Search Results for: london

Land Securities to submit application for solution to Walkie Talkie solar glare problem

Walkie-Talkie solution

Land Securities has confirmed it will submit a planning application next month for the solution to the solar glare problem at the ‘Walkie Talkie.’ Last year the skyscraper at 20 Fenchurch EC3 was dubbed the ‘Walkie Scorchie’, after it was found its unusual design was reflecting and magnifying the sun’s rays, which were melting parts of vehicles parked in nearby streets. According to the developer, despite its problems, the building is now 64 per cent pre-let, with a further 23 per cent in solicitors’ hands, and just 42,700 sq feet of space remaining. Land Securities has also announced, that due to increased demand for London office space it is to launch two new central London developments.   More →

Plans submitted for 19 storey tower in Manchester business district

No 1 SpinningfieldDevelopers have submitted plans for the development of a new tower on the site of an existing office building in Manchester city centre. Allied London is looking to create a new 19 storey office in Spinningfields, the city’s troubled £1.5 billion business district which ran into development problems at the height of the recession between 2007 and 2010. The new building a will offer over 340,000 sq. ft. of office space and is designed by Ian Simpson Architects who were responsible for the design of the Beetham Tower. The ground floor is also likely to incorporate retail outlets, cafes and restaurants. A final decision on the application from the local authority is due in April. Quay House, the current building on the site, is argued by the developer to be under-occupied and outdated.

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Latest issue of the Insight newsletter available to view online

2.Insight_twitter_logo smThe latest issue of our weekly newsletter is now available to view online. If you don’t already subscribe, please do so. Just submit your email address in the Subscription section on the right of this page and we’ll keep you up to date each week with a digest of the best news and views on the design and management of workplaces, the people who work in them and the technology they use. This week, we offer a timely warning of the perils of predictions while hypocritically predicting what we’ll spend most of 2014 talking about, ponder why wellness programmes are so popular given that they don’t appear to do all they claim, ask why so many UK employees are so keen on moving jobs, question the thinking behind the idea of creating a cycle lane in the sky in London and highlight the ongoing resurgence in the takeup of commercial property in the UK.

SkyCycle. Great idea, but how realistic is it really?

Cycling in London

 A cycle lane in the sky is a brilliant concept. The very name conjures up visual images of 21st century transport networks that HG Wells might have been proud of. But wedged above the Enfield Town to Liverpool Street line or its equivalent it seems very unlikely. So let’s assume this is an exercise in marketing, making use of good research and creative design as a means to kick start the debate about how we get to work and how we can accommodate more different and more sustainable methods of commuting. And let’s not restrict this to London either. The capital might have more obvious issues, more publicity; a larger than life Mayor; plus too many cycling fatalities, but they are problems shared across the UK.

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New SkyCycle route proposed to ease Capital’s transport network congestion

SkycycleDemand for London-based workplaces is increasing, but the capital’s transport network is at capacity and ill equipped for a predicted population growth of 12 per cent over the next decade. Despite the Mayor’s efforts to encourage more cycling in the capital, a recent series of accidents has raised concerns about its safety. Architects Foster + Partners together with Exterior Architecture and urban planners Space Syntax have come up with a proposed solution, the SkyCycle network. This consists of a wide, secure deck constructed above the existing suburban railway corridors, to provide over 220 kilometres of safe, car free cycle routes which can be accessed at over 200 entrance points. Each route can accommodate 12,000 cyclists per hour and will improve journey times by up to 29 minutes. More →

Driving home for Christmas? Forget Chris Rea and try Sigur Ros

Driving home for Christmas? Forget Chris Rea and try Sigur Ros

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Six in ten commuters travel by car. This was the finding of a survey conducted by the RAC earlier this month. Inevitably a busier road leads to congestion, and therefore stress. It’s no shock to learn, according to a Sky News report, that almost half of British drivers claim to have been involved in some form, with road rage. In fact, Britain is the shamed ‘winner’ of the highest road rage (Daily Mail), a surprising truth for such a stereotypically polite-prone nation. Road rage is a worrying occurrence – both for stress levels – but also for road safety. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents attributed ‘aggressive driving’ to the deaths of 122 and the serious injury of almost 1,000 in 2011. It goes without saying, that lowering these high-stress experiences for drivers is a necessity.

