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03.13 // up to data How to get ahead in the data centres sector p28 move along The science of modelling pedestrian flows p34 a risky business? Iraq: surveying the opportunities p40

The virtual issue

The Virtual issue inside: preview the RICS Hong Kong Awards 2013

SIGNATURE COLLECTION New product launch 2013

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No 8 03.13 //

The virtual issue Time flies. While the joyful scene of last year’s RICS Annual Dinner and Awards evening is still vivid in my mind, we will soon be having the next one. My thanks go to the organising committee, the jurors, the sponsors and everyone who has contributed to it. If you have any experience of organising similar functions of this scale and nature, you will understand the challenges involved. There is always a budget to balance, and uncertainty about the number of sponsors and the turnout – whether there will be too many people or not enough. However, once you see the members and guests enjoying the evening and having fun, you feel it’s worth all the effort. After all, this is an event to celebrate the efforts and the achievements of the members. And I hope this is an event that members look forward to every year. kenneth kwan frics Chairman, RICS Hong Kong

Regulars 05_feedback Your views on Modus and the profession, and social media

34_model behaviour Using simulation software to create secure environments

06_intelligence Global news, plus opinions, reviews and reactions

40_Rebuilding iraq Are the rich opportunities for work worth the potential danger?

27_law advice The legal implications of suspending construction works

In formation

47_business advice Practical points when considering a virtual work arrangement

Features 14_property awards A preview of the second annual RICS Hong Kong Awards

49_rics news News and updates, plus a message from the RICS President Alan Collett FRICS

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52_events Training and conference dates for your diary 54_the measure Facts, stats and current thinking about BIM usage in the industry

24_10 mins with... Ichiro Makijima FRICS, executive managing director of ARES, Japan 28_the virtual reality The wide-ranging opportunities for surveyors in the burgeoning digital data centres sector





MEETING THE DRAGON After recently returning from a three-week trip to the beast that is China, I was delighted to read the article ‘Head of the Dragon’ in the September global issue (page 36). Spending time in Shanghai was a real eye-opener to an undergraduate real estate student and the article summed up my thoughts and experiences in an exceptional fashion. A fascinating point mentioned was the sensitivity of cultural differences and business etiquette. I was fortunate enough to spend some time with some students of a similar level to myself, and the emphasis was clearly on building close relationships from a young age that continue into a business environment – very much on a face-to-face level. It is also very clear that Shanghai has been developing at an astounding rate. Agents from CBRE and Savills provided ground-level evidence that consumer demand and improving construction quality will continue to boost development across China. I think that there is still a lot to get excited about in Shanghai, with plenty of opportunities for property professionals. Matthew Wackett, Sheffield, UK SUSTAINABILITY STRATEGY I read with interest the observations of the four eminently qualified surveyors on sustainability in the ‘Leadership’ issue, who all have a handle on the subject but disappointingly only one, Miles Keeping, reflected the reality. For those who continue to promote sustainability as a separate subject, I agree with Miles that

this is not the way forward. Markets quickly judge what is good value and where costs can be saved or efficiencies improved. Empirical requirements simply encourage complacency and often an overly optimistic approach. But the reality is usually different and, therefore, risk profiling is the way in which investment, development and occupational markets will judge the potential and returns, and it will be on this basis that sustainability will perform as an embedded part rather than as a discrete subject. Sustainability is fundamental to all our jobs and its assessment is not in the hands of a few. To say otherwise would be to suggest the market is not interested in sustainability, which it most definitely is –

but not at any cost. Sustainability is simply part of a transparent and understandable measurement of performance and, where it can be demonstrated, it gives the investor and occupier an advantage, which will be based on a risk assessment. In valuation terms, that will drill down into the rent an occupier will pay, and the yield return an investor will expect, given market conditions. Graham F Chase FRICS, London




26,650 followers in December 2012. RICS is also tracking 725 tweeting professionals – see

205 followers in January 2013 Since the launch on 14 September, around

24,000 RICS members have logged on from more than 100 different countries

31,950 members in December 2012 150 comments every week

Due to the volume of correspondence we receive, we regret that we are unable to print all letters or respond to every one individually.



Modus Asia edition is the official publication of the Royal

Editor Oliver Parsons // Art Director Christie Ferdinando

Institution of Chartered Surveyors in Asia: Room 2203,

Editorial board Jaclyn Dunstan and Mark Goodwin (UK)

// Contributing Editor Brendon Hooper // Deputy Editor

Hopewell Centre, 183 Queen’s Road East, Hong Kong

Roy Ying and Vivian Yuen (Asia)

Samantha Whitaker // Intern Isabella Fernandes // Creative

Published by Sunday, 207 Union Street, London SE1 0LN

Asia advertising ROF Media

Director Matt Beaven // Account Director Stephanie Hill //

Bryan Chan +852 3150 8912 |

Commercial Director Karen Jenner

Printers ROF Media

Views expressed in Modus are those of the named author and are not necessarily those of RICS or the publisher. The contents of this magazine are fully protected by copyright and may not be reproduced in any form without the prior permission of the publisher. All information correct at time of going to press. All rights reserved. The publisher cannot accept liability for errors or omissions. RICS does not accept responsibility for loss, injury or damage or costs that result from, or are connected in any way to, the use of products or services advertised. All editions of Modus are printed on paper sourced from sustainable, properly managed forests. This magazine can be recycled for use in newspapers and packaging. Please dispose of it at your local collection point. The polywrap is made from biodegradable material and can be recycled.

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:GLOBAL SEED VAULT SVALBARD, NORWAY Set deep inside permafrost, which keeps the structure at a consistent temperature of -30°C, the Svalbard Global Seed Vault was developed in 2007 to be a ‘central bank’ of the world’s food plant biodiversity. As we’re forced to adapt to the effects of climate change, food security has become an increasingly important issue. Designed and planned by Barlindhaug Consult of Tromsø, the vault currently holds 780,000 seed samples, with a capacity for around 1.5m. The Nordic Genetic Resource Centre first assessed the disused mine site in 1983, and later set up an early form of the seed storage facility 300m inside. The extended structure was built in 2007 as three concrete chambers, powered and refrigerated to -18°C by an on-site generator. Should the backup power fail, the surrounding permafrost is expected to act as a temporary natural cooler, preventing the seed stores from being damaged. The entire structure is around 1,000m2, but above ground it is recognised by its distinctive concrete ‘fin’ entrance.

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Global investor transaction levels remained steady in Q3 2012, with US$96bn (£60bn) transacted over the quarter, according to Jones Lang LaSalle’s (JLL) capital markets research from 60 countries. Despite a slight fall on the US$106bn (£66bn) total recorded in Q2 2012, a full-year 2012 global forecast remains at

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developments (capped at no more than 10%) with BEAM PLUS for New Buildings certification. To further promote building energy efficiency, the Hong Kong government enacted the Buildings Energy Efficiency Ordinance in 2010, which mandates the implementation of building energy codes at the initial design stage and during ‘major retrofitting works’, and requires an energy audit to be completed every 10 years. Meanwhile, Singapore launched the Building and Construction Authority’s Green Mark Scheme based on energy efficiency, water efficiency, environmental protection, indoor environmental quality and other green features. All new public build projects must be Green Mark Platinum, and all projects over 2,000m2 must meet a minimum Green Mark Standard. Green buildings in the property industry are beginning to take off as awareness, and attempts to achieve sustainable building standards through certification, grow. Governments can, and should, lead the way by designating public sector buildings as model green buildings, while sustainable rating systems will ensure performance and disclosure for investment and ownership purposes.

ECO-SKYSCRAPERS The Solaris office building in central Singapore received the country’s highest certification in sustainable building

DR THOMAS TANG is regional director of corporate sustainability at AECOM Asia.

around US$400bn (£249bn). ‘While general sentiment continues to be constrained by the economic environment, transaction volumes have been robust overall due to the high levels of interest in offices, retail and industrial real estate in major global markets,’ said Arthur de Haast from JLL.

Europe // OUTSIDE INTEREST Opportunities for investment outside of core market cities will become stronger in the next five years, according to research from Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL). The firm predicts that the vast majority of the largest investors, such as Asian and US institutions, will continue to focus on the prime office buildings in the most

liquid markets of London, Paris and major German and Nordic cities, leaving opportunities open elsewhere. ‘Secondary space might present more opportunities for cash-rich, entrepreneurial investors who are willing to ride out the economic risks across Europe,’ said Bill Page, director of EMEA research at JLL.

Image Creative Commons

here is a growing awareness of sustainability issues in the property portfolio performance of the Asian property sector. This is to accommodate the needs of an increasing urban population, to comply with lean-energy requirements to ensure energy efficiency and to adapt to global factors, such as climate change. Green performance can be achieved through design features, such as green roofs and façades, and building technologies, such as replacing conventional building materials with photovoltaic materials in parts of the building’s exterior and solar orientation, which places buildings so as to avoid solar loads. Also, water recycling systems can harvest rainwater and grey water, while waste management systems can recover and reuse materials. However, currently only a few developers are aiming for formal recognition of their green efforts from green building councils. This may be because there is limited knowledge on who can offer specialist advice, or a belief that green measures do not offer attractive returns. Nevertheless, countries and regions, such as Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia, have started accepting standards set by green building councils, and are mandating building performance through their respective governments. In Japan, although there are no mandatory green building regulations, the Comprehensive Assessment System for Built Environment Efficiency (CASBEE), developed in 2001, covers new construction, temporary construction, renovation, heat island, urban development and homes. Hong Kong’s new buildings can earn a gross floor area (GFA) concession for building

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SUNNY SIDE UP Construction is underway at the Hongqiao Vantone SunnyWorld Centre, a major new development for the Shanghai Hongqiao CBD. Designed by architects Foster + Partners for Vantone Real Estate and SunnyWorld Group, the mixeduse commercial scheme will include a new 40,000m2 public park, and laid out as opposing triangular sections. Meanwhile, Foster + Partners has revealed that it will soon open an office in the Brazilian city São Paulo.




The percentage of Scottish households that could be powered by the world’s biggest offshore windfarm, planned for construction off the coast of Caithness

ROAD TO MATURITY The Indian property market is expected to remain stable, even as prices fall elsewhere, predicts Knight Frank. The firm notes that, in order to emerge as a mature market, India must incorporate a framework combining a transparent legal system, easy access to finance and liquidity in the market. Regulations to protect the public are also key. ‘Some of the issues that need regulation are customer rights,’ said Anand Narayanan, national director of residential for Knight Frank India.


KENT ATTRACTION Plans for a US$3.2bn Hollywood-style Paramount Pictures theme park in Kent have been unveiled. London Resort Company Holdings (LRCH), a joint venture consisting of Lafarge, Development Securities, and Brookfield Multiplex, will take the plans forward for approval. The plan for the site on the Swanscombe Peninsula includes an indoor water park, a rollercoaster, music venues, movie theatres, hotels, and restaurants. ‘We are particularly pleased with the appetite we are seeing from investors,’ said Tony Sefton, project leader for LRCH.

