Scottish Futures Trust

Balfour Beatty signs £55m Forth Valley College construction contract

The New Falkirk Campus is due to commence construction this year

The new Falkirk campus is due to commence construction this year

Balfour Beatty is to deliver the final phase of construction work to the new £55 million Falkirk campus of Forth Valley College.

The infrastructure group will be responsible for the construction of the 20,709 square metre Science and Engineering campus and its associated facilities in Grangemouth, which on completion will become the Forth Valley College headquarters and house over 2,000 full-time students.

The search for a contractor to build the campus began in December last year when the full business case was approved by the Scottish Government and the Scottish Funding Council. The £83m facility will be located on the college’s former Middlefield site on Grangemouth Road and will include modern, flexible and technology-enabled spaces and will boast industry standard workshops, laboratories and classrooms.

The state-of-the-art campus will also have a Learning Resource Centre, food outlets, hair and beauty salons, conference space and sports facilities. In addition, the campus will be built with sustainability in mind and is aspiring to achieve a BREEAM rating of very good or excellent.

Architectural firm Reiach and Hall, which also designed the College’s new Alloa and Stirling campuses, has been appointed to design the new campus. Other key partners include the Scottish Government, Scottish Funding Council, Scottish Futures Trust and AECOM.

falkirk-campus-signingBalfour Beatty said it has utilised a range of its in-house capabilities, including mechanical and electrical engineering expertise and specialist geotechnical knowledge to meet the project’s requirements and provide the client with an integrated, sustainable design.

Hector Macaulay, managing director of Balfour Beatty’s regional business in Scotland, said: “This is another great win for our business in Scotland, and we are delighted to be able to provide over 2,000 students in Falkirk with a stimulating and exciting study environment.

“Throughout the project lifecycle, we will work closely with a variety of key community stakeholders including the Polmont Young Offenders Institution, Forth Valley Community Focus and The Engineering Trust to drive further benefit and deliver on our added social value promises.”

Works are due to commence this Autumn, and at construction peak will employ over 250 individuals including 18 apprenticeship positions and opportunities for 10 long term unemployed people.

New income guarantee scheme launched to boost investment in housing

Edinburgh Fountainbridge build to rent

A Build to Rent scheme being delivered in Fountainbridge, Edinburgh

Housing minister Kevin Stewart has announced the launch of the UK’s first Rental Income Guarantee Scheme (RIGS) to support investment in private rented housing.

Developed in consultation with the sector, the scheme aims to reduce some of the risk that investors see in the emerging Build to Rent market, with potential to attract £0.5 billion of investment and support delivery of around 2,500 new, high quality private rented homes.

RIGS guarantees 50% of any gap between actual and projected rental income of a development which will provide greater certainty of rental income to investors and landlords during the initial years of letting.

Mr Stewart said: “RIGS is a unique scheme, which will boost this emerging sector. As the first of its kind in the UK, the Scottish Government is clearly demonstrating our commitment to the private housing sector.

“This scheme will help deliver new, high quality private rented homes for tenants, which are modern, energy efficient and professionally managed. And it does so in a way that provides assurances for investors, while ensuring good commercial practice and the incentive for investors to let these homes.

“RIGS is just one part of our More Homes approach to increase housing across all tenures. It can deliver potential investment of £0.5 billion, building 2,500 new homes, along with wider economic benefits. And it clearly shows that Scotland is open for business.”

Nicola Barclay, chief executive of Homes for Scotland, which led a Scottish Government commissioned project on how to expand the Build to Rent sector, said: “The announcement of the Rental Income Guarantee Scheme will provide investors with greater confidence during the early stages of development, when letting risk is likely to be highest and is just one of the levers the Scottish Government has put in place to help boost a tenure which has such an important part to play in meeting the diverse housing needs of our growing population.

“As well as the significant investment and development opportunities on offer, expanding build-to-rent will help increase choice, flexibility and affordability for tenants.  Most importantly, perhaps, it also has the ability to transform customer experience of the private rented sector through the delivery of new high-quality, purpose-built and professionally-managed accommodation.”

