Post Consent & Construction
We have considerable experience in the delivery of consented schemes, and working alongside the client and their specialist contractors.
The Ardent delivery team is often embedded within the Project team throughout the application and consenting process but particularly during the pre-construction and construction phase of the Project, maximising efficient working. We can act in conjunction with the client’s existing land team or as the sole land team where there isn’t one (reporting to the internal land manager or consenting manager as required), providing proactive advice and solutions drawn on experience to mitigate risk and ensure delivery.
Commitments and discharge of requirements
For major projects, it is entirely normal for a series of commitments to be given to stakeholders, including landowners and for conditions and requirements to be placed on the Applicant through the consenting process.
In order to mitigate delivery and construction risks, it is of paramount importance to identify all of the commitments and formally record them in a Commitments Register. Having produced the Commitments Register it is then important to understand whether the Promoter of the Contractor is best placed to discharge or fulfil these commitments and obligations. Where commitments are best placed to be owned by the Contractor these should form part of the procurement process to ensure that the Contractors are bidding based on the requirement to discharge or fulfil these commitments and obligations and so that they form part of the contract award documentation.
Procurement, risk and delivery vary considerably from project to project and the strategy to delivering the best value to the client is therefore different in each case. However, often the responsibility for delivering land access is retained by the Promoter, therefore extended notice periods and risk associated with delivering vacant land is retained by the Promoter, whereas requirements to manage access, dust suppression and to install fencing is often transferred to the contractor.
Exercise of Compulsory Acquisition Powers
It is important to establish a land acquisition strategy at an early stage so this can be implemented to ensure the delivery of land to fulfil contractual commitments and ensure programme delivery.
The Land Strategy will identify phasing of works to inform our programme for delivering land through the Option Agreements or through notice service trigger the survey, temporary or permanent land use and acquisition powers with the Order.
It is important to understand the terms of agreements reached with landowners during Order promotion. Option Agreements often set the parameters for the timing of acquisition (and access to land, which is critical to the construction contractor) and therefore drives the commencement within the land delivery programme.
Taking possession and construction
Once a Land Strategy is determined, we will work with the client to serve notices or implement the terms of the agreements to deliver the land in accordance with the contractual commitments and programme.
We regularly make pre-entry records of condition and agree them with the landowners/occupiers or their appointed agents and record handover the land to the contractor for construction.
We work with the Project Team to ensure that any specific conditions in the agreements are met and are there to ensure that relationships with landowner and occupiers are managed throughout the process. Where the project is rural, we would work alongside the appointed Agricultural liaison officers (ALOs) to manage the interaction with those directly affected stakeholders.
Creation of the Commitments Register
- Identification of retained and proposed transferred commitments and obligation to inform procurement
- Determination of a Land Strategy
- Land delivery and compensation risk management
- Notice and plan production and service
- Securing vacant possession and access to land to enable construction
- Land handover certificates
- Identifying and securing any additional land access required or variations needed to the agreements.
- Updating the PCE
- Managing and required crop loss claims against the budget along with land agent fees.