What are some of the most interesting engineering projects to watch out for in the UK in 2017?
First of all, Happy New Year from everyone at Millbank! There's a lot going on in the world of construction and engineering in 2017 and beyond, with several massive projects starting up, continuing on or coming to a close.
Here are just a few to keep your eye on.
Garden villages and towns announced
On January 2nd, the government revealed the locations of fourteen new garden villages to be built around the country, plus three larger garden towns. These are designed to bring infrastructure, jobs and much-needed homes to the areas, with 200,000 new homes planned including the larger towns planned, helping to solve the first time buyers housing crisis.
Each garden village and town will have access to the £2.3bn Housing Infrastructure Fund announced in the last Autumn Statement.
The programme will see £7.4m directly invested in total, with the size of the task obvious from a built environment perspective. Watch this space for further coverage on these new developments.
HS2 Phase 1 underway
One of the biggest rail projects in decades, High Speed 2 is set to enter into construction in earnest this year. It is expected that phase one (London to Birmingham) will be ready by 2026, with phase two (Manchester and Leeds) to be completed by 2033.
The scope of the project is huge and spans site clearance, earthworks, civil engineering for new tunnels, bridges and stations, and installing a total of 335 miles of the railway line itself.
It’s estimated that by the end of the decade, HS2 will have employed 27,000 people.
Aston Martin’s St Athan factory under construction
With the production line for their first SUV, the DBX, set to roll into action in 2018, the iconic British automotive manufacturer will make significant progress on the new factory in south Wales this year.
The site sits on the former MoD base near Barry in the Vale of Glamorgan, and a number of the 750 new staff set to work there are already being trained at Aston Martin’s main site in Gaydon, Warwickshire.
This development is set to boost the local economy and attract more businesses to the area in the coming years, making it one to watch closely.
Hinkley Point C boosts nuclear new build work
With the green light for Hinkley Point C finally given in 2016, the real work can begin on the first nuclear new build in a generation.
With construction set to take ten years, EDF say 25,000 people are due to be employed over the lifetime of this major project across construction, civil engineering, electrical installation and other support roles.
Mersey Gateway set for completion
The Mersey Gateway, a new six-lane bridge across the River Mersey and Manchester Ship Canal, is set to open in autumn 2017. Since beginning construction in May 2014, the 1,000 metre-long bridge has been one of the UK’s largest infrastructure projects. After the Mersey Gateway is complete, there will be further renovation works on the old Silver Jubilee Bridge as well.