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November 19, 2020

£12.5m student accommodation scheme completes in Leeds

National-contractor Tolent has handed over a new £12.5m student accommodation scheme on Burley Street in Leeds. Known as Union, the development has created 87 extremely spacious and thoroughly modern studio apartments within easy walking distance of both the University of Leeds and Leeds Beckett University, as well as Leeds city

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Green refurb grants should be available up to 2040

Boris Johnson’s decision to extend green homes grants by another year should be stretched to the next two decades, urges the construction industry. Getting existing buildings more energy-efficient is going to take longer than a year warn builders and surveyors. The Federation of Master Builders, FMB, chief executive Brian Berry

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NEW DEVELOPMENT RECEIVES PLANNING IN NAPHILL

Last week, housebuilder Dandara received permission to build 63 new homes on Clappins Lane in Naphill. Plans for the development include the delivery of 30 affordable homes (48%) the creation of public open space and a footpath connecting the new homes with the existing public Right of Way and wider

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Blenheim Estate Creates New Footpaths

Blenheim Estate Creates New Footpaths

Blenheim Estate has created a series of new waymarked permissive paths that give access to its wider estate to help local residents enjoy their environment. To date, four circular walks varying from 30 minutes to two hours have been made available with start and finish points linked to their Hanborough

Read More »

Furniture At Work®: The Different Types of Office Layout

A well-designed workspace can help to optimise productivity, boost employee satisfaction, and even improve the health of the people working there. There are many different types of effective office layout; the one that is right for your business will depend on the type of business, the available space, the working

Read More »
Works Underway on Specialised Teaching Facilities

Works Underway on Specialised Teaching Facilities

Midlands contractor G F Tomlinson has been selected by the Department for Education (DfE) to design and build the new Bramcote Building, a specialist teaching block for The Polesworth School in Tamworth, Staffordshire. The school is a mixed gender secondary school with pupils aged 11-18, and it is part of

Read More »
Nuaire Awarded BSI Kitemark for BIM

Nuaire Awarded BSI Kitemark for BIM

Leading ventilation specialist for the built environment Nuaire, has announced it has been awarded the BSI Kitemark for its Building Information Modeling (BIM) processes. One of the first companies in the UK to achieve this certification, the BIM Kitemark is the benchmark in best practice when it comes to the

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Latest Issue

BDC 317 : Jun 2024

November 19, 2020

GLP EXPANDS RELATIONSHIP WITH WHISTL WITH NEW 155,000 SQ FT LEASE AT G-PARK NORTHAMPTON

GLP, a leading investor and developer of logistics warehouses and distribution parks, today announces that it has leased a 155,000 SQ FT unit, Unit 3, at its G-Park Northampton site, to Whistl on long-term lease. Whistl is the UK’s leading delivery management company and the development at G-Park Northampton will serve to support Whistl’s continued growth in the ecommerce fulfilment markets. This letting is the second major lease between GLP and Whistl following the construction and lease of a 233,000 SQ FT development at G-Park Bedford in September 2019. G-Park Northampton is situated in a prime location benefiting from its proximity to both the M1 and M6 and is within easy reach of the A45 & A14. This puts 90% of the population of England and Wales within a four-hour HGV drive time. G-Park Northampton is a much sought after location for logistics located within Moulton Park and comprises three units and one build-to-suit logistics warehouse, with sizing ranging from 50,000 to 155,000 SQ FT. Grade ‘A’ rated, the highly specified buildings have achieved BREEAM Very Good rating and are suitable for a range of occupiers including last mile logistics, 3PLs, retail/FMCG and manufacturers. In August this year, GLP announced that it had leased Unit 2 at G-Park Northampton, a 90,000 sq ft unit, to SF Express. SF Express is a global customer of GLP and the lease marked its first UK Distribution Centre outside of China. Moulton Park is one of the most successful industrial estates in Northamptonshire and is already home to a range of regional and national businesses. Occupiers continue to be attracted by the areas’ transport links, access to national markets and skilled workforce. Joe Garwood, Development Director at GLP UK, said: “Having worked closely in partnership with Whistl to deliver their new state-of-the-art, built-to-suit super depot at G-Park Bedford last year, we are delighted to be working together once again as part of Whistl’s ongoing growth.

