hub North Scotland

Balfour Beatty reaches milestone on £47m Lochside Academy

The completed Lochside Academy in Aberdeen

Balfour Beatty has successfully completed construction works to the new £47 million Lochside Academy in Aberdeen.

As part of the works, the firm was charged with the design and construction of a new teaching and sports facility, 3G sports pitch and associated car parking facilities. Over 1,300 pupils and teachers from Torry and Kincorth Secondary Schools will join together to form the new school.

Balfour Beatty was appointed as main contractor for Lochside Academy in 2016, following close collaboration with Aberdeen City Council and hub North Scotland during the preconstruction phase to provide the most cost-effective and high-quality design solution.

Reaching this major milestone will allow the council to begin fit-out works to ensure the school is ready to receive pupils ahead of the new academic year.

Iain Lumsden, managing director of Balfour Beatty’s North Scotland Delivery Unit, said: “We are delighted to hand Lochside Academy over to hub North Scotland, providing students, teachers and the local community with a first class educational facility that will significantly enhance the learning experience of students.

“This marks the second school that Balfour Beatty has successfully handed over to hub North Scotland on time and to budget since we were appointed as  the main ‘tier 1’ contractor in 2016.“

hub North Scotland chief executive, Michael Padzinski, said: “This is a fantastic new school which provides a modern environment for teaching and learning, along with great facilities for the broader community.

“The project has been developed and delivered through a collaborative approach by Aberdeen City Council and our construction delivery partner, Balfour Beatty.”

Through the project, Balfour Beatty made a significant and sustainable contribution to the local economy, engaging with the local supply chain and providing numerous local employment and apprenticeship opportunities.

Inverurie Community Campus reaches financial close milestone

A £55 million finance deal for a state-of-the-art community campus in Inverurie has been agreed as the project moves to the next phase.

Construction of the facility, which will replace the existing Inverurie Academy, will be led by hub North Scotland after it was appointed as development partner by Aberdeenshire Council.

Robertson Construction has been appointed as the projects main contractor with FES FM as the facilities FM Service provider.

On completion, the new Community Campus will provide:

  • Replacement of the existing Inverurie Academy, Inverurie Swimming Pool and Garioch Community Centre on the existing site which will provide state of the art teaching accommodation for 1600 learners;
  • New accommodation for the existing St Andrews Special School with dedicated external teaching space;
  • Community accommodation including a 6 lane swimming pool, hydrotherapy pool, training pool, dry sports facilities, community cafe, and access to shared Campus spaces;
  • External facilities including an all-weather pitch, MUGA and external play area;
  • Car and bus parking together with demolition of existing facilities.

Preparatory work has already commenced on site, with full construction works now set to follow the first phase of the new facility is due to be completed early 2020.

Morrison Construction opens doors to £26m Campbeltown Grammar

It was a historic occasion in Argyll and Bute on Wednesday when secondary pupils from across Kintyre moved into the new £26 million Campbeltown Grammar School built by Morrison Construction.

Welcomed to their new surroundings by two pipers, pupils were gathered in the multi-purpose sports hall where acting head teacher Catherine Cameron greeted them.

Ms Cameron said: “By bringing the best of what we already are as a school and adding to this our ambition to maximise the potential of our wonderful new school facility to achieve the highest standards in teaching, learning and attainment, we can make Campbeltown Grammar the excellent school that our young people and our community deserve.”

The three-storey school has capacity to cater for up to 500 pupils and will provide young people with a modern learning environment fit for the 21st century. Outside, it will also feature a 3G sports pitch, music pavilion and large car park on the site of the existing 1960s school buildings, once they are demolished.

Argyll and Bute Council’s policy lead for education, Councillor Yvonne McNeilly, said: “Today is a very special day for the young people of Kintyre. This wonderful new school will enable pupils to realise their full potential and enjoy a learning experience where they can succeed.

“Our vision is that together we will realise ambition, excellence and equality for all, and we want to equip our young people to secure and sustain positive destinations and achieve success in life – this wonderful new state-of-the-art facility will help us to do that and will pupils for years to come.

