BDC

Search
BDC Magazine

February 21, 2023

Major contracts awarded for Havant Thicket Reservoir scheme

Major contracts awarded for Havant Thicket Reservoir scheme

In a major step forward, Portsmouth Water has appointed Future Water MJJV Limited to build the flagship Havant Thicket Reservoir in southern Hampshire – a contract worth £167 million. It will be the first large-scale new water storage reservoir in the UK since the 1980s and is being progressed under

Read More »
Atkins awarded contract on Ireland’s MetroLink

Atkins awarded contract on Ireland’s MetroLink

Atkins, a member of the SNC Lavalin Group, has been appointed by Transport Infrastructure Ireland to deliver the detailed design for the Advance Works programme for the MetroLink Project, a high capacity, high-frequency metro railway and integrated public transport network connecting the Greater Dublin Area, including Dublin Airport and city

Read More »
Midlands based Platform Housing Group partners with Switchee to drive digital transformation strategy forward

Midlands based Platform Housing Group partners with Switchee to drive digital transformation strategy forward

Platform Housing Group (PHG) has partnered with social housing data and insights company Switchee to rollout Switchee devices in their residents’ homes. Implementation of IoT (internet of things) technology is part of the group’s digital transformation programme to help improve its offer and service to residents. Specifically, Platform Housing Group

Read More »
Fast-growing developer boosts its senior team with two new managers

Fast-growing developer, Urban Group (York) boosts its senior team

Urban Group (York) Ltd has recruited a new Managing Quantity Surveyor and Project Manager to its fast-growing team. Nicholas Bryant brings 15 years of project management experience, having previously worked at Esh and Mace, he specialises in the delivery of student, residential, care and education development. His previous projects have

Read More »
Scott Tallon Walker Announces Leadership Appointments

Scott Tallon Walker Announces Leadership Appointments

Appointments will further strengthen Scott Tallon Walker’s reputation as leader in innovative design in Ireland and the UK Scott Tallon Walker (STW), a leading architecture and urban design company with offices in Ireland and the UK, announces the appointment of four new Project Directors to work across its commercial, urban

Read More »
Peel submits plans for sustainable community in Wigan

Peel submits plans for sustainable community in Wigan

Peel L&P has submitted plans for a vibrant new healthy living and sustainable community on land north of Mosley Common in Wigan. The applications include outline planning for a wider masterplan for the area and detailed plans for new homes at Twire at Mosley Common, the first phase of development,

Read More »
Are house prices still too high?

Are house prices still too high?

Over the last year, the Bank of England has attempted to curb rising inflation through a series of interest rate hikes. The theory behind this is simple: when interest rates are higher, people are more incentivised to save than to spend. This dampens demand, and therefore pushes down prices. We’ve

Read More »
How to Start a New Career in Welding

How to Start a New Career in Welding

A welding career can be very rewarding. Good pay, high job demand, and opportunities for advancement into robotics or management (or both.) But, it’s not a career you can just decide to start overnight. It takes specialized training, skill development, and certifications. So, we put together a list of schools,

Read More »

