Tall Orders

London's Skyscraper Building Push Might be Grounded if Major Talent Issues aren't Resolved

 
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Queen Victoria Street in London, England

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London, England needs more construction workers—and fast. Project teams are hoping to complete 13 proposed skyscraper projects in the East End by 2026.

“It is unprecedented to see such a scale of development taking place at one time in the Square Mile. There are now more cranes in the city sky than in recent decades,” Chris Hayward, chair of the planning committee, City of London Corp., said in a statement.

But the boom comes at a time when the city faces a construction talent crunch—which Brexit and a wave of retirements could worsen in the coming years. With eight years to build a brand new skyline, the clock is ticking.

GROWING GAP

62%

of U.K. surveyors say a lack of skilled workers limits their building activity. That's a 22 percent increase from 2012.

AGING OUT

25%

Amount the U.K. labor force could decrease by 2026 because of aging.

BREXIT IMPACT

25%

of construction workers in London come from the rest of the European Union (EU). Only 8 percent of the U.K.'s overall workforce comes from the rest of the EU.

Sources: UK Construction and Infrastructure Market Survey, Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors, 2017; Construction Leadership Council

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