It is rare that a month goes by without Turner & Townsend being mentioned in connection to a major project, so we just had to mention it in the winner's box here
This award was open to all types and sizes of project and construction management firms. The judges were be looking for evidence of success during 2008.
- Turner & Townsend
Take virtually any high-profile project in the UK at the moment and it's a fair bet that Turner & Townsend will be at the heart of it. Described as a “real all-rounder” by the judges, this firm has what it takes to deliver a
first-class scheme every time, regardless of scale or sector. Over the past 12 months it has been instrumental in meeting unique challenges, such as the largest printing pressworks in Europe for Rupert Murdoch's News International and the Stephen Lawrence Centre in London, a smaller but equally headline-grabbing scheme that is intended to foster social cohesion. It's no wonder that when property tycoon Irvine Sellar wanted to ensure the delivery of the Shard at London Bridge without breaking the bank, this was the firm he chose. The firm is also a beacon for the industry in terms of sustainability - it prioritises low or zero-carbon delivery on all its projects.
Arup's work on the astonishing Water Cube aquatic centre for the Beijing Olympics could be used to write the definitive guide to project management. The Arup team for this crucial project included more than 100 designers, working across 20 disciplines and out of four countries. This work of this multi-talented outfit was every bit as impressive as the performance of Britain's medal-winning swimmers at the venue, as they delivered the scheme within a tight fast-tracked programme and yet remaining within budget. But then, success is hardly a surprise where Arup is concerned - the firm remains at the centre of some of the most exciting projects across the globe, and is a true leader of the industry when it comes to sustainability and innovation.
- Capita Symonds
When a consultant's managing director pledges to meet regularly with top customers face-to-face, they have a pretty good chance of getting an attentive service. And it is this care and precision that characterises everything that Capita Symonds does - such as partnering with local authorities, at which it is a market leader. It is equally capable of working on difficult schemes such as the continuing operation of Wembley stadium. There are not many firms in the industry that would envy them that particular job, but Capita Symonds seems to succeed at whatever it tries - last year it had its strongest performance since its inception in 2004, with fee income increasing 15%. After acquisitions, this firm is now almost 500 staff bigger than it was a year ago - but the quality ethos and personal touch remain the same.
- Entec UK
With its notoriously difficult procurement routes and large scale projects, the PFI sector is not an easy place for any project manager to work. But Entec is capable of making the sector's challenges disappear, even in the glare of the public eye. As technical adviser on the £3.5bn Manchester Waste PFI, the firm has developed a disposal solution that will not only deal with the city's waste, but will provide the city with heat and energy for many years to come. The firm has also been widely praised for its role on defence projects - one of the most notorious areas of public sector work. And if you can please a client as tough as the Ministry of Defence, you can't be going far wrong.
Mace's profit soared by a huge 40% last year, and when you look at the strength of its portfolio, it's hardly surprising. In the UK, the company has maintained its position in an elite group of construction and project managers. Last year it delivered the massive Terminal 5 project at Heathrow in time for its March opening and was selected as delivery partner on the £600m programme of works to transform Birmingham New Street station into a 21st-century transport hub. Its reputation is no less fearsome abroad - among many highlights, the company has used the experience it gained as part of the delivery team for the 2012 Olympics to assist the Russian city of Sochi to secure the right to host the 2014 Winter Games. And, of course, it is to move outside its traditional construction management role to build the Shard on a guaranteed maximum price contract, thereby proving that it has courage as well as brains.