Hong Kong Government policies in suppressing the residential market have led to many property investors shifting to the office, retail and car park markets, which have continued to do well. Benny K B Kwok MRICS, Benny K B Kwok Forensic Expert

East China The commercial property market will see a further boost due to policy about limitation of real estate investment. However, some property has already faced risk by insensitive investment action. Cao Haimin MRICS, Tishman Speyer

Kuala Lumpur The impending general election is causing uncertainty in the market. Also, industrial investment has been affected by labour shortages and the imposition of a minimum wage. Christopher Boyd FRICS, CB Richard Ellis (Malaysia)

Haryana The government’s decision to allow 51% foreign direct investment in multibrand retail has cheered the retail and real estate sectors, and will open up multiple opportunities as demand rises. Mohit Verma, Raheja Developers Ltd

Central Asia The focus is on the 2014 drawdown and the uncertainty that this is causing. Most investors are preferring to wait and see, but I don’t think things will turn out as bad as the media foresee. Richard Scarth MRICS, Property Consulting Afghanistan Source: RICS Global Commercial Property Survey Q4 2012

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nce upon a time, it was the norm for workers to sit at workstations owned by the employer, using computers owned by the employer, working (in theory, at least) a nine-to-five office day – how simple that model looks now. We’re just now at the beginning of a revolution in working practices, as ultra-capable mobile devices take on more and more of our traditional IT workload. However, although this is making employees more mobile, it’s also throwing up numerous IT security concerns because these devices are often owned by the employee, not the employer. With this seemingly small change of boundaries come serious questions about access, responsibility and cost. There’s also the age-old worry of a ‘lost briefcase’ security lapse, which has now become a 21st-century danger with numerous mobile phones and tablets left on trains and the back seats of taxis globally. To counter these increasing security concerns, it’s tempting to view the reducing spend on IT hardware as a major sweetener. But the reality is that it’s unlikely to be quite so straightforward as there will be – at least for the foreseeable future – a continued need for underlying employer-owned IT infrastructure. So although these extra devices may be taking up a lot more of employees’ time, that desktop machine or laptop isn’t going anywhere fast and probably won’t cost much less to run. That’s the bad news. But there is also good news, because bring your own device (BYOD) can do wonders not only for staff morale, but productivity, too. In a recent survey of IT

managers commissioned by Insight UK, 82% of respondents that had implemented BYOD said they had seen visible improvements in staff morale as a result. As for productivity, at companies where people use devices to access corporate information, they seem to be available far longer. A telling example of this is how emails are increasingly answered outside of office hours, not because people feel they must, but more because they would rather action something important than leave it for later. Put simply, the trend toward employee-owned mobile devices is persuading many of us to be more available for work, in a wider variety of situations and at various times of day. Is this a good thing or a bad thing? I suppose it very much depends on whom you ask.

GENERATION NEXT Businesses are capitalising on the ever-increasing popularity of smartphones and tablets

ASHLEY GATEHOUSE is vice president for EMEA marketing at Insight UK.





Image Corbis

More than 50 years after its construction, this housing complex at Buchheimer Weg in Cologne has been refurbished. The complex is one of hundreds of similar programmes that sprang up in almost every German town after the Second World War to house a booming population. Designed by architects and planners ASTOC, with surveying from SEAD Geoinformationen, the refurbishment of Buchheimer Weg is seen as a model for retaining and rejuvenating existing cost-effective structures for use by low-income groups in other cities.

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The Asia headquarters of the Development Bank of Singapore was recently opened ahead of schedule with help from Sweett Group’s Asia Pacific team. Located in Tower 3, Marina Bay Financial Centre, Sweett Group provided project management services throughout the 18-floor fit-out, as well as managing the fit-out of trading floors, a retail banking branch, a 300-seat auditorium and a Channel News Asia TV studio. ‘We have applied for the local BCA (Building and Construction Authority) Green Mark award for the project, and targeting Green Mark Gold for energy and water efficiency,’ said Shailen Talsania MRICS, senior project manager at Sweett Group.

(RICS Global Real Estate Weekly)

Japan A reduction in public investment has led to a steady decline in housing starts




Order from

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(RICS Global Real Estate Weekly)

Singapore Capital inflows induced by QE3 may spark a resurgence in transaction levels



MARKET OVERVIEW Despite cooling measures introduced over the past three years, house prices have continued to rise in Hong Kong, nearly doubling since early 2009, according to Knight Frank’s Asia Pacific Residential Review. House prices in Beijing and Shanghai have also risen recently – by 12.82% since mid 2012. Looking at 2013, Nicholas Holt, research director, Asia Pacific at Knight Frank, said: ‘We’re more bullish about markets with solid fundamentals and little or no cooling measures. Jakarta and Bangkok, notably, are two markets that are well positioned to benefit from strong economic growth.’


The percentage global wheat production is expected to fall in 2012 (FAO)


PLATINUM STANDARD Hysan Place has become the first LEED Platinum pre-certified building in Hong Kong. Designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox and developed by the Hysan Development Company, the US Green Building Council (USGBC) pre-approved the design team’s plans for the mixed-use retail and office tower, and if the building is built according to spec, it will achieve Platinum certification upon completion. The HK$1.5bn (US$193m) 36-storey tower features sky gardens, a natural ventilation system and a host of other energyefficient strategies. The first office tenant is the international accounting firm KPMG, which has signed a nine-year lease for floors 20 to 25.


Incorporating new information on BIM, integrated practice, and sustainable design, plus how designers can use the latest technological tools. 19148 // £57.50

The number of 100,000m2+ shopping centres opened between Q2 2011 and Q2 2012 in 11 major cities in China (Knight Frank)

The 11th edition is fully up to date with latest guidelines, statutes and case law, including the implications of the Localism Act. 19315 // £44.99

Providing costs for highway works, and general and civil engineering works, plus a full breakdown of labour, plant and material elements. 19232 // £155

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Trophy win

Simon Rubinsohn RICS Chief Economist


fter the shock waves that have rocked the global economy over the past few years, a heightened level of economic insecurity is inevitable, forcing governments and central banks to take further measures to provide some level of reassurance to households. In the past month, this has included another round of intervention from the Bank of Japan, as well as a huge fiscal stimulus from the Chinese government. But the most dramatic announcement, arguably, has come from the Federal Reserve (Fed), which effectively committed itself to taking on responsibility for reducing economic insecurity in the US. The press release following the latest Fed meeting stated, ‘If the outlook for the labour market does not improve substantially, the Committee will continue its purchases of agency mortgage-backed securities (and) undertake additional asset purchases’. Although the US monetary authority does have a dual mandate – unlike most other central banks, which tend to have a singleminded focus on inflation – rarely has any Fed

chairman been quite so explicit in following this more broadly based approach to the letter. Not everyone, it must be acknowledged, is comfortable with the world’s most powerful central bank taking such an activist approach to managing monetary policy. One fear is that this apparently endless commitment will be a breeding ground for inflation, sparking a new and more pernicious round of economic upheaval. If this is right, the policy will ultimately fall well short of its objectives. The initial reaction of the US bond market certainly provides grounds for concern, with investors falling over themselves to get hold of inflation-protected debt issued in the wake of the Fed decision. Other traditional inflation hedges are also likely to strengthen over the coming months, including prime real estate and gold. Despite this, my judgement is that Ben Bernanke made the right call. Of course, the Fed’s strategy carries risks and markets are right to pay attention to them. But I can’t help believing that the threat posed by the current wave of economic insecurity, and the resulting deficiency in demand, is far greater.


BIO LEADER Davis Langdon has been appointed project manager on Phase 1a of Bio Istanbul, a US$2.2bn (£1.4bn) plan to build Turkey’s first biomedical science park, advanced children’s hospital and sustainable residential community. The project, which will accommodate 15,000 residents and 20,000 working commuters when completed, aims to be the first large-scale community in Turkey that’s built to meet LEED and BREEAM sustainability standards.



FEASIBILITY DEMAND Demand for feasibility studies has risen in the United Arab Emirates, according to Cluttons. The firm has noted a pick-up in due diligence and feasibility activity undertaken by investors and developers in projects currently on hold or that were previously cancelled. ‘Clients are requesting everything from the feasibility of refurbishing a residential apartment building, to looking at substantially expanding or refurbishing an existing shopping mall,’ said Jonathan Fothergill, director of UAE valuations at Cluttons.

Gardiner & Theobald has been appointed as the lead cost consultant for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, where around £3.1bn is to be spent on building new stadiums and infrastructure for the tournament. The firm will work on several stadiums, as well as precincts, training camps and ancillary facilities.

Sky garages

A high-rise development in Singapore is thought to be the first in the world to offer apartments with ‘en-suite sky garages’. After using a biometric scanner to recognise the owner, an elevator transports the resident’s car into their living room. The Hamilton Scotts luxury building’s four-car penthouse suites sell for around US$24m (£15m).

Green data

The Building and Construction Authority and the Infocomm Development Authority have jointly developed a new Green Mark for data centres in Singapore. The country’s commercial data centre space is projected to increase by 50% from 2010 to 2015, and the scheme will assess data centres based on five key sustainability criteria.

Home help

Savills has launched an online Asia Pacific Residential search engine tool, which is available in five Asian languages. ‘The platform has a full search capability and is loaded with residential market research,’ said Chris Marriott, CEO of Savills South East Asia. Visit

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rganised by RICS Hong Kong, the annual RICS Hong Kong Awards aims to recognise the contributions and outstanding performances of agencies, teams and individuals across the industry, and to celebrate the talents and team spirit of surveyors, property developers, cost consultants, project managers and planners, to name just a few. Ahead of the ceremony, Modus Asia previews some of the winning firms and individuals involved, as well as the nominations for this prestigious industry prize. These annual awards stand alongside the‘must have’awards that RICS has established elsewhere in the world. They recognise the contribution and outstanding performance of property agencies, teams and individuals in the industry. With more than 50 entries received for the 12 categories, this year looks to be fiercely contested. Over the following pages, we highlight the teams and individuals that have made the judges’ shortlist. ROSS CRIDDLE FRICS Chairman of the RICS Hong Kong Awards 2013 organising committee




The International Commerce Centre is a 118-storey commercial skyscraper in West Kowloon. Running the fourth-tallest building in the world requires a disciplined operation. Innovation and efficiency are key, but it’s communication that sets this team apart. As well as frequent meetings with tenants, 400 digital notices, six newsletters and three environmental guidebooks were issued in 2012. Each tenant has a one-point contact for assistance and trained staff man a 24/7 helpdesk. Having maintained a zero crime rate, and achieved ISO 50001 energy management certification, the team now share their management and energy-saving experience with other organisations.


With a strong focus on expertise and professionalism, the JLL team differentiates itself from the other players. For example, at LHT Tower in Central, a 28-storey mixed office and retail space, the service team provided advice on the building’s bespoke services system design, and front-line staff now ensure utmost quality. The team manages more than 300 properties for leading developers and landlords – including 51 new appointments in 2012 – covering a total area of around 5.3m m2.

