Construction industry needs to boost output significantly to meet national ambitions, warns Arcadis

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The UK construction industry needs to significantly increase its rate of infrastructure delivery to more than £95,000 of output per minute for the next decade to even come close to meeting national ambitions.

That is the warning from Arcadis, which said that delivering the UK’s ambitions will mean more than doubling historic peak output of £20bn a year.

In its latest report on the UK’s infrastructure pipeline, the consultant has based its £95,000-a-minute figure on the pipeline of work outlined by the National Infrastructure and Construction Pipeline, which features upwards of £500bn of infrastructure spending over the next 10 years.

Greg Bradley, head of UK business advisory at Arcadis, said: “The industry needs to look at innovating on a massive scale to achieve the step-change required, including upscaling digital solutions, offsite manufacture and offshore design, investment in skills and training, sharing of resources and better alignment with regional development agendas. We also need to continue to collaborate across sectors and the supply chain to help speed up the pace of delivery.”

Greater London has more than £28bn of infrastructure investment taking place within the next four years, including schemes such as the Thames Tideway Tunnel, while the northern powerhouse has over £13bn of combined infrastructure opportunity to 2021, with schemes such as the Manchester Airport Transformation Programme and Network Rail’s Transpennine Route Upgrade.

But the consultant said NICP underestimates the scale of opportunity as it currerntly excludes programmes such as Heathrow’s proposed third runway and the Lower Thames Crossing and future programmes to upgrade existing infrastructure.