Latest Issue

BDC 317 : Jun 2024

February 21, 2023

Major contracts awarded for Havant Thicket Reservoir scheme

Major contracts awarded for Havant Thicket Reservoir scheme

In a major step forward, Portsmouth Water has appointed Future Water MJJV Limited to build the flagship Havant Thicket Reservoir in southern Hampshire – a contract worth £167 million. It will be the first large-scale new water storage reservoir in the UK since the 1980s and is being progressed under an innovative partnership between Portsmouth Water and Southern Water.  In addition, a new £41 million tunnelled pipeline, running to and from the reservoir, is set to be installed by Ward & Burke Construction Limited.  Future Water is a joint venture between leading civil engineering contractors Mackley and Jones Bros, which have a combined total of over 150 years of experience in tackling complex and challenging civil engineering schemes. Having worked across a wide range of sectors including water, energy, coastal protection and flood defence, Future Water MJJV is uniquely qualified to construct the reservoir, a vital new piece of infrastructure. Ward & Burke is one of Ireland’s principal Civil & MEICA Engineering contractors and has an outstanding track record for innovation. The company has built more than 130,000 metres of tunnels, including for water pipelines, in the UK, Ireland and North America, and has been involved in a wide range of major infrastructure projects.  Bob Taylor, Chief Executive Officer at Portsmouth Water, said: “This is a major milestone for the Havant Thicket Reservoir project, and we are delighted to have these two exceptional contractors delivering the scheme.  “We were highly impressed by the proposals put forward by Future Water MJJV and Ward & Burke during the tender process, with both companies being able to call upon vastly experienced teams, with strong track records in successfully delivering major infrastructure.” Mr Taylor added: “We look forward to working closely with both companies to progress and complete this environmentally led project on time and within budget. This includes honouring our commitment to leave a really positive legacy by creating opportunities for local employment and skills development through the reservoir scheme.” Future Water Director Ben Hamer commented: “Future Water is delighted to have been selected by Portsmouth Water to deliver this critical piece of water infrastructure for the South East of England. As a regional company, legacy projects, such as this, are central to the values of our staff and stakeholders.”  Mr Hamer’s fellow director John Dielhof added: “It’s a project that we can’t wait to get started on because we know how much of a positive impact it will have on the region. The scheme will safeguard dozens of jobs for our skilled workforce, as well as create opportunities for apprentices and trainees to kickstart their civil engineering career with us. In addition, we are excited to see the impact this has on the local economy, through supply chain opportunities and spend in the local area.”  Speaking about being awarded the pipeline contract for the reservoir scheme, Joe Dobey, Ward & Burke’s Project Director, said: “We are all very excited at Ward & Burke to be delivering this key pipeline for Portsmouth Water, its customers and the surrounding area. It’s a great opportunity to work with the company to bring forward innovative solutions that are better for both the local community and environment.”  Havant Thicket Reservoir in Havant will secure critical water supplies for the South East of England, an area that’s already under serious water stress. It will also help protect environmentally sensitive chalk streams and create a new green leisure facility to benefit local communities and wildlife.  Once completed in 2029, the reservoir will hold approximately 8.7 billion litres of water and be able to supply up to 21 million litres of water each day. It will be one mile from east to west, half a mile from north to south, with a new wetland on its northern shore, and is being built on a 160-hectare grassland site which has been owned by Portsmouth Water since the mid-1960s. A new two-mile long pipeline, which is designed to be largely tunnelled, will also be built to fill Havant Thicket Reservoir in the winter with surplus water pumped from nearby Bedhampton Springs. It would also be used to draw water from the reservoir to supply customers when it’s needed.  The reservoir was granted formal planning permission in October 2021, with a further planning application for the new pipeline expected to be submitted in Summer 2023. Ofwat, the economic regulator for water companies in England and Wales, recently published its final decision to agree a revised budget for the Havant Thicket Reservoir scheme. This has enabled Portsmouth Water to award the two main design and construction contracts for the project, with further contracts, including for a new visitor centre at the reservoir, to be awarded in the coming years. Bob Taylor commented: “‘The final decision from Ofwat on the project’s updated budget will ensure the reservoir scheme can be funded and deliver good value for money for customers, while safeguarding water supplies and supporting nature.   “The innovative regulatory and commercial approach that’s being taken has enabled us to deliver cost-effective local solutions to regional water resources challenges. We would like to thank our colleagues at Ofwat and Southern Water for their excellent collaborative work.” Portsmouth Water will finance the Havant Thicket Reservoir scheme through a combination of £150 million of equity funding, provided by investors in the company’s owner Ancala Partners, as well as money that will be borrowed. £120 million of the equity funding will be used this year, with a further £30 million to follow in early 2024. Ultimately, Havant Thicket Reservoir will be paid for by Southern Water, through its drinking water customer bills. These costs are expected to be spread over many years – to reflect the continued benefits of the reservoir. Portsmouth Water customers are not paying for the reservoir through their drinking water or wastewater bills. For more information on the Havant Thicket Reservoir scheme, please visit havant-thicket-reservoir.uk.engagementhq.com/.  Building, Design & Construction Magazine | The Choice of Industry Professionals 

