ABi Garage Doors http://abigaragedoors.co.uk Garage Door Specialists Thu, 01 Jun 2017 17:48:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8 New Hörmann products unveiled at the National Homebuilding Show http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/new-hormann-products-homebuilding-show/ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/new-hormann-products-homebuilding-show/#respond Tue, 11 Apr 2017 19:06:50 +0000 http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/?p=2933 By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

The world of garage doors never stands still, with new products constantly being developed, tested and released. Part of our job here at ABi Garage Doors is to keep an eye on the latest innovations, so that we can continue to offer our customers the best products from the best manufacturers. With this in mind, [...]

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By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

National Homebuilding Show Hormann
The world of garage doors never stands still, with new products constantly being developed, tested and released. Part of our job here at ABi Garage Doors is to keep an eye on the latest innovations, so that we can continue to offer our customers the best products from the best manufacturers.

With this in mind, we often send members of the team to explore the latest offerings on the market, so a couple of weeks ago we packed Luke and Chris off to the National Homebuilding & Renovating Show at the NEC in Birmingham to take a look at the exhibitions.

So what’s new?

As always the show was populated by a huge range of exhibitors – over 500 in total! There were lots of stands featuring garage and entrance doors, and some lovely finishes to admire.

Of course the best bit is being able to see the products in action through the live demonstrations, and we were particularly interested to take a look at the latest updates to the Hörmann range. We’ve been recommending their doors for years and for good reason – and these new products are no exception to their usual high quality.

Here’s a quick look at the products and their key features:

The Rollmatic OD – ceiling roller door
Hormann RollMatic OD
How do you solve the problem of high vehicles and low headrooms? With the Hörmann Rollermatic OD!
A genuine innovation on the marketplace, this garage door can be installed in spaces where there’s as little as 60mm of headroom – less than any other door available to date. Perfect for the modern trend for taller and chunkier cars, other great benefits include:

  • Minimum side-space requirement of just 100mm
  • Great range of colours and finishes
  • Space-saving operator fitting to the horizontal guide rail
  • Operator can be fitted to the left or right side
  • The LPU 67 – insulation innovation
    Hormann LPU67 Sectional Garage Door
    We were thoroughly impressed by the incredible insulation properties of the new LPU 67, although it’s fair to say that innovation comes at a cost, so it won’t be found at the budget end of the market! You get what you pay for with this door though, and it would fit perfectly into ‘eco’ build projects.

    The standard version offers:

  • Up to 50% better thermal insulation compared to a sectional garage door
  • 67mm thick sections with thermal break
  • Double lip and bottom seals
  • Finger-trap protection
  • Triple pane glazing
  • Optional ThermoFrame for up to 15% better insulation
  • There’s also a premium version being released which comes with colour matched hinges and tracks, plus twin rollers. For customers looking for the most insulated garage door on the market, this is probably it!

    We had a great time at the show, catching up with old faces as well as the new Hörmann products – we can’t wait for next year’s event!

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    Contemporary Architecture in Harrogate. ABi work with Swan Lane Developments on their exclusive modern apartments http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/contemporary-architecture-harrogate-abi-work-swan-lane-developments-exclusive-modern-apartments/ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/contemporary-architecture-harrogate-abi-work-swan-lane-developments-exclusive-modern-apartments/#respond Mon, 27 Feb 2017 19:11:57 +0000 http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/?p=2895 By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    Being a North Yorkshire Spa town, Harrogate has an ancient history and features many fine examples of architecture, including a Grade I listed building. So here at ABi we were intrigued when we were approached by Swan Lane Developments to work with them on an apartment construction that featured a very contemporary aesthetic. The Brief [...]

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    By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    Swan Lane Developments Garage Doors Harrogate

    Being a North Yorkshire Spa town, Harrogate has an ancient history and features many fine examples of architecture, including a Grade I listed building. So here at ABi we were intrigued when we were approached by Swan Lane Developments to work with them on an apartment construction that featured a very contemporary aesthetic.

    The Brief

    The plans for this development featured a double garage door that opened straight onto a road so straight away it was obvious that any type of door that opened out wasn’t going to work. The design of the property was very specific so it was important that any door, along with the type of installation would blend in seamlessly and compliment the building. A garage door is quite a large area of any construction but it rarely needs to be a focal point.

