Crick News

ISSUE 09

October 2013

Construction catch-up

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Completing the exterior of the building is now a priority for the contractors as the building needs to be watertight before the lab furniture and scientific equipment can be installed.

Laing O'Rourke has started glazing the roof of the main atrium and continue to install roof louvers on the north and south sides of the curved roof with 700 now in place out of the total 2500. On average the team install 15 per day using a roof mounted crane whilst abseiling down the facade.  Between the south west block and south east block the curved glazed window is being installed manually. The activity involves two mast climbers working on a platform that takes them up and along the building.  Elsewhere on the roof, 23 of the 32 chimneys have been installed. By December these will all be in place.

There are now only two cranes left on site and the construction team are filling the hole where the cranes once were so that other construction work can commence in those areas.  In the basement boilers and autoclaves have been delivered and work has started on the ceilings, a key activity in forming the rooms.

Going green

With solar panels on the roof and its own combined heat and power system, the Crick will be a highly sustainable building. The design of the building includes many innovative, environmentally friendly features and this extends to the construction site too.

On large-scale projects like the Crick, landfill is a huge issue. The good news is that by Spring this year - 22 months since construction started - Laing O'Rourke had already diverted 1,000 tonnes of wood away from landfill, to the National Community Wood Recycling Project (NCWRP) all across the UK. Wood sent to the NCWRP helps to provide materials to social enterprises for various projects, and any wood that isn't of good enough quality is chipped for other uses.

But it doesn't stop there. Since building work started, enough waste has been produced to fill a staggering three Olympic swimming pools. However, 99% of this waste has been diverted from landfill and reused or recycled by our waste management contractors. Making sure site activities produce as little waste as possible is a priority, but when waste is unavoidable it will always be recycled or reused elsewhere.