Read More »
Atkins awarded contract on Ireland’s MetroLink

Atkins awarded contract on Ireland’s MetroLink

Atkins, a member of the SNC Lavalin Group, has been appointed by Transport Infrastructure Ireland to deliver the detailed design for the Advance Works programme for the MetroLink Project, a high capacity, high-frequency metro railway and integrated public transport network connecting the Greater Dublin Area, including Dublin Airport and city centre. Atkins, supported by its subconsultants RPS, a Tetra Tech company, will develop the detailed design for a programme of activity to precede the main infrastructure works, including utility diversions, archaeological and heritage works, facilitation of land access and environmental monitoring, with the aim of achieving a level of site readiness to facilitate mobilisation of MetroLink’s main infrastructure works. Martina Finn, Managing Director, Atkins Ireland, said “The Metrolink Project will provide Dublin with a modern, interconnected transport system that eases congestion and offers commuters faster, more convenient and cleaner transport options in and around the city. “This appointment builds on our existing role as Operations Advisor for Metrolink and we’re pleased to bring our local teams of experts and global experience in transportation to support Transport Infrastructure Ireland as they progress this exciting project.” MetroLink is one of the key projects identified in Ireland’s National Development Plan. It will be a first-of-a-kind public transport infrastructure in Ireland, with much of the 18.8km route running underground. The Project will link Dublin Airport, Irish Rail, DART, Dublin Bus and Luas services, linking major transport hubs and key destinations in the city centre, and is estimated to carry up to 53 million passengers annually. Building, Design & Construction Magazine | The Choice of Industry Professionals 

Read More »
Energy Efficiency at City Plumbing and GTEC join forces to offer heat pump training for installers at new centre

Energy Efficiency at City Plumbing and GTEC join forces to offer heat pump training for installers at new centre

Energy Efficiency at City Plumbing is set to unveil its new Energy Efficiency Centre after agreeing a partnership with GTEC Training to provide accredited training courses for installers. The Centre, based in Farnborough, Hampshire is now open with an official launch planned to mark Earth Day in April. It will focus on showcasing renewable energy home heating technologies such as heat pumps, underfloor heating and solar panels – and training engineers to install them., The Centre will be open to the public and include a range of fully kitted-out zones, highlighting how alternative home heating solutions work in real life, as well as an accredited training room. Adam Foy, Managing Director, Energy Efficiency at City Plumbing, said “We are very excited to announce that Energy Efficiency at City Plumbing has partnered with GTEC Training to deliver accredited training courses to our installer base in England and Wales – and help our customers make the transition to low carbon technologies. “Our industry-leading Energy Efficiency Team has been in place for over a decade, offering an indemnified design service along with impartial advice on technologies and manufacturers.  “As the market evolves, we are looking to support our installers through their journey and this partnership, and the Energy Efficiency Centre are crucial steps in this process.” The partnership has been boosted by news that it has secured government funding through the BEIS Home Decarbonisation Skills Training Competition to reduce the cost of courses to installers until the end of March 2023. Adam added: “This funding allows us to offer installers based in England subsidised heat pump training and qualifications through a range of locations, with funding available to SMEs.” Griff Thomas, Managing Director of GTEC Training, added: “GTEC is delighted to be playing a part in Energy Efficiency at City Plumbing, with our first in-merchant training facility at the Energy Efficiency Centre in Farnborough. “Heat pumps are playing a key role in the UK’s drive to reduce the carbon footprint of our buildings – the ideal solution for energy efficient properties. “Thanks to the partnership between GTEC and City Plumbing, installers will be able to access everything they need to enter this growing market; from purchasing the latest heat pumps and associated equipment, to undertaking our industry-leading training. “All heating and plumbing installers should consider upskilling into heat pumps. Demand is growing steadily and will outstrip gas boilers over the next 10 years. Training is designed for tradespeople, providing an exciting opportunity for the existing installer-base. The Energy Efficiency Centre is the first step in an ongoing, industry-wide campaign to raise the number of heat pump installers in the country. For further details and to book a course, visit: https://eecityplumbing.co.uk/gtec-training/ Building, Design & Construction Magazine | The Choice of Industry Professionals 

Read More »
Midlands based Platform Housing Group partners with Switchee to drive digital transformation strategy forward

Midlands based Platform Housing Group partners with Switchee to drive digital transformation strategy forward