    Our Solution

    Working closely with the architect and Swan Lane, it became clear that a sectional type door that could be colour matched to other elements of the construction would be the best option. It would provide the high level of insulation required and the reliability that a communal parking area would need. It was also important for the door to integrate as discreetly as possible into the fabric of the building including taking into consideration how the lintel above the door would be covered. Hörmann offer a vast array of additional options for their products, and this includes a number of matching profiles and fascia panels. These allow the installation of their doors to fit in to their surroundings exactly without the need for lots of additional finishing off work which can sometimes look obvious. The Hörmann L ribbed design door was finally chosen as the large panels offer a simple aesthetic with clean lines that would complement the architecture of the project. We could install matching side profiles and a matching fascia panel to cover the lintel that would integrate with the door and its running gear and provide an elegant and stylish solution. The door, profiles and fascia were factory finished in silk grain RAL 7039 Quartz Grey to match the rest of the metalwork on the building.

    Installation

    The matching fascia panel requires non-standard door gear and also determines the height of the tracks running back into the garage. With limited side and head room inside the garage it was very important to ensure that the height of the door and the size of the fascia panel were balanced. There was very little tolerance and if the tracks were not at the right level the door would not function correctly. After some very careful measurements and planning the door was installed on schedule. It’s the small details that can often make a big difference on an installation and we feel that the fascia panel on this project really helped the door compliment the contemporary design of the building.

    Swan Lane Developments Garage Doors

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    Development in Leeds – what’s coming up in 2017? http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/development-leeds-whats-coming-2017/ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/development-leeds-whats-coming-2017/#respond Mon, 06 Feb 2017 19:14:47 +0000 http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/?p=2876 By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    With our head office based in Leeds, ABi Garage Doors are always interested to see what’s happening in the city – especially when it comes to building and development, as it kind of relates to our own industry! After a successful 2016, it seems that Leeds is set for another great year in 2017, with [...]

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    By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    Development in Leeds - what’s coming up in 2017?
    With our head office based in Leeds, ABi Garage Doors are always interested to see what’s happening in the city – especially when it comes to building and development, as it kind of relates to our own industry! After a successful 2016, it seems that Leeds is set for another great year in 2017, with plenty of planned developments to help us become an even better city than before.

    The last 12 months saw both the Victoria Gate shopping centre and new University Technical College open in the city, as well as seeing the University of Leeds named the best of the bunch. But what exciting things does 2017 hold? Let’s take a look…

    Refurbs and revamps

    Majestics Leeds Development
    Following a devastating fire in 2014, the Majestic (a building that lived up to its name) which has played home to a cinema, a bingo hall and a nightclub in its past, will see in its 100th birthday as a newly refurbished office and leisure space. Rising like a phoenix from the flames of the original Grade II listed facade will be a modern glass structure, creating 6 storeys overlooking City Square.

    After essential roof repairs, Leeds Art Gallery will re-open this year, ready to display its art and installations proudly – and safely – once more. However, one of the city’s nearby landmarks, the Town Hall, will be following suit this year, shutting its doors for a £10.5m renovation project designed to create a large public venue that will help them to become a financially self-sufficient venture in the future.

    New developments coming soon…

    Yorkshire Post Leeds Development
    The once iconic but now demolished Yorkshire Post building is to be replaced by a massive new development of housing and commercial properties, spread over 18 stories – although don’t expect to see the finished result until 2019. This one is sure to have a huge impact on the cityscape as we know it – all in the name of progress!

    Hot on the heels of the new south entrance at the train station, Granary Wharf is also getting an investment injection to the tune of £55m. The new development has already been approved, and will see three new buildings pop up around the beautiful Italianate towers, playing host to 250 apartments and plenty of office and leisure space too – probably a good job that there are hopes of turning No 1, The Embankment, into a new secondary school!

    Following the successful opening of Victoria Gate, the biggest casino in the North of England is also going to rise up on the city centre skyline, making a more convenient and central hub for over 18’s entertainment than its current competitors.

    Subject to approval

    Roundhay Park Leeds Go Ape
    We’re blessed to have a space like Roundhay Park in Leeds, so it’s no surprise that there have been mixed reactions to talk of a ‘Go Ape’ treetop experience being developed within the park. A full investigation is pending, but if approved, you could soon be cavorting through the canopy like our primate cousins!