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£12.5m student accommodation scheme completes in Leeds

National-contractor Tolent has handed over a new £12.5m student accommodation scheme on Burley Street in Leeds. Known as Union, the development has created 87 extremely spacious and thoroughly modern studio apartments within easy walking distance of both the University of Leeds and Leeds Beckett University, as well as Leeds city centre. Built on behalf of Burley Place Ltd (BPL), the seven storey building used 5,700 tonnes of concrete and over 55,000 bricks to create its structure.  John Currie, regional director for Tolent, said: “Union has been a fantastic project to work on and our teams can be really proud of what they have achieved. We’ve completed over 3,000 student accommodation schemes across several major cities including Leeds, York, Newcastle, Liverpool and Manchester and this project is another fantastic development to put our name to. “This was our first project with BPL and having received such positive feedback on the quality and collaborative working on site, we hope to work with the team again in the future.” All the apartments benefit from en-suite luxury bathrooms, modern kitchens, entertaining space, double beds, contemporary furniture, flat screen TVs and high-speed fibre optic internet. The development also includes several wheelchair friendly apartments.  Hamze Idriss, managing director of Burley Place Ltd, said: “Union will set a new benchmark in terms of the standard of accommodation on offer and the lifestyle students who live here will enjoy. “Every apartment has been specifically designed to combine spacious living areas with their own high quality kitchens and luxury bathrooms. There is also a superb range of facilities within the development, including a gym, gaming areas, and large communal lounges and kitchens where students can relax and socialise. As a result, it’s proving very popular with students who are already reserving apartments to move into from the UK and overseas.” In addition, Co-op has opened a handy convenience store on the ground floor. Tolent has worked across the central region of the UK since 1990, delivering a variety of contracts from industrial, leisure and more recently student accommodation. Projects ongoing in the area include the £34m build-to-rent residential scheme on Sweet Street in Leeds. Working on behalf of property developer Oakapple Group, the development known as Fabrik is part of the Holbeck Urban Village in the south bank area of the city and includes a mix of 216 one, two and three bedroom rental apartments.

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Green refurb grants should be available up to 2040

Boris Johnson’s decision to extend green homes grants by another year should be stretched to the next two decades, urges the construction industry. Getting existing buildings more energy-efficient is going to take longer than a year warn builders and surveyors. The Federation of Master Builders, FMB, chief executive Brian Berry said: “Our existing homes contribute 20 per cent of all our carbon emissions and consume 35 per cent of our energy. A long term retrofit strategy is needed over the next two decades to make all our existing homes more energy-efficient. “Such a strategy has the potential to create hundreds of thousands of new jobs and save the NHS as much as £2 billion because of the cost of people living in poor housing conditions.” The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, RICS, has said the grants are not enough to help with the costs of home insulation, heat pumps, or solar thermal heating systems. Government vouchers of up to £5,000, and £10,000 for those on benefits, is insufficient, it claims. “Only a small proportion of properties can be renovated within the scope of current incentives made available by the UK government,” said RICS data analyst Jon Querejeta. Existing building stock with poor energy ratings is massive More than half of the UK’s 29 million houses and more than a third of its one million commercial properties were built before 1970 and as a result, have low energy performance ratings. “In our opinion focusing on renovations and retrofitting should be central to the green recovery. The green homes grant scheme is a good start and we recommend that the government should consider using the scheme as a pilot project to roll out more energy renovation measures and incentives,” said Mr Querejeta. RICS would like all properties to be brought up to a minimum energy performance certificate rating of C by 2035. New build housing generally has an energy performance rating of at least B, however, it makes up just one to two per cent of current housing stock. The professional body argues if VAT on repairs and maintenance was cut from 20 to five per cent this would be a motivator for homeowners hiring traders to do energy performance work. Brokers Hank Zarihs Associates said development and refurbishment finance lenders were keen to support builders in embracing the business opportunities green retrofits presented.