ISS EASTPOINT PROPERTY MANAGEMENT Providing property and facility services for companies in the Hong Kong Science Park, the ISS EastPoint team prides itself on attention to detail, customer service and efforts to protect the environment. This has included introducing energy-saving measures, such as suspending certain systems and lifts during non-peak hours, and installing electric vehicle charging stations. The team also helps tenants to test their own eco-products via a collaborative network.

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Committed to providing affordable and high-quality living environments for a variety of tenants, the HKHA has continued to adjust its social strategy in light of Hong Kong’s growing elderly population and to ensure people with disabilities are unhindered by their environment. Since 2010, HKHA has been rolling out a HK$330m retrofitting programme to improve barrierfree access at most of their existing properties. To date, the works have been carried out at around 240 premises totalling around 1,100 buildings – most of which completed within a strict two-year timeframe.




It was a year of ‘firsts’ for C&W’s Hong Kong project management team. As well as concluding around 15,700m2 of reinstatement and fit-out work up to the end of November, the team provided fit-out services for Net-A-Porter’s first distribution and packaging facility in Hong Kong. The 12,700m2 project was particularly complex, with a great many consultants, contractors and vendors involved. Just as importantly, the team also served as the client’s representative to liaise, negotiate and gain approvals from the landlord.

With its revenue increasing fivefold in the past three years, CBRE’s project management team has become one of the strongest service providers in the corporate fit-out industry. Comprising architects, engineers, building services and legal professionals, the team provides a full spectrum of services covering all aspects of a project from inception through to close-out. In 2012, the team was appointed for 38 fit-out/restacking projects, including work for Manchester United, ANZ bank and Starbucks. They offer a one-stop seamless service, helped by a professional and can-do attitude, and by CBRE’s Project Insight, an internet-based system that facilitates internal and external collaboration.



In order to tackle high vacancy rates in Nam Shan car park and generate revenue, HKHA converted the top four floors of the multistorey into an educational centre. This provided a much-needed expansion to the main City University of Hong Kong campus, as well as increasing business at the nearby shopping centre and generating rental income for HKHA. During construction, the project team devised innovative designs and construction methods to minimise disturbance to residents, and to overcome various site constraints within the tight timescale. Completed within budget in just 15 months, the conversion project fully demonstrated HKHA’s core values: caring, customerfocused, creative and committed.



Following its success as the Best Project Team at last year’s awards, the RLB team has continued to strive for excellence in delivering a successful Hong Kong Science Park Phase 3 project. A key feature has been the implementation of the Jointly Selected SubContractor (JSSC) procurement strategy, which was developed to ensure integration and value in the procurement of systems that are critical to the integration of Phase 3 within the wider Science Park.

Awards preview// BEST DEAL OF THE YEAR


In March 2012, the Colliers team was instructed to locate a high-specification building in the saturated central business district for the Agricultural Bank of China (ABC). The timeframe to purchase: immediately. Sensing the magnitude of the appointment, the team assembled their best in-house experts and within the day the purchaser had viewed a potential property. With a strategic location and impressive architecture, 50 Connaught Road fitted the bill but, although the owners wanted to sell, the market conditions presented another challenge: to establish a fair price point. With Colliers representing the landlord and purchaser, the team was able to ensure a satisfactory outcome for both sides and concluded the sale within just eight weeks.


As a result of their recent merger, leading law firm King & Wood Mallesons were occupying two separate sites in Central, which had vastly differing lease expiry dates. And so, in August 2012, they set CBRE a near-impossible challenge: to identify, secure and fit-out a suitable new space in an overcrowded market before one of the leases expired in July 2013. In an unprecedented and hugely challenging four-firm move, which involved three early surrenders and four new lettings, CBRE completed the assignment within just four months. The firm’s teamwork, innovation and professionalism were crucial, and although the transaction was not a headline grabber, the sheer complexity of the deal and the fragility of the different components involved made it stand apart.


After 30 years in Hong Kong and Asia, the Generali Group needed a new home. With its desirable location, 8 Queen’s Road East (8QRE) was chosen, but major refurbishment work was taking place that wouldn’t complete until six months after Generali’s current lease expired. Also, to obtain the exclusive naming and signage rights required, Generali had to lease the whole building – three times as much space as they currently had. The team secured a rare short-term lease renewal and, in May 2012, successfully agreed the letting for 8QRE, including naming and signage rights, and achieving real estate cost savings. They also found sub-tenants to fill half the surplus space, with the rest absorbed by Generali’s proposed expansion.

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Located in Kowloon Bay, ZCB is the first zero-carbon building developed by the Construction Industry Council in collaboration with the Hong Kong government to help combat greenhouse gas emissions and carbon intensity. The building showcases ecobuilding design and 80 different green technologies in the unique context of Hong Kong’s high temperature and high humidity environment. It also produces on-site renewable energy via photovoltaic panels and biodiesel, exporting surplus energy to the local grid to offset the embodied energy of the building materials and construction process. The technologies will be trialled and evaluated, and the findings shared with the building industry and with the public to promote sustainable construction and living.


In early 2012, the Housing Authority’s Quantity Surveying Section launched a research study entitled ‘5D BIM’ to discover how building information modelling (BIM) could be used for construction project cash-flow simulation and interim payment process. This involves integrating data from BIM models with the construction schedule and contract pricing – the fourth and fifth dimensions. The team are still working through various challenges, and will continue to develop BIM-based automated quantity takeoff to improve the accuracy of the software. It’s hoped that, in future, this innovative approach can be adapted for other QS functions.


In 2005, the Hong Kong Housing Authority launched the Comprehensive Structural Investigation programme to systematically investigate the condition of aged buildings, and to develop sustainable solutions to prolong their life for at least 15 years. The innovative repair/improvement solutions underwent comprehensive research, testing, site trials, monitoring and consultations with residents. To date, 13 aged estates have been preserved, avoiding mass redevelopment and saving money, time and manpower. The Housing Authority also share their research within the industry.


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At just 29, Reeves recently celebrated his promotion to director of investment services, having concluded more than HK$9.3bn worth of investment transactions. He is regularly complimented on his professionalism and detailed follow-through.

Described as a hardworking and gifted professional, Michelle began working in the retail sector in the US before she joined JLL in 2010. She was promoted to assistant manager in 2012 and provides services to local and international retailers.

Before joining Knight Frank in 2008, Connie was awarded a PhD from the University of Hong Kong at just 25. She has since become chartered and worked in several positions within the firm. Connie was promoted to associate director in 2012.




As one of Hong Kong’s most respected residential teams, Knight Frank completed a successful mix of residential lease and sale transactions, residential renewals and serviced apartment leasing transactions during 2012. The firm’s specially designed Relocation and Home Search portal continues to be instrumental in relocation projects for major corporations, while the expansion of its international project marketing department means it now covers London, New York, Vancouver, Bangkok, Melbourne, Perth, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and the Bahamas. Supporting a wide range of corporate social responsibility activities, the team took part in Earth Hour, charity walks and visits to the Po Leung Kuk Orphanage.



2012 saw a stellar performance from the specialist team of 11, which transacted more than 55,700m2 of property. But what really set them apart was their performance in the government-backed ‘Domain’ project in Yau Tong. The Hong Kong Housing Authority recruited CBRE, a private agency, to handle all retail leasing – a first for a newly built shopping centre. The team adopted a non-traditional marketing strategy and achieved excellent feedback from shoppers, retailers and the government, which cited the tenant mix and overall shopping environment as innovatively different from traditional shopping centres.


C&W’s Hong Kong retail agency team completed a number of highprofile lease acquisitions during 2012, including the 8,700m2 Jumpin’ Gym at Cotai Central and the 2,400m2 H&M at Metro City. Made up of five brokers, who each have an average of 15 years’ retail market experience, the team shares daily market intelligence and transactional information to provide a one-stop shop to their clients. This means being on hand from the moment of first contact right through to completion – a quality of service and trust that has been key to their adoption of and adherence to the RICS Real Estate Agency Code.


Hong Kong continues to be an ideal springboard for international luxury brands to enter the Chinese market, and in 2012 Jones Lang LaSalle’s retail team was at the forefront of assisting big name clients with their leasing needs. The team transacted in excess of 30,600m2 of retail space across the year, including helping Breitling’s first step into Hong Kong at Causeway Bay – a flagship store of more than 1,000m2 over five floors. Another superb achievement was securing a three-storey, 750m2 space at Silvercord on Canton Road to house Longchamp’s flagship store, which was one of the biggest retail brokerage deals in recent years.

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During 2012, Cushman & Wakefield’s industrial agency team concluded more than 90,000m2 of industrial, warehouse and data centre premises transactions, but one project really stood out – the search for a suitable warehouse for Net-A-Porter, the rapidly expanding online shopping platform for luxury products and accessories. The requirements for their first distribution and packaging centre in Asia included a high ceiling height and a large amount of power for the packing departments. The team eventually identified a space in the sustainably built Goodman Interlink development in Tsing Yi, which the client was particularly satisfied with due to the high level of privacy the building offered.


CBRE’s Industrial & Logistics Services division has continued to lead from the front after a superb year – the team achieved a 70% revenue increase over 2011, covering the full spectrum of industrial requirements for clients with a focus on warehouse leasing. The team handled more than 46,400m2 of new lettings, taking around 30% market share of institutional grade leasing activity in the market. They also provided innovative solutions to help overcome a shortage of low-cost industrial land for clients such as Scania.



CBRE’s commitment to the Hong Kong community is demonstrated through multiple environmental, charitable and philanthropic endeavours. In 2010, CBRE were the first firm in the industry to achieve carbon neutrality and, in 2012, the Hong Kong office received a Green Building Award from the Hong Kong Green Building

Council, which the firm supports. CBRE also launched the Real Green Research Challenge in 2012 – a four-year US$1m commitment to fund sustainability research. CBRE Cares, the company’s charitable arm, supports a number of organisations – with a focus on active involvement over purely financial contributions.



KWH/WTSH were the first public hospitals to attain ISO 14001 energy management certification in recognition of various environmental campaigns – for example, Energy Saving Day 2012, when a reduction of 5,000kW of electricity consumption was recorded. The hospitals integrate environmental, safety and social concerns into their daily operations and, in the continued pursuit of sustainable development, a food waste decomposer was recently installed. In 2012, KWH/WTSH were awarded the Asian Hospital Management Award for their various staff training programmes, and events are frequently held to boost staff morale and promote a good work-life balance. At Kwong Wah Hospital, the Chinese medicine general outpatient clinic also provides free bone-setting and herbalist services for the public.


Launched in 2011, Project WeCan is one of Wheelock Properties’ signature programmes. With HK$150m funding, the project provides activities and experiences for around 10,000 students at Ng Yuk Secondary School, and awards scholarships and incentives for outstanding performances in academia, music and sports. Project WeCan is a long-term programme and commitment that benefits the volunteers as well as the students. As of December 2012, more than 60% of the staff had participated in voluntary activities, with 745 cumulative volunteer services hours recorded. The firm is also involved in various environmental initiatives.

