Built Environment Networking Blog:

West Yorkshire vows to secure more devolved powers

West Yorkshire council leaders have pledged to “seize the moment” to secure more devolved powers for the Leeds city region, as all the main political parties wrestle with the devolution issue after Scotland narrowly rejected independence The chief executives of the six councils that formed the West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA) in April – Leeds, […]

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Reading’s success fuels development demand

Reading’s economic success in recent years is fuelling strong demand for development across all sectors, according to the town’s borough council. Councillor Tony Page, deputy leader of Reading Borough Council, told a Built Environment Networking Event on ‘Reading General Development Plans 2014’ at Reading’s Town Hall, that development investment was sorely needed. “There are major […]

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Broads planner outlines vision of high quality growth

The chief officer of the council covering one of Norwich’s key expansion zones has said the authority wants growth, but not at any cost. Broadland district council chief executive Phil Kirby delivered the opening keynote presentation at Built Environment Networking’s Norwich Development Plans seminar, which took place last Thursday (16th September) in the city. He […]

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Cardiff goes for greenfield growth

Cardiff is allocating 13,000 homes to green field sites in its latest local development plan in a bid to accommodate the booming Welsh capital’s rapid population growth, a senior planner has revealed. James Clemence, planning policy operational manager at Cardiff City Council, delivered the opening keynote speech at Built Environment Network’s Cardiff General Development Plans […]

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New eco-watchdog advocates eco-system planning

Wales’ environmental watchdog is urging developers and councils to work with it in delivering an integrated or eco-system approach to all aspects of the natural environment. Graham Hillier of Natural Resources Wales said: “We certainly want to encourage investment in Wales that supports the Welsh economy while enhancing and protecting Wales’ unique environment.” “We want […]

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Case study: Porth Teigr: a new model for waterfront regeneration

Porth Teigr is one of the last unfilled pieces in Cardiff’s waterfront regeneration jigsaw, according to Mark Hallett development director of Igloo. The company inherited a masterplan for the site from the Welsh Development Agency, drawn up by Sir Terry Farrell, with a big commercial development at the centre and a 4,500 space multi-storey car […]

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Manchester gets building to meet commercial demand

Developers are getting cracking with commercial developments in Greater Manchester to meet increasing demand from occupiers, according to four clients active in the region. Argent, Muse Developments, Bruntwood and Nikal told the Built Environment Networking event on ‘Manchester Major Development Plans 2014’ in Manchester Town Hall that they were each committing to commercial schemes in […]

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Undergraduate numbers rebound fuels confidence in student housing market

UK student accommodation has strong growth prospects but should not rest on its laurels as universities face increased competition for students from overseas countries, according to leading tertiary education residential experts. Speaking at the Built Environment Network’s student residential sector briefing, Campus Development Management executive director Rupert Wyard, pointed to recent UCAS figures showing that […]

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Southampton comes out of the shadows

The city of Southampton is pushing ahead with several major development schemes, putting the city firmly on property and construction firms’ radars, according to four major clients in the city. Dawn Baxendale, chief executive of Southampton City Council, told a Built Environment Networking Event on ‘Southampton General Development Plans 2014’ at the city’s Novotel, that […]

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Ambition returns to Leeds universities

Universities are more confident about investing in capital projects as the predicted volatility from the increase in student fees to £9,000 has failed to materialise, according to the University of Leeds. Steve Gilley, head of estates at the University of Leeds, told the Built Environment Networking event on ‘Leeds Universities and Colleges Development Plans 2014’ […]

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West Mids has ‘no choice but to embrace HS2

The West Midlands region has no choice but to embrace HS2 if it is to tackle its imminent rail capacity problems, Network Rail has warned. David Golding, principal strategic planner at Network Rail, told the Built Environment Networking event on ‘Birmingham’s Transport Development Plans 2014’ at Villa Park that the West Coast Mainline is “approaching […]

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Siemens helps power Humber Estuary revival

Growth prospects for the Humber Estuary economy are at their best for half a century, Lord Haskins of Skidby, chairman of the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), has said. Lord Haskins and two major clients in the region, Associated British Ports and Siemens, were addressing Built Environment Networking’s ‘Hull Major Developments 2014’ event at Hull’s […]

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PRS sector starts to rocket

The UK’s private rented residential (PRS) sector is gathering pace, with £500m of additional funding pumped into the market every month, according to GVA Financial Consulting. Andrew Screen, director and head of financial consulting at GVA, and four other PRS experts, shared their views on the PRS sector at a Built Environment Networking sector briefing […]

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Ambitious plans for the future of York

City of York Council (CYC) has pledged to be “more proactive” in kick-starting development work in the city. Katie Stewart, head of economic development at CYC, told a Built Environment Networking event on ‘York General Development Plans 2014’ at the city’s Guildhall that CYC will be “more proactive at working with industry”. Stewart said: “We […]

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Cambridge ‘held back’ by lack of housing and infrastructure

Inadequate housing and transport infrastructure is hampering Cambridge’s economic development, the University of Cambridge has warned. Professor Jeremy Sanders, pro-vice chancellor for institutional affairs at the University of Cambridge, told a Built Environment Networking event on ‘Cambridge General Development Plans 2014’ at the city’s Guildhall that more investment was needed in the city’s housing and […]

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Sheffield pushes on with £300m retail quarter plans

Sheffield City Council (SCC) will begin the procurement process for investors and developers this summer to kickstart its long-awaited £300m city centre retail quarter scheme, a senior council official has revealed. Nalin Seneviratne, SCC’s director of capital and major projects, told a Built Environment Networking event on ‘Sheffield General Development Plans 2014’, held at the […]

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Turbulent times ahead for higher education

Student fees will become a “battlefield” in next year’s general election and higher education policy will see “major change” from 2015, whichever party wins, a senior university estates professional has predicted. Matt Fulford, head of space and asset management at the University of Bristol, told the Built Environment Networking event on Bristol Universities Investment Plans […]

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Imperial considers joint venture on major scheme

Imperial College London is considering joint venturing with a private sector firm to develop a major part of its planned 23-acre Imperial West campus in White City, west London. Martin Summersgill, director of estates masterplanning and development at Imperial, shared the university’s development plans at the Built Environment Networking event on ‘London Universities Investment Plans […]

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Birmingham’s ‘sleeping giant’ schemes awake

Birmingham’s ‘sleeping giant’ schemes awake Two of Birmingham city centre’s ‘sleeping giant’ mixed-use schemes – Arena Central and Paradise Circus, together comprising up to 4.1 million sq ft – will start on site by the end of the year, according to the schemes’ respective developers. Developers Arena Central Developments (ACD) and Argent revealed their development […]

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The North West enters the infrastructure fast lane

The North-west of England is set to benefit from huge investment in its rail, roads airports and ports, according to five infrastructure clients in the region. Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), Manchester Airports Group (MAG), Network Rail, Northern Rail and Peel Ports revealed their development plans at the Built Environment Networking event on ‘How Transport […]

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