News - Construction News

Britain is building! £600Bn of projects in construction pipeline

The government has published the 2018 National Infrastructure and Construction Pipeline, showing Britain is backing building with some £600Bn worth of projects in the pipeline for the next decade.

The massive investment in UK roads, hospitals and schools has been set out in the pipeline, together with a call to look at modern methods of construction in a bid to make the process more efficient.

The Government’s National Infrastructure and Construction Pipeline reveals the vast scale of public and private investment underway and expected by 2028. It includes schemes announced by Chancellor Philip Hammond in his recent Budget, such as the £28Bn national roads fund, as well as other flagship projects like East West Rail, upgrading the M6 to a smart motorway and Hornsea Project One – the largest offshore wind farm in the world.

The document also calls for greater use of offsite building, with ministers wanting more projects to be delivered using digital manufacturing and offsite building techniques to ensure maximum efficiency in building these projects. This includes the manufacturing of components in factories using the latest digital technology before being sent for assembly on construction sites. The Government has committed to increasing use of these methods in public-funded projects and has asked for views on how to encourage greater use of these cutting-edge techniques.

The construction sector is one of the least digitized sectors, resulting in weak productivity. The government’s aim is to improve this contribution through modern manufacturing approaches to building; such as a school that typically takes a year to build could be completed in just over four months.

This manufacturing technique has already been used to great success in several projects, including the A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon improvement scheme. Parts of these bridges were developed in a factory, meaning they were built more efficiently than if traditional methods of construction had been used.

The Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Robert Jenrick said: “We are committed to renewing our infrastructure to drive economic growth in all parts of the United Kingdom. Over the course of this Parliament, investment in economic infrastructure will reach the highest sustained levels in over 40 years.

“And as the pace of technological change accelerates, we are stepping up our commitment to digital infrastructure, use of data to drive greater productivity and embrace new methods of construction.

“With £600Bn of investment over the next decade, including the largest ever investment in our strategic road network, we are taking the long term action required to raise productivity and ensure the economy is fit for the

Chief Executive of the Infrastructure and Projects Authority, Tony Meggs said: “Government is the largest client for infrastructure projects so has an important role in using its purchasing power to drive improved productivity in their delivery.

“We recognise there is significant momentum within the sector to scale up the adoption of more modern and innovative practices and it is the role of the IPA to help coordinate this approach across new infrastructure projects.

“We would like to hear from a range of industry experts on government’s proposals for a Platform Approach to Design for Manufacture and Assembly.”

Chief Executive of Highways England, Jim O’Sullivan said: “At Highways England we recognise the productivity and efficiency challenges that the U.K. construction industry is facing. In recent years we have encouraged more computer-led design, automation, and pre-assembly across all of our construction activities. As well as driving productivity and efficiency, it improves worker safety and reduces delays and frustration for road users passing through our works.

“We will adopt ever increasing levels of automation and off-site construction on road improvement schemes and smart motorways in our next five year road investment programme.”

If you are interested in finding out more about key infrastructure trends today, you may wish to attend the flagship infrastructure exhibition at the NEC 30th April 2019 : UKIS 2019

Click here for more information on how to register or exhibit at the UK Infrastructure Show 2019.  

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