Search Results for: one public sector estate

NHS estate checks in for major surgery of leases and facilities management

facilities managementThe troubled organisation which looks after a £3 billion chunk of the NHS estate is set to launch an extensive review of its enormous portfolio of offices, hospitals, health centres and GP practices. According to a report on commercial property website CoStar, the move comes as NHS Property Services gets to grips with structural problems in the way the estate is managed, not least the fact that over two thirds of its properties do not have documented leases in place, many facilities management services are provided without a contract in place and nobody seems aware of the true cost of running its estate of the thousands of individual sites involved. The health estate has come under mounting scrutiny over the past two years following the setting up of NHS Property Services in April 2013 as part of the Government’s plans to modernise and rationalise the public sector property portfolio.

More →

Case study: A public sector building that lights the way ahead for others

The new offices of Wiltshire County Council, Trowbridge

The new offices of Wiltshire County Council, Trowbridge

Last year, I had the pleasure of producing a case study of the new offices of Wiltshire County Council for Mix Interiors magazine. Given that the building was this week shortlisted for the Prime Minister’s Better Public Buildings Award and had already won an award from the BCO, we thought this seemed a good time to retread its corridors of power…. The recession has led the UK government to develop a number of new approaches to public sector buildings. But some of the UK’s local authorities are way ahead of the new thinking. Even so, there was a time, not so long ago, when nobody worried too much about the shape of the rooms that led off the corridors of power. But the pressure on UK public finances has politicised the design of the UK’s public buildings, with the government launching a wide range of initiatives to improve the efficiency of the way public sector acquires, designs and runs the places it calls home.

More →

Government extends public estate scheme as DCLG moves in with Home Office

public estateThe UK government has announced that it is to extend its groundbreaking One Public Estate scheme to a further twenty local authorities. The programme aims to divest and consolidate government-owned land and property to cut public sector spending and boost economic growth and regeneration. The government believes the initial phase will save £21m in running costs and £88m in capital receipts, generate around £40m for local economies and create an estimated 5,500 jobs and 7,500 homes over the next five years. The Cabinet Office is now looking to build on this with the extension of the schemes to councils including Liverpool and Birmingham city centres as well as six from Greater Manchester and Cornwall, Southampton and Plymouth. The Government Property Unit will provide funding and training to the participating authorities.

More →

Innovative public sector property scheme to be extended

Hull GuildhallOne of the UK’s most innovative property strategies, the One Public Sector Estate programme is to be extended, the Government has announced. The initiative was established in June of last year in 12 pilot areas as a way for central and local government departments to share offices and other public sector property. The programme will now be extended to as many as 15 new authorities across the country with the Cabinet Office claiming that the pilot schemes have already  saved around £21m in under a year and that the sale of property freed up by the scheme will raise an additional £88 million. The strategy is jointly managed by the property arm of the Cabinet Office who are responsible for similar initiatives in central government, and the Local Government Association.

More →

DEFRA confirms Montagu Evans is to manage its UK-wide estate

DEFRAIn one of the largest public sector portfolios to be re-tendered in recent years, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has appointed Montagu Evans to manage its UK-wide commercial estate. Montagu Evans takes over the three-year contract to manage the estates from DTZ, which has been advising Defra in its role as estates asset manager for the past four-and-a-half years. Montagu Evans will take over the management of the estates, which consists of over 180 properties, from 1 March 2014. Montagu Evans managing partner Steve Thomas said: “We are delighted to have secured such an important appointment. We have been highly impressed with the Defra team and believe there is an excellent fit with Montagu Evans’ tradition of delivering high-quality services.”

If you are moving to new offices, make sure you can get rid of the old ones first

Building 1000 - seemed like a good idea at the time

Building 1000 – seemed like a good idea at the time

One of the most common reasons for large organisations to move to new offices is a consolidation of an extensive and disparate estate that has developed over a long period of time. But what happens when the benefits of the move are scuppered because the organisation finds it impossible to get rid of its old buildings? That is the question facing Newham Borough Council as it emerges that it may have to quit the controversially swanky £110 million offices it moved to in 2010 and back into some of the 26 properties it left at the time and has struggled to unburden itself of since.