    If you’ve got a comment you’d like to make regarding any of these new developments coming up in Leeds, please add it below – we’ve love to hear what you think. We’ll be keeping a close ear and eye on any new projects planned in the area, and maybe we’ll even get to supply some garage doors for some of them!

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    Reset a BiSecur hand transmitter – Erasing and resetting all the codes to 128bit mode and replacing batteries http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/reset-bisecur-hand-transmitter-erasing-resetting-codes-128bit-mode-replacing-batteries/ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/reset-bisecur-hand-transmitter-erasing-resetting-codes-128bit-mode-replacing-batteries/#respond Wed, 25 Jan 2017 15:32:01 +0000 http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/?p=2826 By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    1. Remove the battery for 10 seconds. 2. Press and hold one of the buttons on the hand transmitter and re-insert the battery (and the battery cover for the HS1 BS / HS4 BS/ HS5 BS). 3. The LED will start a series of flashes – Blue flashing – slow for 4 seconds, fast for [...]

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    By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    To reset a BiSecur hand transmitter erasing and resetting all the codes to 128bit mode

    1. Remove the battery for 10 seconds.

    2. Press and hold one of the buttons on the hand transmitter and re-insert the battery (and the battery cover for the HS1 BS / HS4 BS/ HS5 BS).

    3. The LED will start a series of flashes –

    Blue flashing – slow for 4 seconds, fast for 2 seconds, on solid for a short time.

    4. Release the button as soon as the series of blue flashes has finished. Do not continue to hold the button through the red series of flashes as this will reset the transmitter into 40 bit mode.

    The hand transmitter is now in 128 bit mode all the code for each button are reset. The LED will illiminate BLUE when the buttons are pressed.

    Replacing / Removing Batteries

    The Hormann HS1 BS, HS4 BS and HS5 BS have a removable battery cover that is unlocked and locked by turning.

    The HSE2 BS has a removable black cover that needs to be prised off with the use of a small screwdriver or tool.

    Hormann BiSecur Reset Hand Transmitters

    Video demonstrating procedure

    More information

    View more Hormann how to guides.

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    Transfering the code to a Hormann HSE 4 BS hand transmitter http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/transfering-code-hormann-hse-4-bs-hand-transmitter/ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/transfering-code-hormann-hse-4-bs-hand-transmitter/#respond Wed, 25 Jan 2017 14:38:11 +0000 http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/?p=2816 By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    Info Sheet: ABi011.1 – Transfering the code from an existing HSE 4 BiSecur transmitter to a new BiSecur transmitter Series 3 Hand Transmitters Please note: To transfer the code from one hand transmitter to another, the signal strength needs to be very strong. This means the units need to be very close together and have [...]

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    By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    Hormann HSE 4 BS Transfer Code Instructions

    Info Sheet: ABi011.1 – Transfering the code from an existing HSE 4 BiSecur transmitter to a new BiSecur transmitter
    Series 3 Hand Transmitters

    Please note: To transfer the code from one hand transmitter to another, the signal strength needs to be very strong. This means the units need to be very close together and have a good battery power.

    The procedure is more reliable if the receiving transmitter is on the left hand side, ideally in direct contact with the sending / existing transmitter, with their tops level (see image below).

    Transferring the code from a BiSecur hand transmitter to a BiSecur hand transmitter.

    Hormann HSE 4 BS Transfer Code Example

    (Please be aware this will activate your device / garage door!)

    1. Press and hold the button on your existing hand transmitter (which has the code you want to transfer.)
    The LED will illuminate constantly then start to flash red and blue, keep the button pressed down until the code has been successfully transferred.

    2. Once the first hand transmitter has started to flash red and blue, press and hold the button on the hand transmitter which is to receive the code. The LED will flash blue slowly for a few seconds then flash quickly for a few seconds, and then stop with no illumination.

    Please note: On later edition transmitters, when receiving a code, the LED will show solid blue for a couple of seconds before flashing blue slowly for a few seconds then flashing quickly for a few seconds, and then stopping with no illumination.

    The code has now been transferred. You can continue this process to transfer the code to different buttons.

    Video demonstrating procedure

    More information

    View PDF instructions here for the full procedure.

    View more Hormann how to guides.

