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National infrastructure pipeline only achievable if UK construction industry doubles output

The UK construction industry will need to build at a rate of over £95,000 every single minute for the next decade to come close to meeting national infrastructure ambitions. This will mean more than doubling the historic peak rate of delivery, and will require a major step- change in how we plan and deliver construction in the UK.

Greg Bradley

Head of UK Infrastructure Advisory Ask me a question
UK Infrastructure Pipeline

"Demand for new infrastructure is creating an exceptional opportunity to create jobs and drive growth."

Demand for new infrastructure is creating an exceptional opportunity to create jobs and drive growth. There are now more major infrastructure programmes simultaneously underway than ever before, but this also means that competition is rife for access to the best supply chain, technology and construction  talent

Operating in this increasingly crowded market is putting the industry under growing pressure to meet targets, forcing new delivery approaches if it is to keep pace.

The true scale of the opportunity

The figures are based on the current iteration of the National Infrastructure and Construction Pipeline (NICP), which features upwards of £500 billion of infrastructure spend over the next 10 years. 

Yet although the NICP represents the largest potential spend seen so far on infrastructure, it actually understates the real scale of the opportunity.

For example, the NICP currently excludes some of the UK’s most important future programmes, such as Heathrow’s proposed third runway and Highways England’s Lower Thames Crossing. Equally, future programmes to adapt existing infrastructure related to disruptive technologies, such as autonomous vehicles or the battery storage of energy, could also come to market in the next 10 years but don’t feature in the Pipeline. 

We could be looking at the need to deliver UK infrastructure at a scale and pace that is unprecedented.  

This will force the industry to do things differently and innovate on a massive scale to achieve the step-change required. This includes digital solutions, offsite manufacture and offshore design, investment in skills and training, sharing of resources and better alignment with regional development agendas. It is also essential that the industry continues to collaborate across sectors and the supply chain to help speed up the pace of delivery.

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Greg Bradley

Head of UK Infrastructure Advisory Ask me a question

Arcadis White paper

Delivering UK's National Infrastructure Pipeline
Opportunity Knocks - Delivering the UK’s infrastructure pipeline

The UK construction industry will need to build at a rate of over £95,000 every single minute for the next decade to come close to meeting national infrastructure ambitions. This will mean more than doubling the historic peak rate of delivery, and will require a major step- change in how we plan and deliver construction in the UK.

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