More →

Wellness in Real Estate resolution passed for U.S. built environment

The influential U.S. Conference of Mayors (USCM) has voted unanimously to pass a Wellness in Real Estate Resolution which commits to promoting buildings that “use a combination of criteria and features that will enhance the well-being of occupants and address growing preventable health concerns and costs.” The resolution is one of ten new sustainability resolutions for the U.S. built environment commended by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), which praised the USCM for “showing courage and leadership by embracing a strong sustainability and green building policy agenda”. More →

UK public sector leading the way in procurement and sustainable building

Nottingham City Council's Loxley Building

Nottingham City Council’s Loxley Building

Over the last few years, the UK Government has grown increasingly interested in finding ways of making its £30 billion property portfolio more efficient. Both the last Labour government and the current Coalition administration have been driven by the opportunities offered them with the advent of new technology, new ways of working and new procurement models. They’ve pursued these issues to cut costs by reducing and changing the way property is designed and managed but have also found how that can also help to establish best practice in sustainable building. What is increasingly apparent, especially given recent news from the Major Projects Authority about cost savings in procurement is that the public sector is now leading the way as models of good practice.

More →

UK civil service signs up to hybrid working deal

UK civil service signs up to hybrid working deal

The UK civil service is set to pioneer a widespread hybrid working strategy with the announcement of a new deal with serviced office provider IWG. The details of the deal, reported first in The Telegraph newspaper (paywall), will include the creation of a nationwide network of ten coworking spaces for the use of civil servants when they are not in London. The report suggests that up to 430,000 employees could now have a better chance of adopting a hybrid working culture.  More →

Insight weekly: Obsession with data + People subvert design + Engaged workplace

Insight weekly: Obsession with data + People subvert design + Engaged workplace 0

big-dataIn this week’s Newsletter; Jess Brook says beware of the latest data dressed up as pseudo-science; Serena Borghero on ways workplace design can boost engagement levels; and Mark Eltringham says how workplaces are utilised are subject to the vagaries of human behaviour.  Staff allegedly spend just 38 percent of their time performing their primary job duties; collaborative spaces are replacing the traditional office boardroom; and 30 percent of corporate real estate portfolios will incorporate flexible workspaces by 2030. Research suggests office design makes the most significant difference to employee happiness levels; over a quarter (28 percent) of employees are reluctant to ask for flexible work; digital tech within many workplaces is not up to spec; and extension announced of the One Public Sector Estate scheme. Download our new Briefing, produced in partnership with Boss Design on the link between culture and workplace strategy and design; visit our new events page, follow us on Twitter and join our LinkedIn Group to discuss these and other stories.

Latest Work&Place + Performance management + Design and people 0

Insight_twitter_logo_2This week’s Newsletter features the latest issue of Work&Place, which presents a truly global perspective on the forces redefining our relationship with work. In news, the Government extends the One Public Sector Estate scheme and London’s commercial property sector is unaffected by the Brexit jitters. The three day working week is the ideal scenario for the over 40s; current performance management practices discount the digital workplace; and employees spend too much time checking work emails at home. Mark Eltringham says design what you like but don’t discount the impact of adding human beings to the mix; how people have been writing guides to good ergonomics at least since the early seventeenth Century; and that Charles Eames came to have mixed feelings towards his most famous chair. Download our Insight Briefing, produced in partnership with Connection, on the boundless office; visit our new events page, follow us on Twitter and join our LinkedIn Group to discuss these and other stories.

Groundbreaking office sharing scheme rolled out to over 100 UK councils

Groundbreaking office sharing scheme rolled out to over 100 UK councils 0

Manchester_town_hallOne of the most intriguing and yet least talked about developments in the UK’s workplace design and management scene over the past couple of years has been the roll out of the One Public Sector Estate scheme, which encourages local authorities to share and divest parts of their vast, messy and under-utilised estate. The Cabinet Office, the central government department behind the scheme, claims that the current programme involving 32 local authorities will yield around £129 million in property sales and savings of £77 million in running costs over a period of five years. Now, more than 100 councils are set to join the scheme including several that are set to acquire greater autonomy through the Government’s plans for devolution. The new regions set to sign up to the programme include Greater Manchester, the City of Liverpool, West Midlands and Sheffield as part of 24 new ‘partnerships’.

More →