CMYA Finalist

Employer: Wates Construction

Project: Coleshill Leisure Centre

Value: £3.98m

With limited experience of capital projects this size, the client was justifiably apprehensive. What’s more, the leisure centre scheme was a complex multi-agency undertaking with three separate funding organisations for a site in a rural town that the commissioning partner didn’t own.

Brought in to persuade the client of the feasibility of main contractor’s proposed approach, Adam Cannon’s ‘on time and within budget’ promise was met with some scepticism, although his analysis of the risks and how they would be overcome was enough to get it out of the blocks. He then stomped hard on the project gas, proceeding from bid stage to site start in just six weeks.

He identified risk, and where he couldn’t manage it out he mitigated its impact with client-impressing gusto. When, for example, the statutory authorities eventually costed their works at £190k over the project’s allowance, Adam worked tirelessly to re-engineer the solution, reducing that overspend by £130k by putting in a new substation onsite. His client-focused value management led him to realise that the internal design of the leisure centre put the greatest investment in areas that didn’t generate income. By downgrading the specification for the reception and corridors he was able to generate the funding for wall-to-wall mirrors and a music system in the dance studio, and heavy-duty matting, high-spec flooring and vinyl wall graphics for the gym, creating a space more in keeping with competing private leisure facilities. Adam tackled the construction challenges head-on. When it became clear during the handover planning that an open day had been widely publicised two weeks after completion even though fit-out would take three weeks, he completed one week earlier by encouraging the subcontractors to work smarter, take ownership of their sections and finish snag-free.

By fulfilling his on time and within budget promise with a high-quality development for an extremely happy client, he has brought Wates within sight of another two projects in the borough.

Adam Cannon’s ‘on time and within budget’ promise for this complex multi-stakeholder leisure centre project was ambitious but ultimately prevailed. He offered client-focused value management. He downgraded the specification for the reception and corridors to generate funds for a much higher-spec dance studio and gym, creating spaces more in keeping with competing private leisure facilities. An extremely happy client has recognised the fulfilment of his promise by awarding Wates another two projects.