Tender price indicator
Our Tender Price Inflation report looks at the movement of prices in tenders for building contracts in the UK. The report examines a number of contributing factors and is further informed by our market survey responses and contractor consultations.
Mass Timber in Office Construction: Does it impact the cost and programme of your project?
In the fifth session hosted by G&T as part of the ongoing Mass Timber Office series the panel of experts focussed on what implications using mass timber for office construction may have on a project’s cost, programme and the procurement approach, from the design phase right through to construction.
Targeted Property Investment: We Have the Framework...Let’s Use It!
In this short article, G&T’s Construction & Property Tax Advisory team ask the UK government to start incentivising business to help drive positive growth and good sustainability credentials.
Decarbonising Transport: Retail in the Automotive Sector
The fourth in our electric vehicles series, this report looks at retail within the automotive industry.
SMART and Sustainable Hospitals
‘Smart’ hospitals can capture everyday data to radically re-engineer our approach to healthcare. Enabled by an underlying network of interconnected digital assets, they are able to optimise, redesign and create new clinical processes, management systems and infrastructure. Smart hospitals are also able to provide services and insights which help improve patient care, patient experience and operational efficiency.
Repurposing Retail: Bringing Empty Department Stores Back to Life
Retail is changing. Hastened by COVID-19, the high street is undergoing one of the largest evolutions it has seen for decades and the department store is no exception. Empty retail space is accelerating at a rapid rate. A recent report from Savills suggested that retail in the UK is over spaced by as much as 40% , begging the question, what can we do with these underutilised assets?
EV Manufacture in the UK
The latest independent outlook for the UK car manufacturing industry predicted that factories will make fewer than 885,000 cars this year — the first time volumes will have dipped below the one million mark since 2009. The one bright spot is EV manufacturing.
UKGBC publishes new strategic guidance to help deliver net zero buildings
ONS: construction input costs rise by 0.5% between March and September but are not fully feeding through into tender pricing, homes England chief says “time for talking is over”. MMC/ prefabrication is essential to deliver the homes of the future, Chancellor’s Spending Review promises to invest in UK infrastructure, increase commitments for housebuilding, deliver on net zero and introduce a new UK infrastructure bank, starts on site in central London fell by 50% between Apr-Sep according to Deloitte’s latest London office crane survey, builders Merchant sales up 8.3% in September compared to the same month in 2019
Architects say workloads are back to around 90% of pre-pandemic levels but say next few months will be critical
Construction output rises for a fifth consecutive month and new order data shows robust increase in new work, Construction PMI: expansion of activity softens in October but construction is still optimistic about its prospects for the next 12 months, private housing sector awarded most new contract awards and granted most planning approvals in October, materials firms note surge in demand before anticipated cost inflation in the coming months, BCSA: public sector spending expected to boost structural steel demand by 12.1% overall in 2021
The Future of Aviation
The aviation sector has been hit hard as a result of the pandemic. Projects and expansion plans have been put on hold, cancelled or deferred for the foreseeable future, and many industry commentators are suggesting that activity in the sector will be negatively impacted for years to come.
CPA upgrades 2020 and 2021 output growth forecasts in latest Autumn scenarios publication
ONS: Revenues remain under pressure with 40% of surveyed construction firms reporting lower than usual turnover, CLC publishes new guidance on immigration and trade post Brexit, more contractors and architects publish net zero carbon targets, construction product sales much higher than expected in Q3, University of Oxford report: “standardised, fast and frugal” infrastructure projects better at stimulating GDP than mega projects
The Impact of Fire When Building with Mass Timber
In G&T’s Mass Timber Office series the latest panel ‘Fire, Testing and Building Control’ examined the impact of fire both pre and post construction and discussed the work currently being carried out by industry stakeholders on the behaviour of mass timber in the event of a fire.
September UK construction PMI beats expectations with rise in new orders
Construction output grew for the fourth consecutive month in August but rate of growth slowed to 3%, UK concrete and cement industry plans to become net carbon negative by 2050, Robert Jenrick: 20% of affordable homes to be built from modern methods of construction, rent collections improve in Q3 but are still putting financial pressure on landlords and developers
Electric Vehicles Infrastructure: Charging Ahead
Developing our own unique approach to everything is part of the UK’s DNA. As such, making the transition from internal combustion engines (ICE) to battery electric vehicles (BEV) will inevitably require new ways of doing things, especially if BEVs are going to contribute to the UK Government’s overarching policy to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050.
