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Importance of thermally efficient buildings highlighted by LABC

London’s Trinity House was the setting for the recent 2010 LABC president’s reception, hosted by outgoing president Andy Hardy, head of building control at London Borough of Brent.

Mr Hardy’s speech focused on changes the LABC wishes to see implemented within the commencement of work rule.

This requires that for the purposes of a site of multiple buildings, such commencement should be for individual buildings and not for the entire site.

The guidance issued to building control bodies last May in relation to the introduction of amendments to Part G stated that commencement on the first building within an application for an entire site determines whether all of the building work can follow the transitional provisions.

LABC believes that improved thermal efficiency of new buildings should be introduced with minimum delay. Building control bodies have worked tirelessly learning the new regulations relating to Part L, it states. Introducing this ‘artificial delay’ will compromise the climate change agenda, which the entire building industry is working towards.

“The previous commencement of work rule allowing individual units to continue under existing standards was fair. But now developers are being encouraged to pre-register whole sites that will be carried out in different phases for years to come,” said Mr Hardy.

“This means that new homes will still be being built to 2006 standards in 2013 or 2014. Purchasers won’t understand why, commentators won’t understand why, and we don’t understand why.

“The whole industry has been gearing up for zero carbon and higher standards, so everyone knows what needs to be done. My plea is to go back to the old transitional arrangements so that we don’t fail the end purchasers.”

He welcomed the incoming LABC president, Mick Henman, building consultancy manager at Derby City Council, who will begin his tenure at the Annual General Meeting on 23 September.

Mr Hardy also presented a cheque of £27,500 to representatives from his chosen charity, Pancreatic Cancer UK.


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