Construction Manager of the Year Awards 2019 – Residential Over 7 storeys
GOLD – Richard Ingram MCIOB, project manager, Watkin Jones
Exchange, Bridge Street, Cardiff
Project: Exchange, Bridge Street, Cardiff
Scope: Construction of 27-storey tower block with 477 student apartments
Programme: 94 weeks
Contract: JCT D&B 2015 with amendments
Richard Ingram had 12 years under his belt working on residential towers, but this 27-floor scheme was by far the biggest thing he had ever built.
Besides the 90m height of the 477-bed development, other challenges included managing logistics on the landlocked site and a project team 140-strong at its peak.
On the concrete frame, Ingram realised the contractor’s traditional build strategy of pouring a slab, sitting the vertical elements on top, then pouring the next slab was fine for a lengthy programme on a low-height building with an envelope infill system – but not for this tall building with unitised facade. He appointed a new contractor able to build jumpform, with its fast core-and-slab construction.
For the curtain wall, Ingram appointed a Croatian contractor, after being impressed with its previous schemes on a visit to Zagreb. The offsite-manufactured cladding, with insulation prefitted, was installed from inside using a spider crane as panels arrived on site. This accelerated fit out, contributing to an estimated five-month reduction in programme.
SILVER: Paul McGibbon, project manager, Telford Homes
Project: Legacy Tower, Great Eastern Road, Stratford
Scope: Construction of 33-storey tower with 181 apartments, completed in 42 weeks
Client: Telford Homes
Paul McGibbon had to build this 106m tall residential tower on a footprint entirely filling the site, cheek-by-jowl with railways, busy roads and two other projects on adjacent sites.
He had to manage several setbacks, – the first when the foundations failed. With 450mm CFA piles chosen for the foundations on problematic ground, the pile breakdown operation revealed necking and soft cores all the way down, and half the piles failed subsequent design load tests.
It left him with little option but to discard the work that had already been done, install 1,050mm piles, and revert to a full raft foundation, incurring a nine-month delay.
Another issue was a crane leak spattering mineral oil over two facades of installed cladding, requiring replacement of all mastic joints to the precast columns.
McGibbon worked through these challenges and introduced innovation such as slipforming the core, because of limited storage on site, which allowed the single tower crane to be installed on the roof rather than being jacked up through the building.
Category presented by Paul Nash FCIOB, CIOB past president 2016/17
Anthony Blackledge MCIOB, Mace, Victory Plaza, Stratford
Gerald Ward MCIOB, Bennett Construction, FiftySeven East Kingsland, London
Mark Wolverson MCIOB, Willmott Dixon Construction, Gateshead Heights, Harlow Green