Platform Housing Group (PHG) has partnered with social housing data and insights company Switchee to rollout Switchee devices in their residents’ homes. Implementation of IoT (internet of things) technology is part of the group’s digital transformation programme to help improve its offer and service to residents. Specifically, Platform Housing Group is looking to use Switchee smart thermostat devices to provide real-time data and analytics about the performance of its housing stock. The use of Switchee data and its use in PHG systems (via API) will help to inform decision making and resource deployment around maintenance and flag issues such as damp and condensation mould. It will also identify where residents may need support.  The project forms part of the group’s programme to achieve a minimum EPC C rating (Energy Performance Certificate) in targeted properties by 2028. Installations are being carried out through Switchee’s Trusted Installer Network, which supports Switchee’s housing partners with swift and efficient device rollouts. The devices will be installed across different types of properties; supported accommodation, properties at risk of condensation, damp and mould and into properties as part of the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund. All Switchee smart thermostats will be fitted by the end of March, with Platform Housing Group and Switchee providing full data analysis on an ongoing basis throughout the project and beyond the initial term. Jonathan Cocker, Chief Information Officer for Platform Housing Group said: “We’re delighted to be working with Switchee to improve the way we help customers in their homes.  These devices are just one of the ways we’re investing in technology to achieve energy efficiency in all that we do and benefit the wider UK housing sector.” Tom Robins, Switchee CEO added: “Utilising technology like Switchee is a game changing for landlords.  By enabling them to understand what’s going on in their properties, they can change their operations from reactive to proactive. They can see where their biggest issues are and can deploy resources more efficiently and lower their operating costs.” Building, Design & Construction Magazine | The Choice of Industry Professionals 

Read More »
Fast-growing developer boosts its senior team with two new managers

Fast-growing developer, Urban Group (York) boosts its senior team

Urban Group (York) Ltd has recruited a new Managing Quantity Surveyor and Project Manager to its fast-growing team. Nicholas Bryant brings 15 years of project management experience, having previously worked at Esh and Mace, he specialises in the delivery of student, residential, care and education development. His previous projects have included a 58-home retirement living scheme for Housing 21 Doncaster and the £250 million Climate Innovation District development for CITU. He was also the project manager delivering the renovation of the Grade II Lady IDA Lodge at Cookridge Hospital which recently secured the Constructing Excellence award for Conservation and Regeneration project of the year. Jamie Wilkinson also joins the Construction Division as the new Managing Quantity Surveyor. He previously worked in commercial management and quantity surveying roles at Fortem (part of the Wilmott Dixon Group) and Kier Group, where he managed multi-million-pound contracts, handling traditional tendered contracts to long-term framework agreements for a variety of local authority clients and social housing providers. Jamie and Nicholas will both work on the high-profile Aire Straits boutique student accommodation scheme which Urban Group is delivering on Merrion Street in Leeds. The nine-storey high specification development will provide 88 en-suite studios with on-site cinema, gym, lounge, dining and study space. Nicholas explains: “Urban Group specialises in residential schemes, from new-build, buy-to-let and student accommodation, to housing association frameworks, an area where both Jamie and I have extensive experience. “It is a fast-growing team, working with a strong team of sub-contractors and supply-chain partners. The role will also give me the opportunity to continue my passion for mentoring the next generation of project managers.” Brendon Hutchinson, Group Managing Director at Urban, said: “It’s a coup to appoint two senior team members with the calibre of experience Nicholas and Jamie offer. They will be a fantastic addition to the construction team.  “We have recently secured a number of high-profile developments, from flagship student accommodation in Leeds to land-led Housing Association build contracts across Yorkshire and the East Midlands and will continue to grow the team as a result.” Building, Design & Construction Magazine | The Choice of Industry Professionals 

Read More »
Scott Tallon Walker Announces Leadership Appointments

Scott Tallon Walker Announces Leadership Appointments

Appointments will further strengthen Scott Tallon Walker’s reputation as leader in innovative design in Ireland and the UK Scott Tallon Walker (STW), a leading architecture and urban design company with offices in Ireland and the UK, announces the appointment of four new Project Directors to work across its commercial, urban design, healthcare, and education practices. These appointments further strengthen STW’s client offering and build upon its proven track record for innovation in design in Ireland and the UK. Michael Tallon, Managing Director at STW, commented: “As we continue to develop and promote the next generation of designers and leaders in our business, we have created the role of Project Director, directly responsible for dealing with clients and project teams, providing leadership across multiple complex developments. People are the defining aspect of any company, and we are delighted to make these appointments from within our existing team, highlighting the calibre of talent across our offices. Their appointments strengthen our position as a design leader, ensuring we remain at the forefront of innovative and inspiring architecture, and building on our legacy of excellence in design and project delivery for almost a century.” Project Directors Appointments Building, Design & Construction Magazine | The Choice of Industry Professionals 

