Merseyside based Innov8 Safety Solutions secures role on landmark Liverpool RIBA fit-out

Merseyside based Innov8 is supporting a landmark Liverpool fit-out scheme to deliver the Royal Institute of British Architects’ (RIBA) new national architecture centre.

The Birkenhead-based firm has been appointed as CDM (Construction Design Management) Advisors for the project, which will mark RIBA's first exhibition space outside London, located at Liverpool's Mann Island.

Innov8 managing director Alan Robson said the contract was secured through Countryside Neptune LLP – a joint venture between Liverpool-based Neptune Developments Ltd and Countryside Properties.

Innov8 has previously worked with Neptune Developments on projects including St John Bosco Art College and Lime Street, in Liverpool, alongside regeneration projects in the centre of Wolverhampton including i10, i11 and re-development of the Railway station district.

"This contract sees Innov8's construction safety experts working on RIBA's new national architecture centre," said Mr Robson. "It's a terrific project to be involved with as a passionate Merseyside firm, helping to bring RIBA's world-class collections and development plans for Liverpool and beyond to local audiences.

"Construction and fit-out work has started on site. However, our role as CDM advisors required us to get involved at a much earlier stage. Following recent changes to CDM regulations - enforced by the Health & Safety Executive earlier this year - there are now much greater obligations placed on our clients than ever before.

"Essentially, our clients are now responsible for some of the duties that were previously carried out by the CDM coordinator. These duties include notifying the HSE, and providing designers and principal contractors with all relevant information. This can include existing information about the site and any surveys carried out, for example asbestos or existing services.

"Our clients must also ensure that welfare facilities are provided by the principal contractor, prior to commencement at the site. Furthermore, they are also responsible for the appointment of the principal contractor and principal designer.

"Innov8's role as an independent CDM Advisor is to ensure our clients are made fully aware of all responsibilities and, crucially, ensure they remain fully compliant. There has never been a more important time for developers to understand the rules and regulations surrounding CDM. It is essential they have a comprehensive understanding of their new responsibilities."

The RIBA Mann Island fit-out will involve significant alterations to the existing internal layout of Block Two at Neptune Development’s Mann Island site. The regional headquarters will occupy two floors of the building, which sits within a Unesco World Heritage Site.

It will see a new dedicated entrance for RIBA staff and visitors with a new passenger lift and feature staircase to link the ground floor and first floor mezzanine level, which will also be extended to provide additional office space.

The ground floor transformation includes a high-specification café area. In addition to the creation of a museum-standard exhibition space a "City Gallery" will become the permanent home for the Liverpool City model and a venue showcasing development plans for the region. The facility also includes lecture and conferencing facilities, majority open plan office accommodation and a retail outlet. 

Innov8, which was acquired by Gateshead-based risk management specialist Lucion in 2015, continues to record rapid growth after almost doubling turnover and staff numbers in 2014.

Lucion Services has subsidiary companies specialising in the training, consultancy, identification and remediation surrounding risk management, offering a complete turn key solution.

“The strong relationships we have built with major developers like Neptune have been key to our development as a business,” said Mr Robson. “Our expansion into new territories including Edinburgh and London, outside our regional base, has also enabled us to broaden our profile and appeal.

“By operating independently under the Lucion banner, we are able to tap into additional resource across the group and strengthen our overall client offering. We believe this will be a major driver in attracting greater local investment.

“We are determined to maintain the momentum experienced in recent years. Innov8’s offering is simple – to minimise all construction site health and safety risks and ensure clients achieve complete compliance. 

“However, it is the way we deliver our service which is important. We are focused on providing a flexible, independent, cost-effective service, which is tailored to individual clients’ needs.”

For more information contact Innov8 on Tel: +44 (0)845 468 1974 Email: info@innov8safetysolutions.com 

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