With the announcement of a reduced GDP growth forecast for 2017 – 1.5% as opposed to 2% - the Autumn Budget announcement by Chancellor Philip Hammond included increased infrastructure investment to offset the unexpected downturn.
East-West Infrastructure Gets a Boost
The Transforming Cities Fund was announced, providing £1.7bn to improve transport links between cities, including extending the Midlands Metro scheme. The majority of this scheme is planned for the West Midlands, which will see the works triple in size over the next 10 years. This is a great boost for rail and infrastructure engineers and quantity surveyors near Birmingham.
A further £300m has been committed to HS2 to accommodate the Midlands Metro and Northern Powerhouse rail upgrades. This will likely require more staff on HS2 in order to deliver on the additional design and construction works that the extra investment creates.
The East West Rail Project and Oxford to Cambridge Expressway scheme were also committed to by the government, with funding details still to be determined. Both schemes are to be accelerated with opening dates expected to be in the mid-2020s, meaning that roles for engineers, quantity surveyors, and site staff will soon be required to deliver on this boost in funding.
House Building Still Booming
The Housing Infrastructure Fund has been more than doubled with an additional £2.7bn committed. Unblocking house building projects using these additional funds will open up opportunities for quantity surveyors, commercial managers, engineers and construction staff around the country.
The National Productivity Investment Fund has also been extended, which is good news for house building and transport. This fund aims to support the construction of new homes and reduce congestion on the UK’s transport network, as well as invest in other areas of growth such as research and development. Expect to see more house building and pinch point improvement schemes announced as a result of this extension.
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I am responsible for the delivery of Search Assignments, Business Development and UK Candidate Attraction Strategy. Based in Leicester and Melton Mowbray and have 20+ years experience in construction recruitment. I focus on recruiting for construction jobs in the East Midlands, West Midlands and across London and South East England.
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