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With 45 dedicated office professionals, the CBRE team pride themselves on providing creative and personalised solutions for clients, and defying difficulties in the economy to grow their business. One example is the

recent consolidation of King & Wood Mallesons, where the team cooperated with the firm, Hongkong Land and CBRE’s project management team to ‘play mah-jong with space’ as they describe it, within the Landmark building to make room for the newly merged firm.


It was a record year for the C&W office agency team – by the end of 2012 around 140,000m2 office transactions were finalised, with a remarkable average of more than 10,700m2 transacted per broker. This included prestigious lease renewal projects, such as IBM’s headquarters at the PCCW Tower and a new lease for Generali at 8 Queen’s Road East – the client’s first headquarters in Hong Kong.



Who was Hong Kong’s most outstanding property personality of 2012? Selected exclusively by the jury panel, this award category has no nominations, as the winner will be announced at the RICS Hong Kong Awards ceremony. The winning firms and individuals in all 12 categories will be presented with their awards at the second RICS Hong Kong Annual Dinner, which will be held on Thursday 14 March at the JW Marriott Hotel, Admiralty, Hong Kong. Find out more at


Difficult market conditions tested the JLL office leasing team in 2012, but by December, they had concluded 247 transactions across Hong Kong and Kowloon, totalling more than 200,000m2 in office space. The team also won the role as the sole leasing agency for the prestigious CCB Tower for Diamond String Limited. They also achieved an outstanding average score of 4.89 out of 5 for all client surveys.



Richard Price CEO, Asia Pacific, CBRE Global Investors (chairman of jury)

Jeremy Stewardson chief executive, ANREV

Au Choi Kai, JP director of buildings, HKSAR Government

KK Wong managing director, Zeppelin Property Development Consultants

Maureen Fung Sau Yim general manager, leasing, Sun Hung Kai Properties Group

Jason Ho director, North Asia, RICS

KK Fung managing director, Greater China, Jones Lang LaSalle

Anita Liu professor, the University of Hong Kong

John Saunders chief operating officer, Asia, MGPA (Asia)

Brad Searchfield global head of corporate real estate, Manulife Financial


There are a total of 12 awards to be presented at the RICS Hong Kong Annual Dinner on 14 March at the JW Marriot Hotel, Admiralty, Hong Kong. The award categories are:

AGENCY AWARDS Office Agency Team of the Year Retail Agency Team of the Year Industrial Agency Team of the Year Residential Agency Team of the Year Best Project Team of the Year Project Management Team of the Year Property Management Team of the Year Best Deal of the Year Innovation of the Year Contribution to the Community Team of the Year

INDIVIDUAL AWARDS Young Achiever of the Year (under 35 years old) Property Person of the Year


John Pattar managing director – real estate fund, CLSA Capital Partners (HK)

Craig Shute senior managing director, Hong Kong, Macau & Taiwan, CBRE

Nicholas Sallnow-Smith chairman, the Link Management

Find out more about the winning property firms at from 14 March or in the next issue of Modus Asia. For more information on how to enter the RICS Hong Kong Awards 2014, visit

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A world of value in every square. To deliver exceptional value, we look at your real estate needs from every angle. Combining in-depth local knowledge with far-reaching global insights our square meter. Tel +852 2846 5000 â–Ş

A world of value in every square. To deliver exceptional value, we look at your real estate needs from every angle. Combining in-depth local knowledge with far-reaching global insights our square meter. Tel +852 2846 5000 â–Ş


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1o minutes with…

ICHIRO MAKIJIMA Executive managing director, Association for Real Estate Securitization Interview by Kit Gillet Photograph by Martin Holtkamp

I feel it’s important that RICS Japan was recently established as an incorporated body, because corporations dominate Japanese society. As a body for the public benefit, it’s possible for RICS Japan to have corporate members in the future, and a corporate membership will lower the barriers for the employees to obtain individual RICS membership. However, although I think it was a sensible decision, I recognise that it will be a challenge for RICS to succeed in Japan because there are not many examples of successful foreign organisations here.

After graduating from the University of Tokyo in 1974, I joined real estate developer Mitsui Fudosan where I was involved in corporate planning, housing development, new business development and urban redevelopment. I’ve been at the Association for Real Estate Securitization (ARES) for 12 years and now hope to be something of a mentor to young business people in the real estate industry. I feel that I can assist young people by using my extensive personal network and experience: when I was in my 30s, I was a manager in charge of new business development and urban redevelopment, and the projects required an enormous amount of investment – but only a few people could do the project management. Time management is a critical issue for project management and, to achieve progress, everyone in the project must take initiative in their work. After many trials, I developed my own management style, which requires staff to make decisions at their discretion. Still today, I always say to my staff: ‘Be your own leader.’

This is important because ARES functions as a human network, with around 300 member companies and their employees. Related politicians, government officials, academics, media and investors are also key members of our network, and it’s essential to build good relationships with these key people to conduct our activities properly and smoothly. Japan’s real estate prices plunged when the bubble economy burst in 1992. With hindsight, I think Japan should have created a system for real estate securitisation right after that period, but it wasn’t until 2000 that the necessary laws were legislated, such as the Special Purpose Company Act and REIT (real estate investment trust) Act. But after a long effort, Japan’s real estate securitisation market has grown to around 33tn yen (US$393bn), and real estate is becoming a common investment product. The development of the real estate investment market is also essential for developing Japan’s large cities. I would say that deregulation and more diversified capital funding are essential for the further growth of the J-REIT (Japanese Real Estate Investment Trust) market. In particular, enabling J-REITs to invest in overseas properties, and the approval of rights offering and purchasing own investment units, are urgent issues to be dealt with. The best opportunity right now is to take advantage of the strong yen, to buy overseas properties and to carry out mergers and acquisitions to buy up foreign real estate management companies.

Ichiro Makijima FRICS works in Tokyo, Japan and was honoured to be awarded RICS Fellowship in April 2012

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We deliver advice to owners and occupiers of real estate around the world

253 offices 60 countries 14,000 employees

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Law advice//

The impact of

SUSPENDING CONSTRUCTION By professional contracts specialist Eugenie Lip

While any glimpse on the horizon of signs of recovery is welcome, lingering concerns and volatility in the global markets continue to dampen demand in the property market. As a temporary measure to review liquidity and financial arrangements, some employers are now exploring the possibility of suspending the whole or portions of their projects, or certain activities relating to the project. CONTRACTUAL REGIME UNDER FIDIC Under sub-clause 8.8 of the FIDIC Conditions of Contract for Construction (published by the International Federation of Consulting Engineers), the engineer can issue instructions for the progress of all or part of the works to be suspended. The contractor is entitled to claim an extension of the time for completion for any delay and/ or cost incurred, provided it was not attributed to making good the consequences of faulty design, workmanship or materials of the contractor, or his failure to protect or secure the works. The period of suspension is capped at 84 days and if it continues for longer than this, the contractor may request permission from the engineer to proceed. If permission is not granted within 28 days, the affected part should be treated as an omission under clause 13. Where the suspension affects the whole of the works, after the 28-day period, the contractor may give a notice of termination under sub-clause 16.2 with the consequential cost, loss and damage entitlements (including loss of profit) payable to the contractor. After a suspension order, it is imperative for the contractor and employer (with their professional team) to agree on actions to be followed up by the respective parties. Some key points for consideration are:

Illustration by Borja Bonaque


FOR THE CONTRACTOR: Discontinue further work and ensure that incomplete portions of the works are properly protected and in a safe condition to prevent accidents and collapse Stop issuing purchase orders for materials and equipment and/or subcontracts and supply contracts, and withdraw orders and subcontracts that have been placed but not acted upon or fulfilled Consider alternative use for materials and equipment already ordered, such as reselling to another buyer

Store materials and equipment in a local warehouse rather than storing them overseas Secure the site with additional hoardings and deploy 24-hour security personnel to prevent theft, vandalism and entry of unauthorised people to the site Protect temporary buildings, stores, unfixed goods and materials, and partially completed portions of the works until work resumes. FOR THE EMPLOYER: Notify the insurer and arrange for additional cover (if required) for the temporary buildings, plant, tools and construction equipment left on the site, which are normally excluded from the contractors’ all-risks policy For evidential purposes (especially for prolonged suspension), take inventories of the materials, goods and plant, and also on the condition and extent of the completed work. Photographic records and detailed notes should be taken to supplement the inventory records Carry out a defects survey of the completed work to record any patent defects requiring rectification when work resumes Monitor the expiry date of the performance security provided by the contractor and consider whether a fresh performance security or an extension is required when work resumes. Any suspension of work will almost certainly translate into additional costs. It would, therefore, be prudent for the employer to weigh up the financial implications of the available options. Suspension is a serious step, and an employer must think carefully of the consequences – both contractual and financial – before making that critical decision. EUGENIE LIP FRICS is a director with Davis Langdon KPK, an AECOM company, and heads the Contracts Support Group.

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assume the centre could be hit by a plane or damaged from flooding, so it’s our job to find locations with the least amount of risk. And this can be pretty tough in concentrated urban environments, such as southeast England, where there are airports, rivers and railway lines all around – even fireworks factories are factored in.’ With the growth of IT and telecommunication services, social media use, and a shift to working and collaborating in an online ‘virtual’ world, data storage requirements are growing. The number of large-scale data centres in the US increased five times from 1997 to 2007, while the UK boasts some 7.6m m2 of data-centre space according to research by DatacenterDynamics, which expects £2.19bn to be invested in UK data centres this year. There’s no rule of thumb for site-finding, explains Jay. Mostly

it’s about compromise. For example, some clients will compromise and go nearer to an airport, if that means being closer to a stronger power supply. ‘However, one thing most will not compromise on is flood risk, as flood damage is an almost unacceptable risk,’ he says. Strong power sources and an established fibre optic cable network are also vitally important. Cushman & Wakefield’s Data Centre Risk Index 2012 lists the US, the UK, Germany, Iceland and Canada as the top five countries in which to locate a large data centre. However, emerging data centre markets, such as Thailand and Malaysia, are on the rise and in the top 20. As society’s need for more data storage and processing grows, it’s presenting rising opportunities for property professionals. The worldwide data centre construction market is already worth US$50bn (£31bn) annually, a figure set to

Images Google


e may not realise it, but millions of us are using data centres every day. At home, in the office, or out and about with a smartphone, we’re becoming ever more reliant on the highly specialised buildings that store and process all our online data – and which help keep the world’s economy functioning. But figuring out where to build these valuable properties in the first place can be a complicated affair. ‘Data centre clients are hugely risk-averse,’ says Andrew Jay, executive director for data centres at CBRE London. He heads a team of chartered surveyors at, perhaps, the world’s largest data centre property advisory service. ‘Location challenges are power supply, cable access, planning and risk. If a centre is near an airport or a river, clients will

