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NCE Live News Updates 13 May 2013: More tunnelling for High Speed 2

The government is seeking more opportunities to tunnel along the route for High Speed 2 – this time proposals are being made for an increased tunnel in phase two.

4pm: Cargo carrier Coyne Airways has weighed in on the Thames Hub debate.

Chief executive Larry Coyne said the airport proposed by London Mayor Boris Johnson would take too long to build and be in the wrong place for the manufacturing industry.

He called for a third runway at Heathrow to boost short-term air freight capacity.

It comes after the Transport Select Committee concluded last week that the Thames Hub was not viable because of the excessive environmental damage that would be caused.

3.30pm: Crossrail will award its Ilford Yard stabling project to contractor VolkerFitzpatrick, the firm announced today.

The contractor will be responsible for additional stabling at the exiting Ilford Depot.

Work at the site will also facilitate the construction of 10 sidings to store trains.

12pm: More survey data here – this time telling us tender prices are still falling in the construction industry.

A balance of 29% of respondents to a National Specialist Contractors Council poll said bid prices had fallen in the first quarter of this year.

This showed tender prices were still falling at roughly the same rate as a year earlier, when a balance of 31% saw a drop.

A balance of 68% of specialist contractors saw an increase in supplier prices in the first quarter of 2013, meaning firms were being squeezed from both sides.

11.30am: The government has relaunched its bid to find sites for radioactive waste disposal.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change called for views to help shape a public consultation later in the year.

It follows the collapse of a four-year process to find a geological disposal facility to store waste nuclear fuel.

Cumbria County Council voted in January against plans to build a multi-billion pound facility within its borders.

11am: Turner & Townsend has been appointed as cost manager for the renovation of Citizens Theatre in Glasgow.

Citizens Theatre

Citizens Theatre: Major work will commence in 2016/17

The £6.5M redevelopment will include substantial extension and new build work, increasing the size of the theatre by a fifth.

There will also be restoration of existing space at the 137-year-old facility.

Work will begin this summer, with completion expected by 2017.

10.30: The government is to consult on plans to extend a tunnel on the route of the High Speed 2 rail line.

Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin said a longer tunnel may be needed under East Midlands airport to allow development of a strategic rail freight interchange depot nearby.

Without this change, phase two of the high speed rail line from London to Leeds and Manchester would cut through the site of the depot, threatening a development with the potential to create 7,000 jobs.

The Department for Transport will consult on the route later this year.

10.00: Civils workloads rose slightly across the UK in the first three months of this year, according to a respected report.

A balance of 1% of respondents to the Construction Products Association’s Construction Trade Survey said their workloads were higher in the first quarter of 2013 than in the same period a year earlier.

The unexpected result comes after three consecutive quarters of declining civils workloads, and in a period when overall construction output was down more than 6% year-on-year.

The picture varied vastly by region, however. In Wales, a balance of 52% of firms saw a fall in workloads, while in Scotland a balance of 35% saw an increase. In England the balance was zero, meaning workloads were broadly the same as a year earlier.

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