European Investment Bank (EIB) has approved a loan worth £280m to the University College of London (UCL) for the development of its Bloomsbury and UCL East campuses.UCL is investing £1.25bn over 10 years to implement its Transforming UCL programme, which includes the development of two campuses as well as other projects across London.The 30-year loan follows the investment of £25m in January in the new UCL Technology Fund by the European Investment Fund, part of the EIB group.The project in Bloomsbury is worth about £740m and will include the refurbishment and expansion of Bartlett School of Architecture, which will house nearly 1,000 staff and students. Construction of a new student centre is also set to start this year.The loan will also finance the construction of UCL East university's new campus at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in east London.UCL East’s first phase is due to be finished during the 2019/20 academic year.EIB’s vice president Jonathan Taylor said: "This new £280m 30-year loan represents the largest ever EIB backing for investment at a European University, and reflects the EIB's commitment to strengthen the local and global role of leading universities."
North Point Global has begun construction work on a £200m project to transform Liverpool’s Chinatown. Designed by BLOK Architecture, the project to revamp Europe’s oldest Chinese community will include the creation of 850 new homes, 150,000 sq ft of new commercial and retail space, and a new hotel.The commercial and retail space will house China-based businesses, and a significant number of units have already been bought by Chinese businesses seeking a foothold in the UK.North Point global chairman David Choules said: "From the outset we wanted this scheme to be an authentic Chinese development that brought new commercial energy and entrepreneurialism into the heart of an historic Chinatown."This is not only something unique in the UK, it will be something unique outside China itself."Phase 1 of the Chinatown’s transformation will be built by BILT Group and Scottish Power and is expected to be complete before the end of 2017, while the entire project is slated to be complete in 2019.
UAE-based real estate developer Sobha Group and the government of Umm Al Quwain have signed an equal stake joint venture to develop an AED25bn ($6.8bn) tourism resort on Al Sinniyah Island.The project, called Firdous Sobha, will feature a luxury seafront villa community, hotels and resorts, apartments, boutique shops, an 18-hole golf course, a water sports centre and a wellness spa.Located on Al Seniyah Island, along with Khor al-Beidah, the development will cover a total land area of 53m sq ft.Sobha’s Group founder and chairman PNC Menon said: "Our latest project announcement represents our commitment to the UAE."In line with our aim to fully leverage the opportunities present in this highly dynamic market, we have partnered with Umm Al Quwain Government, and are jointly to transform the island into a world class destination and a hot spot for iconic properties."By combining our capabilities and expertise, we are confident ‘Firdous Sobha’ will be a proud testament to our commitment to quality."
UK-based student accommodation developer Unite Students has purchased a development site in Liverpool that has planning permission for 713 student bedrooms. The site is in a prime city centre location next to Unite’s Grand Central property and is in close proximity to the University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University.The facility is anticipated to offer a home for more than 1,000 students.The total cost of the development, including the land, is expected to be about £70m.Unite Students managing director of property Richard Simpson said: “We are delighted to have acquired this site in Liverpool for delivery in 2019 to add to our existing portfolio in the city.“We will continue our progress on our secured pipeline in regional locations with strong student markets.”The new development is set to be ready in time for the 2019/20 academic year.
Construction firm Morgan Sindall has commenced construction work on a £70m project to transform Lambeth’s Town Hall and civic buildings in the UK. Morgan Sindall’s scope of the work will include the refurbishment of the Grade II listed Brixton Town Hall to create a more open and accessible building for residents and local businesses.The project also involves the demolition of some buildings to the rear, reinstatement of the original atrium with a new roof, and the installation of new lifts, doors and windows.Further, it will include basement modifications to offer new office space and upgraded community facilities.In addition, a new energy efficient civic facility is being built with a customer centre and council offices. The new six-storey building will offer 11,000 sq ft of office space.Morgan Sindall is also improving Buckner Road and Porden Road to ease traffic congestion.The work on the project is set to be completed in 2018.
China-based Sun Paper is set to invest more than $1bn in a bio-products mill in Arkadelphia, Arkansas. The mill will be the company’s first facility in North America and will be located in the heart of Arkansas' timber industry, where 18.8m acres of its area are covered by forests. The facility will convert wood into pulp to be used for paper production.The project will create more than 2,000 direct jobs during construction work Once operational, the mill will employ 250 people directly and generate an additional 1,000 indirect jobs in the timber industry.Arkansas governor Asa Hutchinson said: "The fact Sun Paper is investing more than $1 billion in south Arkansas speaks volumes of their confidence in our workforce and pro-business environment."This is among the largest private investments in the state's history and the impact will be felt for generations. Thanks to Sun Paper for choosing Arkansas as the location for its first North American facility."Construction is expected to start in the first half of 2017 and production is scheduled to begin in late 2019.