Barry White, chief executive of the Scottish Futures Trust who will manage the scheme, said: “The launch of RIGS has sent out a clear message which demonstrates Scottish Government’s commitment to the Build to Rent sector as an important way to deliver much-needed quality housing.”

Government releases £28m tranche of ‘Schools for the Future’ funding

(from left) Back row: Depute Head Boy Tom Balderston and Skye Patterson of the Jedburgh Grammar senior hockey side. Middle row: Greig Jamieson of hub South East Scotland; Jedburgh Grammar Headteacher Susan Oliver; Councillor Carol Hamilton, Scottish Borders Council's executive member for children and young people; Martin Cooper of BAM Construction. Front row: Harry Brown, Jedburgh Head Boy; Deputy First Minister John Swinney, Scottish Borders Council's convenor Councillor David Parker and Jedburgh Grammar Head Girl Kira Renilson

(from left) Back row: Depute Head Boy Tom Balderston and Skye Patterson of the Jedburgh Grammar senior hockey side. Middle row: Greig Jamieson of hub South East Scotland; Jedburgh Grammar Headteacher Susan Oliver; Councillor Carol Hamilton, Scottish Borders Council’s executive member for children and young people; Martin Cooper of BAM Construction. Front row: Harry Brown, Jedburgh Head Boy; Deputy First Minister John Swinney, Scottish Borders Council’s convenor Councillor David Parker and Jedburgh Grammar Head Girl Kira Renilson

A £28 million investment will be shared between four new schools as part of the fifth phase of the Scottish Government’s £1.8 billion ‘Schools for the Future’ programme.

The new projects will see Jedburgh Intergenerational Campus replace Jedburgh Grammar School, Parkside and Howdenburn Primary Schools, in the Scottish Borders and Sighthill Community Campus replace St Stephen’s Primary School and St Kevin’s Primary School in Glasgow.

Underbank Primary School and Walston Primary School in South Lanarkshire will also be replaced.

The funding will take the overall number of schools being delivered to 116 and benefit over 60,000 pupils across Scotland.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney made the announcement during a visit to Jedburgh, where proposals for the new intergenerational campus include sports facilities and a community hub, alongside education provision for two to 18 year olds.

Mr Swinney said: “We originally aimed to build or refurbish 55 schools across Scotland at the outset of the programme in 2009 and have now more than doubled that commitment.

“These new buildings will provide children and young people with inspiring learning environments and some also include facilities for wider community benefit and use that will be enjoyed by generations to come.

“The projects are also a welcome boost to the local economy, creating apprenticeship opportunities for young people and construction jobs across the country.”

According to Mr Swinney, the £28m has become available due to the Scottish Futures Trust’s (SFT) monitoring of the programme budget and contingency, enabling more schools to be built for the same government funding.

Gemma Boggs, education delivery director at the Scottish Futures Trust, said:  “We’re absolutely delighted that by careful management of the budget and programme, four more schools are to be built from the existing programme budget.

“This will benefit 1,000 more pupils and will take them out of poor condition schools and allow them to learn in well-designed, fit-for-purpose schools aligned to modern teaching methods.”

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The Jedburgh campus is to be located in land at Hartrigge Park, subject to planning permission being granted. Work is due to start in Spring 2018 and is expected to last 18 to 24 months.

The project will see Scottish Borders Council team up with development partner hub South East Scotland, while BAM Construction have been announced as the appointed contractor.

Greig Jamieson, hub South East’s commercial director, said: “This is a major investment in education for our client, Scottish Borders Council, and we are delighted to be working in partnership to ensure its successful delivery.

“The new Jedburgh Campus will provide a modern learning experience, fit for the needs of all generations, and as we develop this exciting project, we look forward to ensuring that the community will benefit from investment in the local area.”

Martin Cooper, construction director at BAM Construction, added: “This is our first appointment by Hub South East since joining its supply chain earlier this year and we were absolutely delighted to be given the opportunity to bring our experience to their team on this state of the art learning campus that will be a massive asset to both Scottish Borders Council and the local community.”

