The awards, now in their fifth year recognise companies which demonstrate excellence and innovation in Ireland’s construction industry. McAleer & Rushe competed against four other international companies to lift the award at the gala ceremony which took place at the Citywest Hotel in Dublin.
McAleer & Rushe was engaged as the design and build contractor by the global leader in student accommodation to develop the scheme through the entire evolution process. The project which was worth £50m completely transformed and extended the existing derelict 1970s landmark office building, Zurich House on Stanhope Road. The original structure was given a state-of-the-art refurbishment providing a 405-bed student accommodation along with the design and construction of an 11-storey new build extension delivering enough space for an additional 595 beds.
Commenting on the award Dominic Trainor, McAleer & Rushe Contracts Director said,
It is a great honour to be recognised by our peers for this project which further cements our position as leading contractors in the student accommodation sector. I want to pay tribute to our teams hard work and commitment and thank our client, GSA for entrusting us with the scheme. Carrying forward this collaborative relationship with GSA we have already begun work on two further projects in Bournemouth to deliver 950 student beds. We look forward to continuing to build this long-lasting relationship to deliver additional schemes across the UK and Ireland.
Tim Mitchell, GSA’s Global Head of Real Estate, said:
There’s no doubt that the development of Catherine House was one of our most ambitious projects to date, but we’re delighted with the results delivered by McAleer & Rushe. We’ve successfully brought 1,000 much-needed high-specification student rooms to Portsmouth and are proud to have given such an iconic building a second lease of life. Feedback from our residents living there has been outstanding!
Since 2014, the Irish Construction Industry Awards have become an established benchmark for contractors, businesses, teams and consultants in Ireland to demonstrate innovation and excellence within the built environment.
McAleer & Rushe, which is one of the UK’s largest design and build construction and property companies, is celebrating 50 years in business and has hosted events in London and Cookstown to celebrate the key milestone.
The events marked McAleer & Rushe’s journey from small beginnings in Cookstown where it was formed in 1967 by Seamus McAleer, and where its headquarters are still based, to its standing today as a brand that has its construction footprint in cities throughout the UK and Ireland. With regional offices in London, Dublin and Belfast the company reported Profit Before Tax (PBT) of £10m in 2016, a 100% increase from the previous year with turnover in 2017 expected to exceed £350M. It currently employs 330 people across its operations.
The Company is jointly owned by Seamus McAleer, Founder and Chairman and Eamonn Laverty, Chief Executive, who together have been the driving force behind the business. The business made its in name in the early years by delivering large scale social housing projects before moving into commercial construction and development. The Company would be recognised as the leading Hotel Design & Build Company within the construction sector. The Company has constructed over 20,000 hotel rooms, 2 million square foot of office space, over 10,000 houses and 7,500 student housing units across the UK and Ireland.
Commenting on the local to national journey that the business has been on, Seamus McAleer, said,
“Our principles, which are based on hard work, a strong team ethic and ambition, are those that we set out 50 years ago when we established our base in Cookstown and remain the cornerstone of our business today. We are fortunate to have such great staff, working hard for the Company and sharing in our successful journey”.
Talking about the future growth of the business, Eamonn Laverty added,
“2017 represents a very important milestone for our business and after gaining 50 years’ experience in the acquisition, design, development, construction and management of a variety of property types we are looking to the future with increased confidence. We have an extensive portfolio of work, a growing client base with a number of important projects in the pipeline and we are looking forward to the long-term growth of our business throughout 2018 and beyond.”
Margaret’s achievement is all the more remarkable because it was her first role as a construction manager, working on the £22m nine storey office block at 9 Adelaide Street in Belfast City Centre which McAleer & Rushe both developed and constructed.
Working with the client Belfast City Council, Margaret delivered considerable cost savings of over £1m by reducing the height of the building and adapting the existing raft foundations for the new superstructure, as well as completing the 80-week project two months early with a clean health and safety record and an Excellent BREEAM rating.
