Test piling begins
- 09 January 2008
Before Christmas the hoardings to the Southern end of the site (Swan Theatre side) were completed and the new path to join Waterside to the riverside walk in Theatre Gardens was opened.
Demolition work continued with the removal of rubble from the auditorium and the dismantling of the old stage lift. Test piling in the former car park at the front of the RST foyer took place before the holiday and the piling rig was removed early in the New Year. The site is now operating on its own newly-installed power supply and all the original electrical systems in the theatres have now been disconnected.
The test pile is under test and will be monitored by our engineers, Buro Happold, until 9th January. The next phase of demolition involves the removal of the RST auditorium floor slab prior to the installation of the piled foundations for the new thrust stage auditorium. The first stage of this will be to cut through the reinforced concrete floor to isolate it from the parts of the building which are to remain. The concrete auditorium slab will then be broken out and crushed to form a 'piling mat' - a stable base for the piling rigs to sit on.
Demolition work also continues on the remains of the riverside actors' accommodation behind the Swan Theatre. Bricks from this area of the theatre will be reclaimed and re-used in the new building. The final sections of the stage lift will be removed during the coming week.
The Swan Theatre and Picture Gallery will have temporary heating installed. Lighting will be added to the Theatre Gardens hoardings.
Work now begins on the reprofiling of The Dell to provide the flood compensation volumes required. The project archaeologist will observe the works.