Morrison Construction project director, Jeff Hedley, added: “It was wonderful to see pupils and teachers begin to move into their new school. Works will now progress to the next phase of the project, demolishing the old school.

“Campbeltown Grammar School is the second of four education facilities we will deliver for Argyll and Bute Council and hub North Scotland. Last November pupils and teachers moved into Kirn Primary School, Oban High School is the next facility due to be completed this spring and excellent progress is being made on the site of Dunoon Primary School.”

Michael Padzinski, chief executive at hub North Scotland, said: “This fantastic and much needed new school is testament to the effective collaboration and positive working partnership between Argyll and Bute Council, hub North Scotland and our supply chain. Hub North Scotland looks forward to the continued Partnership with Argyll and Bute Council, and to seeing the benefits that this long term partnership will deliver.”

Council takes possession of £55m Shetland high school and halls of residence

Anderson High School -FinalThe new £55.75 million Anderson High School and Halls of Residence has been handed over to Shetland Islands Council by hub North Scotland.

The state-of-the-art facilty set by the Loch of Clickimin in Lerwick has been delivered by Morrison Construction.

Michael Padzinski, chief executive of hub North Scotland, said: “We are delighted to have been part of the delivery of this first-class community school and Halls of Residence, which represents a significant investment for education and the community by Shetland Islands Council.

“These excellent facilities will provide a strong focal point for the local community and more importantly provide the pupils and staff with an exciting modern environment within which they can thrive, serving generations of Islanders for years to come.”

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Mark Boden, chief executive of Shetland Islands Council, added: “This is a landmark day for Shetland. The council has realised the aspiration of many years and delivered a state of the art modern school. It will provide an ideal learning environment for Shetland’s children, and give school staff the best possible opportunity to deliver first class education.

“This has been the council’s biggest building project, with the construction contract costing £55.75m. I want to pay tribute to the many organisations and hundreds of individuals who have contributed to the project; every single person’s contribution was vital and is appreciated.

“The new Anderson High School is a monument to the vision and determination of the councillors who made it happen.”

The first pupils are set to arrive at the new school and halls of residence after the October break. Open days are also being planned to give all the residents of Shetland an opportunity to see their new school.

Balfour Beatty appointed tier 1 contractor for Highland hospitals

Maxim 7 Balfour Beatty 1hub North Scotland has appointed Balfour Beatty as the main ‘tier 1’ contractor for NHS Highland’s proposed new hospitals in Aviemore and Broadford.

The announcements follow other recent key milestones for the new hospitals with the appointment of the design team and the submission of the pre-planning applications.

As a ‘tier 1’ supplier for hub North Scotland, Balfour Beatty International (North Scotland) will work alongside the project’s design consultants – architectural firms Oberlanders based in Edinburgh and Portree-based Rural Design – who were appointed in June, in conjunction with engineering design firms Waterman Group and Rybka.

The hospitals for Badenoch and Strathspey and for Skye, Lochalsh and South West Ross are being produced by hub North Scotland as part of a £30 million design, build, finance and maintain contract for NHS Highland which will see both projects ‘bundled’ to deliver best value.

NHS Highland’s head of estates, Eric Green, said: “NHS Highland is delighted to be working with Balfour Beatty on these exciting projects. We look forward to delivering high-quality facilities that the communities of Badenoch and Strathspey and Skye, Lochalsh and South West Ross can be proud of.

“Balfour Beatty have shown a desire to engage communities proactively to ensure that we can maximise the local benefits of these substantial investments during construction and through to operations.”

NHS Highland’s deputy directions of operations for the health board’s Inner Moray Firth operational unit, Georgia Haire, said: “The appointment of Balfour Beatty as the main contractor is another milestone in this project for the Badenoch and Strathspey community.

“Design work for the new Community Hospital is underway, with initial design ideas on display at a public drop in event on Thursday, 5th September. This event is being held in the Aviemore Community centre from 3.30pm-7.30pm and technical representatives will be on hand to answer any queries.”

hub North Scotland’s chief executive, Michael Padzinski, added: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with NHS Highland to develop and deliver these important new facilities for the communities they serve.”