DAMAC Properties has announced that its $1.3bn luxury hotel and serviced residences, DAMAC Towers by Paramount Hotels & Resorts, in Dubai has been topped out. The company also stated that 60% of the façade work of the four-tower complex has been completed, with the interior fit-out progressing steadily.Each tower of DAMAC Towers by Paramount Hotels & Resorts will stretch more than 250m into the air, with ten podium levels and 58 additional storeys. Three of the four towers will have, in total, 1,200 luxury serviced residences.The fourth tower, the Paramount Hotel, will feature more than 800 rooms and suites, along with a lobby with a coffee lounge and chocolaterie. It will also include a reception area, featuring 360-degree floor-to-ceiling digital walls and a wide range of eateries.Paramount Hotels & Resorts chairman Ghassan Aridi said: "This is a much-anticipated achievement for us, as it will be the world's first-ever Paramount Hotel and Paramount Residences, and it will also represent the premiere of the Paramount Hotels & Resorts brand in the UAE."Dubai has built a reputation as a leisure destination, with impeccable service standards and lifestyle offering. DAMAC Towers by Paramount Hotels & Resorts will seamlessly combine the timeless Hollywood glamour of the movie industry with Dubai style."The towers are expected to be completed in 2017.
Oman’s Minister of Housing Sheikh Saif bin Mohammed Al Shabibi has signed two housing contracts worth OMR75,97m ($197m). The first deal involves setting up infrastructure for a new residential area in Liwa in the Governorate of North Al Batinah, while the second agreement is related to providing consultancy services for preparing the necessary studies and detailed layouts for the new urban complex at Al Najd area in the Wilayat of Thumrait in the Governorate of Dhofar. The new agreements include water, irrigation, rainwater discharge, sanitary drainage, electricity and communication networks. Earlier, the agreement for levelling the site and roads for the new residential area in the Wilayat of Liwa was signed for more than OMR25m ($65m), and included the construction of roads that connect the residential districts and the service road parallel to the current Al Batinah road.
FC Barcelona has released a mock-up of the new-look Camp Nou Football Stadium , which is expected to cost over €620m ($700m).
Pharmaceutical company Allergan has begun work on a $200m expansion of its facility in Waco, Texas. The Waco facility is the company's flagship manufacturing facility for its eye care products such as Restasis, Lumigan, Combigan, Refresh Plus, Refresh Tears and Latisse. The project will increase the manufacturing space of the existing facility by 322,000 sq ft, nearly doubling its current footprint. The expansion will add a new raw material dispensary, an automated bulk formulation suite and ten new production lines, as well as warehousing space. The Waco facility will be able to manufacture more than 40 different products and its production capacity will be increased by more than 50%. When completed, the extended capacity will add about 100 full-time jobs, and at full utilization will have the potential to add 250 more. Allergan’s president and CEO Brent Saunders said: "Today's groundbreaking marks an important milestone for Allergan, strengthening our commitment to our people, operations and the partnership we have built with Waco and the Central Texas communities for 27 years. "This investment will add highly-skilled jobs to the Waco and Central Texas economies, elevate our manufacturing capabilities and increase our ability to provide more complex medicines to more physicians and their patients around the globe.” The construction, commissioning and validation of the facility expansion and production processes are scheduled to be completed by 2020.
UK based housebuilding company Keepmoat has announced that the housing development Mandale Park in Stockton is nearing completion after 11 years.In 2004, the Mandale Estate compromised 578 homes, half of which were unoccupied, as well as three retail units and a community centre. Stockton Council, Barratt Homes, ISOS Housing and Keepmoat Homes entered into an agreement to transform the area building 891 new homes, 641 of which were to buy and 250 available for rent.The project, which entailed an investment of £120m, also includes the £1m Allison Trainer park, named in honour of the councillor who played a pivotal role in bringing the investment to the area.Keepmoat North East regional managing director Richard Bass said that prior to the redevelopment properties on the estate were sold for an average of £13,500 and that now new homes on the estate are reaching prices over £150,000. Keepmoat has built 445 new dwellings as part of the £90m regeneration scheme.Construction of the 333 Barratt Homes created 945 jobs, 95% of which were filled by local people from within a 10-mile radius of Thornaby.Barratt Homes North East managing director Mike Roberts said: "In 2004, the Mandale Estate was in a dire state of repair, with almost half of the 578 units of residential accommodation in the area unoccupied."Since then however, it has been amazing to see the regeneration of not only the estate, but of the area as a whole, not to mention the annual benefit to the local economy of £1m in council tax and over £6m in spend in local shops."Now out of the 333 properties we have built, there are only two left to purchase, and there is now a fantastic community of happy homebuyers on the site. We are really proud of what we have managed to achieve and the positive impact this has had on the area."
