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December 10, 2015

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Innov8 to ensure CDM compliance on RIBA project

CDM specialists Innov8 say they are supporting a landmark Liverpool fit-out scheme to deliver the Royal Institute of British Architects’ (RIBA) new national architecture centre.

The Birkenhead-based firm has been appointed as CDM (Construction Design Management) Advisors for the project, which they say will mark RIBA’s first exhibition space outside London, located at Liverpool’s Mann Island.

Innov8 managing director Alan Robson said the contract was secured through Countryside Neptune LLP – a joint venture between Liverpool-based Neptune Developments Ltd and Countryside Properties.

In the past, Innov8 say they have worked with Neptune Developments on projects including St John Bosco Art College and Lime Street, in Liverpool, alongside regeneration projects in the centre of Wolverhampton including i10, i11 and re-development of the Railway station district.

“This contract sees Innov8’s construction safety experts working on RIBA’s new national architecture centre,” said Mr Robson. “It’s a terrific project to be involved with as a passionate Merseyside firm, helping to bring RIBA’s world-class collections and development plans for Liverpool and beyond to local audiences.

“Construction and fit-out work has started on site. However, our role as CDM advisors required us to get involved at a much earlier stage. Following recent changes to CDM regulations – enforced by the Health & Safety Executive earlier this year – there are now much greater obligations placed on our clients than ever before.

“Essentially, our clients are now responsible for some of the duties that were previously carried out by the CDM coordinator. These duties include notifying the HSE, and providing designers and principal contractors with all relevant information. This can include existing information about the site and any surveys carried out, for example asbestos or existing services.

“Our clients must also ensure that welfare facilities are provided by the principal contractor, prior to commencement at the site. Furthermore, they are also responsible for the appointment of the principal contractor and principal designer.

“Innov8’s role as an independent CDM Advisor is to ensure our clients are made fully aware of all responsibilities and, crucially, ensure they remain fully compliant. There has never been a more important time for developers to understand the rules and regulations surrounding CDM. It is essential they have a comprehensive understanding of their new responsibilities.”

The RIBA Mann Island fit-out will involve significant alterations to the existing internal layout of Block Two at Neptune Development’s Mann Island site, says the firm. The regional headquarters will occupy two floors of the building, which sits within a Unesco World Heritage Site, they add.

Innov8 go on to explain that it will see a new dedicated entrance for RIBA staff and visitors with a new passenger lift and feature staircase to link the ground floor and first floor mezzanine level. Other features of the project include: a ground floor transformation comprises a high-specification café area; the creation of exhibition space; lecture and conferencing facilities; open plan office accommodation; and a retail outlet.

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