Problem contracts slash margins at Mace | Construction Enquirer



  • Stephen Pyecroft said new work over the year included a major data centre in Ireland for the construction team

    Problem contracts and rising costs saw margins at Mace’s UK and Europe division crash from 1.7% to less than 0.5%.

  • Overall the group operating margin including construction, consultancy and FM activities around the world halved to 1.1% over the year.
  • Announcing Mace results for last year, executive chairman Stephen Pyecroft said: “2015 saw some challenges for our construction business.

    “The sector delivered £1.42bn in turnover, an 18% increase on 2014.

  • However a number of difficult projects did impact on the margin level delivered to the business.

    “But we lived up to our long-standing reputation of being a trusted partner able to deliver large, complex and iconic projects.”

    He added: “Mace continues to go from strength to strength and while challenges remain in the UK and global economies, we have an enviable pipeline of work stretching well

    into 2016 and beyond.”

    Mace’s group pre-tax profits were actually up 4.5% on last year to £36.2m, supported by almost £18m profit from a major property disposal, thought to by its London student accommodation development Assam Place.


Source

This week’s biggest architecture and design stories on Dezeen



  • The cover of David Bowie’s Blackstar album, released just days before his death, was designed to reflect the musician’s mortality, according to his graphic design collaborator Jonathan Barnbrook.
  • This week on Dezeen: the designer behind David Bowie’s Blackstar album artwork revealed its true meaning in an exclusive interview and we looked ahead to the era of the “megatall” skyscraper.
  • More architecture | More interiors | More design | More news

  • Rotterdam-based architecture firm OMA also released images of its renovation plan for Berlin’s KaDeWe department store.
  • Rotterdam is fast becoming a centre for innovation, according to architects we interviewed this week.


Source

Construction Enquirer



  • Eagle New Energy specialise in the supply and installation of Photovoltaic systems.
  • As part of our on-going expansion programme we are looking for solar PV installation companies to work with us.
  • Your team will have previous experience and category 2 asbestos training would be an advantage.
  • Operatives will ideally have either PASMA or IPAF training and you will need to work within East Anglia and the London area on mainly commercial projects.
  • For further details or to apply please contact Charlotte Adams, Business Development Manager via email to charlotte.adams@eaglenewenergy.co.uk


Source

London house extensions awarded by Don’t Move, Improve!



  • Dezeen promotion: a south London residence updated with new living spaces, custom-built furniture and a two-storey lightwell has been named winner in a competition to find London’s best house extensions (+ slideshow).
  • Designed by Tsuruta Architects to reveal “memories of place and construction”, House of Trace is a two-storey addition to a Victorian property in south London.
  • The prize for Best Historic Intervention was scooped by Fitzrovia House, a project by West Architecture that involved inserting a new residence behind the Georgian facade of a bomb-damaged west-London house.
  • Dezeen’s architecture editor Amy Frearson and RIBA London Director Tamsie Thomson were among the judges, who were chaired by NLA director Peter Murray.
  • “The standard of Don’t Move Improve continues to rise each year,” commented Murray.


Source

Tributes after leading architect Gareth Hoskins dies aged 48



  • TRIBUTES have been paid to the Scottish architect Gareth Hoskins, who died at the weekend aged 48.
  • Scottish architecture is much the lesser with his parting.”

    Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Europe and External Affairs, said: “Gareth Hoskins was an outstanding architect.

  • She tweeted: “Very sad to hear of the death of Gareth Hoskins, one of Scotland’s finest architects.
  • Hoskins trained as an architect at the Glasgow School of Art and at Florence University.
  • Hoskins Architects issued a statement confirming his death, adding: “It is with great sadness that we confirm that Gareth Hoskins OBE, the founder and Managing Director of Hoskins Architects, has died.

    “Gareth, who was 48, took ill at an event in Edinburgh on Sunday 3rd January and, despite receiving the best care possible in Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, he passed away on Saturday.

    “Everyone at Hoskins Architects is deeply shocked and saddened by this untimely loss.


Source

London has most expensive construction costs in Europe, second in the world



  • The International Construction Costs Index published by Arcadis, analyses the relative costs of construction across 44 major cities, and also shows a crucial imbalance in London’s expensive construction market.
  • London is the most expensive city in Europe and the second most expensive city worldwide in which to build, according to an index from a global design and consultancy business.
  • At the other end the least expensive cities for construction are Taipei, Bangalore, Bangkok, Kula Lumpur, Ho Chi Min, Bucharest, Prague, Sarajevo, Sofia and Jakarta.
  • Overall the top city is New York, with Hong Kong in third place followed by Geneva and Macau.
  • Cost premiums in the top cities range from 40% to 60% in comparison with other European counterparts.


Source

2016: A year of grand designs



  • The branding of 2016 as the Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design, follows this 2015’s Year of Food and Drink status, and 2014’s Year of Homecoming.
  • VisitScotland’s involvement signals the belief that there’s a tourism buck to be made out of selling Scotland’s architecture – both historic and new – as an attraction.
  • WHEN fire tore through Glasgow School of Art’s Mackintosh building on 23 May, 2014, the shockwaves spread far beyond the confines of the creative community.
  • Turning the festival – and the entire Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design – into a financial success is the responsibility, ultimately, of the quango.
  • Contemporary structures add a new layer to our built environment, taking inspiration from and sometimes reacting against past achievements in design.


Source

London Met’ Protests Intensify



  • The protesters are campaigning against the sale of London Metropolitan University’s Cass Faculty of Art, Architecture and Design which, is expected to gain the London University a minimum of £50m.
  • It followed a night of visual protests, which saw hundreds of students standing as silhouettes in the university windows as sunlight left London.
  • With the university seeming under increasing fire in recent years, the board of Directors has decided that a single, Holloway Campus in 2017 is a decision that best suits the university, however, many students of London Met staunchly oppose that opinion.
  • “We believe this will benefit our students, who will enjoy an enhanced student experience, and our staff, who will have more opportunities to collaborate”

  • The student protests have been led by protest group Occupy The Cass, and Turner prize-winner Jeremy Deller, who is a visiting professor at the Cass, has been seen on Twitter showing his support for the cause.


Source

Construction chiefs should learn from miners’ woes



  • Such flexibility is surely prudent for all cyclical stocks be they miners or housebuilders (Other OTC: UBGXF – news) .

  • That has resulted in two interrelated problems: huge oversupply of most commodities and many miners being over-leveraged.
  • Many miners had progressive dividend policies that required payouts to slowly increase or, at the very least, stay the same over time.
  • As the markets turned and the miners began to flounder, these badges of pride soon became albatrosses around their necks.
  • The root cause of their woes, and indeed those of all commodities producers, is the same China .


Source

UK’s Top Art Award, the Turner Prize, Won by Architecture Project for Derelict Houses



  • The UK’s Turner Prize for 2015 has been won by Assemble, a collective group of architects that has restored derelict houses.
  • The Turner is the leading award in British contemporary art, and arguably Europe’s most prestigious contemporary visual art prize, and Assemble is its first winner from the architecture and design field.
  • Alex Farquharson, director of Nottingham Contemporary, has been appointed the new director of Tate Britain.
  • Assemble was nominated both for this “Granby Four Streets” project as well as others.
  • The total prize pool for the Turner is £40,000 (about $60,300).


Source