Market Update - October 2020
G&T’s Market Update for October 2020 provides an overview of the London construction market. In light of the disruption caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and its impacts on the construction industry, the report highlights changes to key macro-economic indicators over the reporting period, as well as significant construction-specific metrics such as the UK Purchasing Managers’ Index, construction output, commercial and residential new orders, key material costs, trade package inflation and tender price trends and forecasts.
New guidance from Build UK urges firms to make future contracts ‘open book’
Proportion of construction workforce on furlough continues to fall, Mark Farmer suggests Government should embark on a programme to build 75,000 modular homes a year by 2030 to help encourage industry acceptance, ONS: 10% of construction firms at ‘moderate risk’ of insolvency but majority (over 79%) state ‘low’ or ‘no risk’ of insolvency, Multiplex becomes first contractor to sign up to the World Green Building Council’s ‘Net Zero Carbon Buildings Commitment’.
Climate change is the most pressing environmental challenge of our time. The scientific evidence suggests that we need to take action now, and the UK Government is making this a priority. In June 2019 the UK became the first major global economy to pass a law that requires the country to achieve 'net zero' greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050.
Fibre Optic Market
The importance of connectivity has never been more apparent than it is right now. With the UK lagging behind many of its more digitally evolved competitors, Government priority is now focusing on getting fast, secure and resilient broadband across the whole country as soon as possible – aiming to bring “gigabit-capable broadband” nationwide by 2025.
Steady fall in number of firms reporting decreased turnover, compared to same time last year
New report espouses post Covid-19 ‘lessons learned’ review to avoid drifting back to ‘business as usual’, Atkins Global: two-thirds of infrastructure businesses believe workloads won’t return to pre-Covid levels until Q4 2021, CLC launches new taskforce to advise the construction industry on how to prepare for a post-Brexit world, lumber prices hit record high amid surging demand for home improvement and renovation projects plus more news and analysis from across the industry
G&T Launches Mass Timber Forum for Commercial Offices
Hosted by partner Matt Holman, these forums focus on hot topics such as Insurance, Fire and Sustainability. G&T partner and timber expert Oliver Booth has assembled panels of leading experts in their respective disciplines to help share knowledge and information that can be referred to when considering mass timber for commercial office projects.
Draft Building Safety Bill for England
Described by the Housing Secretary as, “the biggest change to our building safety regime for 40 years”, the Government is planning to introduce fundamental changes to the building control regime to improve building and fire safety in higher-risk buildings so that people will be safer in their homes.
UK construction PMI beats expectations in July with a steep increase in activity and output
ONS new order data for Q2 shows that private sector demand was hit the hardest in the quarter, ‘Planning for the Future’ – Government white paper published putting forward vision to radically overhaul England’s planning system, Leo Quinn: “We will not take contracts at any price... We are not interested in volume”, Derwent changes office development model to meet changing work patterns and employee needs plus more news and analysis from around the construction industry.
Industry calls for clarity on border arrangements and changes to worker permits
ONS: Construction firms report that the proportion of furloughed workers continues to fall, CLC letter to Government requests for clarity on border arrangements and changes to worker permits , 59% of construction firms note lower turnover according to ONS survey, RIBA and others voice concerns over the deregulation of the planning process, Wates switches focus to public sector and affordable housing work in the wake of the pandemic.
Future Health of Buildings
COVID-19 has created two new requirements for buildings: 1. owners and occupiers need to provide an objectively safe indoor environment and 2. they must communicate trust and a sense of welcome to those coming through the doors. While both are critical, they do not necessarily align.
The Future Office
The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted many to rethink their physical office space. In planning a logistically-difficult return to the office, organisations appear to be asking fundamental questions about the future design and purpose of the post-pandemic office. Whilst there are still many unknowns, the current pandemic has fuelled a seismic shift that will alter our perceptions of how and why we use offices and workspaces for years to come.
‘Build, Build, Build’: UK Government announces plans to help construction’s recovery
Cashflow continues to be a pressing issue as nearly 40% of firms said current reserves would last less than three months, June construction PMI data points to sharp turnaround as more sites reopened and the supply chain kicked into gear, Kier likely to tap equity markets to bolster its balance sheet after Covid-19 takes its toll on revenues, TfL issues briefing note to construction firms on how to safely use the capital’s public network
Health and Wellbeing in Schools
How the built environment impacts health and wellbeing represents a critical and growing area of sustainability. We are increasingly aware of the connection between where we are and how we are. It is no surprise that the newest and most popular sustainability certifications for commercial buildings – the WELL Building Standard and Fitwel – focus on the building/body connection.
