February 19, 2018

McAleer & Rushe wins third Wembley Park deal to deliver over 500 new homes


Quintain has awarded McAleer & Rushe a major construction contract to deliver over 500 homes at Wembley Park where Carillion had originally been in talks to deliver the job.

The £130m South West Land’s phase two project marks McAleer & Rushe’s third contract at the North London redevelopment site and takes Quintain’s overall spend with the firm to £212m.

It is understood that Quintain abandoned talks with Carillion to deliver this project after it delivered its first major profit warning last summer.

McAleer & Rushe is also on site delivering the £55m first phase of works of the South West Lands development, due for completion in Q3 2019, and a 312 bedroom Premier Inn hotel, due for completion ahead of schedule this summer.

The second phase of the South West Lands development, which lies next to Wembley Stadium and London Designer Outlet involves building 553 homes, 114 will be affordable, split between affordable rent and shared ownership.

The remaining 439 will be rental homes managed by Quintain’s wholly owned build to rent operator, Tipi.

Eamonn Laverty, Chief Executive of McAleer & Rushe said: “Marking our largest contract to date, this is our third contract with Quintain since 2016 and the project cements our partnership with them as a trusted member of their main contractors framework.”

The contract signing comes less than two months after Quintain signed their largest ever construction contract for £211m with Sisk to deliver 743 new build to rent homes. Quintain is spending £1m a day on construction making Wembley Park one of the UK’s largest construction sites.


Landscape Architects shortlisted for Pro Landscaper Business Awards

Pro Landscaper

The shortlists have been announced for the highly anticipated Pro Landscaper Business Awards, celebrating the great accomplishments of businesses in the landscaping industry. The ceremony will take place on Friday 9 February 2018 at the stunning East Wintergarden, Canary Wharf.

In the ‘Landscape Architecture Practice’ category, the shortlisted practices are:


Davies White Ltd


The Pro Landscaper Team would like to thank all of the entrants and congratulate all of the shortlisted companies on their accomplishments. We look forward to seeing all of the shortlisted companies there and bringing the industry together for the ceremony.

A full list of all those shortlisted can be found here:

Landscape Company – Less £1m Turnover:

Acre Landscapes

Burnham Landscaping

The Landscaping Consultants


Landscape Company – More than £1m Turnover:

Oak View Landscapes

Urban Landscape Design

Elite Landscapes

Landform Consultants


Landscape Company Design and Build:

Urban Landscape Design

Garden Club London

Landform Consultants

Ground Control


Commerical Landscape Company:

Skidmores of Hertford

Ground Control


Grounds Maintenance:

CGM Group


Nurture Landscapes



Garden Designer:

Melissa King (from JPS Landscape Design)


Butter Wakefield


Garden Design Practice:


JPS Landscape Design


Landscape Architect Practice:


Davies White Ltd



Industry Partnership:

Lateral Design Studios

Gristwood and Toms



Apprenticeship Scheme:


CGM Group



Bourne Amenity

James Coles Nurseries


GreenBlue Urban


£20m flood defence to protect economy is completed


A £20 million project delivering flood defences to better protect hundreds of businesses in Sheffield’s Lower Don Valley will be unveiled on Thursday (25 January).

Sir James Bevan, the Chief Executive of the Environment Agency and Councillor Julie Dore, leader of Sheffield City Council, will be among the speakers at an event, attended by local business owners, to mark the completion of the work.

The events of the 2007 and 2012 floods, which caused millions of pounds of damage to property, led to the development of the project. The area was one of the worst hit by the 2007 floods and for the last seven years Sheffield City Council has been leading on the Lower Don Valley flood defence project to develop affordable flood defences.

The Lower Don Valley area is second only to the city centre for economic importance to Sheffield. The new flood alleviation scheme will benefit over 500 businesses and safeguard around 5, 000 jobs, key roads in and out of the city and homes along a five mile stretch of the River Don.

It is the first scheme of its kind in the UK to have business owners contributing to the costs of the flood protection through the creation of a formal Business Improvement District. Local businesses are contributing a total of £1.4 million, with more than 90 per cent of the total capital cost of £20.7 million funded by the Environment Agency and Defra.

Construction work has involved the installation of more than 60 new flood protection measures to the River Don, between the Wicker and the M1 at Meadowhall, and has significantly reduced the risk of flooding.

Councillor Julie Dore, the leader of Sheffield City Council said: “ I am delighted to see we have fulfilled our promise to strengthen our defences against floods.

“We have seen an innovative and pioneering approach to allow us to invest in these important flood defences and I would like to thank everyone who has been involved in the Business Improvement District, who have made this possible through working together.

“We will continue to push for the funding we need to improve flood protection throughout the city.”

