This week, squatting birds, pampered bats, committed contractors, genial developers – and an architect that is demolishing itself
Home to roost
Parkview International, the developer of Battersea Power Station (see feature, pages 38-44), faces a further hurdle to its ambitious plans for the site: a pair of peregrine falcons nesting in one of the power station's chimneys. As these are two of the last peregrines in London, Parkview is having to co-operate with ornithologists to ensure that the birds are well treated. The developers must be praying the falcons spread their wings soon – but the signs aren't good. Last year they had chicks.

Log in and drop out
I hear far-sighted client the Mellon Bank has tried to tender the construction of its office in Blackfriars, central London, completely electronically. Firms had to log on to a website to join tender process for the construction management job. Unhappily, a few snags meant that firms ended up sending their documents in as hard copies. Still, keep trying.

Cutting the mustard
I see that Constructing Excellence, the body Sir Richard Rogers is chairing, is on the lookout for a chief executive. An advert for the £100,000 post will be seen in Building soon. Qualities sought include "vision and strategic foresight" and "genuine passion for the change agenda". Some applicants, however, may be put off by one criterion, namely that candidates will be "likely to have managed a successful business". Tall order.

Elevating example
Strategic forum head Peter Rogers (pictured above right) kept his cool during an event at his firm's Paternoster Square development. On his way to awarding construction logistics firm Wilson James an Investor in People award on the top floor of one of the Paternoster blocks, Rogers had some lift difficulty – it wasn't working. But instead of berating those responsible, he laughed it off, even giving the sheepish operator some handy advice on how to get it up and running.

Architecture giant BDP is constantly expanding its business in the hope that it will one day become a global player. So imagine my surprise when I found out that its office in Sheffield was to be demolished. Apparently, a compulsory purchase order tied in to the masterplan for the regeneration of the centre of Sheffield, drawn up by BDP itself, means that its local office will have to be destroyed to make way for a new John Lewis store. Remember, the client is always right.

Return of the flagellants
An eagle-eyed Hansom reader sends me the latest news from Venice, where the reconstruction of the Fenice Opera House, which burnt down in 1996, is under way. According to reports, Venetian contractor Sacaim has promised to complete the job by December. The firm says it will work 16 hours a day, every day, or face penalty charges. Now that's commitment.

A suite in the belfry, please

I hear – but do not necessarily believe – that the South West Regional Development Agency has plans to build a “hotel” for bats. Apparently, four different species of the furry little darlings have been discovered on a site earmarked for a high-tech business park in Bodmin, Cornwall. The luxury accommodation will include a heated area especially for one species, male and female quarters, soundproof hibernation areas and space for breeding, feeding and flying. In other words, all the creature comforts.