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    ABi Garage Doors in TV spotlight on ‘Restoration Man’ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/abi-garage-doors-tv-spotlight-restoration-man/ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/abi-garage-doors-tv-spotlight-restoration-man/#respond Sun, 02 Oct 2016 19:09:52 +0000 http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/?p=2753 By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    Imagine for a moment a 46 foot tall water tower in a rural setting. Now imagine turning that tower into a dream home full of modern fixtures and fittings. Well that’s exactly what Majid and Carol Nadry did – and the journey of their incredible work on the Walton Head Water Tower has now been [...]

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    By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    ABi Garage Doors Feature on Restoration Man TV Show
    Imagine for a moment a 46 foot tall water tower in a rural setting. Now imagine turning that tower into a dream home full of modern fixtures and fittings. Well that’s exactly what Majid and Carol Nadry did – and the journey of their incredible work on the Walton Head Water Tower has now been featured on Channel 4’s hit TV show, The Restoration Man… and we were lucky enough to be part of the project!

    Originally built in the late 1940’s to pump and supply natural spring water to residents of a neighbouring village, the tower – one of the last brick-built versions constructed – is situated near Pannal, Harrogate. Majid and Carol secured the seriously degraded property at auction, buying the tower from Yorkshire Water, along with the planning permission the company had previously fought hard to win.

    Restoration and negotiation

    One of the primary objectives was to restore and retain the historical character of the building, developing a stylish but sympathetic finish that remained true to its heritage. However, the Nadrys also needed to expand the property in order to cater for an energy (but not space!) efficient air source heating system and much needed storage.

    The couple eventually navigated the negotiating table and had permission granted for a garage, office and hallway extension – which is where ABi and our trusted partners at Hörmann come in!

    Sectional garage doors on schedule for the show!

    Mr and Mrs Nadry were keen to find a garage door that would give them a more usable space – so insulation and water tightness were at the top of their tick list. Meeting this requirement with its weatherproof seals on all 4 sides, plus the space-saving bonus of its vertical, rather than swing, movement, the Nadrys chose the Hörmann sectional door for their new single garage.

    However, on a restoration project like this, looks were also an important factor; the way the horizontal lines complemented the vertical cladding, along with the ability to get a perfect colour-match with it too ended up sealing the deal.

    Once the garage door had been decided, the Nadrys needed to find a dealer – they’d come across the ABi name before, so following some more research they decided to give us a call. Of course filming a TV show means that there’s a set schedule to meet, so we worked closely with the couple and their builder to ensure that all fittings, including the door frame, were all in the perfect place ready for a smooth and speedy installation.

    Happy customers – great result!

    While the overall building project went over budget, the couple were delighted with the outcome of all of their hard work – and we’re pleased to report that they were also delighted with ours, commenting: “The doors are sturdy and quiet. We haven’t had any problems and are happy with the service.”

    ABi Garage Doors Feature on Restoration Man TV Show Before

    ABi Garage Doors Feature on Restoration Man TV Show After

    More related articles from the web:
    Channel 4 Restoration Man – The water tower Pannal
    http://www.channel4.com/programmes/the-restoration-man/pictures/all/pannal-water-tower/137

    Yorkshire Post – Old water tower conversion Pannal
    http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/lifestyle/homes/old-water-tower-conversion-brings-challenges-and-rewards-1-7063868

    ABi Houzz – Converted water tower Pannal
    http://www.houzz.co.uk/projects/2070474

    Find out more information on the services we provide on our local Harrogate page.

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    Checking out the latest Hörmann Garage Doors at the IMHX show http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/checking-out-latest-hormann-garage-doors-imhx2016/ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/checking-out-latest-hormann-garage-doors-imhx2016/#respond Sun, 02 Oct 2016 18:46:00 +0000 http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/?p=2746 By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    As some of you will already know, we’ve been working with leading garage door manufacturer Hörmann for many years now, and we’re proud to offer their high quality products to our customers across Yorkshire. It’s always nice to have the chance to take a sneaky peek at their new products and to have a chat [...]

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    By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    Hormann IMHX Show
    As some of you will already know, we’ve been working with leading garage door manufacturer Hörmann for many years now, and we’re proud to offer their high quality products to our customers across Yorkshire. It’s always nice to have the chance to take a sneaky peek at their new products and to have a chat with their staff, so we sent Luke and James along to the recent International Materials Handling Exhibition (IMHX) at Birmingham’s NEC to show their support and take a look around…

    The event was held across the 13th – 16th September and it was the fifth time that our colleagues at Hörmann exhibited – and as always, it gave us the opportunity to see some of their latest products in action.

