The Challenge:

The St Albans Place project was in an extremely constrained location between the A64 and nearby businesses, requiring close working with local businesses and residences to ensure that disruption was minimal. The constrained site and the building’s height has also impacted how the site operates, with careful positioning of the crane and additional goods hoists to accommodate the programme and save space.

In addition, the speed of the programme has influenced the internal sequence for forming the studios, with deliveries made before internal walls were constructed and external SFS walls were built. External landscaping and paving enhancement began in the second half of the programme, requiring careful phasing and planning to prevent disruption.

The one-way road network around the site meant that it was vital to minimise disruption to the road; all contractor parking was located in local car parks surrounding the site, and road closures were limited to the dates of the installation and removal of the crane.

The Solution:

To address the speed of the programme and the issue of the constrained site, the building’s concrete core was slipformed, and then the saddleback crane was positioned on top of the core. This reduced the cost and removed the need for the installation and then removal of a crane base; it also saved space on the outside of the building where the hoists were positioned.

Bathroom pods were delivered early, before the installation of windows and the construction of the studio walls and external SFS walls to ensure that the pods could fit into the building. Once the studio walls were constructed, the bathroom pods were installed.

The team minimised disruptions to surrounding roads through an extensive traffic management plan; vehicles with an MGW of 44T and axle loadings of 10T were restricted on Wade Lane, and were escorted to and away from the site.

The Impact:

VITA Student were pleased with their finished project, which completed as planned and allowed students to move in early. Collaborative planning between all parties has been key to the project’s success; fortnightly lean planning meetings were held, discussing progress, future works, and any further actions or issues. The sessions provided full transparency for stakeholders, and ensured that all parties had a full understanding of all aspects of the project.

St Albans Place also created significant benefits for the surrounding area and local communities. For every £1 of project spend, the project created an additional £1.01 in social value, which was reinvested in the community. The site team formed excellent relationships with Leeds City College and Leeds College of Building, offering site visits, work experience, and helping some young people into apprenticeships.

" Some good innovations were brought to the table, including the slip-form core and saddleback crane to address site constraints, with the potential to add further technical innovations once familiar with the client brand and requirements "
Daniel Roberts Senior Development Manager Select Property Group

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