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NEW DEVELOPMENT RECEIVES PLANNING IN NAPHILL

Last week, housebuilder Dandara received permission to build 63 new homes on Clappins Lane in Naphill. Plans for the development include the delivery of 30 affordable homes (48%) the creation of public open space and a footpath connecting the new homes with the existing public Right of Way and wider village. The development site was allocated for development in the Wycombe District Local Plan and will help the district meet its housing targets. The housebuilder, which has recently received five stars from the HBF for quality, expects that the groundwork for the new homes will begin in the first quarter of next year and the first residents are likely to move in during the summer. Simon Pendlebury, Sales and Marketing Director for Dandara, commented: “We are pleased to have received outline planning permission for this development of quality new homes which will offer a range of different property types.  As the site falls within the Chiltern Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, we have worked hard to ensure that these homes will be built in keeping with the local area, with specific design references to the Chilterns Buildings Design Guide.” Local residents are invited to make suggestions for road names by emailing dandara@building-relations.co.uk . To find out more about the range of new homes coming soon to Naphill, visit www.dandara.com.

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Chancerygate and Bridges Fund Management acquire Peterborough site to develop 200,000 sq ft of industrial, roadside and trade space

A joint venture (JV) between Chancerygate and Bridges Fund Management has acquired an 8.63-acre site in Peterborough to speculatively develop up to 200,000 sq ft of industrial, roadside and trade space. Located on Maskew Avenue, the site has lain vacant for a decade and is around two miles north of Peterborough town centre. It is also immediately adjacent to the established Maskew Retail Park which includes B&Q, Matalan, Aldi and Argos as occupiers. The vacant site’s vendor was Wren Kitchens and the value of the sale is undisclosed. The JV intends to submit plans to the local authority within the next four months which, if approved, will provide the opportunity for a mix of industrial, warehouse, trade counter, self-storage and roadside accommodation. Subject to planning, Chancerygate and Bridges Fund Management have already agreed the sale of one acre of the site to self-storage company Lok’nStore. In addition, the JV is also in advanced negotiations with drive-through food and beverage retailers. Commenting on the acquisition, Chancerygate development director, George Dickens, said: “We are very pleased to have secured this prominent development opportunity and bring back to life a site that has lain dormant for 10 years. “We specialise in speculative development and believe that the Maskew Avenue site is ideally placed for us to do what we do best by creating a mix of industrial, roadside and trade units which will attract investment and jobs to the area. This is already evident by our agreement with Lok’nStore and the positive ongoing negotiations with drive through operators. “We are looking forward to delivering much-needed, high quality accommodation for a wide variety of businesses.” Chancerygate and Bridges Fund Management have been working in partnership on projects for more than 10 years. Investments include the development of ‘The Curve’, a student housing development in London SE1; the regeneration of Beeston Business Park, Nottingham; and the recent acquisition of a site for industrial development in Coventry. Bridges Fund Management partner, Guy Bowden, added: “Our Maskew Avenue site will allow us to regenerate and revitalise a sizeable area of land by creating a new place for both business and the wider Peterborough community. We are looking forward to having the opportunity to deliver another successful project with Chancerygate.” Chancerygate and Bridges Fund Management have appointed property consultancy Savills as agents for the Maskew Avenue site.