    While we also had a good look around at the other 400 stands, covering 180m2 alone, Hörmann’s display was among the most impressive, drawing plenty of visitors from the estimated 20,000-strong crowd attending over the 4 days.

    Latest additions to the Hörmann range

    While some of their most popular products were put through their paces over hundreds of live demonstrations, we were particularly interested in seeing what else they’ve been developing to add to their range.

    The DD S6 new direct-drive rolling shutter was one item that caught our eye – a great solution for commercial operations, it has minimal side-room requirements making it ideal for tighter spaces and can be installed in sizes up to 12m (w) x 9m (h).

    We also got to see the DOBO docking system – an innovative piece of kit that allows a truck to dock in a depot’s loading bay while the doors remain closed, so it can be reversed in and made secure, with the doors being released afterwards. As well as the extra security aspect this offers, it’s also stirring up a lot of interest in the world of frozen/chilled goods!

    The event was much more geared towards industry clients, so we didn’t get to see much in the way of Hörmann’s garage doors for domestic properties, but we had a day full of new technology and information. We’re always impressed when we see their latest engineering successes firsthand, and this event was no different.

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    Wakefield Waterfront set to be transformed into the new creative centre of the North http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/wakefield-waterfront-set-transformed-new-creative-centre-north/ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/wakefield-waterfront-set-transformed-new-creative-centre-north/#respond Wed, 16 Mar 2016 17:22:54 +0000 http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/?p=2557 By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    Wakefield Council have agreed the sale of the Rutland Mills site to developers City and Provincial Properties PLC. Rutland Mills sits next to the internationally renowned Hepworth Wakefield art gallery and the regeneration scheme will see the 10 acres of waterfront transformed into a creative hub. The redevelopment project is the final stage of a [...]

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    By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    Rutland Mills Wakefield
    Wakefield Council have agreed the sale of the Rutland Mills site to developers City and Provincial Properties PLC. Rutland Mills sits next to the internationally renowned Hepworth Wakefield art gallery and the regeneration scheme will see the 10 acres of waterfront transformed into a creative hub.

    The redevelopment project is the final stage of a three phase regeneration scheme which aimed to transform the waterfront area. Phase one was completed in 2009 with the creation of new offices and work space. Phase two saw the Hepworth Wakefield gallery completed in 2011 and the Rutland Mills project would be the third and final phase.

    Dating back to 1872, the Rutland Mills site has been derelict since 1999 and although it was included in the original development plans, the project stalled due to the economic downturn. Wakefield Council continued to market the site, however, to ensure that any future development would complement the original vision for the Waterfront area.

    City and Provincial director, Paul Kempe, plans to transform the mills into the creative centre of the North, including the creation of music, textiles, and art and design studios, a small boutique hotel, offices, an events space and a courtyard with bars and restaurants.

    Mr Kempe said: ‘City and Provincial Properties have been involved in a number of mixed use regeneration projects throughout the UK and will work alongside Hawkins Brown Architects to deliver this exciting opportunity.’

    ‘I think there’s huge creative talent in the North of England but a lot of people feel obliged to go down to London. These facilities here could accommodate that talent and keep it in the north, in Wakefield.’

    ‘I hope that this will have a positive effect on both the immediate area and also The Hepworth.’

    City and Provincial Properties PLC is the developer responsible for the Tileyard Studios creative media hub based in central London, and the landmark deal would effectively see a northern extension of this significant cultural brand. Celebrity musicians based at the London complex include Tinchy Stryder, Mark Ronson and Chase & Status.

    Chief executive of Wakefield Council, Joanne Roney said: “To get a great investor like this is a big achievement for Wakefield and will finish off our vision for the waterfront development. I am excited now what it will do to the vibrancy of this site and of the district, excited for how it will add to the sustainability of The Hepworth and excited for the 1,000 jobs it will create in small businesses and new technologies and industries.”

    Wakefield Council’s cabinet formally agreed the deal which includes a buy back option if work does start work within two years and is subject to planning permission, with an estimated completion time of five years.

