Under most construction contracts, the contractor takes on the ground conditions risk. However, a recent case has demonstrated that the risk can fall on the employer.
Cycling offers many benefits to society such as a healthier population, as well as fewer emissions and a cleaner environment. It also however has its own dangers, which have prompted many campaigns for safer cycling and appropriate cycling networks over the years. Unfortunately cycling provisions aren’t always at the top of the agenda for local authorities in times of austerity, but since 2013 Birmingham has secured circa £60 million from the Government to support the Birmingham Cycle Revolution.
The aim of the Cycle Revolution is to make cycling an everyday way to travel in Birmingham over the next 20 years. By 2023 the goal is that 5% of all trips in the city will be made by bike, increasing to 10% by 2033. The Council is pledging to improve cycling facilities within a 20-minute cycling time of Birmingham city centre with 95km of improvements to existing routes and 115km of new cycle routes.
Whilst this is fantastic news and it will go some way to making Birmingham a ‘healthier, greener, safer and less-congested’ city, businesses and individuals across the City need to take some responsibility for the Revolution’s success.
The values of ACS are based on making a proactive difference in society and improving local communities, which is why the firm is supporting the Bike West Midlands network and safer cycling campaigns.
Peter Hubbard, Senior Partner at ACS commented: “At ACS we work with many partners and clients to make positive changes in communities to safeguard them for future generations. We encourage colleagues to use sustainable commuting to get to work and operate a cycle to work scheme. A healthier and happier workforce benefits not only the Firm, but our clients as well.
"We are all too aware of the dangers that cycling can involve: we act for clients who have suffered catastrophic and life-changing injuries resulting from road accidents, as well as families of those involved in fatal accidents. While the health benefits of cycling generally outweigh such risks, those benefits will not be fully realised until people from 8 to 80 feel safe to cycle.
"Ensuring safer routes for cyclists is vital to protecting our communities. Businesses in Birmingham need to support initiatives such as Bike West Midlands and the Cycling Revolution to promote a healthier and safer society. We were glad to host the Bike West Midlands Network at our offices and look forward to welcoming them back for their official launch event later in the year.”
Shivaji Shiva, Senior Associate at ACS, is a member of the Bike West Midlands Network steering group and added: “The cycling community has an opportunity to shape the future of Birmingham and promote a better understanding of how active travel will support economic regeneration as well as more liveable communities.
"We will be looking at how we can pool the resources of campaigns across Birmingham and the West Midlands to promote the sustainable economic benefits of cycling along with raising the importance of safety and road justice. It’s an exciting time for Birmingham to set the standard for safer walking and cycling.”
For more details please contact Shivaji Shiva. For more details about the Bike West Midlands Network, please contact David Cox, Chair, National Cycling Council on 07785 920646, email email@example.com or through Twitter @BWMnetwork
The UK Government has been consulting on how it should promote social value in its procurements. Here is our response that we submitted to the consultation...
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