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Blenheim Estate Creates New Footpaths

Blenheim Estate Creates New Footpaths

Blenheim Estate has created a series of new waymarked permissive paths that give access to its wider estate to help local residents enjoy their environment. To date, four circular walks varying from 30 minutes to two hours have been made available with start and finish points linked to their Hanborough Gate development. Roy Cox, Blenheim Estate’s Director, said: “Spending time in green space, taking exercise in the fresh air and communing with nature are all well-proven ways of reducing anxiety and depression. The aim of the permissive paths is to share the estate with others and to promote the benefits both of exercise and interacting with the countryside for mental and physical wellbeing. “Rarely has this access to the outdoors been more important than now. The spacious immediate surroundings of Hanborough Gate combined with the back-door access to country walks, is a big draw for potential purchasers. “Our Rural Team have been hard at work clearing the various routes and putting up way-markers and signage. We are planning to provide additional interpretation and information about the routes and local wildlife in the future to provide a richer experience. “One of the real pleasures of living in this area is its rich history and heritage, and the outstanding natural beauty. We hope that by opening up new areas of the estate to local residents we will be able to share these fantastic open spaces with as wide an audience as possible.” Pye Homes, in partnership with Blenheim Estate Homes, continues to release new homes at its Hanborough Gate development, just south west of the Blenheim Estate in Long Hanborough. A total of 169 homes will be built by May 2022, which include help to buy, shared ownership and affordable rent options. Interest in the development has been high with buyers particularly drawn by the village’s rural location combined with accessibility with mainline trains direct to both Oxford (10 mins) and London Paddington (1 hour, 5 mins). Its location on the edge of Long Hanborough village and just five miles from Witney and Woodstock makes it part of a wider local community with Blenheim Palace itself on the doorstep. The development will incorporate play parks, a new doctors’ surgery alongside other local amenities including a dentist, pharmacy and Post Office. All of the properties benefit from superfast broadband as standard allowing seamless, high speed communication, essential in today’s working-from-home climate. Property is an integral part of Blenheim’s 10-year development programme that includes tripling the Estate’s contribution to the local economy and creating a £45m endowment fund to ensure the long-term future of the World Heritage Site.

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Södra launches 360ᴼ video transporting viewers to its Swedish forestry operation

Södra, one of the UK’s foremost suppliers of sustainable timber, has launched a landmark immersive experience that transports viewers to its world-leading Swedish forestry operation. Using the latest 360ᴼ video technology, Södra’s video takes users to the forest – just a small section in its network totalling over two million acres – and the ‘Södra neighbourhood’. The virtual reality neighbourhood offers a glimpse of how wood-based products can facilitate a more sustainable way of life. In the forest, users can meet a forest inspector and a family of forest-owners. Södra is run by more than 42,000 forest owners in southern Sweden – many of whom have inherited forests passed on through several generations. As well as narration at each stage, users are able to click, drag and control their own perspective for a truly immersive experience. As they look around, knowledge bubbles appear, allowing users to view information, videos and fun facts relevant to what they’re seeing. For those in the UK’s timber and merchants’ industries this video offers a unique chance to discover the potential of wood-based products and experience Södra’s Swedish operation as close to first-hand as possible, without getting on a plane. Södra Sales Director, Nigel Buckley-Ryan, explains the motivation behind the experience: “We wanted to bring to life wood’s almost endless number of uses. Of course, we’re confident that high-quality, sustainable timber will continue to transform the UK construction industry in the coming years. But some of the perhaps less-obvious by-products of wood as a raw material are fascinating – from biomethanol and tall oil, both renewable fuels, to lyocell and viscose for textiles for clothing, bed linen and soft furnishings (to name just a few).” Nigel continues: “We’re incredibly proud of our Swedish operation and passionate about how sustainably-managed forests can facilitate a truly sustainable future. This video allows us to share this passion with our UK audience – some of whom may not have been aware of the possibilities wood can offer or ever had the opportunity to see what a world-leading forestry operation looks like. People can now experience that from the comfort of their own homes.” Södra’s immersive 360ᴼ experience is available to view at www.sodraexperience.com For more information, visit www.sodra.com/en-gb/gb/

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Furniture At Work®: The Different Types of Office Layout

