May 16, 2020

The world’s longest sea bridge to be constructed in China

China
The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge
steel
Sea bridge
Sophie Chapman
1 min
The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge used enough steel to create 60 Eiffel Towers
In April China plans to open its sea bridge connecting Hong Kong, Macau, and Zhuhai, as part of its infrastructure scheme to encourage 250mn people to m...

In April China plans to open its sea bridge connecting Hong Kong, Macau, and Zhuhai, as part of its infrastructure scheme to encourage 250mn people to move into its megacities.

The 34-mile-long structure is the largest cross-sea bridge in the world, according to AFP, ahead of China’s 26.3 mile bridge connecting Qingdao and Huangdao.

The HK$120bn (US$15.3bn) project has been in developed for seven years and is anticipated to run for 120 years.

The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge is expected to be utilised by 40,000 vehicles on a daily basis.

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The car-only bridge is allegedly 20 times as long as the Golden Gate Bridge and was constructed using 420,000 tonnes of steel.

The nation constructed four artificial islands to hold the major project.

China received help from experts in the UK, US, Japan, and at least 11 other countries to construct the bridge.

Image: HZMB

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Jun 11, 2021

Apprenticeships can bridge skills gap says Autodesk director

Autodesk
CITB
apprenticeships
Training
Dominic Ellis
2 min
Construction Skills Network says UK industry must fill 216,800 posts by 2025

The UK construction industry needs 216,800 new workers by 2025 to meet rising demand, according to the Construction Skills Network published by CITB.

Even before Covid-19, it was estimated it needs to attract 400,000 new recruits each year to meet the UK’s infrastructure needs.

But given one in three current construction employees are over 50 there is predicted to be a 20-25% decline in the available workforce over the next decade. And with end of the free movement of people from the EU, it has further limited access to skilled talent.

Mike Pettinella, Director, Autodesk Construction Solutions EMEA, believes the solution may be one that is hardly new, but might have taken a back seat during the pandemic.

"Apprenticeships could help us bridge the construction skills gap and meet this rapidly rising demand, and attract a new crop of younger talent to the industry," he said.

"Apprenticeships benefit everyone. For candidates, it’s an opportunity to learn valuable skills without incurring thousands of pounds of student debts. For employers, it’s a chance to train up employees in the competencies that are really needed – combining technical knowledge with collaboration and team work, which are equally important as you enter a new industry. And if you’re a larger company and already required to pay the apprenticeship levy, it makes sense to ensure you’re benefitting from the scheme too."

Marshall Construction recently took on nine new apprenticeships covering various roles. "Some of our previous apprentices have left and started their own businesses, which sets them up for life," said Chairman Robert Marshall. "Most of our current managers came from organic growth within the business whom we have trained to our own standards." Firms such as Barnwood Construction and Keepmoat Homes are also advertising and supporting apprenticeships.

According to the CSN, most English regions will experience an increase in construction workers by 2025, with East Midlands (1.7%) and West Midlands (1.4%) forecast to lead demand. Scotland (1.4%) and Wales (0.7%) are also predicted to fare well. The only region forecast to see a slight decline in workforce is the North East (-0.1%).

Major projects such as HS2 are driving growth in some regions and infrastructure (5.2%) and private housing (6.7%) should see the healthiest pace of expansion by 2025.

The impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution on the future shape of work will be profound. Modelling by the McKinsey Global Institute on the effects of technology adoption on the UK workforce shows that up to 10 million people, or around 30 percent of all UK workers, may need to transition between occupations or skill levels by 2030.

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