In today’s news, we will look into the consortium in the United Kingdom that is working on the development of mobile hydrogen refuelling for construction sites. Pursuant to a report that was just released by the administrators, one business came quite close to purchasing Ilke Homes in June for the price of £25 million before the company went bankrupt. In addition to this, Construction technology trends: paving the path for the future of the UK housing sector was recently published. In furtherance of this, the major construction works contract for Beaulieu Park station has been granted. In top of this, construction production decreases when it rains. According to the Office of National Statistics’ projections, the amount of construction work completed in July 2023 will have fallen by 0.5%. Moreover, construction workers at the Pembroke refinery are voting on whether or not to strike over pay.
Building Site Mobile Hydrogen Fueling by UK Consortium
A UK partnership received £3m ($3.7m) in government funding to create mobile hydrogen refuelling for construction sites.
The Ryze-led consortium of iGAS, Wrightbus, Skanska, Mace Dragados, and Sizewell C received £3.2m ($3.99m) from the Department of Energy Security and Net Zero’s Red Diesel Replacement Programme to develop and demonstrate production-ready hydrogen refuelling equipment for construction sites.
It is planned to demonstrate new technologies at a working quarry site with a “large quantity” of construction machines to prove hydrogen as a low-carbon alternative to red diesel in construction, mining, and quarrying.
The project will also support standard operating procedures, site safety, equipment standardization, and hydrogen knowledge sharing via case study reports from project partners on hydrogen use on large building sites from 2025.
Neil Isaacson, Ryze’s CEO, said hydrogen is a promising diesel substitute that may drastically reduce carbon emissions. Hydrogen combustion produces cleaner exhaust than diesel-based alternatives.
Jo Bamford, Ryze’s Executive Chairman, is the son of Lord Anthony Bamford, JCB’s Chairman, who created hydrogen ICE construction machines.
Isaacson added, “With hydrogen-fueled vehicles projected to be widely available by 2025, a mobile, flexible hydrogen supply chain and technology that provides hydrogen on demand at building sites is urgently needed.
The new refuelling equipment is needed to enable hydrogen providers commercially viable options to supply hydrogen to building sites.
Ryze and Centrica announced plans to build and manage hydrogen production plants on Centrica and third-party UK sites in November 2022.
Prior to Collapse, Ilke Homes Nearly Bought for £25m
Original Source: Ilke Homes nearly bought for £25m before collapse
According to a recent administrators’ report, one company nearly bought Ilke Homes for £25m in June.
Administrators reported that 36 companies approached the North Yorkshire modular specialist in May and June about buying it.
One bid for the company would have sold it through pre-pack administration if Homes England and a bank provided new loan finance.
However, AlixPartners reported that the agreement collapsed when the undisclosed bidder “informed the companies that it was unable to progress with its offer”. A report provides no further explanation.
Ilke Homes, Ilke Homes Land, and Ilke Homes Holdings filed a notice of intent to appoint administrators two days later. When the administration began, 1,058 were laid off.
As reported in Construction News, Ilke owed Homes England £68m when it failed. According to the current study, administration is likely to recover only £1m.
A pre-pack administration would have recovered less for the government housing organization, but it may have reached a better long-term deal with Ilke Homes.
In its last released records, the offsite specialist earned £12.7m and lost £33.9m pre-tax in 2021.
AlixPartners claimed Ilke, a Low-carbon modular housing specialist founded in 2017, “suffered liquidity constraints largely due to inflationary pressures”.
In May, a four-month investment contract with a third party “unexpectedly failed” and increased constraints, the report said.
Ilke is one of several start-up offsite specialists to fail in the past two years, including L&G Modular Homes, Urban Splash House, and Caledonian Modular.
Current Construction Technology Advances Will Shape the UK Housing Industry
Build Warranty examines the construction technology innovations that will change the UK housing sector in this article.
Due to rapid building technological advancement and trends, the UK housing market is about to change.
These advances are changing how houses are built and affecting property pricing, demand, and the housing sector.
Tech trends in construction include:
Modular construction increases efficiency and speed.