McAleer & Rushe dominated this year’s CMYA picking up two further medals with Michael Yohanis and Paddy Connolly winning Gold and Silver respectively within the Leisure and Retail category. Michael won the Gold medal for his work on the construction of the £20m Adagio Royal Mile hotel in Edinburgh with Paddy winning the silver medal for his work on the £25m Holiday Inn in Manchester.
“Margaret is a true inspiration for anyone thinking of entering this exciting and challenging industry. As well as remaining in control of the immense technical and logistical challenges of her day job, her inclusive style has encouraged young people to get involved in construction. Our sector badly needs a more diverse workforce and Margaret shines out as a young leader who is making a genuine difference. We will watch her career with great interest.”
Commenting on the team’s achievements, Martin Magee, Managing Director, McAleer & Rushe said:
“The success of Margaret, Michael and Paddy at this year’s CMYA is truly outstanding. These Awards demonstrate the diversity, inclusivity, commitment and expertise of our employees and our teams and we are immensely proud of their achievements. Investing in our people, developing their experience and nurturing them in their areas of interest and expertise is at the heart of our success and central to our back to back CMYA wins.”
“9 Adelaide Street was a challenging scheme in terms of programme, site logistics and budget. Margaret was intuitive to Belfast City Council’s needs, always focused on delivering the scheme on time, whilst never losing sight of the importance of safety or quality. Her ability to communicate all issues and foster a real sense of teamwork set a benchmark for the project.”
Martin Magee concluded:
“For McAleer & Rushe it is very rewarding that over the last number of years our project work across Office, Hotel, Student Accommodation and Residential sectors of the construction industry has received such wide recognition. Indeed, it is no coincidence that our Award winners at the 2017 CMYA have been recognised for their work on projects in Belfast, Edinburgh and Manchester. After 50 years in business this shows our growing reach and the talented skill base we have to service it.”
Competing against some of the most talented construction professionals in the UK, the McAleer & Rushe project manager from County Tyrone in Northern Ireland beat 85 other finalists and 10 gold medallists to the coveted trophy. Paul has also scored a CMYA first. He is the first overall winner to come from a residential category in the competition’s 38-year history.
Despite facing a barrage of logistical and technical challenges, Paul delivered the Angel Lane project in Stratford on time and on budget and with a ‘wow factor’ that delighted the client. The 759 unit accommodation block has since become a standard setter for Unite’s Homes for Success initiative, and a benchmark against which future projects are measured.
Paul’s achievement is all the more impressive because of the project’s difficult beginnings: the start date had to be delayed by two months to January 2014 due to late land purchase, but the completion deadline remained fixed at July 2015, in order for Unite to prepare for the first intake of students.
Leading Angel Lane from pre-construction phase, Paul radically revised the build strategy to save two months from the programme. A notable time saving initiative included switching from a post tensioned to a reinforced in situ concrete frame. Paul also selected a new lightweight cladding system that could be installed by scaffold, mast climbers and cradles, freeing up tower cranes for other activities.
Angel Lane faced major constraints: it was bound by a main road, a bridge and a neighbouring building site. But the biggest challenge was the proximity of live rail track less than 6m from the completed building. As well as having to undergo an extensive pre-approval process with Network Rail, Paul also had to guarantee 24-hour access site access to the operator’s maintenance teams. The provision of utilities also presented significant risks to the programme: as there was no extra capacity in the local electrical network, a new supply had to be delivered from 1km away.
Throughout the project, Paul maintained close liaison with a large number of third parties that were critical to successful delivery. He also ran a series of design workshops that were pivotal in ensuring suppliers and subcontractors were smoothly coordinated and integrated with the site team.
Paul led by example on health and safety, producing outstanding results: with more than 500,000 man hours worked and 1,836 people inducted onto the project, there was not a single reportable incident or accident on site.
This has been another extraordinary year for CMYA. In every category we have seen project managers of all ages delivering exceptional projects, mastering multiple challenges, and achieving world class quality with exemplary leadership skills.