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Data centres //

grow to US$78bn (£49bn) by 2020. Meanwhile, total global investment in data centres has grown from around US$86bn (£54bn) in 2011, to US$105bn (£66bn) in 2012 – a rise of 22%. ‘It’s easy to see why the level of investment in data centres is growing,’ says David Quincey MRICS. ‘Service providers, such as banks, are driving customers to use online services to reduce their staff costs. Businesses are now expected to have videoconferencing facilities. International videophone calls are being made via Skype, and smartphones with mobile internet, music and video streaming are becoming the norm.’ Quincey is a chartered quantity surveyor specialising in mechanical and electrical (M&E) and process systems at Aquenta Consulting in Australia. He advises clients in the data centre market with >>

:SUPER SERVERS GOOGLE’S DATA CENTRES How many of us have our internet browser homepage set to Google? The answer is probably in the hundreds of millions. Still only 14 years old, the web’s most dominant company has one of the world’s most frequented websites, processing more than a billion search requests every day. Of course, Google is now much more than a search provider – it also hosts and processes interactive online maps, books, YouTube videos, emails, blogs and cloud computing networks, such as its Docs service. To cope with this exponentially growing amount of data, the company runs more than a million servers across eight major data centres (pictured). Located mainly in the US, the buildings range from custom-made ‘server farms’ in Iowa to a former paper mill in Finland, which uses a seawater cooling system. Meanwhile, new data centres are being constructed in Chile, Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan. Inside, Google’s employees rely on colour codes to locate different servers and to distinguish cool water pipes (blue) from warm (red) ones, and at the vast data centre in Douglas County, Georgia, the firm even has its own branded bicycles for engineers to move around on. Despite criticism for the amount of electricity its data centres consume, Google insists that renewable energy powers more than 30% of its operations, and is investing millions of dollars in renewable energy projects. Take a virtual tour of Google’s data centres at

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cost, schedule and risk management services. ‘The biggest challenge a surveyor faces at the construction stage is not to price what is shown on the drawings, but to recognise and allow for what’s not shown,’ he says. ‘For example, a 24-hour, seven-day continuous Integrated Services Test during commissioning is a common project requirement, but this is often not specified in the documentation.’ Despite being highly specialised buildings, data centres require a whole range of professional services from site acquisition to construction, leasing and investment to facilities management. Most surveyors seem to end up working in the data centre sector by accident, simply because there are currently only a few property firms that have dedicated data centre teams. ‘But once you’re in the sector, it’s interesting, internationally focused, and an ideal environment for multidisciplined individuals who understand investment, agency and M&E issues,’ says Keith Inglis MRICS, a partner at Cushman & Wakefield’s data centre advisory group. ‘We’re definitely looking to attract these kinds of people – when someone asks me about getting involved in data centres, I’m always pretty excited to tell them about it.’ Andrew Jay is also excited about the burgeoning data centre market. He sees surveyors working with data centres right across the board. ‘They could be advising on strategy, how to fund them, whether to self-build or outsource, or on total cost ownership,’ he says. ‘Then there is site-finding and acquisition – at either a newbuild site or a co-location facility – and further on, specialist M&E designers and consultants and project managers are needed for the build. Data centre clients rely on previous expertise and high standards, which are attributes fundamental to chartered professionals.’ Valuers are also essential to the process. But as a unique property type, with a relatively short history, many valuers will have had only limited experience with data centres.

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Data centres //

‘Data centre clients rely on previous expertise and high standards – attributes fundamental to chartered professionals’ In light of this, RICS launched a Valuation of data centres guidance note last year to help valuers who are instructed to provide market value, or market rent in this relatively new market. Jay says their biggest clients are financial services, internet service providers, and telecommunications and IT companies. But what’s really expanded the market is cloud computing – the shift to hosting services, data and collaboration systems online. ‘Of course, anything that goes into the cloud still has to sit somewhere, so rather than having

a smaller data centre on a company premises, you’re redistributing it elsewhere,’ he explains. Many smaller companies are now providing cloud-computing services by offering co-location facilities – a type of secure data centre where networking equipment space and bandwidth are leased to retail customers. Jay believes this is very cost effective for the client, and a recent DatacenterDynamics report shows a rise in data centre outsourcing and co-location investment from US$16bn (£10bn) in 2011, to US$21bn (£13bn) in 2012.

Ultimately, the defining challenge for data centres is power supply – especially as most of the energy needed still comes from burning fossil fuels. What’s more, servercooling equipment accounts for a significant portion of energy consumption. One way the UK has the potential to lead the market over the next 10 years, says Jay, is to ensure that more data centres use sustainable power sources. ‘Powering data centres via green energy sources, and making them more energy efficient, is so important. We’ve seen big changes in the past four years, and it makes sense – if you use sustainable power and cooling systems then not only are costs lowered, but carbon emissions, too.’ To download the RICS Valuation of data centres guidance note, visit


Last year, a Greenpeace report found that more than half of the electricity supplying Facebook’s data centres was generated from coal-fired power stations. The social network giant is now making a step change in its energy policy with the construction of its first data centre outside of the US. Engineering consultancy Cundall is set to finish the second phase of the £469m project in Luleå next year. ‘The site was chosen for its availability of cheaper green electricity and cold climate, which supports “free cooling” systems,’ says Malcolm Howe, a critical systems partner at Cundall. Architect Gensler’s design will see three 30,000m2 server buildings supplied by 120MW of energy from local hydropower sources and cooled using a system powered by evaporating water.


Featuring triple-skinned walls, bomb-proof glass, biometric entry systems and a security team of former special forces guards, Next Generation Data (NGD) Europe’s £200m investment in the UK’s largest and greenest data centre should put many risk-aware clients’ minds at ease. Located just outside of Newport, the 75,000m2 centre has enough space for 19,000 server racks for use by IT and telecommunications companies, such as BT and Logica, who have signed up as the first tenants with combined contracts of around £20m. ‘Unlike most data centres,our BREEAM and ISO 14001 accredited facility is powered by 100% renewable sources, with a customised energy management and fresh-air cooling system,’ says Nick Razey, CEO of NGD.


Indian companies are at the forefront of global IT services and telecommunications, and none more so than Tulip Telecom, which has a data connectivity network spanning more than 2,000 locations globally. The telecoms giant teamed up with IBM to build Asia’s largest, and the world’s third largest, eco-friendly data centre – an 84,000m2 facility with the capacity to house 12,000 racks, and backed up by 100MW of power. As a large hosted data centre, Tulip Data City is multi-tenanted, which the corporation believes will make it far more energy efficient than smaller facilities. Designed by IBM, the data centre cost around US$200m (£125m), and is built to meet LEED Gold certification.

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uilding information modelling (BIM) users: prepare for invasion. Your stark – if colourful – worlds are about to be flooded with hundreds of thousands of tiny people swarming out of pedestrian modelling software and into the corridors, fire escapes and lifts of building information models. This is the next planned step in the fastdeveloping field of people movement analysis, an engineering discipline that uses real-world data and computer simulations to predict how visitors to a building or precinct will move through that space. It originally developed from fire safety engineering, as a tool for testing evacuation strategies in the later design stages to check that projects, such as airports, railways and stadiums, will function safely and efficiently. But it’s increasingly being used to enhance customer experience in shopping centres, improve circulation in schools and high-rise towers, and to even increase productivity in offices. As it moves into the design mainstream, software developers are investigating how to integrate their dynamic models with the fixed elements of a building within BIM.


Pedestrian modelling is an important part of stadium design. Buro Happold carried out people movement analysis as part of Lord’s cricket ground masterplanning

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Pedestrian flow//

Their users – sometimes no more than dots, sometimes an army of 3D automatons – will be able to reveal potential conflicts between the structural and mechanical systems and escape routes or crowd dynamics. The importance of people movement analysis to safety and security is well established, and it also plays a role in counterterrorism. The Home Office highlighted that building and space design should minimise vulnerability to attack in its ‘Crowded Places’ guidance in January. ‘Crowded places have always been targets for terrorists,’ says Chris Phillips, former head of the National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO) and founder of security consultancy International Protect and Prepare Security Office. ‘People movement strategy is a big part of security, especially where you’ve got crowds. In queues, for example, people are vulnerable to terrorist attack and crime, so one of the biggest issues in a stadium or an airport is how to move people through security quickly.’ But people movement specialists argue that how visitors move through any space is a critical element of its operations, and that the earlier it’s considered the better. Now a shift is taking place, from designing buildings for the worst-case scenario to optimising how they run every day. ‘Places and buildings are built for people, you can’t lose that focus,’says Tom Pestell, senior engineer in WSP’s pedestrian modelling team. ‘Understanding what people need right at the start of the process can help produce a better building. People-flow modelling can steer assumptions

‘In queues, people are vulnerable to terrorist attack and crime, so one of the biggest issues is how to move people through security quickly’

The traces setting in Buro Happold’s SMART Move software shows the most common likely routes and desire lines through a building design

and back them up with tangible, quantitative evidence of operational performance levels or capacity. It’s also qualitative, where we look at the architect’s vision and make sure that the masterplan is going to work, above and beyond health and safety design codes.’ The team recently worked on the redevelopment of London Bridge train station in the UK, to show that lining a new entrance corridor with retail space would improve rather than hinder circulation, justifying an important commercial element of the scheme. Pestell’s colleague Paul Speirs, technical director at WSP, says that their work also reveals possible cost savings.‘We’re maximising the efficiency of the design. With security gates, for example, we can show that you might not need five or six, you might only need two.’ As people movement becomes more widely used, designers and clients are seeking to know more about how buildings will work, says Paul Clifford, principal pedestrian modeller at Mott Macdonald. >>

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‘One area that’s particularly important is the dynamic assessment of lift provision for those with restricted mobility. We can also look at the efficiency of lift systems in underground stations and high-rise or busy buildings.’ Consultancy Space Syntax, meanwhile, has taken it to the next level to quantify interactions and knowledge exchange within buildings, such as offices and research facilities. This is crucial to productivity in a knowledge economy, argues managing director Tim Stonor: ‘We’ve learned that the degree to which people exchange information and find each other useful is related to the ease with which they can move around the building and meet each other. So organisations that have a labyrinthine office environment with cellular offices where people don’t see their colleagues for most of the day are less productive than those organisations where people can interact.’ Space Syntax carries out extensive analysis of workplaces to demonstrate how much interaction is taking place, where and how it happens, and how companies can maximise the information exchange on which their productivity is based.

