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ContraCting sustainability rmi infrastruCture l



We need to talk about brexit

HoW construction firms can brexit-proof tHeir business

WHAT ABOUT REGIONAL IRELAND? A lack of investment in areas outside Dublin is hampering growth

LESSONS IN HOW TO GET PAID Follow these 10 steps if you want to get paid on time

THIS CONSTRUCTION LIFE Patrick Butler’s memoir about a life spent in the industry

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Dublin’s construction sector is thriving. Hotels, offices and apartment blocks are currently under construction while a whole new part of the city is being built at the Grangegorman site. That level of activity however, isn’t being replicated in other parts of the country. A recent survey showed that 75% of CIF members are not confident that infrastructure projects will materialise in their regions. Over the past 18 months, a number of road projects in regional Ireland have been delayed and with Cork Event Centre suffering yet another setback, it’s difficult to rationalise Dublin’s booming sector with the rest of the country’s more lethargic activity levels. Conor O’Connell, CIF Southern Regional Director, believes government investment is crucial to meeting the needs of regional Ireland, particularly when areas outside Dublin are expected to play such a major role in the Government’s Project Ireland 2040 National Planning Framework. For more on this, turn to page 16. We might all be sick of hearing about Brexit but it’s imperative that Irish construction firms get their ducks in a row and ensure their businesses are as Brexit-proof as possible. Turn to page 20 for some advice as to what firms can do right now to mitigate the effects of all this Brexit uncertainty. If you have any comments or opinions on this issue’s content, we’d love to hear from you – email

Denise Maguire Irish Construction Industry Magazine

Publisher: MCD Media Ltd. Managing Editor: Michael McDonnell Editor: Denise Maguire

Subscriptions & Circulation, Accounts/Administration: Linda Doran Production & Design: Catherine Kelleher


media ltd.


1st Floor, 103 Newtown Park, Malahide Road Industrial Park, Coolock, Dublin 17. Telephone: 01 8482286 Mobile: 087 4184353

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Š 2019. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of the publishers. The views and opinions contained in this magazine are not necessarily those of the publishers. The publishers do not accept responsibility for accuracy, errors or omissions in articles or advertisements, or for unsolicited reports or photographs. Reference in this publication to commercial products, process or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favouring by Irish Construction Industry Magazine. The views and opinions of authors and contributors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of Irish Construction Industry Magazine nor does it assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of the information contained or submitted.

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News - A look at what’s been happening in Ireland’s construction industry


New branding, same superior service – Grafton Merchanting ROI has rebranded to Chadwicks Group


A modest expansion – Construction activity rises at weakest pace in almost six years


No investment, no growth – A lack of infrastructure investment in regional Ireland is hampering current and future growth. We spoke to Conor O’Connell about why the government should not neglect areas outside Dublin


We need to talk about Brexit – Construction companies need to get their ducks in a row and try to ensure their business is Brexit-proof

28 28

Time to tap into BIM’s full potential – Can BIM help the industry meet its energy efficiency targets and how does it improve Ireland’s building stock? BIMcert explains


Poised for growth – With a new office in the Netherlands, Kirby Group is planning to expand its presence in the data centre and life science sectors


Legal – Leman Solicitors shares a few tricks of the trade when it comes to making sure you get paid


Retail parks are top property performers – Construction activity and rising consumer spending power is driving demand for Dublin’s retail parks


This construction life – Limerick-born Patrick Butler has written a book about his experiences in the construction industry


Where will the power come from for data centres? – A new policy paper from the Irish Academy of Engineering takes a look at how data centre growth will likely affect Ireland’s energy generation requirements and what it means for our carbon emissions


One to watch – Right now, data centres are big business in Ireland. Tony Barry explains why construction firms might want to keep an eye on this lucrative sector




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Sep/Oct 2019


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Killeen Road Depot Kileen Road, Dublin 12 TEL: 01 601 1500 WEB:

Santry Depot Old Airport Road, Cloghran, Co. Dublin TEL: 01 9018690 WEB:

Cork Depot Unit 10, Sarsfield Court, Silver Bullet Industrial Estate, Glanmire, Co. Cork TEL: 021 486 6400 FAX: 021 486 6610 WEB:

Galway Depot Airglooney Industrial Estate, Ballygaddy Road, Tuam, Co. Galway TEL: 093 60470 FAX: 093 60477 WEB:

Suppliers of:

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Shaping Future Environments

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W: E:

Progressive, dynamic and client focused, MMD Construction is an expert leader in the Construction Industry offering project completion to an exceptional standard in line with client expectations

* Residential * Commercial * Industrial * Renovation/Restoration * Education * Government * Civils * Energy * Healthcare * Leisure * Pharmaceutical * Public Buildings * Retail

