The Challenge:

A screen of vertical fins and perforated panels wrap the building, evoking the industrial gas holders that once stood on the site. Design, management and construction of this complex, bespoke façade was a challenge.

The complex façade and the range of end users on the compact and unusual site footprint required constant and ongoing innovation and adaptability throughout the build.

One of the initial challenges on The Aperture project was the crane tower, which was intended to be located to the south of the building. However, it was found that erecting the crane tower towards the south of the project was not possible.

There was the risk of the crane clashing with the radius of an adjacent construction site. This alongside an additional risk of a very large obstruction below ground at the Northern end of the site, prevented piling in the single storey area.

The Solution:

A series of mock-ups, sample approvals and workshops took place to resolve the technical challenges faced due to the complex façade.

Being mindful of the variety of end users a concrete sprung floor was installed in the gym areas. A non-structural reinforced slab is cast on top of the structural slab, jacked up to create a 50mm void using a series of springs. This prevented direct noise transfer to the office and community spaces below.

We dealt with the significant challenge in locating the tower crane within the building by adapting the programme to suit without impacting on the overall duration. We designed tower crane pads to sit below the ground floor slab.

This resulted in the ability to install the ground floor slab before installing the crane, and by accelerating this area of retail space once the tower crane was removed and the first-floor slab infilled.

The Impact:

The Aperture is a highly successful project; a complex building with a bespoke façade, on a tight footprint in a multi-contractor environment to programme, with zero injuries or incidents and zero defects at handover.

The Kier team fostered a collaborative approach with the client, stakeholders and the local community.

Project Manager, Jon Staley, attended Greenwich University lectures to discuss construction management and health and safety. Students were also invited to tour the site on regular occasions and the team assisted them in providing material and information for their dissertations.

An Open Doors event was hosted at the site, allowing various members of the local community (future residents, students, journalists etc.) to get a ’behind the scenes’ view of what happens on a construction site.

Kier also sponsored and supported the Greenwich Peninsula marketing team with their Urban Village fetes to further build the community moving into the development.

" A strong and motivated team with enthusiasm and drive who quickly got to work and drove a solution that delivered the intent but with a firm hand on cost and buildability. Organisation and pragmatism ensured the project was completed to a very high standard on time. "
Neil McGinty Director of Project Delivery Knight Dragon

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