Read More »
Peel submits plans for sustainable community in Wigan

Peel submits plans for sustainable community in Wigan

Peel L&P has submitted plans for a vibrant new healthy living and sustainable community on land north of Mosley Common in Wigan. The applications include outline planning for a wider masterplan for the area and detailed plans for new homes at Twire at Mosley Common, the first phase of development, to bring together a multi-generational community with homes for people at all stages of life. The plans submitted for the land north of Mosley Common will connect the northern and southern sections of the site, creating extensive parkland and pedestrian routes throughout the area. The proposals for 1,050 new homes reflect the masterplan document which was approved by Wigan Council in September 2022, and the submission of these plans is the next step in bringing the vision to life. As well as 25% affordable homes, there are plans for a new transport hub in partnership with Transport for Greater Manchester to improve connectivity and active travel with easy access to the Leigh Guided Busway and commuter routes to Manchester and beyond. Plans also include sports and play facilities and a new green corridor to bring ecological improvements to the area connecting people to nature with an extensive new parkland including three new parks. The 202 homes planned for Twire are suitable for first time buyers, families, older people with additional care needs and those looking to downsize. There will also be a specially designed accessible home for families with dependent relatives and around 200 jobs will also be created during the construction of the new homes. “The submission of two planning applications for Twire at Mosley Common and a wider masterplan follows two rounds of consultation held throughout last year and the approval of a masterplan document by Wigan Council. We are extremely thankful for all those who took the time to share their views and we are delighted to share our finalised plans with Wigan Council and the community,” said Annabel Baker, Peel L&P’s Associate Director of Development Planning. “The key focus of the proposals has been to create a connected community, with modern housing, improved transport links and vibrant parklands for everyone to enjoy. The first phase will be developed by Northstone, featuring the highest quality design and meeting the highest standards of environmental sustainability. We look forward to the applications being considered by Wigan Council and continuing to engage with the community.” Peel L&P’s homebuilder Northstone will build the homes at Twire with an emphasis on biodiversity improvements and energy-saving features to help residents with their fuel bills. As a landscaping led-approach, the vision will include links to a green walking network with lots of community space. The site at Mosley Common has been identified for residential development as part of Greater Manchester’s Places for Everyone plan which has been submitted to the Secretary of State for the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities. Building, Design & Construction Magazine | The Choice of Industry Professionals

Read More »
Are house prices still too high?

Are house prices still too high?

Over the last year, the Bank of England has attempted to curb rising inflation through a series of interest rate hikes. The theory behind this is simple: when interest rates are higher, people are more incentivised to save than to spend. This dampens demand, and therefore pushes down prices. We’ve seen this in the property market, with the average price of a house sliding from a peak of just under £300,000 last summer. This is just the latest downward trend in a market that has been rising relentlessly since the 70s. If we look at the inflation-adjusted price of property over time, we see an overall upward trend. In today’s money, the average price of a home at some points in the 70s was just £100,000. The rising cost of building The construction sector is facing the effects of inflation, much like every other part of the UK economy. But there are special concerns to weigh, here. The rising cost of fuel makes it more difficult to get materials and equipment to the building site. What’s more, the price of certain kinds of skilled labour is going up. All these costs must ultimately be passed to the person paying for the building – and perhaps the people who subsequently buy the property from them. The effects of second-home ownership You might suppose that owning a second home might help to drive up property prices. After all, when one person owns two properties, there’s one less property available for everyone else to live in. Of course, there’s a built-in penalty to owning a second home that’s uninhabited. The homeowner must foot the bill for things like maintenance and mortgage payments. Providing the space for a tenant, therefore, is a financially sensible thing to do. It’s also worth noting that the effects of second homes in the city are different from those of second homes in the countryside. A holiday home or lodge in a rural location will tend to provide a place for people to stay when travelling, without contributing to urban house-price inflation. Plus, these homes tend to be fairly reasonably priced, and so within the reach of lots of potential buyers – not just extraordinarily wealthy ones. Will prices come down in 2023? According to most estimates, house prices will indeed continue to fall throughout the year to come. The extent of the fall varies depending on who is being asked. Lloyds and Halifax are betting on an 8% fall, while Zoopla puts it at closer to 5%. The Office for Budget Responsibility, which provides the basis for the Exchequer’s decisions, thinks a 9% fall over the next two years is likely. These predictions hinges on several factors, but all of them are related to the interest rates set by the Bank of England. This rate, of course, is set according to world events – which might move suddenly in just about any direction! Building, Design & Construction Magazine | The Choice of Industry Professionals 