It’s the first year that we have seen the use of Building Information Modelling (BIM) from the conception to completion of many projects. This is an important milestone in the evolution of our industry, indicating the increasing complexity and sophistication of built environment work and the pivotal role that construction managers play within project teams. Congratulations to Paul and all our finalists and medallists. You are helping us take our industry to the next level.
Rather than reporting problems, Paul consistently delivered solutions. His foresight and suggestions enabled us to maintain programme and deliver the scheme in time for 2015 occupation. He also led by example on health and safety. The fact that we had zero accidents can be directly attributed to the conscientious work from Paul and his team.
The project was very challenging in terms of programme, site logistics and budget but Paul’s ability to communicate all issues and foster a real sense of teamwork has set the benchmark in terms of stakeholder management and leadership.
Chris Richards, an honorary Life Member of the CIOB and CMYA consultant said:
Competition was particularly intense at CMYA this year. An unprecedented number of gold medallists were strong contenders for the top trophy. But Paul’s entry was genuinely outstanding. He delivered a project of immaculate quality at a very rapid pace. Confident, positive and determined he demonstrated complete command of the situation. The judges’ decision was unanimous.
Celebrating exceptional hotel design and architecture, the Awards honour the work of industry-leading architects and designers, and the projects they create with hotel developers, owners and operators.
This is the first Gold Award McAleer & Rushe have been awarded from the London scheme and sets a notable standard. The company would like to commend the contract director, site managers and personnel involved in the project who consistently demonstrated a spirit of pride and awareness to uphold and exceed the requirements of the Code of Good Practice.
The significance of this Gold Award is highlighted by the substantial difficulties that emerged during construction due to the surrounding areas of the site.
Close collaboration was required right through to Practical Completion with the City of London Infrastructure because of their works along Minories concurrent with our activities – this was especially tested during construction of the basement in which the elevation of St Clare Street had to be retained with the road levels some 6 metres above the works.
Constraints particularly developed as the overall footprint of the building was strictly not to be decreased yet being in close proximity to a live public highway access and neighbouring offices and apartments.
To overcome these conditions, bored kingpost piles were installed in a contiguous manner and encased in a capping beam. This enabled the highway to be retained in a permanent state and the remainder of the superstructure to be constructed, and the hotel footprint was not compromised.
Peter Devlin, Contracts Director and Conor Feeney, Site Manager for the project represented McAleer & Rushe alongside Richard Rixon of Endurance Land and Allan Sugg of E C Harris to accept the Gold Award Plaque. The plaque was handed out by the City of London’s Lord Mayor, Alan Yarrow on the 8th May 2015.
Seamus and Eamonn who have led the group, since the company was founded as a housebuilder in 1969. They have presided over continued growth which has seen the company emerge as one of the UK and Ireland’s foremost commercial and residential building contractors and developers. The company developed the glamorous W Hotel in the heart of London’s West End which it sold to the Qataris for £200m in September 2011.
The award ceremony which had 15 different categories recognised the achievements of companies from Cookstown, Magherafelt and Dungannon council areas. Nearby building products company Keystone Group, won the Excellence in People Development Award.
Seamus McAleer said:
“Eamonn and I were very honoured to have won such a prestigious award as Mid Ulster is truly a business hub to be reckoned with. But it would be fairer to say the award represents recognition for all the great people we work with who have built up McAleer & Rushe’s fine reputation for delivering excellence.”
Mid Ulster DUP MLA, Ian McCrea congratulated all the businesses who took part. Speaking after the awards, Ian McCrea said:
“I am delighted that so many of our businesses in Mid Ulster received justified recognition of the hard work and dedication that they have put in to making their enterprises a success”.
“The Mid Ulster Business Awards, in just three years, are firmly established as ‘the Oscars’ within the Business fraternity. The entries were of the highest standard once again which made picking the winners all the more difficult for the judging panel.”
