Build UK’s update the industry amid the covid-19 outbreak
We have now been in lockdown for three months and this is the 60th Build UK update on coronavirus! Since we published our first one on 16 March there has been no shortage of information to share and the Build UK website has had more visitors in that time than in the previous three years put together. We have also had a higher presence in the national and trade press than ever before as we work on behalf of our members to keep the industry operational and a huge thank you for all your support.
We know that keeping sites open and maintaining a pipeline of work is the most effective way for businesses to sustain their cash flow and keep people employed. Working collectively through the Construction Leadership Council (CLC), we have demonstrated to government that the industry is critical to both society and the economy. Together we can continue to make the case for infrastructure investment, deliver quality projects at pace and at scale, and support the economic recovery.
The Scottish Government has confirmed that the construction industry can move to Phase 3 of the construction re-start plan, known as ‘steady state operation’, from next Monday 22 June. As in phase 2, work can only be carried out where physical distancing can be maintained, and it is anticipated that 30% - 40% of the original workforce will be able to be accommodated on site during phase 3. The Scottish Government has also confirmed that face coverings will be mandatory on public transport in Scotland from Monday and house moves can recommence from 29 June.
Transport for London has written to its supply chain to encourage construction workers to free up limited space on public transport by walking or cycling to site unless unable to do so. Companies are being asked to help by providing facilities on site, including lockers, showers and cycle storage. For those construction workers who must use public transport, TfL is requesting that they avoid peak times (05:45 - 08:15 and 16:00 - 17:30) and busy interchanges, and consider whether they could start or end their journey using quieter stations.
TfL has highlighted its work with Build UK, which resulted in Thames Clippers resuming services on a temporary timetable. Thames Clippers are also now introducing a ‘Park and Glide’ service, which will allow commuters to park their cars at The O2 and then take a clipper into London.
The Mayor of London has confirmed that construction vehicles will have a six-month exemption from implementing the next stages (Stages IIIB and IV) of the Non-Road Mobile Machinery (NRMM) Low Emission Zone when it comes into effect on 1 September 2020. This means that all construction machinery will now have until 1 March 2021 to meet the requirements.
Build UK Chief Executive Suzannah Nichol will be joining the next LetsBuild ‘Virtual Town Hall’ on Tuesday 23 June from 10.00am – 11:30am to discuss the CLC Roadmap to Recovery and you can register online now.
Businesses should continue to follow the most up-to-date government guidance and for the latest updates please follow Build UK on Twitter and LinkedIn. If you have any construction-specific queries or feedback on what is happening within the industry, please contact Build UK.