Building Briefs – November 24th

Brandon_Parade_EastMotherwell town centre projects shortlisted for competition

Three project proposals on how to redevelop a town centre in North Lanarkshire have been shortlisted in a design competition.

A week-long public consultation, organised by Planning Aid Scotland and North Lanarkshire Partnership, helped to develop the ideas for Motherwell town centre.

The Future Town Design Competition was organised by Scotland’s Towns Partnership.

The shortlisted projects are:

• Creating a performance space within the Merry Street precinct.

• Redesigning the public space next to the health centre and shops on Windmillhill Street to provide a green space for activities and along with a green gym.

• Transforming a flat roof at Motherwell Shopping Centre/Brandon Court into a first floor garden for residents of the adjacent tower block.

To vote for your preferred design, click here.


Marischal Square ‘right on time’ with 116-week project

The £107 million Marischal Square regeneration scheme in Aberdeen was yesterday said to be running right on schedule.

The Muse and Aviva project, at the former St Nicholas House complex, is to include two office buildings, a hotel, and seven restaurants and bars.

Last night, a spokesman for Muse confirmed everything was going to plan.

He said: “The Morgan Sindall construction team on site are right on schedule on the 116-week construction programme for Marischal Square.

“There are 85 people working on site at the moment on the remaining foundations and underground car park activity.

“It will be early in the new year before the public in Aberdeen will be able to see the granite, concrete and steelwork rising out of the ground as part of the construction process around the office, hotel and barrestaurant space available at Marischal Square.”

It is scheduled to open in the summer of 2017.


Aberdeen primary school receives £1.6m extension

A new £1.6 million extension to a primary school in Aberdeen has been officially opened.

The development at Insch Primary School was unveiled during a ceremony on Friday, 20 November.

Work on the project started in March this year.

Morrison Construction carried out the works, which included four new classrooms, breakout spaces, staff/pupil toilets, entrance vestibule, circulation space, a small office and additional stores.


Construction activity slows in Q3 but continued growth forecast

The Construction Products Association expects further growth for the construction industry, although the latest forecast reflects a downward revision since the summer owing to a slowdown in third quarter housing and commercial activity.

Construction output is expected to increase 3.6 per cent and 3.8 per cent in 2015 and 2016, respectively, revised down from 4.9 per cent and 4.2 per cent in the Summer Forecast.

The slowdown in Q3 activity is expected to be temporary and construction output is expected to rise by 19.7 per cent between 2015 and 2019, driven by growth in the three largest construction sectors; private housing, commercial and infrastructure.


Upgrading of streetlights across Perth and Kinross

Starting in December, Perth & Kinross Council will commence a 10 year programme to upgrade all of the street lighting across the area to energy efficient LED lanterns.

The council operates 25,000 street lighting lanterns; a new project to replace all of these with new efficient lanterns will realise savings in terms of both cost and CO2 emissions. The life expectancy of these modern LED lanterns is estimated to be 20 years, as opposed to the 4 years of the current older style ones.

The first areas to be targeted by the upgrading project will be all of the main traffic routes across the area, which currently consume the highest wattage and will allow for significant savings in the coming years. The project aims to replace 250 lanterns per month.


Gym plan for former hostel in Melrose

A former youth hostel in the Borders could become home to a pay-as-you-go gym, offices and artists’ studios.

Priorwood, on the outskirts of Melrose, would be transformed under the plans drawn up by house builder Rural Renaissance.

The red sandstone building has 22 bedrooms, five reception rooms and six bathrooms over four floors.

In plans submitted to Scottish Borders Council, Rural Renaissance claim its project would secure a viable future for the property, which dates from about 1815.

It said the development could create employment in the area, and the studios could ensure that artists and designers remain in the region.


Councillors pass plans for solar farm near Glenrothes

Central Fife can expect its first solar farm after councillors approved plans for a major project near Glenrothes.

A five-megawatt complex, capable of powering in the region of 1,500 homes, has been approved for construction at Strathore Road, on the outskirts of Thornton.

Proposals for several solar farms, also known as photovoltaic (PV) farms, have already been approved in north-east Fife.

This development, proposed by West Strathore Solar Ltd, is believed to be the first of its kind in central Fife, while further projects have already been proposed at other sites in and around the Thornton area.

The site, measuring just over seven hectares, could operate for up to 25 years.


Bilfinger GVA trio make the grade

Three of Bilfinger GVA’s most recent graduate appointments are celebrating after they passed their APC at the first time of asking.

Louise Bell (Building Consultancy, Glasgow), Callum MacDonald (Business Space, Glasgow) and Derek Reid (Valuation team, Edinburgh) all completed the process which now allows them to gain chartered (MRICS) status.

To achieve this qualification, participants must have at least two years relevant work experience before completing a 3,000 word critical analysis of a case they were directly involved in. This critical analysis then forms a 10 minute presentation on assessment day where a panel of three qualified chartered surveyors ask questions on this as well as the candidate’s general expertise. If successful, participants can call themselves Chartered and have MRICS after their name.


£70K needed to refurbish ‘iconic’ Dundee bandstand

A community group aiming to restore one of Dundee’s “iconic” landmarks to its former glory will need to raise at least £70,000, it has been revealed.

The Friends of Magdalen Green want to refurbish the dilapidated bandstand in the West End park as well as adding electricity.

The bandstand was built in 1890 and is immortalised by the 20th Century paintings of James McIntosh Patrick.

The structure plays host to Sunday performances by brass bands during the summer months and an electric supply would help, as well as providing lighting at night.


Young apprentice builds a career with Persimmon

Jeff Fairburn & Ian Brown
Jeff Fairburn & Ian Brown

A talented young graduate has been named Persimmon Homes’ Young Achiever of the Year, earning himself a £2,000 prize.

Site manager Ian Brown, from East Kilbride, beat off competition from hundreds of other apprentices and graduates across the country to be announced as this year’s overall winner.

The 23-year-old was described as a “real asset to the team” by his director, Alan Prickett.

Ian studied construction management at Glasgow Caledonian University prior to joining Persimmon Homes West Scotland as a graduate site manager and was promoted to the role of site manager with his own site on April 2015.


Resurfacing works taking place along A77

Resurfacing works are taking place along the A77 at Carlock Hill, Scotland TranServ has announced.

The resurfacing programme is being carried out on behalf of Transport Scotland.

The works at Carlock Hill will last until 4pm today, 23 November.

Further resurfacing will take place at Torrisdale from 8am to 4pm between 24 – 27 November.

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