Modular construction is bringing home efficiency and speed.
The components of dwellings are prefabricated in controlled manufacturing conditions and assembled on-site.
While maintaining quality, this reduces building time and waste. Modular building may boost housing supply.
Creating the future of design with 3D printing
Architectural design is being transformed by 3D printing. This new method allows precise fabrication of complicated and customised architectural pieces.
During design and building, 3D printing lets architects and builders create ornamental facades and specific interior features.
While 3D printing may be more expensive, its ability to create unique properties could affect luxury and high-end property prices.
Sustainable architecture supports the green revolution
Environmental awareness is driving sustainable building methods. This construction technology trend integrates renewable energy and energy-efficient materials.
Sustainable properties are projected to attract higher prices as eco-conscious consumers choose green living areas.
By meeting the increased demand for eco-friendly dwellings, widespread adoption of sustainable techniques may help harmonize the housing market.
Innovative smart home and IoT connectivity
Smart houses powered by the Internet of Things (IoT) are changing how we live.
Technologies like automated lighting, climate management, security, and entertainment merge smoothly in these homes. Technology-savvy purchasers may want homes with IoT devices and smart features.
Virtual and augmented reality improve visualization.
VR and AR are transforming property marketing and sales. These technologies allow buyers to virtually tour homes before they are built.
This interactive experience speeds decision-making and improves property layout understanding.
As VR and AR become more integrated into property marketing, their role in promoting informed choices could affect demand.
Why structural warranties and BW Build Warranty® matter
With these technological advances, structural warranties are crucial. A trustworthy structural warranty gives homeowners and property buyers unmatched peace of mind against unexpected structural defects.
BW Build Warranty® stands out for its confidence and extensive coverage. It provides stronger quality assurances and comprehensive protection with technology-driven site auditing.
They protect properties from structural issues, securing homeowners’ futures and increasing property demand and values.
Contract Awarded for Beaulieu Park Station Main Construction
Original Source: Beaulieu Park station main construction works contract awarded
UK: Network Rail awarded J Murphy & Sons Ltd. the second of two principal contracts to build Beaulieu Park station near Chelmsford on the Great Eastern principal Line.
Essex County Council and Chelmsford City Council won the £124m Network Rail contract announced on September 15. The major station and infrastructure construction is covered.
J Murphy & Sons won the £37·8m enabling works contract in January, encompassing site setup, civils, earthworks, and track and signalling improvements.
End of 2025, Greater Anglia will operate services.
The station will have three platforms, a central loop line for fast trains to pass halting services, two lifts for step-free access to all platforms, accessible restrooms, baby change facilities, a waiting area, retail/catering space, ticket vending machines, and a gate line Access will include pedestrian and cyclist pathways, bus stations, a pick-up and drop-off area with taxi bays, and over 700 automobile parking spaces.
The Rain Reduces Construction Output
Original Source: Construction output shrinks in the rain
The Office for National Statistics forecasts July 2023 construction production decreased 0.5%.
As usual, British weather is blamed. UK July was the sixth wettest since 1836 and the wettest since 2009. This delayed planned work, it’s said.
July 2023 construction output fell 0.5% by volume after a 1.6% increase in June 2023, reaching £15,546m.
July saw a 1.3% drop in repair and maintenance work, while new-build work rose 0.1% from June.
In July 2023, five of the nine industry sectors fell, with private home repair & maintenance down 3.9% and new work down 2.2%.
New work increased 0.3% and repair & maintenance decreased 0.4% in the three months to July 2023, resulting in level construction output.
McBains managing director Clive Docwra said: “Following the positive June figures which showed a return to growth after two successive monthly falls in output, the construction sector will feel it’s back to square one with today’s news.
High mortgage rates reduce demand for new homes, as shown by volume housebuilding’s slow performance. I expect more private house-builders to work with local authorities and housing associations on mixed tenure models like social housing and shared ownership, which are less affected by property market volatility.
Despite reducing building material prices, our clients say it takes time for this to flow down the supply chain, squeezing deliveries.
