Social impact shortlist published featuring the best construction across South West

Finzels Reach - Bristol

RICS (Royal Institution for Chartered Surveyors) South West are set to vote on a shortlist 39 construction projects from across the region to mark their role in transforming communities and the everyday lives of people.

Published yesterday (Monday 24th February) the shortlisted property schemes include:

  • Finzels Reach, Bristol: Regenerating a two hundred year old derelict site which used to be a brewery and sugar refinery, the developers included an iconic ‘s’ shaped pedestrian bridge across the River Avon as well as new city centre apartments and Grade A commercial office space. The scheme represented a £275m investment into Bristol, attracting jobs into the city centre and revamped an area in desperate need of redevelopment.
  • Chi Treth Affordable Apartments, Newquay: The delivery of a 100 per cent affordable homes – 21 in total – in an area of high housing need. During construction a local contractor was used to employ skilled labour from the Newquay community – creating jobs and boosting the local economy of the town. All the ground floor homes were designed to enable residents to live in them throughout all stages of life – including allowing wheelchair access if needed.
  • RNLI Penlee lifeboat station, Penzance: Construction of a brand new facility that will help protect lives at sea, the new station was built using £200k in donations from the community and local businesses. The scheme uses the latest insulation technology to keep bills down for the RNLI and provides a warm new home for the volunteers who risk their own lives saving others in distress at sea.

Announcing its support for the Prince’s Trust to help more young people take up careers in property, the awards mark the impact of construction on communities across the country – with voting to take place ahead of the RICS South West ceremony on 15 May.

A UK grand final will be held later in September for those successfully nominated from each region – with property expert David Brooks Wilson leading a panel of guest judges to select those projects worthy of the top award.

Matthew Howell, RICS UK Managing Director said:

“The real estate industry plays a vital role in the South West, and our refreshed awards celebrates the positive impact that our professionals can have on people’s lives and the best of what is built.

“This year’s shortlist features some of the best talent in our profession, and the new Social Impact Awards recognises the significant value these projects have brought to the communities around them. The judges will have their work cut out deciding on who gets the top award with so many top projects involved.

“I’m also delighted to be supporting The Prince’s Trust in getting young people into construction. Our shortlists, showcase projects which have been turning people’s lives around, whether that’s through apprenticeships for young people, rehabilitating ex-offenders or regenerating towns and cities to make them more inclusive, and we hope that promoting these will encourage more talent into a profession that can really make a difference.”

Chair of the award judging panel David Brooks Wilson said:

“The real estate sector is a vital part of our economy, and this year’s shortlist shows the power of built environment professionals to make a positive impact on society and our communities.

“It features the breadth of work and contributions that our professionals and wider industry make and the difference this profession can make.”

The awards are divided into nine award categories to include the best examples of development in the commercial, education, healthcare, heritage, infrastructure, land & rural, leisure, residential and student accommodation sectors – with an overall winner also due to be announced.