Employer: Wates

Project: Pure Aldgate, London

Come what may, the programme on this project to construct a 19-storey student accommodation block simply had to be met. With the full force of David Rowsell’s energetic management behind it, that’s exactly what happened.

When delays hit demolition, he took the pressure off his own enablement works by regularly meeting the contractor and getting his own temporary works incorporated with the ground works.

David continually delivered efficiencies. He had 19 storeys of superstructure on a small footprint, pod installation and precast concrete cladding on his plate. He enabled a two-crane strategy by developing a slipform core that allowed top-out ahead of the floor plates and siting the second crane on the roof. It allowed the overlapping of the critical construction activities.

With mast climbers not viable for access, he installed cradles at floor 12 to allow the external cladding to commence while he was still finishing the frame. He made further programme (and quality) gains from changing the in situ concrete columns to precast with Stairmaster stairs.

To achieve the client’s cost plan, David took £2m out of the cladding by dropping the unitised original solution for a semi-prefabricated version. By building the inner steel-framed panels and window line before the precast cladding, constructing them at their floorplate and lifting them into position, he got the internal fit-out started faster too.

And while hitting his own targets, he didn’t ignore the expectations of the other stakeholders. When the designers wanted to add five colour variations to the external terracotta baguettes, he agreed the scope addition, knowing it was crucial for them and would enhance the look and feel of the facade.