In Parliament, the last few days before Summer Recess brings a flurry of announcements as desks are cleared across Whitehall. Ministers have been busy signing off reports, consultations and policy commitments as they head to their constituencies; on holiday or to negotiate about Brexit.
Post-Grenfell, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has established the Building Safety Programme to cover high-rise residential buildings over 18 metres, including hotels, to make sure that residents of high rise buildings are safe - and feel safe - now, and in the future.
With the support of local fire and rescue services and a panel of independent expert advisers, MHCLG is supporting building owners in taking immediate steps to ensure their residents’ safety and in making decisions on any remedial work that is necessary to do.
The latest Housing Minister, Kit Malthouse MP, is reported as saying that industry capacity will be a key factor in the pace and progress of removing and replacing unsuitable cladding.
The programme is working with building owners, housing providers, schools, hospitals and the construction industry, including an Industry Response Group. Details can be found here.
The Official Receiver has given the latest update on Carillion. A further 65 jobs have been transferred to new suppliers over the past week, taking the total number of jobs saved to just under 13,500 positions. 2,422 (13%) jobs have been made redundant through the liquidation. Just over 1,000 employees are currently retained to enable Carillion to deliver contracted services.
A new taskforce, run by the University of Cambridge’s Centre for Digital Built Britain (CDBB) has been asked by the Treasury to advise on how data, AI and machine learning can help predict and meet future UK construction needs.
Professor Andy Neely, Pro-Vice-Chancellor: Enterprise and Business Relations at the University of Cambridge said:
“Digital technologies are shaping all industrial sectors and will have a profound impact on construction. The core aim of the Digital Framework Task Group (DFTG) is to ensure that the UK is well positioned to capitalise on the use of data for the public good in the UK’s economic infrastructure and the wider built and natural environments.”
To achieve this the DFTG will collaborate closely with industry, policy makers and academia to develop and encourage adoption of the digital framework for infrastructure data. The Digital Framework Task Group will report to government in October 2018 on how to implement the full framework.