Fire safety features prominently once more in the latest issue.
David McCulloch looks at the competence requirements for those working on higher-risk residential buildings that have been recommended by the Industry Response Group, and a case study shows how sprinklers were installed in one high-rise building successfully while residents stayed on site. Other articles focus on how an Australian report has spearheaded efforts to reform regulation and improve fire safety, and a code developed by the UAE in response to high-rise fires spread by cladding. Safety of another kind is considered in Robin Miller’s overview of building conservation in New Zealand, where earthquakes are on everyone’s minds.
On the topic of energy efficiency, Craig Ross covers two recent leaders forums run by RICS that brought together experts in London and Dubai to discuss improving the built environment, while Sarah Ratcliffe explains how a pioneering UK scheme is following Australia’s example by encouraging efficiency by design. The environment remains a concern in another pair of articles, with Simon Sturgis discussing why all-glass towers are facing renewed scrutiny in the light of the climate crisis, and Michael Morgan looking at the potential of plans for electric vehicle charge points in most buildings to transform UK car culture.
Combining academic and practical education is another strand of this issue, as Steven Thompson outlines how T levels offer a new route into the profession, and academics from the University of West London reveal that degree apprenticeships are becoming increasingly popular as a vocational alternative to higher education.
On the RICS front, this edition covers the recently published seventh edition of Party wall legislation and procedure guidance note, focusing on the need to work ethically – also emphasised in plans to launch a new online Professionalism module to refresh the organisation’s training provision. In other RICS news, COBRA, the research conference dedicated to construction, building and infrastructure, takes place at the American Real Estate Society in Florida, USA, on 14–18 April. The COBRA track at ARES 2020 will consist of sessions on six main themes: project delivery; construction business; professional advancement in construction; policy and regulation; construction technology; and digitalisation.
Talking of events, this issue also takes a look back at last year’s Dilapidations Forum Conference, as well as reviewing two recent dilapidations legal cases and reflecting on claims for failure to repair elsewhere in the world. We hope you enjoy the first journal of the new year. As always, I welcome your thoughts and ideas about the sector and the journal itself, so please do get in touch with me.
Editor, Built Environment Journal
Barney works with professionals to produce building surveying, building control and interdisciplinary material that supports surveyors in the technical and professional aspects of their day-to-day work.