New Build

Queen’s Road, Croydon, UK

Our remit was the structural design of seven newbuild properties for our client in Croydon, alongside refurbishing an existing property in the development and supervising the site throughout.

The new development was surrounded by properties on all four sides, which would make access challenging. The only possible access was via the front of the site, which in turn would influence the choice of materials in the design process for the construction phase.

The development was to be built on a site where three properties already existed. These buildings were demolished, and we undertook an initial site survey shortly after, which included a number of trial holes to confirm the existing boundary conditions.

Our survey concluded that the existing boundary walls of the neighboring properties on the side elevations would need to be underpinned traditionally, which was agreed through the party wall process.

The ground conditions were then assessed and found to be clay, which meant approximately 1.5 – 2m deep strip footings would be required throughout the site.

It was decided that the new units would be a hybrid form of construction because of site access issues – a decision that would prove astute later down the line. A timber frame scheme with timber I joists for the floors was chosen for the newbuild properties and materials were fabricated off site, which generated a number of benefits.

Taking the fabrication off site sped up the installation process and reduced the number of deliveries to the development. It also meant that only one crane was necessary on site, which reduced the traffic permit requirements for the project.

Steel I beams and steel frames were designed to support the structural members where the timer elements didn’t have sufficient capacity to span, and the existing property on site was refurbished by removing several structural walls and lowering the basement.

The decision to use timber frames was a successful one, aiding the site access requirements significantly and making the building process quicker and more efficient. As a result, the project was delivered three months ahead of schedule, which allowed the client to sell the units ahead of their initial program plan.

The project was also beneficial for us, giving the LSY team a crash course in timber frame construction – something we’ve since continued to implement in similar projects.

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