Approved Contractors

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PERFECT PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN AMS AND MMD AMS would like to congratulate MMD on the great news for the company, for Cork and for the construction industry, with the opening of its new €6 million headquarters in the Airport Business Park in Cork and the announcement of job opportunities for the industry. MMD and AMS have collaborated on projects for one another in recent times to create quality, functional and innovative projects. MMD was chosen as the main contractors for AMS during the expansion of its plant. MMD completed recent building works, including the construction of AMS’ new warehousing and press building, expanding its facility to 250,000 sq. ft. Subsequent to this development AMS was delighted when MMD decided to choose AMS systems for its new headquarters. AMS was pleased to offer its AMS MU800

units, making for impressive features and maximising light. The TS66 Rebated Door offers excellent performance characteristics, making it one of the more versatile and robust door systems on the market today. Modern methods of construction call for a fast and speedy fabrication process of systems and installation on site and this is where the AMS Athena Window Adaptors for Kingspan Panels were utilised effectively. The MMD office development utilises the Kingspan insulated panel system which is built up around the main structural steelwork frame. Quality products, reliability and performance are very important to both MMD and AMS. This recent collaboration reinforces the company values at AMS, who commented: “We look forward to many more occasions where MMD and AMS work collaboratively to provide the highest quality building solutions into the future.”

Hi Curtain Walling, AMS TS66 Rebate doors and window systems and AMS Athena Window Adaptors for Kingspan Panels for the development of MMD’s thermally efficient and stylish HQ. The MU800 Hi Curtain Wall System is the latest offering available from AMS. It is a highperformance mullion drained system offering sightlines of 55 mm, allowing greater spans and accommodating larger glazed

IRISH BUILDING & DESIGN AWARDS We are pleased to announce applications are now officially open for this year’s Irish Building and Design Awards. These awards have become the industry’s most prestigious recognition of excellence in the building and design sectors, acknowledging the best in all areas of construction and design. These awards will be going to the finest and most innovative projects, firms & practices over the last 18 months, at a blacktie gala night being held on 29th November in the Clayton Hotel, Burlington Road, Dublin. Submit your application ASAP to avoid disappointment as some categories can get oversubscribed before the deadline date.


Sep/Oct 2019

If you have additional questions, please contact Emilye Harris at +353 (0)1 293 3650 or email Log on to access the full list of updated categories and criteria for 2019 applications.


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100 NEW JOBS ANNOUNCED BY MMD CONSTRUCTION Irish-owned construction company, MMD Construction, has announced the creation of 100 new jobs. The news comes as Tánaiste Simon Coveney officially opens MMD Construction’s new fourth generation office building at the Cork Airport Business Park. The new jobs will be created in a number of specialities as demand increases for MMD Construction’s services in Munster and across Ireland. Recruitment is already underway, and will be completed within the next two years. Amongst the positions being offered are roles for project managers, engineers, BIM technicians, carpenters and plasterers. Founded in 2000, MMD Construction has continued to grow consistently. The company currently employs 140 full time staff and provides an extensive range of construction services including pharmaceutical, healthcare, residential, civil infrastructure, education, commercial developments and historical building restoration. MMD Construction welcomes new talent to the industry through progressive graduate training programmes which ease candidates into the world of work and give them the skills necessary to become part of a larger team.

Cormac Smith (MMD Construction Director), Cllr Damian Boylan Deputising Lord Mayor Cllr Shane O’Callaghan, Tánaiste Simon Coveney, Pat Lucey (CIF President), Tom Parlon (CIF Director General), Patricia Harrington (MMD Construction Director) Tomás O’Donovan (MMD Construction Managing Director), Kevin O’Leary (MMD Construction Director)

Image of current work at Colaiste Chiarain, Croom

Director of MMD Construction, Cormac Smith said: “This is a fabulous day for the company with the official opening of our new office building, and the announcement of a recruitment drive for 100 new colleagues. Together, we will continue to offer our customers the very best in design and delivery of construction projects across a wide number of sectors. New technology means the industry is changing for the better, and we hope to attract the best emerging talent from our Irish universities with our progressive graduate training programme. We believe that it helps prepare them fully for a career in construction in the 21st century.” Tánaiste Simon Coveney said: "I am delighted to be here today for the official opening of MMD Construction's new office building. In addition to this we have the fantastic news that the company is creating 100 new jobs for Cork. This will provide a huge boost to the local economy. MMD Construction is a very successful company and their new headquarters are a state of the art design. I would like to wish them the very best of luck as they grow and expand their business." MMD Construction’s new headquarters incorporates a high standard of design and finish, and offers a number of unique additions for its employees. Each workspace in the €6