The Growth Of Healthy Buildings Is Changing How We Manage Them
What makes us healthy? The things we do, the food we eat, the air we breathe? All these elements play a part, but a new factor is being recognised. Click here to read on.
Work resumes on 10% of sites initially suspended at lockdown
RICS: headline workloads fall pointing to virtually no change in activity in Q1 2020, talks between Build UK and Local Government Association to extend permitted site opening hours ongoing, construction machinery equipment makers in China raise prices as sales begin to take off
Minister says construction is an ‘ecosystem’ – the whole supply chain needs to be operational and working collaboratively
Main contractors consider buying up parts of supply chain in order to keep schemes running, more sites re-open but with reduced workforce’, NLA’s annual tall building survey shows 140% year-on-year increase in the number of tall buildings in London
Science, Skills & Innovation
Home to 29 universities, the Powerhouse region has seen significant investment into research and education activities across the scientific sector. Industry and university communities are collaborating to develop new materials technologies and advanced manufacturing methods which will provide huge benefits to the UK economy
BEIS Tells Manufacturing to Keep Supply Chains Moving
Construction output falls 1.7% in February with adverse weather considered a contributing factor, UK Government issues updated guidance reaffirming that sites do not have to close even if they cannot maintain social distancing, CLC urges firms and clients to ‘do the right thing’ to make sure that cash continues to flow throughout the industry, Mace begins progressive re-opening of some suspended construction sites to help support UK economic recovery plus more news and analysis from the construction industry
Contractors restarting work after pause to review and redesign operations at UK sites
Version 2 of CLC’s Site Operating Procedures withdrawn after feedback said updated rules were impossible to follow, contractors such as BAM and Kier restart work after pausing to review and redesign operations at UK sites, BMF tracker shows a number of builders merchants have re-started some services and are at least ‘partially’ open, first stage of work at NHS Nightingale hospital at London’s ExCel Centre completed in just 10 days, plus more news and analysis from the construction industry
The New Normal in Higher Education: The Digital Campus Of The Future
The digital campus is a well-connected one - limiting frictions by using readily available data. Essentially, they can be thought of as mini smart-cities, underpinned by a technologically adept infrastructure.
Are 'All Electric' Buildings The Future?
The UK government has set an ambitious target to reduce carbon emissions by 80% of 1990 levels, by 2025. The use of fossil fuels as the primary source for heating and cooling buildings is a substantial contributor to carbon emissions, and its continued use by the construction industry is likely to impact the UK’s ability to achieve this target.
Construction Collaboration Technology
New technologies and software applications are increasingly being used to facilitate the effective sharing of project-related information between geographically dispersed, multi-disciplinary members of a construction project team. Do these tools offer a route to productivity gains in the construction industry?
The UK’s distilling sector has experienced a boom in terms of growth in the number of distilling enterprises. Although most of this recent growth has been in England, Scottish distilleries remain dominant in terms of revenue-share and employment-size band.
Getting Britain Building
Whilst the effects of COVID-19 had a significant impact on the new Chancellor’s first post Brexit Budget, a common theme remained the levelling up of the UK economy. Here we review some of the more important tax and spending plans that will affect the construction and property sectors.
The New Normal in Higher Education: The Sustainable Campus Of The Future
As part of their sustainable campus plans, several universities in the UK have made the construction and refurbishment of buildings a primary area of focus. Sustainability often comes at a cost as such buildings employ more premium construction techniques.
The New Normal in Higher Education: Health and Wellbeing in the Campus Of The Future
Research from the Urban Land Institute (ULI), the research and education organisation focused on the built environment, found that rising levels of interest in wellbeing in the UK will translate into significant investment over the next three years in the real estate industry.
Creating Occupier Value
Offices are built for occupiers and tenants. Without them there is no demand and no reason for us to build them. So in an age of improving wellbeing for occupiers, increasing building sustainability and providing hospitality services to tenants, it is still worth remembering the basics that can add value to an office product and help attract occupiers.
Offices, the Commercial sector and “North-shoring”
North-shoring – the term used to describe shifting operations from the South to the North in what was originally a bid to save money – is a growing trend among London firms.
Is BREEAM Sustainable?
Traditionally, measures of sustainability on building projects – for example BREEAM1 and LEED2 have been based on a very specific and prescriptive set of “environmental” criteria – energy use, water consumption and even proximity to public transport. However, the effectiveness and value of these forms of certification is under question. Why?
