A Reformed Building Safety Regulatory System

Government confirms the biggest changes to building safety in a generation

New measures announced include:

► mandatory sprinkler systems

► consistent wayfinding signage in all new high-rise blocks of flats over 11 metres tall

► a New Competence regime and standards

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick MP has today [2 April 2020] announced ambitious steps to further reform the building safety system with the biggest changes in a generation to ensure residents are safe in their homes.

New measures announced today include mandatory sprinkler systems and consistent wayfinding signage in all new high-rise blocks of flats over 11 metres tall.

The government’s construction expert, David Hancock, has also been appointed to review the progress of removing unsafe ACM claddings from buildings.

The reforms are designed to incentivise compliance and to better enable the use of enforcement powers and sanctions, including prosecution where the rules are not followed. 

The Housing Secretary will hold a roundtable with mortgage lenders to work on an agreed approach to mortgage valuations for properties in buildings under 18 metres tall, providing certainty for owners affected by vital building safety work.

Housing Secretary Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP said:

The government is bringing about the biggest change in building safety for a generation.

Today we have made a major step towards this by publishing our response to the Building a Safer Future consultation. This new regime will put residents’ safety at its heart, and follows the announcement of the unprecedented £1 billion fund for removing unsafe cladding from high-rise buildings in the Budget.

Today we are also announcing that the housing industry is designing a website so lenders and leaseholders can access the information needed to proceed with sales and re-mortgaging, and the government stands ready to help to ensure this work is completed at pace.

Building safety is a priority and the government is supporting industry in ensuring homes are safe at this difficult time.

Click on the LINK to letter from Housing Secretary Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP to MPs

The measures build on recent announcements including:

  • providing £1 billion in 2020/21 to support the remediation of unsafe non-ACM cladding materials on high-rise buildings. This is in addition to the £600 million already available remediation of high-rise buildings with unsafe ACM cladding

  • naming building owners who have been slow to act in removing unsafe ACM cladding

  • the introduction of the Fire Safety Bill, which took us one step further in delivering the recommendations of the Grenfell Inquiry’s Phase One report

The latest non-ACM (aluminium composite material) cladding testing results have been published today and show that none of the materials, including high-pressure laminate (HPL) and timber cladding, behaved in the same way as ACM.

The government is clear that any unsafe materials should be removed from buildings quickly. External wall systems on high-rise buildings using Class C or D HPL panels are unsafe and should be removed as they do not comply with building regulations.

The government recognises the challenges presented to the building industry by COVID-19. The work to remove unsafe cladding from buildings is critical to public safety and so remains a top priority.

The government is supporting building owners, managers and residents to ensure remediation work continues where it is safe to do so. The government has also made clear that vital maintenance and repair work can continue to take place in line with public health guidance.

► Competence across industry and within building control

David Jones ─ ICM's Director of Education and Training was pleased to have submitted a detailed response from The Institute of Construction Management responding last year to the Government launched ‘Building a Safer Future’ consultation, seeking views on proposals for a radically new building and fire safety system, based on Dame Judith’s recommendations. 

The new regime will require the competence of those working in the building sector to be of a sufficient standard to give confidence to duty-holders, regulators and residents that they are competent to carry out their job in a manner that will ensure quality, safety and compliance with building regulations.

Government requires a more coherent and consistent approach to assessing and assuring the competence of people across all disciplines working on buildings, which will be overseen by the Building Safety Regulator.

Government intend to create a new, national Building Safety Regulator ─ which is being established in shadow form by the Health and Safety Executive.

The new regulator will be responsible for implementing and enforcing a more stringent regulatory regime for higher risk buildings, as well as providing wider and stronger oversight of safety and performance across all buildings, and increasing the competence of those working on building safety.

The more stringent regulatory regime will, at the outset, apply to all multi-occupied residential buildings of 18 metres or more in height, or more than six storeys (whichever is reached first). The Building Safety Bill will provide for the ability to amend scope in the future based on further evidence on risk.

► Building Control Competence

The Building Safety Regulator will be responsible for oversight of the competence and performance of building control professionals and the building control bodies in which they work, taking a wider view of the professionalism and culture that needs to support building safety in all classes of work, not just in-scope buildings

The intention is to create a unified professional structure for building control covering both local authority staff [LABC] and Approved Inspectors [AI]

This will take into account the lifetime view of recruitment and the acquisition and maintenance of competence throughout an individual’s career

The professional structure would be designed to increase regulatory standards across the sector under a single robust set of standards for competence

National CDM Competence Registry™®2018

David Jones ─ ICM's Director of Education and Training was invited to chair the opening day of the Skills Hub at London Build 2018 at the London Olympia during which The Institute of Construction Management officially launched The National CDM Competence Registry™® ─ creating a unique central resource for the sector.

Through 2019 David and his IT team have developed the Registry and the Registration Process commences with an Application for Initial Assessment LINK TO ONLINE FORM

An important part of the next development phase is digital ─ the creation of the CDM4BIM Gateway™ ─ a Digital Competencies platform ...

... at the end of 2019 David Jones was invited to assist the CITB in developing its skills plan for industry 'Unlocking Construction's Digital Future' following on from the research part of CITB's Changing Construction ─ Changing Skills programme (published: Oct 2018) ...

... the CITB Digital Competencies Framework was sent out to Government tender but, the next round of interviews will be delayed though the current coronavirus pandemic crisis ...

[03/04/2020 ─ this page will be updated ─ please check back regularly]

CDM Competence, competence, construction (design and management) regulations, registration

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