UK civil engineering sector 'benefiting from continued investment'

09 November 2011

Posted by Michelle Devonshire

The civil engineering industry in Britain is witnessing "continued investment", it has been reported.

According to the latest planning approval statistics from Glenigan, the sector is prospering and has managed to weather Government spending cuts.

Despite a 27 per cent year-on-year decline in the underlying value of planning approvals over the quarter to September 2011, the firm claims that civil engineering is continuing to see new development.

Public non-residential construction activity fell sharply over the period in question and social housing approvals also dropped, something that will affect the UK's supply of new homes over the coming years.

However, civil engineering has received a significant boost to planning approvals during June and July from rail projects, particularly those based in and around London, including a number of schemes linked to the major Crossrail infrastructure development.

"This will be a major source of work throughout the next few years," Glenigan predicted, adding: "Various renewable energy projects have supported the level of utilities planning approval over the last few months."

As a result, the level of civil engineering work is expected to remain high during the next year, with increasing industrial and retail planning approvals during 2011.

Richard Coackley was recently appointed as the new President of the Institution of Civil Engineers and stated in a speech to industry leaders, Government representatives and engineers that more support is needed from all quarters to meet Britain's carbon emissions goals, particularly as the energy and transport sectors contribute significant proportions of the total each year.

Director of Energy Development, Power and Energy at URS Scott Wilson, Mr Coackley added: "There are no two ways about it, our future and the future of the planet depends on securing access to clean, affordable and reliable sources of power."

The set of Eurocodes standards for civil engineering and construction are likely to be implemented by those organizations concerned with forthcoming UK infrastructure projects.

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