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BA becomes first European airline to allow electronics use throughout flights

BA becomes first European airline to allow electronics use throughout flights

Butterfly cocoonThose of us who feel bereft when we are forced to abandon our links to a world beyond our immediate surroundings and companions for even a few minutes will be delighted at the news that British Airways has become the first European airline to allow electronic devices to be switched on for the whole time passengers spend on their aircraft, including take-off and landing. However, it’s not all good news for Europe’s presenteeist army of solipsist tech addicts as they will still not be able to text, call or use wireless connections. But they will at least be able to use their phones, tablets, e-Readers or laptops offline rather than talk to somebody, read a book or newspaper or even take the slightest interest in what is happening right in front of their eyes.

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Architects’ workloads remain in positive territory across the country reports RIBA

RIBA future trends Nov 2013The design and construction sector continues to pick up, particularly in Scotland, Southern England and London says the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA). Although the Future Trends Workload Index fell back slightly in November, standing at +31 compared with +35 in October 2013, it remained firmly in positive territory. RIBA’s monthly survey illustrates the profession’s confidence and workload, and is a useful indicator of the health of the wider UK construction industry.Welcoming the growing confidence across the United Kingdom, RIBA Director of Practice Adrian Dobson said: “In terms of geographical analysis the highest balance figures were in Scotland (+50), the South of England (+41) and London (+40), but all UK nations and regions remain positive about future workloads, again reflecting a widespread increase in confidence levels.” More →

Workforce to grow across the regions next year, bolstered by flexible working

Workforce to grow throughout the country in 2014The management issues which dominated 2013 centred on the rise of flexible working; if pay scales would remain below inflation; and whether jobs recovery would continue and if so, could expand beyond the fringes of London. As today’s ONS figures show unemployment at the lowest rate since 2009, the latest CBI/Accenture Employment Trends Survey reveals that more than half of UK companies expect to create jobs over the next 12 months for the first time in over five years. It says private sector workforces are anticipated to grow across all regions, Yorkshire and Humberside and the east midlands being the most buoyant. Bosses will continue to take a cautious approach to pay however, with flexible contracts used to bolster economic growth and job creation. More →

Insight newsletter is now available to view online

2.Insight_twitter_logo smIn the Insight newsletter, available to view online; cost is still viewed by businesses as the most important factor in assessing an office’s performance; a suspiciously high number of occupiers claim that their programmes of workplace change are successful; PwC’s nine-storey headquarters in London surpasses all BREEAM scores to date, and we review The Emergent Workplace – a new book which aims to help people make better decisions about their offices. Nigel Sikora discusses the challenges of ensuring the right level of acoustic and visual privacy within the workplace; Charles Marks says London may grab all the headlines but the creative and tech industries are thriving around the country and Richenda Oldham explains ways businesses can improve their knowledge of the range of costs involved in owning or leasing commercial real estate.

Highest ever BREEAM outstanding score for PwC’s HQ refurbishment

PWC refurbishment wins highest every BREEAM

PwC’s nine-storey headquarters at One Embankment Place in London has surpassed all BREEAM scores to date for both new build and existing structures. The 450,000 sq ft commercial office building located at Charing Cross station in London has achieved a milestone 96.31 per cent BREEAM Outstanding score, including a 100 per cent score for materials, transport and management. Built in the early 1990s, the structure, which comprises a basement below the station and nine floors of office space above it, has had a complete office refit and refurbishment as well as full central plant replacement in the basement areas, roof and terraces. Achieving a high BREEAM rating and EPC score was a priority of the refit, which was achieved while some 2,000 staff remained in occupation. More →

Remarkable resurgence of confidence in the UK commercial property market

Edinburgh is one region enjoying a resurgence in confidence

Edinburgh is one region enjoying a resurgence in confidence

The UK commercial property market is continuing its strong recovery, driven in large part by a resurgence in regional markets and financed by more adventurous borrowing by investors, a juxtaposition of three new reports reveals. According to Lloyds Bank’s twice yearly Commercial Property Confidence Monitor, around three quarters of the small and medium sized commercial property agents surveyed for the report expect a  surge in activity over the next six months, led by especially strong confidence levels in Scotland, South West England, North West England and the Midlands. The results are mirrored in the latest Savills’ commercial development activity survey which found that  the UK’s commercial sector grew at its fastest rate on record during November. Meanwhile, another report from Laxfield Capital claims that investors are willing to take on more debt for new deals to take advantage of the new confidence in the market.

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