Both hospitals form part of wider redesigns across Badenoch and Strathspey and in Skye, Lochalsh and South West Ross. In Badenoch and Strathspey, the redesign will see the eventual closures of Ian Charles Community Hospital in Grantown-on-Spey and St Vincent’s Hospital in Kingussie.

Meanwhile, the arrangements on Skye will see a new, modern integrated health and social care ‘hub’ in Broadford and a ‘spoke’ facility in Portree with all the inpatient services provided from the ‘hub’.

Snagging works continue at delayed Wick Campus

Wick Community Campus (pic from Ryder Architecture)

Wick Community Campus (pic from Ryder Architecture)

Snagging works are continuing at the much-delayed Wick Campus project in the Highlands.

The £48.5 million development, which includes a new High School, Newton Park Primary School, and community facilities, was originally set for completion in 2014.

However, the project has been plagued by number of issues and delays. Despite pupils finally moving into the facility at the end of April, concerns have been raised over the facility’s design and construction.

In a letter to the Wick Stakeholder Group, Wick High School Parent Council and Newton Park Primary School Parent Council, the Highland Council stated: “As stakeholders will be aware, the council deferred the opening date of the new Campus to ensure there was sufficient time for the council to commission the various systems within the building, undertaken checks and inspections, and ensure that the building was operationally safe and ready before opening.

“The Campus has been handed over to the council by hub North Scotland and Morrison Construction, following a very thorough and robust inspection and certification regime throughout the construction period. Part of that process includes expert assessment, independent of the council and hub/Morrison.”

In the letter, the council outlined a description of the process leading to facility handover:

  • Highland Council had its own Clerk of Works regularly on site during construction to review and monitor quality of work, and health and safety
  • Morrison Construction undertook their own quality, health, safety and environmental reviews
  • Regular monthly project review meetings took place on-site, including Highland Council, hub and Morrison’s staff
  • An independent structural engineer’s assessment was commissioned by Highland Council
  • Additional site visits and inspections by council engineering staff have taken place in relation to mechanical and electrical systems pre and post-handover
  • An independent assessment and certification of the facility was a formal part of the facility handover process
  • A statutory inspection of the works by Building Control to ensure the building is safe for occupation in line with the Scottish Building Technical Standards
  • Identification of building snagging matters is undertaken by Hub, Morrison’s and Highland Council staff, and all logged within a common system
  • The Highland Council has review and sign-off of all snagging works prior to closure of such items as complete
  • Highland Council officers were on site to witness commissioning and testing of mechanical and electrical systems prior to opening of the facility

The council added the discovery of a ‘deflected’ steel beam saw the local authority commission its own independent engineer’s assessment to provide assurance and the beam was subsequently replaced. In addition, the engineer’s provided assurance over a ‘cracked’ concrete staircase on the campus, as well as scaffolding which was photographed underneath the stairs.

The local authority added: “As a result of the recent Sauna fire, the council and Facilities Management provider moved quickly to address the immediate damage and in liaison with High Life Highland bring leisure facilities back into safe use at the earliest opportunity. It has been agreed that an independent investigation will be undertaken to understand the cause of the fire.

“We trust that this letter provides assurance regarding the safety of the Campus facility, and provides some clarity around matters reported within the media.”

Contract signed for work to start on new Dunoon Primary

Dunoon Primary SchoolWork on a new Dunoon Primary School is about to get under way after Argyll and Bute Council signed a contract with project partners hub North Scotland Ltd and Morrison Construction.

The project will see a major refurbishment of the historic Victorian building as well as the building of a brand new wing.

Catering for a capacity for up to 300 pupils and 30 early learning and childcare places, the new Dunoon Primary School will see the refurbishment of the existing west wing (phase one) and the demolition of the current east wing (phase two).

A brand new east wing will be constructed to include a family centre, gym hall, library, early learning and childcare centre, and staff accommodation and will be linked with the refurbished west wing by a feature staircase.

Approximately £10 million is being invested in the school, with half coming from the council and the remainder coming in support from the Scottish Government.

