Building Briefs – September 24th

Belgrave PointSpeculative Bellshill industrial development

Developer J. Smart & Co. (Contractors) plc has started construction of a first phase 20,000 sq ft speculative industrial unit at Belgrave Point, Bellshill.

Due for completion in May 2016, the first phase is being marketed for lease by Colliers International and JLL.

Built to shell specification, the building will provide occupiers with the ability to tailor offices and staff welfare facilities to their ideal size and specification.

In addition to phase one, Belgrave Point also offers additional land to accommodate bespoke ‘build to suit’ requirements of up to 80,000 sq ft.


Details confirmed for Cockenzie Power Station demolition

The demolition of the twin chimney stacks at the former Cockenzie Power Station site is planned to take place at 12 noon on Saturday 26th September.

The controlled explosive demolition will be immediately followed by a second controlled explosion to bring down the turbine hall structure.

The demolition will be undertaken by Brown and Mason, who have successfully managed similar projects for ScottishPower in recent years at Inverkip Power Station and Methil Power Station.

An exclusion zone will be in place from 9am.


Hebridean Housing Partnership increases funding facility

Hebridean Housing Partnership (HHP) is to spend £20 million over the next five years after approving plans to increase its funding facility.

A meeting of HHP’s board earlier this month saw the organisation approve its spending plans for the next five years (2015–2020) following a successful negotiation with its funder the Royal Bank of Scotland.

David Blaney, chair of HHP, said that he is very pleased that HHP is committed to a strategy of growth.

Mr Blaney said: “HHP has invested a total of £55m in existing housing and new housing developments throughout the islands since Comhairle Nan Eilean Siar transferred its housing stock in 2006.

“We are now entering a new investment phase. Whilst HHP will continue to give priority in meeting the needs of its housing stock by spending £20 million over the next five year period on heating upgrades, windows, doors, new kitchens and bathrooms, we will also work with our key partners the Scottish Government and the Comhairle to deliver 30 new houses per annum over the same period.


Architects to draw upon 50 years of memories at Dundee reunion

A group of architects will return to their alma mater this Friday to celebrate the 50th anniversary of them starting their training.

Members of the 1965 architecture intake will meet at the front steps of Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee. Around 18 classmates are expected to attend the reunion, which will see them tour the college, now part of the University of Dundee, to see how it has changed in the half-century since they first nervously walked through the doors of the Perth Road building.

After meeting with Graeme Hutton, Professor of Architecture, Associate Dean and Head of Architecture + Planning at the University, the group will be given the chance to engage with current students undertaking a ‘Places in Dundee’ project.

Professor Hutton said: “We are delighted to welcome our architecture alumni back for this reunion. Not only will they have the chance to reminisce with old friends they may not have seen for years, they will also have the chance to see how architecture education has changed over the past 50 years, meet with today’s students and find out what makes us such a forward-thinking place to study architecture.”


Edinburgh’s Surgeons’ Hall Museums to reopen after £4m revamp

One of the UK’s oldest museums is to reopen to the public later following a £4m transformation.

Edinburgh’s Surgeons’ Hall Museums, which houses collections of anatomical specimens and artefacts, has been shut to visitors for 18 months.

The refurbishment - the first time the building has been radically altered since 1908 - has allowed bosses to double the number of items on show.

The museums are part of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.

The work was supported by a £2.7m grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.


Scottish rents fall month-on-month

Figures from the latest Scotland Buy-to-Let Index from Your Move have suggested that Scottish rents have fallen month-on-month for the first time since the start of the year, down 0.5 per cent to an average of £546 per month in Scotland.

This means the average monthly rent in Scotland has dropped £3 from its summer peak of £549 in July to stand at £546 in August 2015.

Rents in Glasgow and the Clyde experienced the biggest monthly drop in August, down 1.3 per cent since July, and growth also slowed on an annual basis, down from 2.8 per cent in July to a 1.7 per cent yearly rent rise in August.

However, tenant arrears are at a record high, with 12.2 per cent of all rent paid late last month.

The proportion of rent paid in arrears reached a record high in August, rising to 12.2 per cent of all rent due in the month. This has increased steeply from 9.6 per cent the previous month, and has also risen from rental arrears of 6.5 per cent in August 2014.


Moray Council to host flood risk roadshows

A series of roadshows are scheduled to take place to highlight the new flood risk management strategies in Moray.

The events, which begin later this month and continue into October, are to inform the public about new flooding strategies and local plans being developed across the region.

They form part of a national initiative to move away from reactive flood management to a plan-led, risk based approach set out in the Flood Risk Management (Scotland) Act 2009.

Members of the council’s flood team will attend the events to answer questions and provide further information, alongside representatives from partner organisations such as the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) and Scottish Water.

An online consultation was held by SEPA earlier this year.

It recorded responses to the flood risk management strategies which are expected to be approved by Scottish ministers.

The council is to now develop delivery plans that will show how the strategies will be implemented over the next five years.

Since a major flooding incident in 1997, five major flood schemes have been completed by the council.


West Dunbartonshire library to undergo £500,000 refurb

A library in West Dunbartonshire is to undergo a £500,000 refurbishment.

The 102-year-old Clydebank Library will be modernised and renovated, with structural work carried out on the roof, heating, ventilation, plumbing and electrics.

Interior refurbishment work to make the building more accessible will also be carried out.

The project is expected to go out for tender later this year.

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