Footage shows progress at new Borders school sites


A series of new videos and images have been issued to show the progress at a series of new school projects across the Borders.

Footage and photos from the sites of the new Broomlands and Langlee primaries and Kelso High give pupils, staff, parents and the community the chance to see how each facility is developing.

Videos of Langlee and Kelso are available at Scottish Borders Council’s YouTube Channel.

New photos of Broomlands and Langlee primaries, alongside previous images of Kelso High and Duns Primary, are available at SBC’s Flickr page.

Langlee Primary

The new £10m school is fast heading towards its opening, with an expected completion in summer 2017.

The new facility – which is adjacent to the current school building – will include 14 classrooms, sports hall, outdoor MUGA sports pitch, a centre for children with severe and complex additional support needs and provision for early learning and childcare.

Three new jobs have been created during construction by contractors McLaughlin and Harvey, while two unemployed people also received work experience on the site.

In addition, McLaughlin and Harvey hosted pupils from Langlee last year who received a safety tour of the site, while the company has engaged with Langlee Residents Association.

Kelso High

Work on the new school on the northern side of the town is still on course to be completed by autumn 2017.

The £22.5m project will have extensive sport facilities for students and the community to use as well as an eco-garden pond, orchard, allotment, outdoor classroom and arts and craft garden.

The school is being funded by the Scottish Government through the Scottish Futures Trust. It is being developed in partnership with Hub South East Scotland and its appointed contractor Morrison Construction.

Six new jobs have been created directly and indirectly thanks to the Kelso project, while Morrison have engaged with over 700 students at visits to Borders College and local schools. The site has also welcomed nine work experience placements for school pupils, college students and job centre clients.

Over 90 students and staff have also visited the Nethershot site from schools to learn more about the construction industry, while Morrison have engaged with Kelso Community Council in an effort to identify projects they could support.

Broomlands Primary

Broomlands Primary in Kelso will see 12 new classrooms, an early years centre, a new games hall/dining room and upgraded playground created.

Contractors McLaughlin and Harvey started work on the £9.7m school in October 2016 and are still on track to have the facility ready for pupils in 2018.

Duns Primary

The £8.6m project is on course to be completed in summer 2017.

SBC is working alongside development partner hub South East Scotland on the new school, which will see the primary school relocated to the former High School building, as well as the creation of a new Berwickshire Locality Support Centre.

The project is part funded by the Scottish Futures Trust, with Graham Construction contracted by Hub to carry out the work.

Six new jobs and six new and existing apprenticeships have already been created thanks to the Duns project, while Graham Construction has engaged with over 300 pupils in visits, as well as supporting four work experience placements.

An SBC spokesperson said: “These videos and images provide pupils, parents, staff and the local community with a great insight into how each new school is progressing.

“We have already seen the new Leader Valley additional needs school at Earlston open in February, and it is exciting to know that these four new schools will soon be providing new, modern facilities for our young people and communities.”

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.”

Work to start on new homes at historic Inverness College site

MidmillsThe demolition of all non-listed buildings at the Inverness College site at Midmills in the city centre is to begin next month to make way for more than 80 retirement homes.

Retirement home provider McCarthy & Stone, which acquired the site from Highland Council, will build 45 homes on the vacant site, with the local authority delivering 40 affordable retirement homes.

It’s estimated that 150 jobs will be created as a result of construction starting.

The remaining building on the site, the historic and listed Inverness Royal Academy, will be converted by Wasps Studios into a studio and art gallery for local artists.

The Scottish Futures Trust (SFT) has been working with the Scottish Funding Council and Inverness College to deliver best value and secure the most appropriate end use for the Midmills site that became surplus when the College relocated to its new, state-of-the-art facility on the Beechwood Campus in 2015.

Anna Tozer, strategic disposals manager at the Scottish Futures Trust, said: “Our role is to work with public sector bodies to help them sell sites in ways that not only deliver receipts to be reinvested in public services, but also secures the otherwise uncertain future of significant listed buildings.

