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PROGRESS CUTS NO ICE

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Poor quality housing and infrastructure are leading to a 'disaffected society', according to the Agenda for the Future document from the Institution for Civil Engineers.Launched last week, the document lists the problems the institute says now challenge the UK, including poor transport, safety on the roads, energy consumption, flooding and urban regeneration. 'The need for a progressive and systematic implementation of an urban renewal and maintenance programme is essential, ' says the report. 'Quality affordable housing must be provided if social exclusion is to be avoided. This can be achieved through new build, but often refurbishment can offer a more substantial solution.'

The Sidell Gibson Partnership has won the go-ahead for this £10 million speculative office development in Birmingham. Number 10 Brindleyplace is the last building to be slotted into the masterplan.The architect hopes building work on the seven-storey building will commence this summer with construction planned to take 15 months. The 6,800m2 development consists of large, open-plan floorplates in an effort to appeal to corporate clients. Full-height glazing on all four sides of the building permits natural light to penetrate deep into the 1,100m2 of office space, while employees will have use of a roof-top terrace. The steel structure is clad in a mixture of brick and green metal panels.

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