The Georgia Institute of Technology and John Portman & Associates (Portman) have unveiled plans for the Coda collaborative building in Tech Square, Atlanta.Estimated to cost $375m, the 750,000 sq ft mixed-use development is being designed by Portman in order to achieve the primary goal of bringing research and commercialisation together.The development will have 620,000 sq ft of office space, half of which will be occupied by Georgia Tech, and nearly 40,000 sq ft of retail space, including the adaptive reuse of Crum & Forster building, which will become a local gathering place and outdoor living room for Tech Square and Midtown Atlanta.The development will also include an approximately 80,000 sq ft data centre, which Next Tier HD has been selected to operate.Coda will be programmed around high performance computing modelling, simulation and a sustainable innovation ecosystem, integrating the existing assets of Tech Square with new opportunities in interdisciplinary research, commercialisation and sustainability.The project is expected to create 2,100 construction jobs and 2,400 jobs onsite after completion. Portman Holdings’ CEO Ambrish Baisiwala said: "We're excited to develop Coda, encompassing collaborative office space, co-working and research facilities, a high performance computing centre and interactive community space, collectively enhancing the innovation ecosystem created by Georgia Tech and Midtown."
Artar Real Estate Development, the property development arm of Abdulrahman Saad Al-Rashid & Sons Company, has completed 15% of the construction work on the Mada Residences in Dubai. The AED600m ($163m) Mada Residences are being built in Downtown Dubai, where the main core of the tower has reached the fifth floor.The development will feature a total of 193 one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom units. With floor-to-ceiling glass throughout, each unit has been designed to be light, airy and roomy.Residents at Mada Residences will have access to a roof-top swimming pool, children's pool, terrace lounge, sauna and steam rooms, jacuzzi, a gym and a multi-purpose residents' lounge. Artar’s CEO Sulaiman Abdulrahman Al Rashid said: "Since the commencement of construction, the progress of Mada Residences, has been on schedule. We are in the process of pouring the concrete for the first podium floor above ground, with the main core of the tower reaching the 5th floor."Savvy buyers are recognizing the potential of this area and are confident enough to purchase multiple units with expectations of steady appreciation over the next three to five years."Our successful sales record with Mada Residences is largely attributable to our competitive prices, attractive payment plan, project location, unit layout design and the advanced construction progress."The construction progress on the site indicates that the project will be completed by July 2018.
A joint venture between San Jose Contracting and Pivot Engineering & General Contracting has won the main construction contract for Mamsha Al Saadiyat, a residential development in Abu Dhabi.The AED1.25bn (about $340m) project will be the first residential development within the Saadiyat Cultural District. It will feature nine low-rise residential buildings with a total of 461 units, 414 of which will be apartments ranging from one- to four-bedroom apartments, as well as five-bedroom duplex penthouses and 47 townhouses. Each penthouse will have a private swimming pool and terrace, as well as a modern kitchen, two living rooms and a dining room. There will be accommodation for maids and drivers as well.The gross floor area of the apartments will range from approximately 106–454 sq m, while the townhouses will range from approximately 227–315 sq m.The entire project will also include a serviced-apartment building and a retail destination offering approximately 5,000 sq m of leasable area for both retail and dining outlets.The townhouses, ranging in size from two to three bedrooms, will be located on the ground floor of each building, with some having a roof garden.Work on the development's foundation has already been completed by Nael & Bin Harmal Hydroexport (NBHH) and included excavation, shoring, dewatering and piling works.Mamsha Al Saadiyat will be developed in phases, and is expected to be complete in the second half of 2018.