“We’ve secured a very positive outcome for this site which ensures much-needed retirement homes will be built. Securing the architecturally significant Inverness Royal Academy building for the local community to use and enjoy as an art facility is a real bonus, helping safeguard its future.”

£15m investment boost for Fife and North Ayrshire infrastructure

Derek Mackay

Derek Mackay

Finance secretary Derek Mackay has confirmed a £15 million investment to develop infrastructure in the country.

Applications by Fife and North Ayrshire Councils, through the Tax Incremental Financing scheme (TIF), have been approved and the councils are now set to work with the Scottish Futures Trust on more detailed businesses cases.

The Fife application for £10m TIF investment is for the Fife Interchange distribution and business park development that would help to develop 22 hectares of land and is expected to provide leverage for private sector investment of £75m to £100m.

The £5m TIF funding in North Ayrshire Council will be used to construct roads and services within the i3 Irvine, Innovation and Industry Park, with the potential to facilitate up to 26 sq m of industrial buildings. The TIF is expected to bring wider economic benefits of around 400 additional jobs, securing existing jobs and investment in the new region and promoting the life sciences hub in Irvine.

TIF enables councils to fund infrastructure by borrowing against future business rates that are generated as a result of attracting more businesses into the area.

Mr Mackay said: “This investment in Fife and North Ayrshire will redevelop and regenerate the local areas, making them attractive places to do business, which will unlock significant economic development and regeneration.

“The TIF scheme is just one part of this government’s innovative approach to investing in infrastructure. Boosting capital spending is key to economic growth, supporting jobs, apprenticeships and helping the Scottish economy.”

Tony Rose, infrastructure director at the Scottish Futures Trust, added: “TIF as a mechanism provides another lever for local authorities to enable and deliver inclusive growth and secure additional levels of private sector investment.

“These two new TIF projects demonstrate great ambition and we look forward to working with the two local authorities to bring their visions to life for the benefit of the local communities.”

Contractor sought as £83m Falkirk Campus business case approved

new Falkirk CampusForth Valley College is looking for a contractor to build the New Falkirk Campus after the Scottish Government and the Scottish Funding Council approved the full business case for the £83 million project.

The estimated value of the main construction contract is £58m with the build anticipated to commence in September 2017, enabling the college to take occupation by October 2019.

The new state-of-the-art facility will be located on the college’s former Middlefield site on Grangemouth Road. It will include modern, flexible and technology-enabled spaces and will boast industry standard workshops, laboratories and classrooms.

The campus will also have a Learning Resource Centre, food outlets, hair and beauty salons, conference space and sports facilities. In addition, the campus will be built with sustainability in mind and is aspiring to achieve a BREEAM rating of very good or excellent.

Architectural firm Reiach and Hall, which also designed the College’s new Alloa and Stirling campuses, has been appointed to design the new campus.

Other key partners include the Scottish Government, Scottish Funding Council, Scottish Futures Trust and AECOM.

Forth Valley College principal, Dr Ken Thomson, said: “Now that the full business case has been approved, the green light has been given for us to put the plans out to procurement so we can begin the process of choosing who should build what will be a fantastic new campus, a wonderful learning environment and a legacy building that Falkirk and Scotland as a whole will be proud of.

“All going well we should be looking at work starting in September 2017 with a completion date in August 2019. Situated close to the inspirational and innovative Kelpies, the Helix Park and the Falkirk Stadium, the new Campus will also further enhance what has developed into one of Scotland’s most vibrant economic and cultural hubs.

“It really is exciting times for further education in the Forth Valley area and we are delighted to be leading the way and showing that we are living up to our dynamic and inspirational mission statement of Making Learning Work.”

Deputy First Minister and cabinet secretary for education and skills, John Swinney, said: “I am delighted that the new Falkirk campus for Forth Valley College has been approved and that ‎students and staff will get the new state-of-the-art facility they need and deserve.

“This government is committed ‎to providing excellent college facilities across the country to enable the delivery of high quality learning and training, with over £550m invested in the estate since 2007.”