Councillor Bryan Lodge, Cabinet Member for Environment and Streetscene added: “As well as building flood defences such as new walls and flood gates, that will see us through any future problems, we have put in place a maintenance programme to ensure the river is kept clear of debris which can build up and worsen flooding, as happened in the past.

“We will continue our engagement with the local business community to make them aware of their responsibilities for the river and what measures they need to take to protect themselves from flooding.”

“We will also be working with local schools and anyone else who wants to volunteer to enhance the environment, both in the river, and along the footpaths so that people can enjoy the River Don.”

The voluntary efforts and educational work will be led by a local social enterprise the River Stewardship Company. A proportion of the money raised by the BID will go towards the costs of maintaining the river.

Richard Wright, Executive Director of Sheffield Chamber of Commerce, said: “Weather extremes are hitting the news more frequently and may well become the norm which is why it is so good to get flood defences installed now in the Lower Don Valley.

“Insurance cover for flood risk is increasingly harder to get but the installation of these defences should help us moving forward.

“This revolutionary project is a great example of successful partnership working and could not have been delivered without private sector investment. We are delighted that the business community played its part by raising £1.4million through a Business Improvement District to support the project.”

Sir James Bevan, Chief Executive of the Environment Agency said: “Flooding has devastating costs for people and businesses – and we know this has been the case for the people of Sheffield.

“This fantastic scheme will not only benefit homes and businesses in the city but it will also safeguard thousands of jobs due to the increased level of protection it provides. It’s been great to see Sheffield City Council and the Environment Agency working together in partnership to better protect the Lower Don Valley.”

The LDV scheme has been shortlisted for an award as the best project over £5 million in the Institute of Civil Engineers Yorkshire and Humber Awards 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 from the River Rea during times of heavy rainfall and then slowly release it back into the river when river water levels go down. The Environment Agency have also built a new flood wall and a higher river bank at the rear of 15 homes which back onto the river.

Mike Adams from the Environment Agency said: “We’re pleased to deliver these flood protection measures for the people of Selly Park South. This community has experienced the terrible effects of flooding and the measures we’ve built here reduces future risk of flooding. We would like to thank local people for their patience and support throughout the building of this scheme.”

Councillor Lisa Trickett, Cabinet Member for the Environment from Birmingham City Council said: “We’ve seen the devastating impact that flooding can have on communities, so I am delighted that these new measures are now in place. These will make a real difference by reducing the risk of flooding to hundreds of homes and businesses in Selly Park South.”

Along with flood defences, knowing your flood risk is also important when protecting your family and property from flooding. People can check their risk and register to receive free flood warnings online or call Floodline on 0345 988 1188.


Image source

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 and technical development by Align, the main civil engineering contractor for HS2 between the Colne Valley viaduct and the northern portal of the Chilterns Tunnel.

Align will engage the local community on these designs in spring 2018.

The concept has been developed around 14 key criteria, which were set by HS2 in consultation with the HS2 Independent Design Panel. These include whether the design fits the landscape, maintains views and landscape ‘flow’, is well proportioned and elegant.

The area of the Colne Valley through which HS2’s route passes features a series of woods and lakes that developed when farming and quarrying ended, and sits alongside the Chiltern railway.

Chair of the Colne Valley Regional Park Panel, Jim Barclay, said:”The construction of the Colne Valley HS2 viaduct will have a significant impact on the Colne Valley area. The Colne Valley Panel which is drawn from local stakeholders, is very pleased to have been consulted and through a series of workshops, Panel Members have been able to understand the design principles for the viaduct. The Colne Valley Regional Park Panel looks forward to further engagement with HS2 and Align over the actual viaduct design.”

As well as the viaduct itself, the concept document also explores innovative ideas for additional elements such as transparent noise-reduction barriers with vertical lines which are visible to bats and wildfowl to reduce possible impacts, whilst creating a slimmer side profile of the viaduct.

Sadie Morgan, chair of the Independent Design Panel, said:”We are delighted that this imaginative and carefully-considered concept has been published, and can form the basis for wider discussions with the communities around the Colne Valley and all those who value and use the spaces and amenities within it.

“The Independent Design Panel will continue to work hard to ensure that the viaduct’s final design respects its location and communities, whilst being a shining example of great design that Britain can be proud of.”

Construction partner Align will be responsible for developing the final design and constructing the viaduct according to technical specifications and within an agreed cost envelope.

HS2 programme director, Mike Hickson, said: “The Colne Valley viaduct will be one of the longest viaducts in the UK, and one of HS2’s best-known structures. We are pleased and grateful for the work done by Knight Architects, the Colne Valley Regional Park Panel and the HS2 Independent Design Panel to produce this potential scheme design. We have every confidence that our contractor, Align, will continue this collaborative approach and engagement, as they now develop their own scheme and then detailed design of this significant structure.”

(images by Hayes Davidson / Knight Architects)