Work has begun on SUNY Polytechnic Institute's new computer chip production facility for Ams AG at the Marcy Nanocenter in Utica, New York.Marcy Nanocenter has been designed to replicate the success of SUNY Poly's Nanotech Megaplex in Albany. The new facility is being built close to a campus of SUNY Polytechnic Institute in New York's Tech Valley. The initial private investment in the project is $2bn.The factory, which is being built to Ams's specifications, is initially expected to offer a capacity of at least 150,000 200mm-wafer equivalents per year, and will be able to surpass an operating capacity of 450,000 200mm-wafer equivalents per year with the expansion to follow. Production capacity will supplement Ams' existing production operations at its headquarters near Graz, Austria. The groundbreaking marks a major milestone in the governor's Nano Utica initiative, which is now projected to create at least 4,000 jobs over the next decade, and includes research and development at the Computer Chip Commercialization Center (QUAD C) in partnership with General Electric.Ams CEO Alexander Everke said: "Building this new wafer fab enables Ams to achieve its plans for growth and to meet the increasing demand for sensor solutions produced at advanced manufacturing nodes."Our decision to locate the facility in New York was motivated by the availability of a highly skilled workforce, the proximity to prestigious educational and research institutions, and the favorable business environment, backed by public and private partners.”The plant is scheduled to become operational in the first half of 2018 and Ams will operate the facility under a 20-year lease.
Pirelli is set to expand its presence in Mexico by investing $200m in a new tyre factory.
Coca-Cola Beverage has broken ground on a new $185m eco-friendly plant in Kunming City, Yunnan Province, China.The new 195,632 sq m plant is being constructed in the Majinpu New Town Industrial Base in Kunming National Hi-tech Industries Development Zone to replace an existing plant, tripling the number of bottling lines from four to 12.When completed, the plant will deliver an annual capacity of 423m unit cases of beverage with both sparkling and still products, across brands such as Coca-Cola, Sprite, Fanta, Ice Dew and Ice Dew Chunyue.The new factory will adopt green building standards regarding the site selection, building environment, water-saving and energy-saving measures, air protection, material and resource utilization, indoor environment quality and design innovation. It will also adhere to the international certification system requirement for the Silver Certification of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).Coca-Cola Bottling Investments Group China CEO Glen Walter said: "The new plant will become an important production base for Coca-Cola in China's southwest region."This investment will not only provide strong support to Coca-Cola's sustainable development in Yunnan, but also boost economic development locally by increasing job opportunities and enhancing collaboration."The new plant is part of the Coca-Cola's current $4bn investment plan, which began in 2015 and will continue through 2017.
The University of Canberra has signed a $1.7bn agreement with CIC Australia for the development of up to 3,300 new residences in Belconnen, Australia.The new residences will be a mix of units and townhouses, which will be constructed over a 15-20 year period.University of Canberra vice-chancellor professor Stephen Parker said: "It is great to see another stage of our 'Educated Life' vision coming to fruition."Our vision foresees that by 2030 our campus will be a leading example of how a modern world-class university transformed its physical surroundings to create an integrated learning community where scholars, students and the public intermingle."This residential development, which is part of the university's Campus Community precinct, will see a mix of students, faculty, staff, alumni and members of the general public living in a modern, progressive, sustainable, edgy community."
Long Beach city, in California, has secured funding for its $513m Civic Center P3 project.The project involves the creation of a new civic centre designed with a high seismic resiliency, an 11-storey, 270,000 sq ft city hall, an 11-storey, 237,000 sq ft port headquarters building, a two-storey 92,000 sq ft main library, a 73,000 sq ft civic plaza, and new underground parking with 469 spaces.It features a central utility plant and a three rooftop solar array system to meet 25% of energy needs of the civic centre, and a 4.9-acre revamped city park. Furthermore, plans are on for a future project featuring up to 580 homes, a retail space and up to 200 hotel rooms.Long Beach’s mayor Robert Garcia said: "We are excited to see this deal move forward and to meet the goals set by the city three years ago when it embarked on the Civic Center P3 procurement."I'd like to congratulate and thank our city council, city staff, our partners, and the Plenary led consortium that helped us to reach this important milestone."The Plenary-led consortium includes co-developer Edgemoor Infrastructure and Real Estate, Johnston Controls, Clark Construction, and Skidmore Owings & Merrill. The city's advisors include p3point, Arup, HOK, BAE Urban Economics, MBI, Sheppard Mullins, KNN and Kutak Rock.
Temple University in Philadephia has broken ground on a $170m library, the most expensive project undertaken by the university to date.The library has been designed by Snøhetta, but it is being built in collaboration with Stantec. Originally planned to be built on Broad Street, the building is now being constructed at the centre of Temple's campus, between Polett Walk and 13th Street. This 225,000sq ft library will be one of the few libraries in the world that uses the automatic search and retrieval system (ASRS), which will store 90% of the 2m books held by the university. The library is scheduled to open in the fall of 2018.