- 26 November 2008
You may not know that our approach to the construction is via construction management. This allows us to buy the early ‘trade packages’ of work, such as the demolition, the piled foundations and the concrete and steel structures before we buy and design the work that comes later on, such as all of the electrical and mechanical services.
By early next year we will have bought over 90% of the work and our focus has turned to detailed design by the trade contractors themselves. They have to ensure that the general designs provided by our architects, engineers and theatre consultants all fit together properly in the space available. To do this, designers from a number of our trade contractors are now located together working on a set of fully co-ordinated production drawings.
Our original design team continue to work on the final lighting design for the building and soon we will be looking at a number of sample light fittings. We are very lucky that The Courtyard Theatre is available as a prototype and three subtly different samples of balcony rail have been installed so that they can be evaluated in a real theatre environment.
We are stating to look at the auditorium seating and a group of us have just embarked on a tour of selected seat manufacturers so that we can be sure that we choose the one that best suits our needs.
On site, you will have seen the construction of the concrete lift shaft which reaches up to viewing platform level of the new tower. The structural brickwork that surrounds it will take much longer and it will be early spring before the final shape of the tower begins to become apparent above the hoardings.
The pumps that kept ground water at bay whilst the new thrust stage basement was constructed have been turned off – no large leaks visible so far! Billingtons continue to erect the steelwork. Elsewhere, KLH’s innovative timber sandwich floor decks go down really rapidly, causing us much excitement as we find area after area accessible to us in just a few days.
One of the final areas of concrete to be completed will be up on the roof of the new thrust flying zone. This will be used for our topping out ceremony next week. Throughout December the steel structure assembly and the timber floor decking continues until midday on 23 December when the site closes for the holidays until Monday 5 January.