    The regeneration of Wakefield is going from strength to strength and it is fantastic to see creative and cultural development alongside new retail and housing projects. And following our work with Manchester’s Albert Hall project, if anyone from Hawkins Brown Architects do happen to be reading this post, we would like to point out that sectional overhead garage doors can be a unique and environmentally sound feature of a large regeneration project.

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    Plans for a 47-acre waterside business park submitted to Wakefield council http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/plans-47-acre-waterside-business-park-submitted-wakefield-council/ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/plans-47-acre-waterside-business-park-submitted-wakefield-council/#respond Wed, 09 Mar 2016 17:37:35 +0000 http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/?p=2537 By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    Keyland Developments have recently submitted plans to Wakefield Council in a bid to redevelop the old Calder Vale sewage treatment works. The 47-acre ‘City Fields Waterside Park Business Hub’ would offer over 500,000 sq ft of space for offices and industrial buildings and form the primary employment element of the new 375-acre City Fields development. [...]

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    By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    City Fields Wakefield
    Keyland Developments have recently submitted plans to Wakefield Council in a bid to redevelop the old Calder Vale sewage treatment works. The 47-acre ‘City Fields Waterside Park Business Hub’ would offer over 500,000 sq ft of space for offices and industrial buildings and form the primary employment element of the new 375-acre City Fields development.

    Keyland Developments are the property trading arm of Kelda Group and sister company to Yorkshire Water. They have been operating across Yorkshire for more than 20 years, regenerating Yorkshire Water’s redundant sites. The site of the proposed City Fields Waterside Park Business Hub is on land bought by Keyland for an undisclosed sum in 2013 and the sewage works have been out of operation for over a decade.

    City Fields

    The City Fields project is to be developed around the new Wakefield Eastern Relief Road and is one of Wakefield’s largest regeneration schemes. The City Fields development includes the construction of over 2500 new homes and 750 affordable homes. Plans also include a new primary school, a new publically accessible waterside park and a new 2km waterfront area with canal-side walks, cafes, bars, shops, restaurants and public spaces.

    Wakefield Eastern Relief Road

    The Wakefield Eastern Relief Road (WERR) is a £33m project that will see a single carriageway sited between the A638 Doncaster Road to the south and the A642 Aberford Road to the north of Wakefield. Construction of the new carriageway is already under way with an anticipated completion date of early 2017. The new relief road forms the back bone of the City Fields development and Keyland’s plans for the City Fields Waterside Park Business Hub have been identified as a potential employment area.

    Keyland development manager Ryan Unsworth said; “With direct access to the WERR, this site is one of the most strategically important in the region and has the potential to deliver significant employment opportunities in-line with the aspirations of the Wakefield East Consortium. With work underway on the road, the whole City Fields area is gathering momentum and the creation of this major employment element will ensure its long-term sustainability.”

    There is no denying that the UK needs more homes and developments like this are really exciting, providing both housing and employment opportunities. We think it is great news to see the Yorkshire region leading the way with its regeneration projects.

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    The UK’s Housing Crisis http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/the-uks-housing-crisis/ http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/the-uks-housing-crisis/#respond Fri, 26 Feb 2016 17:49:13 +0000 http://abigaragedoors.co.uk/?p=2499 By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    The Barker Review of Housing Supply In March 2004 the Barker Review of Housing Supply published its final report. The report was authored by economist Kate Barker and detailed a number of recommendations based on some very thorough and excellent analysis. One of the recommendations was that the UK needed to build around 250,000 new [...]

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    By ABI Garage Doors Ltd

    The UK’s Housing Crisis

    The Barker Review of Housing Supply

    In March 2004 the Barker Review of Housing Supply published its final report. The report was authored by economist Kate Barker and detailed a number of recommendations based on some very thorough and excellent analysis. One of the recommendations was that the UK needed to build around 250,000 new homes every year to prevent spiralling house prices and a shortage of affordable homes. A line in the report’s Foreword reads: ‘A weak supply of housing contributes to macroeconomic instability, and hinders labour market flexibility, constraining economic growth’.

    As a direct result of the report, the 2007 Labour government set a target for 240,000 homes to be built a year by 2016. At this point in 2007, around 219,000 homes had been built in the year, but even this was far lower than the post-war decades, where in excess of 300,000 homes were completed every year.

    Following the financial crisis of 2008 the UK hit a post-war low and in 2013 135,500 homes were built. This figure recovered slightly to 141,000 in 2014 and is estimated to be around 143,560 for 2015.