By running simulations, pedestrian modelling teams can identify pinch points and queues within a design, with areas of greatest crowd density shown in red. Here, software is used to assess different room configurations within a school. Exploring and testing multiple design options at this stage can help eliminate undesirable and unsafe congestion

A rail station at an airport rendered by Mott Macdonald using its STEPS software to show how people will move through three-dimensional space



With large concentrations of users at critical times, it’s no surprise that sports grounds are a focus for people movement modellers and safety professionals. The leading safety guide for those involved in sports venues is the fifth edition of the Guide to Safety at Sports Grounds (the ‘Green Guide’), used at the Beijing 2008 Olympics, London 2012 Olympics, Brazil World Cup 2014 and the Rio Olympics 2016, and numerous stadiums built since its origins in 1973. To compliment this guide, RICS has developed specialised guidance specifically tailored to the needs of RICS professionals and local authority officers issuing safety certificates at sports grounds. Authored by Rick Riding of the Sports Ground Safety Authority, the guidance helps practitioners gain an understanding of the legislative framework by which reasonable levels of safety can be achieved. The guidance can be downloaded at


One of the selling points of people movement analysis is that it quantifies intangibles, such as comfort, user experience or human caprice, and displays the results in a clear and accessible way. Pedestrian modellers use an increasingly sophisticated range of computer simulations, including industry standard tools, such as LEGION and MassMotion, and bespoke software packages, such as Buro Happold’s SMART Move and Mott MacDonald’s STEPS. The comfort of individuals within spaces is quantified by measurement systems, such as the Fruin Level of Service, which shows crowd densities and movements using colour-coded categories. However, while simulations are the most tangible element, they are only the culmination of a great deal of information gathering and number crunching on paper, in spreadsheets and on the street. Space Syntax’s calculations of an office’s spatial connectivity begin with extensive interviews with staff members and detailed surveys of their interactions. And when consultant Movement Strategies was working on the Olympic Park, there was more than a year of hard graft before they even started building the models.‘You’ve got to know what questions you’re answering first,’ explains director Simon Ancliffe.

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Pedestrian Networking/ flow//

‘Simulation is very helpful but it’s timeconsuming and expensive, and if you put rubbish in, you’ll get rubbish out.’ It also remains as much an art as a science. Models can help – but you have to know how to use them, says Clifford. ‘No model can replace good design or the experience of a trained transport planner or skilled operator. Model users and auditors should always review and agree the assumptions made, which need to be appropriate to the building or transport interchange and derived from observations of existing behaviour.’ Open environments, such as high streets, are far more difficult to model than closed ones, such as stadiums, according to WSP’s Pestell. ‘In a stadium, you know where people are sitting, which entrance they will use, the route they will take through the building and the delays at various points, such as ticket gates or security screening. We can model these areas with a great degree of accuracy and we can compare it with what happens in real life.’With an open environment, it’s a different story. ‘You don’t know where people are coming from or going to, or how long they are going to pause in front of shops. Take London’s South Bank: there are lots of attractions and at any time of day it’s full of people walking and wandering, not necessarily to a particular destination. We have to rely on judgement – a common-sense approach based on our experience of other projects.’ There are many sources of information that can help to build up a picture. Pedestrian surveys can be taken at different points, or surveys of how long people spend at certain attractions. Restaurants can also add an

element of certainty, based on the number of covers and the likely ebb and flow of diners throughout the day, as can the location of transport nodes and passenger numbers. But everyone agrees that the greatest challenge is the lack of available data on how different people behave in different situations. Walking patterns vary with age, gender, nationality, mobility, where you are and where you’re going, who you’re with, whether you’re happy or sad, and so on. The ideal would be to attach a tracker to every resident of a city and follow them as they move around – and that’s pretty close to what is actually possible with GPS-enabled smartphones and Bluetooth devices now in many people’s pockets. >>

This model was created by Movement Strategies to analyse crowd flow around the London 2012 Olympic Stadium

Buro Happold modelled people movement around the base of the Centre Point tower for the redevelopment at St Giles Circus in London


AT THE OLYMPICS People movement consultancy Movement Strategies was involved in developing the masterplan and detailed design for the Olympic Park. This included decisions on where venues would be located, and the relative scale of the permanent and temporary elements, as well as helping to conceive how security, operations and transport would work during the event. When the firm was appointed in 2006, a key challenge was predicting the demand. ‘We were designing six years out, so we knew things were going to change,’ says director Simon Ancliffe. ‘We also knew that the second week, when the stadium would be operating, would be busier than the first, so we had to design the Park so it worked at peak times but didn’t look empty with fewer people.’ The first step was to work out how many people would visit and how long they would stay, so Ancliffe and his team developed scenarios for how people would explore the Park. ‘For example, people going to a morning session would go there first and walk around afterwards, whereas for an evening session they walk around first.’ The next step was to develop comfort standards, such as space per person and the maximum length of queues, and then to test the design against these parameters. The resulting strategy ensured a pleasant, hassle-free experience for visitors to the Games, and also led to significant cost savings through the correct design and sizing of pedestrian walkways and bridges. To explain the importance of people movement analysis, Ancliffe says you need to ask instead why user experience is important to building design: ‘People movement is a critical aspect of use.’

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Pedestrian flow// At the Olympics, Ancliffe says that Bluetooth data was used to track people moving from nearby transport hubs into the Olympic Park, and that this could also be done on a wider scale, across a city. ‘If you can compare what you thought would happen with what did happen, that can help you improve your information in future.’ The other leap forward will be to integrate pedestrian models with design tools, such as BIM. While current BIMs can flag up conflict between the structural and mechanical elements of buildings, Speirs would like to be able to overlay human elements, such as fire evacuation strategies, to identify potential problems in the same way.‘We worked on the evacuation strategy for an arena, which was taking too long, so we had to get the architect to change the shape of the escape corridors. That started to eat into the plant space, so the engineers had to reconfigure their design, too. BIM could have picked that up.’ Software could also, potentially, replicate human reactions more realistically, says Speirs. ‘Sometimes we find that even though people can be evacuated from the building within 10 minutes, part of the escape route

‘The degree to which people exchange information is related to how easily they can move around and meet up’


DR SHRIKANT SHARMA Associate director at Buro Happold SMART Solutions, a software development team that helps create cutting-edge and highly efficient solutions through pedestrian simulation models WHERE DO YOU START? The problem comes across as quite complex – reading human minds, predicting people’s behaviour – but the real challenge is to break it down in the simplest possible manner to understand the key parameters and the most important value that the client or the architect is trying to achieve. AT WHAT STAGE OF A PROJECT DO YOU USUALLY GET INVOLVED? Historically, pedestrian flow modelling was only considered later in the design to test whether it would work, and it wasn’t always possible to choose the optimal solutions. But more architects are now recognising that the sooner they can bring in our experience, the more effective and efficient the solutions. On one hospital, there were pretty much no drawings when we joined, and we worked as part of a really integrated space planning team.


This model of a ticket hall at the new Bond Street Crossrail station in London, produced by WSP, shows crowd density, or levels of service, by colour-coding from blue to red

will heat up too quickly, so they might start to faint.’ In the future, pedestrians within the model might be able to react and turn back. With real-time information-gathering and smart building systems, this science could also feed into the management of buildings, identifying when crowds are forming or where more customer service staff are needed. This may sound a long way off, but Tim Stonor believes almost anything is possible in the coming decade.‘We still don’t really know how buildings work from a human point of view,’ he says. ‘But a lot has happened in the past 10 years, and I’m optimistic that we will be able to move from analysis of non-human elements into the human elements. It’s harder for people to get their heads around, but it’s a much more significant dimension.’

Sometimes, however, we’re called in if there are problems with a building that’s already finished. We’ve recently been involved in reducing congestion in a lot of new-build schools. One of the things we look at is how the school works without a school bell, which can alleviate the majority of congestion. WHAT SIMULATION TECHNOLOGIES DO YOU USE? We’ve developed our own software, SMART Move, which allows us to work with the model in real time, looking at the most effective design within the architect’s vision. Many commercial software tools were derived from fire engineering to develop evacuation strategies. But if you design a building only for an emergency, you’re missing out on day-to-day movements that are just as important from a comfort and safety point of view. HOW IS PEOPLE MOVEMENT ANALYSIS DEVELOPING? We need early stage design tools that enable real-time, highly visual space planning so that decisions can be made before it’s too late to make changes. And we need tools that can allow us to make more holistic assessments, integrating elements, such as fire evacuation and congestion, in the context of the building design. Also, we need to be able to gather more detailed data at a city level. With smart buildings and smart cities, and software capable of analysing that data, we’ll be able to make real-time decisions on how to operate a building. BIM will be helpful in integrating the various elements of design, and also operational design.

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raq is a hard sell. Decades of war, economic sanctions and neglect have left the Arab state with fragile security, dilapidated infrastructure and crippling shortages of everything from healthcare to hotels. Rebuilding the country will take years – and will cost tens of billions of dollars. ‘They are literally building a country from scratch,’ says Steven Coates, director of Program Cost Consultancy in the UAE for Aecom. As a member of the company’s Middle East Leadership Team, he oversees a team of six working in Iraq. ‘Iraq needs everything. Without a shadow of a doubt there are good opportunities there for chartered surveyors.’ Nine years on from the US-led invasion that ended Saddam Hussein’s 24-year rule, Iraq is again luring contractors seeking to capitalise on the reconstruction process. In

Iraqi// 2011, foreign direct investment (FDI) into the country grew by 40% to US$55.67bn (£34.33bn), according to research firm Dunia Frontier Consultants. More than 23% of this was funnelled into the oil and gas sector, the backbone of Iraq’s economy, but residential real estate snared the lion’s share of investment. The Arab state saw US$14.5bn (£8.9bn) worth of property deals over the 12-month period, aimed at tackling an acute nationwide shortage of two million housing units. ‘It’s not just about the hydrocarbons sector. Iraq has colossal need of infrastructure, power and affordable housing,’ says Stephen Fidler, managing director of Exacta Consulting, who consulted on an oilfield project in the country between July 2010 and December 2011. ‘Many of these projects play directly into the skillsets of surveying firms.’ Iraq’s vast oil and gas reserves are critical for bankrolling reconstruction efforts. >>

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Previous page: Waste gas is burned off at a crude oil plant in Kirkuk, Iraq Top: The future site of Iraq’s new parliament building, at present an unfinished super-mosque commissioned by Saddam Hussein Above: Artist’s rendering of a new town of 100,000 homes to be built by Hanwha E&C in Besmaya, 10km southeast of Baghdad

The country plays host to the world’s thirdlargest crude reserves and petrodollars make up more than half of its GDP. The Arab state has ambitious plans to pump 12m barrels a day by 2017 – putting it on a par with oil kingpin Saudi Arabia – and has invested heavily in resuscitating its oilfields. According to MEED Projects, Iraq is expected to plough nearly US$37bn (£23bn) into oil projects in the 12-month period from September 2012. The spin-off demands of these schemes are likely to be significant, says Coates. ‘They set these oilfields up for thousands of people to come and work on. They are effectively small towns in the middle of Iraq,’ he says. ‘That’s partly what we’re involved in – the planning and then building. Some of the sites are enormous.’ Iraq’s increasing oil wealth is also encouraging a fresh focus on project quality, following the rush of the initial post-war boom. This is creating new opportunities for

