General Election 2015: UK Construction Manifesto Promises

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Introduction.

This article summarises the promises made to Construction and the Built Environment by each of the main parties, which are electable to a majority UK government, taking part in the 2015 General Election.

We have summarised extracts from the manifestos of each of the major parties, divided into the different sectors of construction. Due to the differing formats of the manifestos, with some detailing sums of investment and others not, it hasn’t been possible to rank each party based either on monetary investment or planned quantities of production. Lists are ordered by poll ratings at the time of publishing according to The BBC Election 2015: Poll tracker. We have not included information which makes no direct reference or promise, including references made to secondary actions such as stated aims to review or establish commissions.

This information is taken directly from publicly available official party manifestos and has been quoted without amendment where possible. Tier One do not warrant the information shown, nor do we intend to influence the electorate in any way. We recommend researching party policies in full in order to make an informed decision on ballot day.

 

Housing and House Building

Conservatives

  • plan to “build 200,000 new Starter Homes” reserved for first time buyers under 40 years of age.

Labour

  • plan to “ensure at least 200,000 new homes a year are built by 2020, with first priority for local first time buyers”.

UKIP

  • “will place a statutory duty on local authorities to include a commitment to bringing empty properties back into use”;
  • will “remove the barriers to brownfield builds with the aim of building one million homes on brownfield sites by 2025” offering “Grants of up to £10,000 per unit” for remediation and “A grant to cover the cost of indemnity insurance” as incentives to brownfield developers; however
  • “Oppose excessive development and actively seek to protect our countryside and green spaces”.

Liberal Democrats

  • will “boost house building towards our 300,000 [per year] target; where the market alone fails to deliver sufficient numbers, government agencies will directly commission homes for sale and rent to fill the gap.”; and
  • “Allow Local Authorities more flexibility to borrow to build affordable housing, including traditional council housing”.

The Green Party

  • will spend £19.5bn on the expansion of social housing; and
  • halve the number of empty properties from 700,000 through Empty Property Use Orders.

 

Rail Infrastructure

Conservatives

  • plan investment of £38bn over the 5 year term, with a focus on electrification; and
  • support HS2, HS3 and have plans for a Crossrail 2, linking through London to Surrey and Hertfordshire.

Labour

  • “will continue to support the construction of High Speed Two, but keep costs down, and take action to improve and expand rail links across the North”.

UKIP

  • will scrap HS2.

Liberal Democrats

  • will “Develop a comprehensive plan to electrify the overwhelming majority of the UK rail network, reopen smaller stations, restore twin-track lines to major routes and proceed with HS2, as the first stage of a high-speed rail network to Scotland.”; and
  • “Complete East-West rail, connecting up Oxford and Cambridge and catalysing major new housing development.”

 

Highways and Roads

Conservatives

  • plan to invest a total of £15bn in roads, spending £6bn on the northern network.

Labour

  • “will support long-term investment in strategic roads, address the neglect of local roads”.

 

Airports

Labour

  • “will make a swift decision on expanding airport capacity in London and the South East, balancing the need for growth and the environmental impact.”

UKIP

  • “will consider its [the final report of the Davies Commission’s] recommendations and then take a position on the basis of what we genuinely believe to be in the long-term best interests of the country.” however strongly suggest they will “re-open Manston Airport” to address South East capacity issues.

Liberal Democrats

  • will “carefully consider the conclusions of the Davies Review into runway capacity and develop a strategic airports policy for the whole of the UK” but “remain opposed to any expansion of Heathrow, Stansted or Gatwick and any new airport in the Thames Estuary”


 

The Environment

Conservatives

  • are planning an investment of £3bn “from the Common Agricultural Policy to enhance England’s countryside” over the five year term “to clean up our rivers and lakes protect our stonewalls and hedges, and help our bees to thrive.”
  • They also plan to “ensure that our public forests and woodland are kept in trust for the nation and plant another 11 million trees”. Conservatives also plan to build 1,400 new flood defense schemes.

UKIP

  • “will match-fund grants made by local authorities towards rural capital projects”;
  • “boost the Coastal Communities Fund”.

Liberal Democrats

  • “will complete the coastal path” and take “steps to deliver a £10 a head annual public expenditure on cycling”.

The Green Party

  • are planning an extra £4.5bn for flood defences over 5 years.

 

Energy Plants and Production

Conservatives

  • aim to end new subsidy for on-shore wind farms.

Labour

  • “will create an Energy Security Board to plan and deliver the energy mix we need, including renewables, nuclear, green gas, carbon capture and storage, and clean coal.”

UKIP

  • “will encourage the re-development of British power stations and industrial units providing on-site power generation”;
  • “supports the development of shale gas”; and
  • will “withdraw taxpayer and consumer subsidies for new wind turbines and solar photovoltaic arrays” “to ensure a level playing field for coal” and encourage development of the latter.

Liberal Democrats

  • will “Stimulate a minimum of £100 billion more private investment in low-carbon energy infrastructure by 2020.”;
  • “Encourage onshore wind in appropriate locations”;
  • “Accept that new nuclear power stations can play a role…”; and
  • “plant at least an additional tree for every child born”

The Green Party

  • promise to invest up to £35bn in renewable energy and the National Grid, including “large-scale generation and small- and medium-scale renewable generation schemes funded through local authorities.”;
  • plan investment of £2.5bn over the course of the parliament on R&D into new renewable energies and a further £10m investment to install solar panels on 2,000 council homes over 2 years.

 

If you have any comments, or feel that there are inaccuracies in this post please contact us.
 

References

BBC (2015) The BBC Election 2015: Poll tracker. The BBC. Available from Link

Conservative Party (2015) Conservative Election Manifesto 2015 [online]. The Conservative
Party. Available from Link [Accessed 14 April 2015]

The Green Party (2015) The Green Party Election Manifesto 2015 [online]. The Green Party. Available from Link [Accessed 15 April 2015]

The Labour Party (2015) The Labour Party Election Manifesto 2015 [online]. The Labour Party. Available from Link [Accessed 13 April 2015]

Liberal Democrats (2015) Liberal Democrats Election Manifesto 2015 [online]. Liberal Democrats. Available from Link [Accessed 15 April 2015]

UKIP (2015) UKIP 2015 [online]. UKIP. Available from Link [Accessed 15 April 2015]  

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Follow Daniel Crompton:

Managing Director at Tier Once Commercial Management

Daniel is a Commercial Manager with an MSc in Commercial Management and Quantity Surveying and several years experience, primarily in Rail and Civil Engineering. A keen advocate of commercial procedure development and implementation and commercial involvement in full project life-cycle from tender to close-out.