The Richmond Building, Twickenham
Keeping calm and working through the problems logically, Richard refused to be overwhelmed by the Herculean challenge of this five-storey campus block. He successfully built a reinforced concrete frame around a cavernous atrium, hanging from its roof a giant pod filled with studios. His on-time delivery to an impressive standard of quality while also driving over £4m out of the building costs gave the client everything it wanted.
About the Project
Client: Richmond upon Thames College
Contract: NEC 3 option A
Richard White’s five-storey campus block was all about technical challenge. Not only did he have to build a reinforced concrete frame around a cavernous atrium and auditorium voids, he also had to hang from the roof slab a studio-filled pod four storeys high.
His ability to move in substantial quantities of materials for the works to maintain the critical path was key to the project’s success. Keeping calm and working through the problems logically, Richard focused on the immediate issues and refused to be overwhelmed by the Herculean scale of the task.
With the roof slab needing to cure and gain strength before it could support the pod’s weight, he avoided overloading the suspended ground-floor slab with temporary support. Rather than over-reinforce the slab, Richard smartly retained the piling mat to carry the load from the building’s upper floors.
Meanwhile during the construction of the main building’s frame, he spent six weeks on erecting an atrium-filling birdcage scaffold from which trusses to strengthen the all-important structural roof could be installed. Fabricated in two sections for delivery to site, the eight 24m-long trusses were assembled at ground level and lifted into position in one piece using the site’s single tower crane over a two-week period. The atrium’s dense forest of falsework and scaffolding could be cleared – allowing the internal fit-out to get under way – only once the metal roof decking was complete and the floor slabs had cured and gained strength.
Having also managed an extensive early value-engineering exercise that drove over £4m out of building costs, Richard gave the client everything on the wish list. He delivered on time and budget, safely, and to an impressive standard of quality.