainable and top quality – what more could you want?” To book a consultation or get a quick estimate with Wavin’s dedicated stormwater management experts, visit www.wavin.co.uk/stormforce

Read More »

Improve your pack room equipment

Employee-owned packaging company, Kite Packaging, has recently expanded two of its popular pack room products, their dynamic gummed paper tape machine and glue gun bundles. Efficiency in your pack room is essential to ensure the smooth running of your operation, along with high-quality equipment at your disposal. Kites new gummed paper tape dispenser is suitable for medium to large sized operations and has an array of benefits to improve speed and efficiency within your operation. One of the most dynamic gummed paper tape machines on the market, it is ideal for those looking for an automated solution, with the flexibility of a portable machine. With over 20 pre-set length and an auto-repeat, the ability to electronically provide any tape length between 150mm-2200mm in length, a guillotine blade and much more, it is sure to increase efficiency. Their new glue gun bundles are the perfect cost-saving addition to any company requiring glue guns with hot melt adhesive glue sticks. Commonly used to firmly bond a variety of materials such as wood, paper card, fabrics, foam, glass, plastics, corrugated cartons and much more, the glue gun works by melting the stick of glue at a high temperature. For more information on Kite Packaging, please visit kitepackaging.co.uk.

Read More »