Building on a brownfield city centre location – a former chemical works – almost immediately threw up problems for BAM. Although initially sold to the client as a ‘clean’ site, the construction team soon found high levels of hydrocarbons and asbestos contaminating in the soil. The solution involved crushing the old factory foundations and using them (perfectly safely) as aggregate and for the piling mat: with the added benefit of reducing spoil generated by the site.
Once the site issues had been resolved, the buildings went up fast. So fast that the project was actually delivered four weeks ahead of schedule.
The key to this speedy feat was pre-fabrication. One of the first elements to be erected on site was a pre-cast lift shaft: not only was this quicker to create than traditional blockwork, but also safer.
The BAM team was able to put in the pre-cast ground beams even in the depths of the bad winter weather. Finally, the main structural frame arrived on site. Delivered as boarded panels straight from the factory, this too was installed around in two-thirds of the time it would have taken for conventional stud and track partitioning.
All this meant that BAM could get going on the internal fit-out early.