The Scottish Futures Trust, through its innovative ‘hub’ programme has announced that the Amber Blue consortium, comprising of Robertson Group (Holdings) Ltd, Amber Infrastructure and FES, has been selected to deliver over £½bn of public sector infrastructure projects for the East Central Scotland partners*.
One of the primary aims of the hub programme is to bring complementary public sector bodies together to provide a wide range of services for the benefit of local communities all under one roof rather than in remotely located buildings. As the appointment of the development partner now unlocks the massive £½bn investment programme to be delivered over the next ten years, work will start in earnest to further expand a number of outline plans for a range of health and education projects which have already been identified.
The projects across the East Central territory will be delivered through a joint venture company (hubCo) formed between the various public sector bodies and the Amber Blue consortium. The flexibility of the hub supply chain will offer many opportunities for local SMEs within the construction industry to become involved in building high-quality public sector buildings in their local area.
The announcement of Amber Blue as the East Central Territory hub development partner marks a significant milestone in the delivery of the SFT hub programme which now takes the number of operational hubs to three with the last remaining hubs, West and South West, currently in procurement.
Barry White, chief executive of the Scottish Futures Trust, said: “This is a great achievement for the East Central Territory hub team Board. I look forward to the East Central hubCo working with local suppliers and contractors to deliver quality buildings to provide improved public services for communities right across the East Central hub territory. “Across Scotland, the hub programme is already building or developing in excess of £100m of essential projects to local communities which in turn will support service improvements to local communities.”
Tom Steele who chairs the East Central Territory hub Programme Board explained: “Amber Blue, with its far reaching and dynamic approach is best placed to deliver better value-for-money buildings which will facilitate and enhance joint working across the public sector for the benefit of our communities.”
Neil McCormick, bid director of Amber Blue, said: “Naturally, we are delighted with our appointment and look forward to working with the public sector partners to finalise the East Central hubCo. Once this process is completed we will be looking to commence delivery of these vital projects which will generate multiple benefits for the communities which we will serve.
“We have already commenced dialogue with a number of local businesses within the hub area who are well placed to become part of the teams for each identified project, in turn enhancing employment opportunities within the local economy.”
The current hub investment pipeline of projects across the two live hubs stands at nearly £700m and when all five hubs are operational, it’s predicted that over £1.4bn of public sector infrastructure projects will be delivered by 2020.
*The East Central hub partners include the following public sector organisations: Angus, Clackmannanshire, Dundee, Falkirk, Fife, Perth & Kinross and Stirling Councils, as well as Central Scotland Fire and Rescue, Central Scotland Police, Fife Fire and Rescue, Fife Constabulary, NHS Fife, NHS Forth Valley, NHS Tayside, Tayside Fire and Rescue and Tayside Police.