million building is ergonomically designed, with biometric access and members of staff have the use of a full gym on site. The company also uses new GPS technologies to ensure machine operators on sites can carry out excavations safety and accurately, using precision 3D automated control systems. Amongst the projects currently under construction by MMD Construction is Carrigaline Education Campus, which at €30 million is the largest primary/secondary school development in Ireland. They are also involved in social and affordable housing schemes in Kinsale and Clonakilty, the recent completion of the largest primary care centre in the country at the St Mary’s campus in Cork with another primary care centre under construction in Bandon. MMD Construction is very committed to the safety, health and wellbeing of its employees and is one of the first contractors to achieve ISO 45001:2018 and also was one of the first contractors to achieve the ISO 9001:2015 Quality Standard, meaning that its clients can have the confidence that they are committed to delivering the highest standards of safety and quality in the construction services they provide. The company also recently hit a significant health and safety milestone where they marked 92,000 hours on site (the equivalent of one year) without a single accident.

Sep/Oct 2019

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GROUNDFORCE INVEST IN NEW PREMISES IN CO. LAOIS Award winning construction equipment rental specialist Groundforce have relocated to a new, larger premises in Co. Laois to facilitate further growth and expansion of their range of equipment. The new three-acre site in the Bay Road Business Park in Mountmellick, which opened at the beginning of June, is conveniently situated close to the main motorway networks, providing excellent access across the country. The new, larger premises is twice the size of their previous depot and offers improved facilities for customers and staff. The increase in space will allow Groundforce to stock more equipment, including their larger-capacity hydraulic struts, Larsen sheet piles and their piling attachment portfolio which offers a comprehensive range of cranesuspended hammers and excavator-mounted vibrators. Products from their most recently launched pile cropping equipment range will also be available. This is a new range introduced to meet the increased demand for pile breakers on large commercial and residential developments. The facility also includes a new dedicated painting booth, two dispatch areas and double wash bay to allow quicker return and dispatch of equipment. Groundforce General Manager Joseph Lenihan comments: “At Groundforce, delivering top-class customer service is at the core of our

business model. This drive, combined with our continued investment in new equipment and technical services, allows us to deliver advanced solutions to our ever growing and loyal customer base. “The relocation will allow us to build on the success we have achieved over the past 12 years and allow the business to expand its product range and stock holdings while providing better facilities for our customers and dedicated staff.”

MEDITE SMARTPLY EMBARKS ON AN IRISH ROAD TRIP MEDITE SMARTPLY, manufacturer of innovative MDF and OSB wood panels, is touring its home market of Ireland this Autumn. After a succession of industry leading product launches from the brand throughout 2019 so far, MEDITE SMARTPLY’s Irish road trip hit the road on September 4th and will continue until the end of October, visiting specialist timber distributors and builders’ merchants across Ireland. With the aim of better connecting with local customer bases and building contractors, MEDITE SMARTPLY product experts will be at hand to offer insights and best practice advice to anyone working in the construction industry. David Murray, Head of Innovation and Ireland Sales at the company, said: “We’re delighted to have embarked on this, the Irish leg of our road trip. We are looking forward to meeting existing and new customers, building contractors, end-users and specifiers alike, at all of the many locations around Ireland. The aim is to better understand the challenges faced by the industry and to demonstrate how our extensive product range solves many of these daily challenges on site and in workshops”. There will be free refreshments of bacon rolls, tea and coffee for all who visit the team at any location, to be enjoyed while learning about the latest state-of-the-art MDF and OSB products from MEDITE SMARTPLY. Attendees can also take part in games and competitions for chances to win prizes on the day. MEDITE SMARTPLY, part of the Coillte Group, is an important local employer across Ireland and is committed to fostering an ethos of sustainability within the timber industry and to positively developing higher quality standards in the Irish construction industry.


Sep/Oct 2019

“MEDITE SMARTPLY leads the way in the development of technically advanced timber panels that are created to solve problems for construction professionals, using the world’s most sustainable and only completely renewable building material, grown and manufactured right here in Ireland,” said David. “It’s our customer-focussed teams who have worked hard to conceptualise products that make building work safer, faster, stronger, smarter, which differentiates us from our market competitors. Our innovative wood panels are tailor-made for offsite construction, warehousing and logistics, traditional housebuilding, interior fit out’s and even projects that must withstand extreme weather conditions.” See the full list of locations and plan your visit here: and follow MEDITE SMARTPLY on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn for updates.

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Irish Construction Industry Magazine  

Sep/Oct 2019

Irish Construction Industry Magazine  

Sep/Oct 2019