The school will remain open during the refurbishment and building work.

Policy lead for education, Councillor Yvonne McNeilly, said: “I am delighted that we are now able to take this massive step forward with our plans for Dunoon Primary School.

“It is the council’s ambition to make Argyll and Bute a place people choose to live, learn, work and do business and very much part of that vision is making sure your youngest residents have the very best start in life.

“Getting the Dunoon Primary project off the ground is another major milestone in our commitment to delivering new schools fit for the 21st century.

“I look forward to seeing the new building take shape over the months to come. Along with our forthcoming new school at Kirn, plus the replacement Campbeltown Grammar and Oban High, it’s an exciting time for the provision of first-class education in Argyll and Bute.”

Work will start this month and is scheduled for completion in spring 2019.

hub North Scotland welcomes new chief executive

Andrew Richmond (left) and Michael Padzinski

Andrew Richmond (left) and Michael Padzinski

hub North Scotland Ltd has welcomed Michael Padzinski as its new chief executive.

A Chartered Engineer (Civil Engineer) who has a strong background in PFI, BSF, DBFO, Alliance and Partnering projects, Michael is a highly effective and successful business strategist, organisation leader and operations expert.

He has held senior roles in consultancy and construction companies over the last 25 years, leading major development projects in both the private and public sectors.

Established in 2011, hub North Scotland has been at the forefront of the hubco model’s implementation throughout the country. The organisation covers an expansive territory stretching from the southern tip of Aberdeenshire on the east coast to the islands of Orkney and Shetland in the north, Argyll to the south and the Western Isles.

Chairman Andrew Richmond said: “We are delighted to welcome Michael to the business. The hub North Scotland Board is sure that this appointment will see continued growth in the coming months and years ahead under Michael’s leadership.”

Scotland-wide hub programme supporting over 9,000 construction jobs

East Lothian Community Hospital

East Lothian Community Hospital

The value of community-based facilities under construction across the Scotland-wide hub programme has reached £1.16 billion and is supporting over 9,000 jobs, figures published today by the Scottish Futures Trust (SFT) have revealed.

Within the hub programme, nearly 40 schools are under construction along with several community health facilities and care homes.

Major projects being built include:

  • East Lothian Community Hospital in Haddington – £69m
  • Anderson High School in Lerwick – £55m
  • Stirling Care Village – £36m
  • Waid Academy in Anstruther – £24m
  • Largs Academy – £43m
  • Barrhead High School – £23m

SFT leads on the delivery of the hub programme which operates across five geographical territories in Scotland.

In each territory, the local authorities, NHS boards and other participating public bodies have teamed up with a private sector partner to form a joint venture company known as a hubCo that develops and delivers a diverse pipeline of community infrastructure projects.

hub SFT March 2017To date, over 100 projects have been completed which are providing new and inspiring environments for the benefit of communities.

David MacDonald, hub programme director at SFT, said: “The hub programme is a unique way of delivering best-value community facilities that provides the public sector with a quick and efficient way of getting their projects into construction.

“Integral to the hub programme are community benefits. So far, 153 new graduates and over 770 new apprenticeship and trainee positions have been created which represents a considerable contribution to the skill-base supporting Scotland’s economic development.”

Delay-hit Wick Campus handed over to Highland Council

Wick Community Campus (pic from Ryder Architecture)

Wick Community Campus (pic from Ryder Architecture)

A much-delayed £48.5 million school campus in the Highlands has finally been handed over to the local authority.

Highland Council confirmed to stakeholders that the Wick Campus has been completed by hub North Scotland and Morrison Construction.

At a turf cutting ceremony in 2014 marking the start of construction on the Wick Joint Campus it was said the site would open in the summer of 2016.

But since then the council’s contractor has on several occasions had to push back the completion date.

In a statement, the council said: “The building is not as yet operational, and there are a number of outstanding works to be completed.

“The post-handover period will see commissioning, snagging and other work take place, prior to the council commencing decant into the new buildings and confirming the building as operationally ready.”

A stakeholder group meeting on 31 January is proposed to provide further update.