Fraser Johns, financial director at Beard Construction, said: “With the UK having its wettest July in over a decade, construction output should drop. As private home repair and maintenance and new work remain under pressure, the housing sector downturn is skewing the industry picture.
“New work increased marginally in the month and the three months to July, which is good. It shows that while certain sectors are struggling, others are growing as clients gain confidence. As demand remains high, especially within frameworks, Beard and our pipeline possibilities reflect this.
Despite recent improvements, such as inflation softening and supply and cost stabilization, the industry remains relatively volatile, shifting month to month. We still control what we can, whether in tendering and cost planning, exploring buoyant industries, or talking to clients and suppliers.
Construction Employees at Pembroke Refinery Strike Over Salary
Original Source: Pembroke refinery construction workers ballot for strike over pay
United Kingdom’s largest union, Unite, announced Thursday that 200 engineering construction workers at the Pembroke oil refinery are balloting for paid strike action.
Contract employees under the National Agreement for the Engineering Construction Industry (NAECI) repair and maintain the oil refinery. Strike action would disrupt the site, significantly.
They are furious because their pay has kept dropping since the outbreak. Although they supplied crucial services during Covid, they consented to a salary freeze.
A two-year salary contract of 2.5% for 2022 and 2023 was offered in January 2022.
Engineers Construction Industry Association (ECIA), which negotiates NAECI with trade unions, refuses to restart talks through 2022 despite rising inflation and living costs.
Unite campaigned for a non-consolidated supplement before the ECIA agreed in February 2023, which ends in December.
After the Covid wage freeze and two-year below inflation contract, workers’ spending power plummeted.
Contrary to inflation, oil industry earnings have surged.
The workers rejected the two-year plan for 2024 and 2025 averaging six percent per year, therefore Unite initiated formal industrial action proceedings.
The deal insufficiently restores NAECI workers’ salaries.
While the oil business is booming, Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “This offer is completely unacceptable. It doesn’t undo years of pay decline for these people.
This also pushes these people to gamble on the economy and inflation in 2024 and 2025, when their finances have already been hammered by fluctuating market conditions. Unite continues to support NAECI members and demands an appropriate offer from the ECIA.
The strike action ballot closes in mid-October, and it begins afterwards.
“Our membership is so angry that we are balloting for strike action,” said Unite national officer Jason Poulter. The ECIA must realize that lacking a better offer will worsen NAECI recruiting and retention.
If this conflict is not to evolve into industrial action, they must make a significantly better offer.
Summary of today’s construction news
Overall, we discussed the United Kingdom government invested $3.75 million (£2.5 million) towards a collaboration to develop hydrogen refuelling vehicles for use on building sites.
Meanwhile, Ilke Homes came close to purchasing for £25 million before the market crashed. Administrators said that in May and June, 36 entities expressed interest in purchasing the North Yorkshire modular specialist. If Homes England and a bank had offered additional loan financing, one offer would have resulted in the company being sold through pre-pack administration. On top of that, the housing market in the UK is about to shift due to the rapid development of construction technology and related trends. The housing market is adapting to these developments, which are influencing home prices, consumer demand, and construction methods. In furtherance of this, J. Murphy & Sons Ltd. also received the second of two primary contracts from Network Rail to construct the Beaulieu Park station on the Great Eastern principal Line in the vicinity of Chelmsford. The £37.8m contract for enabling works was awarded to J Murphy & Sons in January. This work includes site preparation, civils, earthworks, and track and signalling upgrades. More so, July 2023 saw a fall of 0.5% in building output, according to the Office of National Statistics. It’s the weather in Britain, as usual. UK The month of July was the wettest since 2009 and the sixth wettest in the record of 1836. They say this caused a delay in previously scheduled work. In addition, Unite, the largest union in the United Kingdom, said on Thursday that 200 engineering construction workers at the Pembroke oil refinery are voting on whether or not to take paid strike action. National Agreement on Employment in the Engineering and Construction Industry (NAECI) contract workers do maintenance and repairs at the oil refinery. If there were a strike, it would cause a lot of chaos there.