With a new decade nearly upon us, we decided to reflect on the events of the past 10 years, and the impact they’ve had on the construction industry. Read on for our review of 2010…

2010 was a pivotal year. We didn’t know it at the time, but it set the wheels in motion for the call for the referendum on the EU, the subsequent vote to leave and the ensuing years of battling about Brexit.

Following the general election in May 2010, the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats formed a coalition government. Led by David Cameron and Nick Clegg, the five-year term will be remembered for austerity, tuition fees for university students and proposals for sweeping welfare reform in the guise of Universal Credit.

To appease the Tory Euro-skeptics and to secure his place as leader of the next Tory government, Cameron promised a referendum on leaving the EU and the rest, as they say, is history.

2010 was dogged by huge public spending cuts with a significant impact on public sector construction. The £55bn Building Schools for the Future Programme (BSF) was axed with more than 700 projects for new and upgraded schools cancelled. The BSF was subsequently replaced with the far less ambitious Priority School Building Programme, phase 2 of which is still in place today.

Meanwhile, the government announced that it intended to adopt BIM for procurement and management of all public assets, paving the way for the subsequent government mandate. At the time however, only a third of the industry had adopted BIM. This has gradually risen throughout the decade to around 70% in 2019.

Meanwhile, excitement was building as the Olympic Park took shape, with the timber-clad velodrome (affectionately known as The Pringle), the winged aquatics centre, the Copper Box Arena, the Athletes Village and the Olympic Stadium all marching to completion.

2010 set the stage for the decade and marked the start of a ten-year roller coaster for the construction sector.

More posts in our ‘Construction Decade in Review’ series

2011: Leaning tower sets a new world record

2012: Construction takes gold

2013: Help to Buy mortgage scheme launches

2014: Construction health and safety failings hit home

2015: Construction Design and Management Regulations come into force

2016: Modernise or die – a shocking message to the sector


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About the Author: Nikki Wilson

Nikki is a highly experienced copywriter and content creator who gets to the heart of the story and makes it come alive for audiences across web, print and broadcast media.

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