Green lending is the means by which commercial lenders provide development finance to borrowers who develop green buildings or retrofit existing buildings with green or environmentally responsible features. The lending is conditional on the borrower fulfilling certain environmental criteria. Generally, this means that the borrower’s sustainability strategy is closely scrutinised.
LREF NextGen Debate 2019: The impact of flexible working - Part 1
NextGen professionals from across the built environment debated the impact of flexible working on wellbeing, at the London Real Estate Forum 2019. Team One discuss their thoughts and argue that increased flexible working has a negative impact on mental health in the capital.
LREF NextGen Debate 2019: The impact of flexible working - Part 2
Arguing that flexible working has a positive impact on mental health and wellbeing, NextGen professionals from across the built environment take part in the London Real Estate Forum NextGen debate 2019.
The Real Potential of Smart Buildings Is Buried In Data
The clever gadgets and the Internet of Things are just the tip of the iceberg - the current possibilities. Read on to find out how data will help create a true smart building.
Well and Fitwel
People spend about 90% of their time indoors and businesses typically spend 90% of their budgets on people. In a well-regarded survey of global corporate executives, 90% reported that they expected to improve their approach to employee wellbeing. It is little wonder why health and wellness have become a dominant concern for the real estate and construction industry.
The Data Behind Design: How Companies Tailor The Office To Employee Preferences
For years, architects and developers have attempted to predict what the office of the future will look like. Read on to find out more.
NextGen Perspectives on...Tackling Talent Post-Brexit
How can the industry futureproof acquisition and retention of young talent through design? And how can we prevent a talent drain after Brexit?
NextGen Perspectives on...Big Data and Smart Technology
How important is big data and smart technology to the next generation? and how can we harness big data and smart technology to innovate within the construction industry?
NextGen Perspectives on...Wellbeing and Mental Health: The invisible risk
In April, G&T hosted the New London Architecture (NLA) NextGen Working Group, as part of the NLA’s NextGen programme. The programme seeks to bring together young professionals and established construction industry experts to explore and discuss some of the critical issues being faced in the industry.
High Rise Construction
The UK’s skyline continues to head upwards with record numbers of tall buildings being completed this year. They are increasingly becoming the norm in London with more than 500 in planning, approved or under construction in a city which has traditionally been associated with low-rise, low-density developments. But the phenomenon is by no means limited to London. Manchester and Birmingham, amongst other UK cities, are also seeing their fair share of high rise development with more expected over the next decade.
The Housing Crisis Within The Northern Powerhouse
Recent figures suggest that by 2030 the Northern Powerhouse will have a shortage of approximately 86,000 homes. Rough sleeping has almost doubled since 2010 and nationwide the number of people in temporary accommodation is on track to reach 100,000 by 2020, unless the Government takes steps to deliver more affordable private, intermediate and social housing. So how can this negative trajectory be reversed?
Retail Is Changing Shape, But We Can All Move With It
Online retail is growing fast and there are thousands of empty stores lying dormant in retail centres across the UK, but already certain landlords are bringing them back to life through considerate development. Read on to find out more
A Good Time to Invest in Build to Rent
Over the last five years, the total number of Build to Rent (BTR) units completed, under construction or in planning has increased six-fold. With steady growth every year since 2013 and more than £2bn of investment per annum since 2017, experts predict that the BTR pipeline could double to 200,000 units in the next two years.
The Internet of Things in Construction
In simple terms, IoT is a network of embedded sensors, meters, appliances and devices capable of sending and receiving data about changes to their current physical state and surrounding environment over the internet.
Off-Site Manufacture for Construction: Barriers to Uptake
In this report we explore the potentially disruptive growth of off-site manufacturing for construction and some of the barriers currently preventing its wider adoption. Given the broadly acknowledged benefits of off-site manufacturing, the question has to be addressed why is this not the norm?
New stores deliver retailers an average 12% uplift in online sales
Revo launches ‘Tomorrow’s World: Retail on the line’ omnichannel research report
A Bright Future for Retail
The demise of traditional shopping habits, the rise and rise of online, shrinking profits for department store operators, retailers seeking to renegotiate leases and developers rethinking their plans for shopping developments whilst business rates can be crippling are just some of the challenging factors that retail world faces.
Built Environment NextGen professionals tackle the housing crisis at LREF 2018
Watch the action unfold in the NextGen roundtable debate held at LREF 2018, discussing solutions to the London housing crisis.