John Kemp, interim chief executive of the Scottish Funding Council, said: “In just over six years Forth Valley College has been able to build new, state-of-the-art campuses in Alloa, Stirling and now Falkirk. Today’s announcement means that all of the college’s 14,500 students will soon be learning in modern and inspiring buildings. I am pleased SFC has been able to play a key role in making this happen.”

Chair appointed to the board of Scottish Futures Trust

Ian Russell

Ian Russell

Ian Russell has today been appointed as chair of Scottish Futures Trust (SFT).

Previously an executive director of Scottish Power Plc for 12 years, initially as finance director and then as chief executive, Mr Russell has held a number of non-executive positions in a variety of commercial and public sector organisations for the past 10 years.

Announcing the appointment cabinet secretary for finance and the constitution, Derek Mackay, said: “We are delighted to have secured the services of Ian Russell to lead the board of the Scottish Futures Trust, building on the good foundation laid by Sir Angus Grossart the current chair. Ian brings with him relevant experience and business acumen to lead SFT with vision to ensure our strategic objectives are met and deliver improved productivity and value for money from infrastructure investment in Scotland.”

SFT was established in 2008 to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of infrastructure investment in Scotland by working collaboratively with public bodies & industry, challenging conventional processes and devising pioneering, commercially attractive programmes which lead to better value-for-money and ultimately improved public services. SFT’s impact ranges from developing future digital options to affordable housing.

The appointment will last four years and run from 1 January 2017 to 31 December 2021.

Scottish Futures Trust’s infrastructure work adds ‘billions’ to economy

SFT positive impactsPublic infrastructure programmes undertaken by the Scottish Futures Trust (SFT) have delivered economic benefits worth billions of pounds, according to its annual report.

Results of the 7th annual review into the public infrastructure investment body’s performance across six key areas of public infrastructure including:

  • SFT home– secured 3,000 affordable-rent homes valued at over £300 million, through National Housing Trust partnerships and initiating the Local Affordable Rent (LAR) charity
  • SFT invest– unlocked £1 billion of economic investment, through leading Growth Accelerator and Tax Incremental Financing projects with local authorities across Scotland
  • SFT build– supported over 7,000 jobs, through delivery of schools, health centres and other public buildings under construction through the hub programme
  • SFT green– enabled 2.6 million tonnes of CO2 savings, through £337m of planned investment in LED street lighting following publication of SFT’s Street Lighting Toolkit
  • SFT place– saved the equivalent of eight football pitches of office space, by working with public sector partners to rationalise office space and adopt new flexible ways of working
  • SFT connect– established £13bn GDP benefit potential, by developing the roadmap and vision of Scotland becoming a world-class digital player.

In delivering these and other programmes, SFT estimates that it has delivered £146m savings and benefits over the past 12 months, as independently validated by The London School of Economics and accountancy firm Grant Thornton.

SFT is on course to reach the corporate objective of securing £500 – £750m of savings during the five-year corporate plan period, ending in March 2019.

Sir Angus Grossart, SFT’s chairman, said: “SFT’s strength lies in our ability to deliver, by taking informed decisions and challenging inertia. Central to our performance are the continuing strong strategic partnerships which we achieved across the public sector.”

SFT chief executive, Barry White, added: “We have secured the construction of 3,000 affordable-rent homes with 1,260 homes now occupied; we have pushed the value of first-class community facilities under construction through our hub programme to over £1bn which is supporting over 7,000 jobs and we have unlocked over £1bn of economic investment into Edinburgh and Dundee city centres though our Growth Accelerator programme.

“The economic and social impact of our work means we are securing employment, attracting investment and saving energy. These are just some of the many positive and tangible benefits SFT’s programmes of work are having across Scotland.

“By the end of this financial year, 20 more new schools will be open for pupils and local communities to use and enjoy and construction will have started on a further eight; 120,000 more energy efficient LED street lamps will have been installed and 200 more affordable-rent homes will be built and occupied.”