July 22, 2018

New multi-million pound flood scheme in Birmingham opened


A new flood scheme that reduces the risk of flooding to more than 200 homes and businesses in Selly Park South has officially opened. The scheme, which cost £2.7million to construct, has been delivered as part of the Environment Agency’s programme of £2.5bn investment into flood defences across the country. The scheme was made possible through a partnership with Birmingham City Council and St Andrew’s Healthcare. The flood defences include a 500m long embankment on the public open space next to Dogpool Lane bridge. By doing this, the Environment Agency has created a flood storage area which will store water…

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New HS2 Colne Valley viaduct concepts released ready for local community engagement in Spring


HS2 Ltd has revealed an outline concept for the Colne Valley viaduct, which will help inform development of its final design and form the basis for wider discussions with local communities. The concept was developed by independent specialists Knight Architects, working with Atkins, in consultation with the Colne Valley Regional Park Panel, and the HS2 Independent Design Panel, consisting of architects, designers and experts in sustainability. The viaduct concept document explores a range of options and ideas for how it can be sensitively and aesthetically sited within the Colne Valley, whilst addressing the technical demands of the project. It will help to inform further design work…

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Citizen science schemes can be used to detect decline of wildlife populations


Woodland Trust and BTO schemes used to track common cuckoo populations A recent paper published in Avian Biology Research1 has suggested that data from citizen science schemes can be used for detecting the decline of wildlife populations. The paper took data from Nature’s Calendar, run by the Woodland Trust, and BirdTrack, run by the British Trust of Ornithology. Both schemes record common cuckoo sightings. When reviewing this alongside other studies into the population of the cuckoo, it was shown that information gathered by citizen scientists reflected similar decline patterns as other scientific investigations (the cuckoo is a Red Listed species)….

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Broadway Malyan secures its largest UK masterplan consent


A masterplan developed by Broadway Malyan for a major new neighbourhood in Suffolk has been unanimously approved by planners. The proposals for the 279-acre site adjacent to the Adastral Business Park on the outskirts of Ipswich will see the creation of  2,000 new homes and is the practice’s largest UK planning consent to date. The successful outline planning application comes more than a decade after the site was first earmarked for potential development and Broadway Malyan director Jeff Nottage said the practice had worked hard with other stakeholders to bring forward a scheme that met the needs of the client…

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Westside developer Urban&Civic receives planning permission


City of Wolverhampton’s £55 million Westside scheme has reached a major milestone. Urban&Civic has received outline planning permission for the first phase of their development on 6.4 acres of land at the heart of the city. Enabling works continue on the leisure led mixed use scheme, and strong demand from occupiers means construction on the first phase remains on track to start in 2018. A multiplex cinema, 50,000 square feet of additional leisure space, new restaurants covering 40,000 square feet, a 100 plus bed hotel, and a multi storey car park are lined up for phase 1. Phase 2 will…

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London’s toxic air-level has ‘improved overnight’ after introduction of low emission bus zones


Low-emission bus zones on some of London’s most polluted high streets have been praised for leading to an “overnight improvement” for toxic air levels. No road-specific annual toxic air limits have yet been breached in the capital, which is an improvement after last year the threshold on one major street was broken in just five days. London environment experts said this change is “largely” due to the roll out of new cleaner bus routes in the capital’s worst offending areas such as in Brixton Road, in south London, and Putney High Street, in west London. Frank Kelly, environmental health professor at King’s…

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Residents invited to public consultation to view Govan’s £17m regeneration plans


Residents who live, work or visit Govan are being asked to attend a public consultation event to view the council’s masterplan for the area. The £17 million proposal will look at the potential for a whole new development at Water Row, from housing to retail and leisure facilities. The vision is a ‘lively attractive destination’ where the old Harland and Wolff Shipyard once stood, drawing on the historic buildings around Water Row and tourist attractions like Govan Old Parish Church and the Riverside Museum across the water. It will mean up to 100 mid-market rentals and 32 homes for social rent,…

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Bath residents seeking judicial review over decision to approve housing regeneration


Residents of an estate in Bath are seeking a High Court judicial review of a decision to approve a housing association’s regeneration plans. Curo, which owns and manages more than 13,000 homes across the South West, was granted outline planning permission to demolish 542 homes on the Foxhill Estate and replace them with 700 new builds in July. Lawyers acting for the Foxhill Residents’ Association submitted several legal challenges to Bath & North East Somerset Council in December over its decision. Among other concerns, the lawyers claimed the authority had failed to follow its own policy regarding the loss of social…

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Planning approval awarded for university’s new £60 million project


A flagship project in The University of Central Lancashire’s (UCLan) Masterplan has been given planning approval today at a Preston City Council hearing. Designed by Hawkins Brown following an international RIBA competition, the proposed Student Centre and a modern civic square will be the focal point of the University’s £200 million Masterplan development. The new Student Centre, which has targeted a BREEAM (environmental quality) rating of ‘excellent’ will be 7,304 sqm providing a new reception area, informal learning spaces and a student wellbeing support centre. Designed as an iconic gateway to the City, the new square will span 8,440 sqm…

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New national housing agency to boost housebuilding


A new national housing agency – Homes England – has today (11 January 2018) been launched by Housing Secretary Sajid Javid as one of the key steps towards delivering the homes the country needs. As the successor to the Homes and Communities Agency, Homes England will drive forward change, as set out in the government’s housing white paper. By bringing together their existing planning expertise and new land buying powers, the new agency will play a major role in securing land in areas where people want to live, support smaller and more innovative house builders into the market and resource brownfield…

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