‘They want the level of quality they’ve seen elsewhere. Professional bodies and companies are at the forefront of this movement’


surveying firms with established track records to gain footholds in the market. ‘The Iraqi government wants to build world-class infrastructure and cities because it’s going to be a very powerful oil nation in a matter of years,’says Coates, adding that Aecom expects its Iraq business to grow by 100% this year. ‘They want the level of quality they’ve seen elsewhere. Professional bodies and companies are at the forefront of this movement.’ For some, Iraq’s potential gains are curbed by the risks of its security situation. While the country is more stable than in the early days of the US occupation – particularly in northern Kurdistan – the threat of violence remains. According to UK-based security firm AKE, 1,716 explosive attacks took place in Iraq in 2011, of which 78 were suicide bombings. On 13 June, more than 90 people died in a wave of coordinated bomb and shooting attacks. For companies, the bill for insuring and protecting employees can add 10% or more to the cost of doing business in Iraq. Add to this the time lost in checkpoints, in travelling by arranged convoy or during security shut-downs, and there are plenty of reasons to be wary. During his time in southern Iraq, Fidler became accustomed to travelling in a convoy, with both a medic and type-specific blood supplies on board. He recalls hearing rocket and mortar attacks land

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Networking/ Iraq//


FIVE SURVEYORS GIVE US THEIR ADVICE ON HOW TO SURVIVE AND THRIVE IN CHALLENGING LOCATIONS nearby during the nights he spent at a US military base near the airport. ‘The base would use phalanx guns to take the rockets out in mid-air,’ he says. ‘The noise was tremendous – it would shake the beds.’ Bureaucracy is another burden. Iraq remains very state-centric and has struggled to keep pace with its growing economy. Investors complain of a backlog of projects awaiting approval from the central government. Political bickering has also slowed legislative changes; a draft national oil law designed to resolve a feud between Baghdad and Kurdistan over oil rights has been five years in the making. Red tape and corruption are constant challenges for foreign firms, and even supposedly easy tasks, such as securing a visa, can prove a headache. ‘The rules are continually changing,’ says Fidler, who was left unable to rotate his field staff during an unexplained freeze on visas for six months in 2011.‘Every single day, there would be two or three serious crises to deal with. We were learning all the time.’ Companies also have to battle with patchy electricity, battered road networks and, in some areas, limited access to clean water. Iraq is, by any measure, a challenge. ‘We find a lot of people get excited about the overall potential of Iraq, which is absolutely there, and rush in without fully doing their homework,’ says Kyle Stelma, managing director of Dunia Frontier Consultants. ‘Local knowledge really is paramount.’ Business in Iraq is a long game, but Stelma believes it is a matter of when, not if, the country takes off. The International Monetary Fund forecasts Iraq’s economy will grow 11.1% this year, to about US$144bn (£89bn), while its population is expected to reach 38m by 2018. With massive oil wealth, a population bulge and a critical need for reconstruction, Iraq is a land of opportunity. Experts suggest companies that make the leap early and establish a reputation in the country will be poised to reap the greatest rewards.‘Iraq has a guaranteed pipeline of money. As long as the government stays stable, you have a country that is educated, financially very powerful and in desperate need of development,’ says Coates.‘This bodes well for companies able to get an early foothold, without a doubt.’ JOANNE BLADD is a freelance journalist and editor based in Dubai.

IAN CORKER FRICS is a senior consultant with Orgut UK. He has worked in countries including Gaza, Somaliland, Rwanda and Vietnam ‘I’ve always had some sort of exit strategy. Gaza was certainly the most difficult because if there was a closure you couldn’t get out at all. But everywhere else it was fairly straightforward. Know where the airport is and how to get to it. If there is a problem in one location, have a second exit route planned. It can be as simple as knowing how to drive across the border. As a contract worker, you always have a plan and an air ticket out.’ MARTIN DE BEER MRICS is the director of MNS Group. He has operated in Nigeria, Rwanda, Sierra Leone and Angola, and is currently based in Swaziland ‘Don’t bring preconceptions about the country to your role. Each job is different and will teach you something new – humility is vital. If you are working in a known area of corruption, always have a local ‘fixer’ and, as far as possible, make it your client’s problem to get authorisation. Lastly, every job presents a unique challenge. The trick is not to give up at the first hurdle. Try again and again.’ SIMON KRAETER MRICS is the commercial director of Blom UK. He has worked in countries including Dagestan, Djibouti and Egypt ‘In politically sensitive countries, be careful who you work with, particularly if it’s a private company rather than the government. Use the foreign office and the embassies in the country, if you can, to get an understanding of the risks associated with the region, and make sure the client is offering adequate security. The local partner is key and it’s vital you know their credentials and connections and believe in them. You have to be utterly convinced of your safety.’ MARK GRIFFIN MRICS is a senior civil engineer for Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Oil Operations. He has worked in countries including South Sudan, Yemen and Gabon ‘If you’re with a big company the security is often good, but you can also become a bit of a target. In South Sudan, where I was working on a contract, the oil company represented the north, which was seen as the enemy. It’s important to have an understanding of who you’re working for, and of what they are seen to represent locally. All countries have problems, but you have to be comfortable with the risk. Do your research, speak to people who have worked there and then make your decision.’ DAVID HARRIS MRICS is team leader and chief technical adviser for the Responsible and Innovative Land Administration (REILA) project in Ethiopia. He has worked in Yemen, Afghanistan, Kosovo and Albania ‘Try to do some basic research about the culture and language before you arrive – just a handful of words can make a big difference. Many of these postings are in developing countries so be prepared to muck in, take things as they come and be patient. Don’t be too fussy about where you’re going to work – take the opportunities as they arise. You have to be prepared to move around to follow the work, and small contracts can often turn into something big. It certainly makes for a varied career.’

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Business advice//

How to implement

VIRTUAL WORKING By HR consultant Simon Brown

For those who can focus on individual assignments, or who can communicate effectively with others by telephone, video conferencing and email, a virtual working contract can make a lot of sense for both the employer and the employee. Surveyors often fall into this category as, although office-based, they can spend a great deal of time out meeting clients and inspecting properties or sites. But before implementing virtual working, there are several factors to consider. Trust is the most important foundation stone for building a virtual working relationship between manager and direct report. The ability to work independently, without regular supervision, is a key selection attribute for a virtual worker, but it also requires the manager to relax a bit on checking up on the detail. They must also be prepared to manage by objectives and outputs achieved, rather than micromanage each step of the process. Trust is built by ensuring the role and responsibilities are fully understood by both parties, and by agreeing to frequent telephone meetings to brief in new work, and report back on progress and work completed. To enable effective virtual working, a certain amount of technology and resources are necessary. Laptops, smartphones, messaging applications and web cameras for video conferencing help ensure easy and rapid communication with colleagues, and are relatively easy to use and inexpensive to install. Skype, for example, is a free app designed for multiple devices that allows users to call, video call and instant message each other for free over 3G and wifi, as well as transfer files and set up screen-sharing for virtual presentations. It may also be useful to enable access to a shared server or use an online file-sharing portal, such as Dropbox, MediaFire, 4Shared and FilesTube. Check company policy, including Health and Safety at Work obligations, as these guidelines apply to workers at home as well as in the office work environment. The shared duty of care regarding the work environment and hazard prevention also apply, so a checklist for a new virtual worker that is signed by both parties could be a good idea. The employer is responsible for the maintenence of any electrical equipment provided, so this will need to be checked and tested regularly.

Illustration by Borja Bonaque


Traditional employment contracts often state a normal place of work and expected working hours. It’s likely that these will need to be amended for virtual workers – whose working patterns are often more flexible – and a new policy established and clearly communicated. Consider the implications and risks of the virtual worker not being in the office, for example, to meet a new client or colleague. Usually, if a face-to-face meeting is arranged early on, the working relationship can be established and maintained virtually. Unfortunately, however, out of sight can still mean out of mind, so the occasional day in the office to catch up can help to keep the virtual worker on the radar screen with both clients and colleagues. Since the focus will shift from hours spent at the desk to outputs as the main measure of performance, frequent assessments will be required to assess the performance of the individual virtual worker. This may include customer satisfaction surveys of clients and 360-degree feedback from others in the company. If the conditions are right, and the critical foundation of trust in the psychological contract of employment between the manager and the individual in their team is solid, virtual working has the potential to revolutionise our work styles and lifestyles. SIMON BROWN is a managing consultant at Simon Brown Associates, which offers practical advice to companies who are looking to maximise the effectiveness of their workforce.

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RICS Recruit: The place for experienced surveyors and graduates

If you have a position to fill, RICS’ official jobs board together with Modus Asia edition offer an unrivalled surveying audience for all your recruitment needs. RICS recruitment channels • There are 22,891 RICS members generating 4,500 visits to* • Modus Asia edition is distributed to over 8,000 chartered surveyors across the region • The only place to reach the new ‘up and coming’ surveyors in Asia • Tailor-made recruitment campaigns

Contact the Asia team today, quoting ref: RR-ASIA-2013 T: +44 (0) 20 7871 5734 or E: T: +44 (0) 20 7871 2667 or E: *Google Analytics May-Nov 2012

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participants from government, academia and research attended the conference in Wuhan

GEOMATICS FORUM RICS Asia organised its first international geomatics conference in Wuhan, China in December 2012, attracting more than 140 participants from various sectors, including government, academia, research and geomatics surveying. RICS Honorary Secretary Rob Mahoney FRICS opened the conference with a speech on the importance and pervasiveness of geomatics in the field of surveying. He was followed by local and international speakers, who discussed the applications, development and advancements that have had a significant impact on land markets, urban planning, the environment and infrastructure in Asia.


Andrew Lee FRICS Chairman, RICS Hong Kong Residential Professional Group Committee

RICS ASIA +852 2537 7117 General enquiries APC guidance Subscriptions Events Training Bookshop REGULATION HELPLINE +44 (0)20 7695 1670 CONFIDENTIAL HELPLINE +44 (0)20 7334 3867 DISPUTE RESOLUTION SERVICES +44 (0)20 7334 3806 SWITCHBOARD +44 (0)20 7222 7000

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RICS news//

RICS Hong Kong in dialogue with HKSAR In January, representatives from RICS Hong Kong attended a joint business community luncheon organised by the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce, with CY Leung, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) chief executive, as the guest of honour. In

front of around 1,500 guests from local and international organisations, Leung elaborated on his plans to develop new land and increase housing stock in Hong Kong in the short, medium and long term. He revealed that a new agency, tentatively called the Office of Built

Environment, is being developed, which will likely be headed by an under-secretary level official. He also praised the work of RICS, noting that Hong Kong still requires more built environment professionals and that related professional knowledge is highly sought after.