A well-designed workspace can help to optimise productivity, boost employee satisfaction, and even improve the health of the people working there. There are many different types of effective office layout; the one that is right for your business will depend on the type of business, the available space, the working style of the employees, and the budget. Furniture At Work stocks a wide range of office furniture, including adjustable desks to fit any space and ergonomic chairs to suit any physical requirements. Private Offices and Meeting Rooms Private offices and meeting rooms are designed for one person or one group of people to use at a time. As the COVID-19 pandemic rages on in the UK, private office space is more valuable than ever before for anyone who is unable to work from home. Furnishing a private office requires additional floor space and separate lighting and heating, but there are many advantages, especially in the current climate. Having a private space to work can also help boost productivity for many people. Open Office Layout Open office layouts encourage employee interaction, which can be ideal in businesses where regular communication between teams is key. This type of layout is particularly popular with creative companies and tech firms, where people need to be able to bounce ideas off each other throughout the working day. When designing an open office layout, it is essential to ensure that each employee has sufficient desk space to call their own. National guidelines suggest that each employee should have a minimum of 11 cubic metres to work in, assuming the ceiling is no more than three metres high. If the ceilings are higher, calculations should still be made assuming a height of three metres. To calculate space per employee, simply divide the volume of the room by the maximum number of employees. Including a mixture of sitting and standing desks can help to improve employee health, particularly in hot desk offices where people can choose to move around more. Cubicle Layout A cubicle layout provides a form of compromise between having private office space for each employee and an open office layout. With cubicles, each employee has a semi-private space for their own work but is still able to communicate easily with other members of the team when required. Cubicles or screens between desks help to ensure social distancing in the workplace as well, making them a better solution in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic than a completely open workspace. Cubicles also give employees more autonomy over their own space, as they provide opportunities to add personal touches such as photographs and mementos from home. As each employee has the same amount of space, cubicle layouts can also provide staff with a feeling of equality and prevent any unintentional favouritism or appearance of favouritism. Team-Cluster Layout As the name implies, a team-cluster office layout is designed for companies where people are regularly expected to work as a team. These types of layouts are more like informal meeting rooms than individual offices, with a large communal desk where everyone can see and speak to each other while working. This type of layout works best for companies where discussion, brainstorming, meetings and employee interactions are part of the strategic process. Hybrid Layout A hybrid layout takes advantage of all available space and provides employees with a mixture of private workspaces and team workspaces. These types of layout are highly customisable and deliver all the advantages of each type of layout in one area. A hybrid layout might include several cubicles for individual working, team meeting spaces, comfortable relaxation zones designed to encourage creativity, and perhaps one or two private offices. Hybrid layouts work well for dynamic companies where employee interaction is valued, but people may sometimes need peace and quiet to tackle a project. There is no one-size-fits-all solution for designing the perfect office space, as different types of business will derive benefits from each style of layout. Whichever style is chosen, Furniture At Work has a comprehensive range of office furniture to equip any space with quality items at affordable prices.

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Works Underway on Specialised Teaching Facilities

