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To be considerate you need to innovate

Kris Karslake Kris Karslake   27 May 2014 Community, Health and wellbeing

In the built environment, contractors have been increasingly challenged by the Considerate Constructors Scheme (CCS) to be more innovative to ‘improve the image of construction’. Bright ideas make sure our activities on site have a positive impact on the local community, enhance the environment and improve the health and wellbeing of our workforce.

Westminster Kingsway College portrait banner


The CCS scoring changed at the start of 2013 to reward more sites that are going beyond industry best practice.  And now rather than marks out of five across eight topic areas, marks are given out of ten across five topic areas. Although there was some concern about the new scoring, it has actually enthused site teams to develop and share more creative solutions. This was reflected by BAM’s improved performance at this year’s CCS Awards, with four gold awards, nine silver and eleven bronze. Here are some of the bright ideas that BAM teams implemented in 2013 that caught the eye of the CCS monitors:

Tracey and Julie at the Manchester City visitors’ centre


Our site team at City Football Academy in Manchester was awarded tens in the Care about Appearance and Respect the Community categories. Very much in the public eye, the team has undertaken many initiatives to make sure the project has a positive impact on the local community. By setting up a visitors’ centre at the site entrance, staffed by a dedicated couple of individuals who provide the public with information about the project, the team was able to offer employment to local people, and keep neighbours informed of progress. Once on site, all visitors have access to a panoramic viewing platform, and can make use of a Land Rover to have a tour of the expansive site.

Dust suppression technology at 110 Queen Street, Glasgow project


The Protect the Environment category saw the most tens in 2013. Dehumidifiers, dust suppression with fan sprayed water, making connection with the on-site renewable technologies early in the contract and subcontractor league tables are innovations that are all part of BAM’s typical control measures. The team at St Antony’s College in Oxford however faced a challenge as a large protected tree was right next to the planned construction of a futuristic addition to the University of Oxford’s Middle East Centre. They produced a piling design around the redwood tree, constructed protection slabs, wrapped the roots and then backfilled with special soil to sustain the root system. Also a ‘Zero piler’ was used, which pushes piles in with the aid of water jetting, to reduce noise and vibration issues.

In 2013 the CCS started their ‘Spotlight on’ initiative. This gave the cycle-savvy  site team at Musgrove Hospital an opportunity to shine. The site team fully adopted the Cycle safety campaign, displaying posters, handing out leaflets, providing hi-viz jackets and a spare cycle helmet. It’s great to see the CCS award sites that take their initiatives fully on-board. As well as this safety initiative, the project provided refresher tests for individuals whose CSCS card was over two years old. The Musgrove project also achieved a ten in the Value their Workforce category after setting up a dedicated telephone number so anyone working on the site could report details of incidents, issues, ideas and innovations in confidence.

Ivor Goodsite at East Ham Community Show

As a 10 year Associate of the Scheme (which has been open to associate members for 11 years), we know that by encouraging sites to participate in the ‘spotlight on…’ initiative, checking the CCS website for example innovations, attending industry events and participating in awareness days like World Environment Day, there should be plenty of inspiration for future innovation. Good luck everyone for the 2015 award ceremony!
 

Kris Karslake is a Senior Environmental Advisor at BAM.

 

 

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