For more information please contact: Robert Gibson at MJ2 on 07748 182234
The Awards are Europe’s longest-running and most prestigious architecture and design awards for the hospitality sector. They were presented at a glittering Great Gatsby themed dinner at London’s Park Plaza Westminster Bridge. The ceremony which is Europe’s largest occasion of its kind, with some 900 guests from across the continent in attendance, was presided over by the glamorous BBC 6Music DJ and TV presenter Lauren Laverne.
“Bulgari Hotel and Residences was a worthy winner and a flag bearer for the UK Hotel industry which to my mind seemed to be under-represented this year. It is very gratifying though to see such superlative hotel design flourishing across Europe.”
The other 2013 Winners were:
Architecture of the Year – Conversion and/or Extension of an Existing Hotel Building: Ushuaia Beach Hotel, Ibiza, designed by Estudio Vila 13
Architecture of the Year – Conversion of an Existing Non-Hotel Building to Hotel Use: Speicher 7 in Mannheim, designed by Schmucker und Partner
Interior Design of the Year – Lobby, Lounge & Public Areas: The Alpina Gstaad; designer – The Gallery HBA London
Interior Design of the Year – Cafe or All-Day Dining: 25hours Hotel, Zurich West; designer – Alfredo Haberli Design Development
Interior Design of the Year – Restaurant: Plum and Spilt Milk, the Great Northern Hotel, London; designed by Archer Humphryes Architects
Interior Design of the Year – Bar: Cuckoo’s Nest at Radisson Blu Riverside, Gothenburg; designer – Stylt Trampoli AB
Interior Design of the Year – Bedrooms & Bathrooms: The Alpina Gstaad; designer – The Gallery HBA London
Interior Design of the Year – Suite: The Oslo Suite at The Thief in Oslo; designer – Anemone Wille Vage
Interior Design of the Year – Spa, Health & Leisure Facilities: Castell dels Hams, Mallorca; designed by A2arquitectos
The European Hotel Design of the Year: The Alpina Gstaad; designers – The Gallery HBA London
Tomorrow’s Hotel: KOI by MM Planners
The ReardonSmith Student Award: James Young, Canterbury School of Architecture
The Outstanding Contribution Award: Ian Schrager
The chairperson of the judging panel was Simon Ford of Dorchester Collection. Commenting on this year’s awards, Ford said:
“Not only did we receive more excellent entries than ever before, but they were more diverse. So it made coming to a decision even tougher. We look for creative excellence, commercial viability and evidence that the designs meet the needs of the client and guest alike. To my mind, the range, talent and fresh thinking seen especially in the work of this year’s winners amply demonstrate the flourishing, varied and pioneering quality of hospitality design today.”
For more information please contact: Robert Gibson at MJ2 on 07748 182234
“McAleer & Rushe is tremendously proud of Stephen’s remarkable achievement. I would like to congratulate him personally but also pay tribute to our entire team which has so consistently surpassed all expectations over a particularly challenging period for our industry.”
For more information please contact: Robert Gibson at MJ2 on 07748 182234
McAleer & Rushe was at the centre of a remarkable find of an extraordinary Roman sculpture discovered on a City of London site being developed by the SWIP Property Trust and Endurance Land.
The sculpture, which takes the form of an eagle firmly clasping a writhing serpent in its beak was found by archaeologists from MOLA (Museum of London Archaeology) and the scheme’s contractor McAleer & Rushe.
Specialists have now confirmed that the sculpture dates to the 1st or 2nd century AD. Depictions of eagles and serpents are typically Roman but the closest comparison to this sculpture comes from Jordan. The symbolism is understood as the struggle of good, the eagle, against evil, the snake. This theme is common in funerary contexts and an important Roman cemetery is known to have been located on the site. Archaeologists believe that this statue once adorned a rich mausoleum, the foundations of which were also unearthed.
Described by experts as ‘amongst the very best statues surviving from Roman Britain’, the skill of the craftsman is apparent; with the forked tongue of the snake and the individual feathers of the eagle still clearly discernible today. Some 65cm tall and 55cm wide, the sculpture is made from oolitic limestone from the Cotswolds. A well-known and celebrated school of Romano-British sculptors worked in the area but to date examples of their exquisite work has been scant and fragmentary.
