Following the recent publication of its white paper on unitised facade builds, Sapphire Balconies examines this growing trend and the technical considerations to bear in mind when designing this type of external building envelope with balconies.

Here, Jackie Biswell, Managing Director of Apex Roofing, explores the role these vocational qualifications will play in construction recovery post-COVID and plugging the skills gap that has plagued the industry for years.

Prior to a revision of Building Regulations in 2010, ventilation was not high on the list of priorities in the housebuilding sector. A fan in the bathroom and cooker hood in the kitchen, plus ventilation blocks in the walls, were the default setting. Then, gradually, ventilation began to make it on to the agenda, largely driven by the now-defunct Code for Sustainable Homes, writes Paul Williams, Domus Ventilation’s Product Manager.

Richard Besant talks us through the important revisions to the European standard for powder coating and outlines further measures to ensure the highest possible performance of your powder-coated finish.

Under the £2bn Green Homes Grant scheme, homeowners and landlords in England are able to apply for vouchers worth up to two thirds the cost of upgrading the energy efficiency of their home – maximised at £5000. While this worthwhile and essential scheme is to be welcomed, it also generates a large number of concerns.

Located in the heart of Hong Kong’s central business district, the 36-storey Murray Road project for Henderson Land replaces a multi-storey car park to create an urban oasis adjacent to Chater Garden, within a short walking distance to both Central and Admiralty MTR metro stations.

This month’s exclusive Q&A profiles Hong Kong-based Elena Galli Giallini – the Architect responsible for the elegant design of Shanghai’s Grand Gateway 66 north building, which featured in our July issue. Here, we find out more about Elena’s portfolio and architectural ethos.

By providing convenient access to shops, bars, restaurants and other leisure-related places of interest, public and privately-owned car parks help oil the wheels of the urban economy. Therefore, it’s vital these sites are in the best possible state of repair in order to remain operational and help maintain town and city centre trade. Exposed car park surfaces are at the daily mercy of the elements, as well as heavy, motorised traffic, which is a potential cause of waterproofing failure if not addressed at an early stage. Mohammed Ashfaq, Senior Sales Manager at Sika, looks at the challenges involved with car park refurbishment in a ‘live’ environment to ensure sites stay safe and ingress-free.

Charlie Fleet, Managing Director at wall coverings specialist Reco Surfaces, discusses how modular construction can lead the way in building more affordable homes in Britain.

Here, Eryl Jones, Managing Director of the ASSA ABLOY Door Hardware Group, advises on the opportunities available for inclusive building designs, the key considerations for door opening solutions, and the potential risks of not complying with these.

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