Works Underway on Specialised Teaching Facilities

Midlands contractor G F Tomlinson has been selected by the Department for Education (DfE) to design and build the new Bramcote Building, a specialist teaching block for The Polesworth School in Tamworth, Staffordshire. The school is a mixed gender secondary school with pupils aged 11-18, and it is part of the Communities Academies Trust – a multi-academy trust comprising 17 schools in the West Midlands region. The Bramcote Building replaces five existing teaching blocks which are nearing the end of their usable life and will be demolished by G F Tomlinson following completion of the new building.   Construction on the new three-storey 2,479m2 teaching block started back in June, and the steel frame and roof are now complete, with works progressing on the external envelope and internal partitions.  Once finished, the building will cater for Design and Technology teaching spaces, ICT teaching rooms, science laboratories and staff spaces, allowing the school to continue delivering the curriculum in a safe and quality environment. The project also includes the resurfacing of an existing 2,135m2 multi-use games area (MUGA) with new fencing and lighting, marked out in accordance with Sport England specifications for five-a-side football, basketball and netball. Expected for completion in autumn 2021, the works are being undertaken within a live school site and have been carefully planned to minimise disruption to ensure the school is able to maintain continuity of the curriculum and extra-curricular delivery for students. The project team is ensuring that all COVID-19 working guidelines are adhered to, to ensure safe working and social distancing on site. In addition to the operational school, the site is located in a built-up residential area, bounded by Birchwood Primary School, the Reserve Forces and Cadets Association and Polesworth Sports Centre, and close liaison with all neighbours has been paramount to agree shared access routes through to the construction site, to minimise the impact on the surrounding area and maintain access at all times. In line with G F Tomlinson’s commitment to social value, the project will maximise opportunities for training and skills for local young people, and five apprentices have already benefitted from being engaged during the design and pre-construction stage.  This will be the first project that G F Tomlinson has completed for The Polesworth School and Community Academies Trust, and the 12th project for the DfE framework. Chris Flint, director of G F Tomlinson, said: “We are delighted to have commenced works at The Polesworth School to deliver much needed modernised teaching spaces which will enable the school to continue providing an excellent standard of education. This project is part of the DfE framework’s schools investment programme which aims to address urgent requirements for the replacement of buildings to provide improvements to the quality of teaching and learning environments. “The buildings being demolished and replaced were nearing the end of their usable life and the planned works will allow for the school to continue teaching in certain buildings, whilst we construct the new facilities ensuring there is no disruption to the day-to-day curriculum. The works will provide high quality, optimised teaching and learning spaces for staff and students, improving the overall educational experience of children at the school. “It has been an honour to engage with DfE again for another project, taking our total projects for the framework to 12 in six years.” G F Tomlinson is working alongside Bond Bryan (architect), BSP Consulting (engineer) and Anderson Green (M & E services) to deliver this project.

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Nuaire Awarded BSI Kitemark for BIM

Nuaire Awarded BSI Kitemark for BIM

Leading ventilation specialist for the built environment Nuaire, has announced it has been awarded the BSI Kitemark for its Building Information Modeling (BIM) processes. One of the first companies in the UK to achieve this certification, the BIM Kitemark is the benchmark in best practice when it comes to the production of digital products used in BIM models.  “Building Information Modeling, or BIM, has probably been the single biggest step change in the construction industry in recent times, when it comes to the provision and exchange of accurate information. The possibilities and opportunities this creates is of course substantial and welcomed by the industry. However, inevitably it also means the market has been flooded by BIM providers with varying levels of quality and sophistication.  “This is where the BIM Objects Kitemark proves invaluable to the industry in terms of providing a highly credible third party ‘stamp of approval’ as it were. It’s really helpful and reassuring to our customers to know that our processes for creating BIM Objects are BSI rubber stamped. This means that our BIM models will contain the information required to achieve BS8541-1: 2012 compliance in architecture, engineering and construction,” said Alun Thomas, Engineering Director, Nuaire.  Characterised by complex multidisciplinary project teams, BIM is revolutionising the construction industry by allowing teams to collaborate much more easily to achieve significant efficiency and cost-saving benefits. By using 3D modelling to plan, design, construct and manage buildings and infrastructure, the BIM process means that everyone involved has a central, shared resource of data throughout a project. With the data staying with a project for the whole lifecycle of the building, from plan to final build to decommissioning and demolishing, errors are reduced, and cost control, improved safety, reduced waste and minimal environmental impact are all more easily achieved.  Achieving the BSI, BIM Objects Kitemark is part of Nuaire’s ongoing digital transformation strategy to provide quality products and customer service to domestic and commercial clients, including; architects, engineers and the construction industry.  “We are continuously innovating to provide our customers with best in class ventilation systems for their particular domestic or commercial need. The BSI Kitemark for our BIM Objects process in the construction sector means that our customers can have 100% confidence that what they see on screen will translate seamlessly into the physical product they want. We’re delighted to have achieved this certification as it gives existing and potential clients the reassurance that there are quality BIM certified providers in the market, like Nuaire, they can trust.” The BMI Objects Kitemark also provides reassurance to companies working with BSI certificate holders in that they are expected to regularly maintain and update their processes and procedures to reflect product changes and validate they meet the latest standards. 

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