Calum Flockhart Investment Manager for SWIPPT said:
“This has been an exciting project for the SWIP Property Trust not only from a real estate perspective but from an archaeological one too. It’s not everyday that a fine Roman sculpture is unearthed in pristine condition on one of our development sites and we’re delighted that 24/26 Minories will be remembered for this extraordinary find.”
“The eagle is a classically Roman symbol and this new find provides a fascinating new insight into the inhabitants of Roman London and demonstrates their familiarity with the iconography of the wider classical world. Funerary sculpture from the city is very rare and this example, perhaps from inside a mausoleum, is a particularly fine example which will help us to understand how the cemeteries and tombs that lined the roads out of the city were furnished and the beliefs of those buried there.”
McAleer & Rushe Contracts Manager Peter Devlin said:
“To be part of such a remarkable discovery was very exciting. We were particularly impressed with the expertise of the MOLA team and gained a fascinating glimpse into the world of professional archaeology.”
Bedford Street Developments is a joint venture between McAleer & Rushe and Dunloe Ewart.
The acquisition includes Invest Northern Ireland’s award winning headquarters and the adjacent Linum Chambers premises. Constructed in 2005 under a Public Private Partnership contract by McAleer & Rushe the assets consist of over 130,000 sq ft of Grade A office accommodation and secure basement car parking for 95 spaces. To date it is the only office PFI contract to have been undertaken in Northern Ireland.
McAleer & Rushe property director Stephen Surphlis said:
“McAleer & Rushe is particularly proud of its role in delivering such a flagship development. The price achieved reflected not only the strong covenant and income stream but the acknowledged high specification and finish of the building which was reflected in the intense interest from a number of UK funds. This transaction is an exemplar of private and public bodies working well together. We enjoyed a very positive and supportive relationship with NAMA who were our banking partner on this particular transaction, and Invest Northern Ireland with whom we have developed a strong working relationship over the course of the project.”
Osborne King Commercial Property Advisors director Paul Henry who advised Bedford Street Developments said:
“The original PFI structure protected Invest NI from any potential development risk and ensured that it got a bespoke headquarters building delivered to its time-frame and budget by an expert developer. But once delivered the Government has been persuaded of the advantages of owning the building.”
The McAleer & Rushe joint venture has retained the adjoining site which has planning permission for a 225,000 sq ft office development.
McAleer and Rushe has completed a flagship design and build office project for British Land at 10 Portman Square in the heart of London’s West End.
The top UK REIT has also awarded McAleer & Rushe, British Land’s 2013 Award for Exceptional Site Management for its “exceptional work on 10 Portman Square.”
The eight storey building, which includes retail units at ground and lower ground levels, was completed on time and on budget and is already 51% let and has been achieving record rents.
The handsome 10 Portman Square was designed by architects Jestico+Whiles, boasts column-free floorplates of 18,500 sq ft, a dramatic curved roof and large accessible terraces offering dramatic views across London. Situated on an island site and with floor to ceiling glazing, the building benefits from excellent natural light on all sides.
Saudi Arabian oil company Aramco Overseas is the most recent occupier to sign at 10 Portman Square, taking the fourth and fifth floors which represent circa 33,700 sq ft. The company will now commence fit-out. They join Aspect Capital, who will take 24,520 sq ft of office space on the top two floors of the building.
“We are very proud to have delivered a superlative office development on time and on budget. It has been a great privilege working with British Land to deliver such an exemplar office scheme on a challenging central London site. It gives us great satisfaction to know it has already garnered considerable acclaim from property and architecture experts which is also being recognised in the rents achieved.”
“This has been a fantastic team effort, and the building looks stunning. This is a new landmark building providing exceptional quality of accommodation. We are pleased with the level of pre-letting, with interest from occupiers remaining strong as companies seek grade A space in one of the West End’s prime business locations.”