RICS and the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoA) to drive the creation of International Property Measurement Standards. The two bodies have come together to support the creation of International Property Measurement Standards to address the lack of consistency in the way property is measured, and therefore valued. Currently, measurement standards exist nationally and regionally, typically varying from market to market, hindering cross-border real estate comparison. Widespread market adoption of these new standards will provide the building blocks for well-functioning global real estate markets and will be complementary to International Financial Reporting Standards and International Valuation Standards – two layers shaping the global financial system. Visit



There is broadly positive occupier demand across Asia, particularly in Thailand

RICS has commissioned four new research documents to look into the issues surrounding project management. Legal issues in project management is a guide to which areas of law are important, where more training is needed and where to find relevant information. Project management and the private finance initiative (PFI) helps to increase awareness of PFI, and develop project management skills and competencies. Learning from other industries examines the various benefits and drawbacks of studying knowledge, experience and best practices of project managers in other industries. And finally, The management of risk – yours, mine and ours identifies new and changing risks across the life of built facilities. Download from


Rental expectations are upbeat in Thailand, due to strong tenant demand and falling availability

Illustration Oscar Bolton Green, Bernd Schifferdecker



In China, Hong Kong (+29), and India (+23), rents are still expected to increase

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‘It’s striking how a decision to deepen our presence in new markets can create opportunities in established ones’ Alan Collett FRICS RICS President

n September, we launched RICS Japan. The occasion was an opportunity to honour 20 certified masters from the Japanese Association for Real Estate Securitization (ARES) who have qualified for MRICS under an agreement we signed in March. More are expected to qualify in the coming months and join the 80 or so members already working in Japan. This is just the beginning; the Red Book will soon be available in Japanese, and we can look forward to membership growth and further partnerships, including agreements with Japanese building surveyors’ institutions. It’s striking how a decision to deepen our presence in new markets can create opportunities in established ones. The government in Tokyo has announced that Japanese REITs (real estate investment trusts) will be allowed to invest in foreign real estate from early 2013. You can be sure that they have London and other leading cities in Europe and Asia in mind. When that happens, they will be looking for the expertise and market insight RICS members can offer. When I mentioned this to a member from Australia recently, he told me that RICS growth in Japan has bolstered Australians’ perceptions of RICS – a welcome benefit to members there.

RICS growth in the Japanese market also illustrates a wider trend. Despite a traditionally less than open market, and well-established national standards, Japanese policymakers and market actors are increasingly seeing the benefits of global standards. And they are looking to RICS for help. This demand for supra-national standards, and the investor confidence they create, is evident elsewhere in Asia and in Latin America. Today, the notion of a UK body with outposts around the world is outdated. RICS has evolved into a global organisation, and now more than half of our new members are from outside the UK. It’s only natural that we rebalance our geographical spread to reflect the new reality, and offer members new cross-border investment and employment opportunities. I’m convinced that RICS Governing Council was right to decide to meet in Beijing in March 2012, and in Delhi in April 2013. The profession’s leadership must engage with our new members on their home territory. Some UK members still tell me that RICS growth is at their expense, but our existing activities collectively across developing markets cover their own costs, and can only benefit members as others increasingly recognise RICS’ reputation for the highest professional and ethical standards.

FIND AND BE FOUND The new RICS website allows you to build a visible professional profile on the online member directory, featuring details such as your skills and areas of expertise, education,

current employer, when you became chartered, your RICS designation and the other professional membership bodies you belong to. Your profile page can also show the latest


In Singapore, falling demand and rising availability is depressing rental expectations


Capital value expectations remain buoyant in Hong Kong, Thailand (+46) and China (+41)

comments you’ve made on articles throughout the site, and can show links to your company website, and LinkedIn and Twitter accounts. Include as much or as little information as

you like. To watch a video on how to set up your account and profile, visit demo, and search for RICS President Alan Collett at to see a live example.


New development starts are strong in China and Singapore, and also in Japan (+27)

Highlights from the RICS Global Commercial Property Survey Q4 2012.

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RICS news//


CHINA RICS International Construction and Real Estate Conference 2013 22 May, Chongqing Co-organised by RICS, Chongqing Construction Cost Association and Chongqing University, this one-day conference covers the major dynamics affecting the construction industry in Asia, with a particular focus on China’s massive urbanisation movement. Overseas and local speakers will address how quantity surveyors and project management professionals can shape their services to support their clients in an everchanging industry landscape under global economic uncertainty. For more information, visit

HONG KONG RICS Hong Kong Annual Dinner 14 March, Hong Kong More than 300 RICS members and key players in the land, property and construction industry will attend this prestigious black-tie event,

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which provides an ideal networking opportunity. During the evening, RICS Hong Kong will also announce the winning firms and individuals of this year’s RICS Hong Kong Property Awards. RICS members/SO members: HK$1,600 per seat Non-members: HK$1,700 per seat Group of 12: HK$18,000 per table. For more information, visit RICS Hong Kong Annual Conference 2013 3 May, Hong Kong Now in its fifth year, this year’s RICS Hong Kong Conference will be titled ‘Riding the Wave of Competition’. With business leaders and professionals from New York City, London and Hong Kong as speakers, the conference will take a close look at the competitive landscapes from global and Hong Kong perspectives, and explore how Hong Kong can stay at the front of the competition. For more information, visit hkconference.

PHILIPPINES Building a sustainable future: The Philippines perspective 4 April, Manila This conference, entitled ‘Building a sustainable future: The Philippines perspective’ will feature high-profile keynote speakers including Alan Hearn, president of Langdon & Seah Philippines; Marissa Benitez, director of Colliers International and Dean Barone, president of Barone International and the Barone Design Group. For more information, visit

MALAYSIA RICS–SCL Technical visit to Iskandar 2 March, Iskandar A one-day technical visit to Iskandar for members of RICS and the Society of Construction Law to learn about the key developments of Iskandar, Malaysia’s ‘strong and sustainable metropolis of international standing’. The tour will include a visit to five flagship zones and a presentation about the historical development of these areas.

NEW CPD REQUIREMENTS From 1 January 2013, the CPD requirements changed. All RICS members must undertake a minimum of 20 hours CPD each calendar year. Of the 20 hours, at least 10 should be formal learning, while the remainder may be informal. Members should record their activity using the CPD management system, available globally from the RICS website. In keeping with current arrangements, members who are affiliated with statutory or RICS schemes will still be required to comply with any CPD obligation that is specific to the scheme, which is counted as formal CPD. WHAT IS FORMAL CPD? Formal CPD can be any form of structured learning that has clear learning objectives and outcomes, such as a professional course, structured online training, learning that includes an assessment measure or self-managed learning that can be assessed by an expert third party. You may be asked to provide supporting evidence of any formal learning that is entered on to the CPD management system. WHAT IS INFORMAL CPD? Informal CPD is any self-managed learning that is relevant or related to your professional role. This could include activities such as private study, on-the-job training, attendance at informal seminars or events where the focus is on knowledge sharing. ARE THERE ANY ACTIVITIES THAT CANNOT COUNT TOWARDS MY CPD REQUIREMENTS? Yes. Any activity that does not have a clear learning purpose, or does not relate to your role and/or specialism cannot be considered as appropriate CPD. Activities such as networking, social events, team meetings or informal planning events, and involvement on boards, committees or clubs that have little or no relevance to your professional role also do not count towards your CPD requirements. For more information or assistance, contact the RICS Regulation Asia office representatives: Jan Chan ( or call +852 2116 1237; or Phoebe Tse ( or call +852 2116 9713.

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What is BIM? WE’VE HEARD ABOUT THE BENEFITS, BUT DO WE HAVE A CLEAR UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT BUILDING INFORMATION MODELLING (BIM) REALLY IS AND HOW IT WORKS? BIM is a new technology and a new way of working. It also offers the capacity to address many of the construction industry’s failings, including waste reduction, value creation and improved productivity. The process of implementing BIM moves away from using conventional word-processing and computer-aided design to the increased use of common standards and product-orientated representations. BIM changes the emphasis: making the model the primary tool for documentation, from which reports can be derived, such as plans, schedules and bills of quantities. However, it’s about much more than simply implementing new software: it’s a different way of thinking. Using BIM requires a move away from the traditional workflow, where all parties – including architects, surveyors and contractors – work from separate information pools and use different, often incompatible software packages, to a situation where everyone effectively works on just one common information pool.

By constructing a 3D virtual prototype, a building or infrastructure system’s design can be simulated and assessed before it’s built

In essence, BIM involves building a digital prototype of the model and simulating it in a digital world. It combines technology with new working practices to improve the quality of the delivered product, and also improve the reliability, timeliness and consistency of the process. It’s equally applicable to asset and facilities management as it is to construction. In its purest form, BIM provides a common single and coordinated source of structured information to support all parties involved in the delivery process – from design, through construction, and on to operation. And because all parties have access to the same data, information loss associated with handing a project from team to team is kept to a minimum. A BIM model contains representations of the actual parts and pieces that will be used to construct a building, along with geometry, spatial relationships, geographic information, quantities and the properties of building components, for example, the manufacturers’ details. Often mistakenly referred to as 3D, 4D or nD, BIM should not be confused with the number of dimensions used to represent a building. Instead, it provides

a common environment for all the information that defines a building, facility or asset – including building shape, costs, physical performance, logistics, and design and construction time. More importantly, the information relates to the intended components and processes, rather than to the appearance and presentation of documents and drawings. However, BIM is not a panacea: it remains just as possible to produce a poor model as it is to produce poor drawings, schedules or any other form of information. Also, without any proactive collaborative management effort, models may end up being structured to suit the originator rather than prepared with all parties in mind. Ensuring that there is an agreed structure and exchange protocol in place to suit all parties will improve certainty, confidence and consistency. And by moving to a shared information model environment, project failures and cost overruns become less likely. Recent experience indicates a trend for large clients and government agencies worldwide to mandate the use of BIM, not only for delivery of the building, but also as a tool to manage its operation. The ability to interrogate an intelligent model that perhaps links to interactive guidance on the repair and/or maintenance process, rather than searching through outdated manuals, has obvious advantages. The largest single barrier to exploiting BIM is the lack of awareness. BIM has the potential to impact every aspect of surveying, and presents an opportunity to deliver new service streams and extend our professional reach into new areas spanning the complete asset life cycle. BIM is not going to go away – so we must learn to adapt and embrace it, or we risk losing ground to others. Steve Pittard is a senior lecturer at London South Bank University and Chairman of the RICS QS and Construction IT Working Group.

03.1301.11 // MODUS // MODUS ASIA

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Top BIM themes discussed in industry journals†

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sta % te in fi d tha A survey of 1,000 t v the e yea UK construction ir fi rs use rm professionals BIM will across architecture, * NBS National BIM Report 2012

Out con of the s U (£1 truct S$65 25b ion i 0bn mis n) n t tak is w he U (£40 5 es and asted S eve bn) s del on ry ye pen ays ine ar, t on (Ec ffici US$ ono enc 20 mis ies, 0bn t)




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s tor rac ve t n a o of c e US h M I h t in ted B ted p a l o ad M-re I or B ** s l too



UK all ent h hic m y w ocure b r r yea nt p ithin The rnme be w IM, e B o gov eed t ative er r n er l m o l wi ollab o for advis t n c 3D rding ructio S o t C c s ac f con ll FRI e e i ch Morr l Pa u

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s in ser seen u IM ve of B S ha eturn U r the sitive ent o a p vestm* in * n o g BIM n i s u Sources:,, National BIM Report 2012*, The Business Value of BIM, McGraw Hill Construction 2009/10**, 10 truths about BIM, WSP Group 2011†

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MODUS Asia Edition 03.13  

The Virtual Issue + Preview the RICS Hong Kong Awards 2013

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