Science Centre Construction Video

June 2015

With the facade activities drawing to a close, we look forward to the removal of the scaffold to reveal the work that has taken place. In this period we have been undertaking the precast sills at 2nd floor, the trapezoidal louvres to the gable ends, the individual louvres to the composite windows and the installation of the Coltlite windows to the 2nd floor.

Internally the decorations, rubber flooring and lab furniture have made their way through the ground and 1st floor. At 2nd floor we have boarded the walls and installed the door frames and ventilation bulkheads. We have also installed the eight person lift and the feature stairs servicing the circulation areas of the facility.

Our utility connections have also been made allowing the all important commissioning of the Mechanical and Electrical installations to commence. Each of the services were checked and signed off prior to the floor being installed and gauges maintained to ensure there were no mishaps during the various processes of closing the floor in.

In the coming weeks we will undertake:

  • The second stage of the chimneys
  • Gutters and down pipes
  • Window louvres
  • Brise soleil
  • Second floor lab fit out

The crane will also be coming down in a few weeks.

April - May 2015

The facade activities have progressed well with the Ideal Combi glazed units being installed to the composite windows and the brickwork nearing completion to the tower Plant Room. The standing seam roof has also advanced well, the zinc arrives in the form of a coil which is passed through a press to form a tray, each tray is lapped over the proceeding one and clipped in position, the vertical elements are then wrapped and crimped to secure them. Internally we have commenced the raised floor pans which are supported on adjustable pedestals, this type of installation gives flexibility for servicing and maintenance. As the wall services and support systems are signed off we install the plasterboard to the metal stud partitions ready for a thin coat of plaster. Once the rooms are plastered and the floor down we can start installing the benches.

Looking ahead our next steps are to:

  • Advance the standing seam roof and chimneys
  • Advance the secondary steel supports and gutters
  • Advance the clerestory windows which are at the top of the building allowing ventilation at the apex of the classrooms
  • Commence the lab fit out with the flooring and benches
  • Take the crane down some time in May

We have also had our second Considerate Constructors assessment in the period where we exceeded our previous score of 39 with a 40 which has entitled us to a Certificate of Performance beyond Compliance.

February 2015

The facade has advanced well with the timber windows installed and the brick and block work nearing eaves level. On each of the gable ends there are trapezoidal louvers to provide a contrast to the red brick piers and bands. Internally the metal stud partitions have been installed, clearly defining the laboratories, wash rooms, meeting areas and circulation zones to each of the floors. Each laboratory has bespoke benches with multi-point services fed via the raised floor zone. The first fix mechanical and electrical (M&E) is now up to high level second floor ready for the cabling and testing to be undertaken. The motorised louvers are being installed to the window apertures which will eventually control the air flow into the building via actuators which are linked to the building management systems. The first stage of the lift installation has begun, involving fitting lifting eyes to the soffit of the shaft to connect the winch, which assists the placing of the shaft guide rails and eventually the lift car.

In the next stage we will continue with the roof which involves insulating the timber roof deck and fixing a profiled zinc top sheet which is supported on a carrier system. The secondary steel and gutter form the eaves detail with clerestory windows closing the apertures. The M&E installation will continue through the floors into the washroom areas. Brick and blockwork will be advanced up to window level at 2nd floor.

December 2014

Now the precast stairs are in place we have completed the cores and the roof steel releasing the last few joists. As we are now at the highest point, a Topping Out Ceremony was held on 26 November attended by the School's governors, teachers and guests celebrating the installation of the last bolt assembly to the roof.

At ground floor the composite windows are being installed, each window measures 4.5m x 2.8m and is craned into position using a specially designed lifting beam. The individual elements of the window consist of high performance glazed units, motorised thermal dampers, aluminium projections and timber louvers to act as a sun screen.

Our bricklayer is following the installation with the insulation, red brick bands and piers which frame the windows. The first fix mechanical and electrical containment at ground and first floors is also well advanced closely followed by the metal stud partitions which divide the labs from the circulation spaces.

In the coming weeks we will continue with the roof and facade works until we achieve a weathered building to protect the internal fit out.

October 2014

As the concrete frame draws to a close we have commenced the installation of the precast stairs. The landings were placed on the pre fixed angles then the stair flights were lowered by the crane with only millimetres to spare. Once the building is closed in we will install the feature stair to the main entrance, this is a steel staircase hung from the slab edge with timber treads.

The roof structure has also commenced, the steel sections are positioned on bolts which were cast into the columns. Once in position the bolts are tightened and any adjustments made before the fixings are grouted in place. As the roof progresses around the building we will follow it with the windows, brickwork and curtain walling providing a weathered environment for the internal trades to commence. This starts with the first fix mechanical and electrical containment providing the water, heat, gas, electric and communications required for the building to function.

We have also had our first inspection from the Considerate Constructors in the period with a very respectable score of 39 out of a possible 50. A score of 5 in each of the five categories is considered a compliant assessment therefore, we are very proud to have our site rated between very good and exceptional.

August 2014

We are now advancing with the superstructure elements of the building which incorporate the reinforced concrete frame, precast staircases and the roof level steel frame.

We first formed the columns and walls by tying steel reinforcements together which we then surrounded by a ply-lined shutter, propped in position and filled with concrete. The concrete slabs are then built on-site around the columns with the walls supported on a Peri Skydeck system, which is carefully designed to carry in excess of 600 cubic meters of concrete.

As the concrete weighs approximately 2,400kg per cubic meter you can imagine the stringent checks and calculations which have to be undertaken prior to each pour. As the concrete frame nears completion we will crane in the precast staircase at the end of each wing. The staircases are being manufactured in Belgium to exacting standards and to ensure they fit into the pre-formed stairwells.

The top floor of the structure is formed of steel which is lifted into position section by section then bolted together to create the roof. Each steel element has been designed on a computer generated model before being sent for manufacture where they are accurately cut to length, holes punched and the end plates welded into position ready for fitting.

June - July 2014

The groundwork and drainage will continue up to the ground floor slab. Once the slab is cast, we commence the first of the columns and shear walls designed to provide lateral restraint to the structure. The temporary support deck is then constructed to allow the steel reinforcement to be supported and tied to the column heads. A few days after the first floor slab is poured, the process starts again.

April - May 2014

The first phase of the project establishes the site boundaries by erecting the hoarding and gates, gaining a secure working environment. The first activity is to create a new path to the rugby field boundary and strip back the topsoil across the site to install crushed stone traffic routes. This allows us to move plant and machinery safely and cleanly across the site on a firm base to access the foundations and construction activities. We will also demolish the medical centre and remove a number of external walls to make way for the new development.

Taken from Kingerlee newsletters