The voice of construction

It’s always a case of whoever shouts loudest gets the most attention, so why does our industry always seem to have such a weak voice when it comes to lobbying government?

Take for instance Building Magazine’s latest campaign: They’ve called it Charter 284: A Building Manifesto to promote construction spending. The title comes from the fact that, according to a report by economic consultant LEK, every £1 invested in construction generates £2.84 of GDP.

Why oh why can our voice not be heard? The government listens to car manufacturers, no doubt now the steelworkers, and it seems almost every other industry except ours. Have we really got just the boiler scrappage scheme on the go at the moment?!

And, while I’m on about it, and following what I was saying two weeks ago, what about this for some headline statistics: The government target (set in 2005) was for us to build 240,000 houses by 2016 and a further 240,000 on an annual basis thereafter. But how many did we build in 2009? 118,000!

If everyone in the industry signs up to Building’s campaign will we stand a chance of getting ourselves back on our feet again? I’d like to think so, but will we do it?

If you are interested then you can sign up here, but this is what Building are saying should be done:

  1. Complete the renewal of the school estate
  2. Don’t let spending on transport infrastructure fall more than 10% below current levels
  3. Reduce the regulatory burden on the housing sector to encourage more development
  4. Give householders incentives to green existing homes
  5. Prioritise the development of renewable energy, including nuclear, through incentives for private sector investment.

What do you think? We’ve got to start somewhere, somehow…

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About Me

I’m now the Managing Director of Mynott Associates Limited my own specialist measurement business. I’ve been in the industry all of my life since I left school. My first job was with Bovis Construction as a management trainee where I trained to become a quantity surveyor. I’ve worked for contractors all through my career, I am FRICS, FCIOB and MCIHT qualified and act as an RICS assessor. I’m also a keen Arsenal supporter having followed them from a young boy

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