Building Briefs – August 21st

Forth Bridge UNESCOUNESCO plaque unveiled for the Forth Bridge

Transport minister Humza Yousaf has unveiled a plaque to commemorate the awarding of World Heritage Status to the Forth Bridge – the first of the three bridges which spans three centuries of history across the Firth of Forth.

Construction of the Forth Bridge began in 1882 and was completed in 1890. 125 years later, in July 2015, the Bridge was awarded World Heritage status, confirming this historic structure’s well-deserved iconic status and providing international recognition to a masterpiece of engineering. The unveiling of the plaque recognises this honour at a time when the people of Scotland are about to welcome the Queensferry Crossing and reflect on the rich history of the Forth Bridges.

The task of overseeing the maintenance of Scotland’s newest World Heritage Site falls to the Forth Bridges Forum, whose members include bridge owners Network Rail, Historic Environment Scotland, Transport Scotland, City of Edinburgh Council, Fife Council and Visit Scotland.

Through the Forum, they share a collective responsibility to protect and monitor the ‘outstanding universal value’ of the Bridge, and to promote it to as wide an audience as possible, both in Scotland and across the world.


Sibbald Training named finalist in VIBES Scottish Environment Business Awards 2017

Sibbald Training has been selected as finalists in two business categories for the VIBES Scottish Environmental Business Awards 2017.

The VIBES – Scottish Environmental Business Awards encourages businesses across Scotland to increase their sustainability and reduce impact on the environment.

The awards emphasise that an environmentally efficient business can result in significant benefits such as financial savings and enhanced competitiveness.

The training providers were shortlisted for the awards due to the installation of electric car charging stations, ground source heat pumps and solar panels at their headquarters in West Lothian. Other efforts included erecting a wind turbine and promoting recycling within the workplace.

The winners of the Scottish Environmental Business Awards are due to be announced on November 15.


Edinburgh housing development ‘on track’ for February completion

An Edinburgh housing development that will provide accommodation for up to 106 people has marked one year since breaking ground and beginning construction.

The £4.9 million Fleming Place site, under construction by J Smart & Company in partnership with Bield Housing and Care, is on track to be completed in February 2018.

Interior works are well underway as the building is now completely wind and water tight with many apartments progressing as far as the decorating stage. Externally, renders and brickworks are complete with scaffolding being removed while internal joiner, electrical and plumber second fix works are approaching 50% completion.

The properties will provide tenants with the high quality features typical of the care and housing provider’s properties. With a focus on being ‘barrier free’ with level access shower rooms and enhanced security, the apartments will offer the highest level of independent living in line with Bield’s ‘Free to Be’ ethos.

Located on the site of the former Eastern General Hospital, the Fleming Place development will create 40 apartments for people aged 50 and over.


Galliford Try to start work at Orkney school hostel

Galliford Try is to begin repair works at Papdale Halls of Residence in Kirkwall.

Scaffolding is being erected ahead of work to replace fascia, soffit and barge boards fitted on the facility.

To minimise disruption for hostel residents, the work will be carried out while pupils are at school.

The scheme is being carried out by Galliford Try as the company is responsible for the design build and maintenance of the facilities, which were developed as part of Orkney Islands Council’s Schools Investment Programme.


Sale of Green Investment Bank complete

The UK government has sold the Green Investment Bank (GIB) to Macquarie Group for £2.3 billion.

The Edinburgh-based GIB will now become home to a new revenue-generating business, as well as providing services to the green energy portfolios of both Macquarie and GIB in the UK.

In addition, the deal ensures all the taxpayer funding invested in GIB since its creation, including set-up costs, has been returned with a gain of approximately £186 million.


Milestone reached on £120m East Ayrshire water infrastructure upgrade

A major milestone has been reached on a £120 million water mains improvement project in East Ayrshire.

Contractor Caledonia Water Alliance (CWA) are working to improve the region’s water supply network by installing more than 30 miles of new water mains to connect the Bradan water supply network to the network served by the Milngavie and Balmore water treatment works, north of Glasgow. Once finished, the investment will allow Scottish Water to transfer water from Glasgow to Ayrshire, and vice-versa if required.

As part of the project, CWA have successfully diverted a short stretch of the Craufurdland Water near Kilmarnock to enable them to install the water main beneath the river bed.

A 60 metre stretch of the permanent riverbed near Craufurdland Castle was allowed to run dry before workers could excavate and install the 900mm steel pipeline.

The work, which took about five days to complete, involved the excavation of a temporary channel which needed to be wide enough and deep enough to carry the volume of water that naturally flows along the watercourse. The channel was lined with a plastic sheeting to prevent the banks scouring away and to prevent any siltation of the downstream watercourse. In addition, straw bales and one tonne builders’ bulk bags filled with gravel acted as a barrier to redirect the watercourse in to the new channel that was excavated so that the water flow passed around the working area.

Once completed, the new and expanded network will enable Scottish Water to provide customers with greater security of supply and to respond more effectively to operational issues such as burst water mains and minimise disruption to customers.

The construction of the new strategic water main is expected to be completed in 2020.


Repair works to start on cemetery wall in West Lothian

Work is to start on a wall repairs project at a cemetery in Bathgate.

The structure at Glasgow Road Cemetery is being repaired following defects identified during a condition inspection. Works will take around eight weeks to complete.

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