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Advantage West Midlands – Asbestos Removal and Demolition – Icknield Port Loop, Birmingham

Advantage West Midlands commissioned Connell Brothers to carry out the demolition associated with the Regeneration of the Icknield Port Loop area in Birmingham.

The regeneration area was part of a site comprising of 8 acres and divided by the operational waterway of the Birmingham Canal.

Each site posed different challenges, involving various demolition techniques and control measures.
The two areas comprised of;-

Area 1- North Site

Brindley Wharf, Wiggin Street – Building A – 3 storey office block with basements
Brindley Wharf, Wiggin Street – Building B – 2 storey office block
Brindley Wharf, Wiggin Street – Building C – Steel framed warehouse & basements
Yes Car Credit, Wiggin Street – Car showrooms, offices and covered car sales area

Area 2 – South Site

298 Icknield Port Road – former Petrol Station & repair garage
300 Icknield Port Road – former Rolling Mill with basements
Crown Cinema, Icknield Port Road – Former cinema & Bathroom Showroom
40 Freeth Street – former Rolling Mill with LIVE Substation to be retained.
39 Freeth Street – former Rolling Mill

All of the buildings had at some time been broken into by vagrants and had been subject to third parties using them for substance abuse. An environmental sweep was undertaken for the removal of sharps and all other associated drug use paraphernalia and disposed of in accordance with legislation.

Many of the buildings on the South site were of previous industrial use and required a full sweep for chemical hazards left behinds by the previous owners. All chemicals were collected to a central point, identified, classified, packaged and dispatched to a licensed facility with a corresponding waste consignment note transfer documentation.

All refrigerants and air conditioning units were decommissioned with gases removed and disposed of to licensed facility accompanied by a hazardous waste consignment note.

Due to the Crown Cinema being converted in a Bathroom Showroom with numerous display areas, a Type 3 Asbestos survey was unable to be completed prior to contract award. The contract included for stripping out the display areas by asbestos trained operatives, allowing analysts to complete the Type 3 survey prior to any further works being carried out in the building. All work relating to the Crown Cinema was carried out under Licence to Birmingham City Council who were the owners of the property.

Prior to the start of any demolition works dust suppression screens were installed to adjacent property occupiers Frank Dudley Ltd. (Manufacturers of spray painted car panel components) A regime of background monitoring was established prior to commencement and throughout the works for dust & noise monitoring

A Traffic Management plan with agreed with the Local Authority. (Birmingham City Council)

Protection scaffolding to the roadside of buildings, Brindley Building A, 40 Freeth Street (with LIVE Substation) and Crown Cinema were required and permits obtained from Birmingham City Council.

Further consents and protection was required from British Waterways for the LIVE operational Birmingham Canal. Protection resulted in Connell Brothers mooring open steel barges with deflector boards adjacent to the buildings on the canal to contain any debris that may have fallen during the demolition process. Whilst demolition works were being carried out canal side lookouts were posted with 2 way radios to communicate with machine operators, enabling works to cease and canal traffic to pass safely.

Due to the heavy nature of the works previously carried out on the south site (Rolling Mills) there was a requirement for extensive cleaning to the premises prior to demolition. These operations included the removal of oils from electrical equipment some of which were PCB contaminated. Draining down and disposal of contents of the redundant pipelines, tanks and vessels left within the buildings.

There was a requirement to carry out the safe removal and disposal of previously tested contaminated water from the basement of 39 Freeth Street and cleaning of pits, basements and floor slabs to remove oils and greases. Wash off from all the above cleaning operations was contained, collected and disposed of to prevent hazardous waste contaminating the Birmingham Canal.

Further works were required to permanently make safe the underground fuel tanks to the former Petrol Station by Foam filling in accordance with the Petroleum Licensing Regulations.

Once all the environmental clean and preparatory works had been completed and areas passed as clear, soft strip operations commenced with the removal and disposal of all loose fixtures and fittings not affecting the asbestos removal operations.

Asbestos Removal was carried out by our in-house ARCA Trained Operatives. Background/perimeter and personal monitoring was carried out throughout the works by UKAS accredited analysts to ensure release of fibre did note exceed specified control limits. The site was also subjected to an ARCA Audit and no non-conformances noted.

The site was also visited by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) and following inspection of site documentation and visit of the working areas was passed off with a clean bill of health.

Achievement of satisfactory 4 stage clearances for the asbestos removal works to each building allowed for the Soft strip of buildings to commence. Materials arising from the soft strip were segregated into separate waste streams to prevent cross contamination and allow the maximum amount of recycling.

As each building became available after the soft strip the proposed areas for demolition were clearly marked out and segregated and then communicated to the workforce to ensure that no heavy plant encroached onto the suspended slabs or basement areas. The demolition was carried out using full range of wholly owned specialist excavators from 90 tonne high reach machines down to 20 tonne machines assisting with processing and loading.

An agreed demolition sequence followed;-

Area 1- North Site Demolition;

Brindley Wharf, Building A – 3 storey office block with basements,
Building C – Steel framed warehouse & basements, Yes Car Credit, Wiggin Street – Car showrooms, offices and covered car sales area and Building B – 2 storey office block.

Building B was delayed due to the additional work required to clear the building of asbestos containing materials. Connell Brothers were instructed to break out internal brickwork and blockwork within existing enclosures to determine the presence of suspect asbestos materials. It was confirmed following additional extensive exploratory work with White Young Green that asbestos containing materials were present in all cavities, voids and risers on the ground floor of Building B. A safe method of removal was devised and a notification (ASB5) issued to the HSE for the additional work.

Area 2 – South Site Demolition;

298 Icknield Port Road – former Petrol Station & repair garage, 
300 Icknield Port Road – former Rolling Mill with basements, 
Crown Cinema, Icknield Port Road – Former cinema & Bathroom Showroom, 
40 Freeth Street – former Rolling Mill with LIVE Substation retained, 
39 Freeth Street – former Rolling Mill
During the course of the south site demolition, protective scaffold was erected to prevent any damage to the LIVE substation to the premises of 40 Freeth Street. 24 Hour access to the sub station was maintained throughout the works.

The system of tunnels in basement to 40 Freeth Street required permanent sealing to prevent any future access.

All basements and voids were filled with site won material which was crushed to 6F2 grade. The crushed material was sampled and tested to ensure compliance with the specification. In addition batters were installed to any high slabs where there was risk of falls from height.

As each phase of the works was completed the site was re-secured by the installation of new palisade fencing to the perimeter.

At the early stages of the project the client had previously agreed for training days to be held on site for the Hereford & Worcester Fire Service. Connell Brothers liaised with the training providers to ensure that access was available to the proposed areas of training.

This high profile regeneration project was visited, audited and inspected by numerous organisations (Advantage West Midlands, White Young Green, Wilkinson Associates, ARCA, HSE, British Waterways, and Birmingham City Council), with no major non conformances found.

Due to the efforts employed by the entire site team the project was carried pout with no accidents, no injuries to third parties and no damage to adjacent property occupiers.

CLIENT: Advantage West Midlands
PROJECT MANAGER: White Young Green

For further information, please contact Steve Balyski on 0161 925 0606 or steve.b@connellbrothers.co.uk