    The present

    So here we are in 2016. Labour’s 2007 target has long been forgotten and it looks extremely unlikely that the 250,000 figure detailed in the Barker report will be achieved any time in the near future.
    The Department for Communities and Local Government has just released a report suggesting that 37,080 new homes were started in the last quarter of 2015, an increase of 23% on the previous year. These figures appear to show a step in the right direction but Labour’s housing spokesman John Healey said the total was “still falling far short of what the country needs”.

    “Ministers have talked up the economic recovery, but these figures show that there were more than 20% fewer new homes started last year than before the global financial crisis,” and Shelter’s chief executive Campbell Robb commented that only half the number of homes needed were being built.

    So what’s the problem?

    That depends who you talk to. In a 2014 survey by estate agents, Knight Frank more than 100 of the largest, midsized and smaller housebuilders listed rising costs, local opposition to development and the planning system as the main obstacles.

    There have been attempts to address some of these issues, in 2012, the government introducing a slimmed-down National Planning Policy Framework in an attempt to simplify the planning system and announced in 2014 that the number of planning permissions for new homes reached 240,000, although it is unlikely that all of these will reach the final stage of planning.

    Kate Henderson, chief executive of the Town and Country Planning Association suggests that the abolishment of national and regional planning housebuilding targets encourages local opposition to projects, citing a doubling of legal challenges on local plans by planning inspectors who are picking councils up on not assessing their housing needs properly. “There’s a lot of pressure from politicians in certain areas to suppress housing figures.”

    A shortage of available land and rising prices has also been cited as a problem. Residential land prices rose 170% from 2000 to 2007 compared to house prices which rose 124%, according to the IPPR.

    The homeless charity, Shelter, have consistently voiced concerns over a shortage of available building land and both the private sector HBF and the National Housing Federation (NHF), which represents housing associations also agree that land is the main long-term constraint. The NHF says that local plans drawn up by councils often fail to identify enough land to meet local housing needs

    One of the most controversial areas of possible reform is around the greenbelt – the protected ‘green’ areas around urban centres. There are consistently calls from planning and construction industries to relax the rules, though while many might see opening up the greenbelt for development as a way forward, politicians are unlikely to agree to something so controversial with voters.

    There are also allegations of Housebuilders sitting on land and holding back homes. If they hold back homes and release them gradually the price remains high, though we have personal experience of working on large construction projects and know all too well that these kinds of developments can take many years. Steve Turner from the HBF says “Housebuilders can only build at the rate a local market will support; you cannot build out a site for 5,000 houses instantly or indeed put them up for sale in a local market at once. So when local authorities are drawing up their local plans it’s imperative they include more smaller sites and not just a few large ones which inevitably take years to build out.”

    The demise of social housing

    Councils used to build more homes than the private sector. Up to the 1970’s local authorities were building in excess of 100,000 homes every year. This fell into decline following the election of Margaret Thatcher in 1979 and although construction increased in the private sector it has not been anywhere near enough. During the 1950’s and 60’s councils alone were building similar amounts of homes as the totals recently announced by The Department for Communities and Local Government.

    It seems that at some stage there was a plan for this shortfall to be addressed by housing associations.

    In 2013 housing associations built 21,600 homes with a number of sources citing unnecessary restrictions including rules over how they set their rents, how properties are let and how housing stock is valued for lending purposes. These all reduce housing associations’ ability to borrow money for housebuilding, says Rachel Fisher, head of policy at the NHF.

    There was a time when the private sector alone built over 279,000 homes a year but this was during the 1930’s and the economy, legislation and mortgage conditions are very different now. It is unlikely that this will be the case again anytime soon.

    Moving forward

    So what is the solution? The answer is probably going to be a combination of a number of factors. One thing is for certain, like Kate Barker stated in her 2004 report, a weak supply of housing is causing artificially inflated and increasing house prices and a shortage of affordable homes. It is estimated that currently over 1.7 million people are on the social housing waiting register in England.

    As a supplier of garage doors to a number of national and smaller housebuilders, we have certainly seen a decline in the scale and number construction projects since we started in 1989. The construction industry certainly does not appear to have anything like the level of activity it had before the financial crisis of 2008 and although it does appear that there are steps in the right direction, from our perspective, they are pretty much baby steps.

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