Read More »
How to Start a New Career in Welding

How to Start a New Career in Welding

A welding career can be very rewarding. Good pay, high job demand, and opportunities for advancement into robotics or management (or both.) But, it’s not a career you can just decide to start overnight. It takes specialized training, skill development, and certifications. So, we put together a list of schools, scholarships, and more to help you get started. HOW TO START YOUR DREAM WELDING CAREER Deciding your career path can be very nerve-wracking. With no prior experience or guidance, starting your welding career may seem overwhelming. But don’t worry, we’re here to help. Here are 4 steps to guide you to your preferred job in the welding field. 1. RESEARCH DIFFERENT WELDING PROGRAMS Your first step will be to research welding programs, to eventually enroll in a welding program. Top-rated welding schools can be found from Alaska to Georgia, especially in areas of the country where welders are in the highest demand. To find the right school for you, do a little research to figure out which one best serves your end career goal. Take a look at the degrees and specialties offered, regional accreditation, and relationships with local businesses that hire graduates. Make sure you’ll get mostly real-world education that’s up to current standards, and look for included certifications. 2. EVALUATE TUITION AND FEES ACROSS THE PROGRAMS YOU RESEARCHED The next step is to weigh your financial options. It’s no secret that money will likely be a determining factor – if not the main one – in which school you choose. Tuition and fees range widely depending on the type of welding program you’re interested in, from a few thousand dollars for basic certification programs to near six figures for a bachelor’s degree. 3. COMPARE SCHOLARSHIPS AND OTHER RESOURCES Next, you should search for a scholarship or take advantage of a related program. One of the upsides of choosing a welding degree is its high demand – many organizations with a vested interest in training skilled welders offer scholarships, grants, or other ways to help grow a talented workforce. Scholarships vary in the amount awarded, grade-point average requirements, and eligibility. The American Welding Society offers its own scholarships as well as links and information to hundreds of others around the world. Most scholarships require a GED or high school diploma and acceptance to an accredited program. Keep careful track of deadlines since they can be any time during the year. States also receive federal funding through the Workforce Investment Act to award grants to help build up a local workforce. For many areas, welding is high on the list of important positions. Start by contacting the Workforce Development Center in your state! 4. FINALLY, GET CERTIFIED! The final step to your first welding job is to get certified, which proves that you can create quality, sturdy welds that meet your job’s code. If your school doesn’t include certification as part of its curriculum, several organizations offer testing. Certifications are as varied as the type of job and cost anywhere from as little as $25 to maintain a certified welder (CW) certification, to more than $1,000 for more specialized roles. If an official welding school just isn’t an option for you, it’s possible to get certified using other methods. One popular option is to work under an experienced welder and learn through hands-on experience. And while certification is required for you to get paid work as a welder, how you get certified is based solely on if you can show up and adequately perform the responsibilities of the job position. IS IT WORTH IT? In a word, yes. The median pay for a welder in May 2017 was just under $20 per hour, and wages can be upwards of $25 per hour for specialized jobs in industries like electric or gas utilities. In addition, The Bureau of Labor Statics expects the field to grow by 6 percent through 2026. KEEP UP WITH WELDING NEWS At American Torch Tip, we pride ourselves in providing useful information and resources for those in the welding industry. After being in business for more than 80 years, American Torch Tip is fulfilling the mission we set out to accomplish by successfully designing and manufacturing thousands of industry-leading torches and consumables for welding, laser and plasma cutting, and thermal spraying. A welding career can offer a lot of rewards, like good pay, high job demand, and opportunities for advancement. And if you’re interested in robotics or management, you can often combine those interests with welding to create an even more rewarding career. Building, Design & Construction Magazine | The Choice of Industry Professionals 

Read More »