Key FactsThis project presented a number of challenges, namely:
- Extensive asbestos contamination throughout the tower block
- Close proximity of adjacent housing and busy road.
Prior to any works on site taking place a large scale environmental clean of the entire building needed to be carried out to remove the extensive asbestos contamination that existed on each floor as a result of the vandalism. (CBL hold a 3 year HSE issued Asbestos Licence, all asbestos removal works were planned, managed and completed out in – house by CBL’s specialist removal team in accordance with the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012.)
Once the initial asbestos decontamination was completed the works remove the remaining asbestos items were programmed efficiently to allow soft stripping to continue in areas unaffected by the asbestos works therefore enabling the works to progress in a timely manner.
Alongside the asbestos removal and soft strip phase CBL arranged and facilitated the disconnection, diverting and decommissioning of the existing electrical substation (located in the ground floor of the tower block) and the disconnection of the gas supplies to both buildings.
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Once services disconnection, asbestos removal and soft stripping works were completed the demolition of the structures could be undertaken. Tameside Court was demolished using CBL’s specialist high reach Caterpillar 375 demolition excavator. This machine weighs approximately 90 Tonnes and is capable of working at a height of 36 meters. The Caterpillar 375 was equipped with a concrete pulveriser attachment to enable it to progressively demolish the structure by crunching the reinforced concrete frame insitu into small pieces which were allowed to cascade into the exclusion / drop zone.
The Four in Hand Public House was demolished used a 40 Ton demolition excavator with concrete pulveriser attachment.
Both excavators were fitted with a dust suppression system that allows water to be sprayed at the tool face, this was supplemented by the use of a ground based dust boss (large water cannon) to further supress any dust generated by the demolition works.
The iconic Tameside Court Tower block was being demolished as part of the next phase of the dynamic regeneration programme being carried out in Hattersley which to date has seen £200 invested by partners Tameside Council, Peak Valley Housing Association, Symphony Housing Group and The Homes and Communities Agency. Since 2001 as part of the ongoing regeneration of the Hattersley Estate, CBL have carried out the demolition of over 500 houses and buildings throughout the area which has made way for the construction of modern housing and local amenities.
CBL had previously successfully demolished seven tower blocks, still the largest ever demolition project awarded by the City of Manchester. The tower blocks were demolished employing varying methods of demolition. One block was deconstructed floor by floor, and four blocks demolished using explosives, (the largest simultaneous explosive demolition to be ever carried out in the UK, with 1,200 residents evacuated from 405 properties). The remaining two blocks were demolished using a specialist high reach demolition excavator – the same process used to demolish the final block, Tameside Court.
The demolition of the last tower block marked another historic milestone in the rebirth of the area and to mark the occasion PVHA hosted a Facebook competition, the winner, a local resident aged 78 who had lived on the estate for more than 25 years won the competition and sounded the air horn that signified the start of the demolition works.
Once demolition had been completed to the top of the ground floor slab, excavators equipped with hydraulic breakers were used to break out the ground floor slab and remove the foundations some of which were 4.0 m below surrounding ground level.
Landscaping works included the removal of a large reinforced concrete retaining wall and the removal of all tarmaced and areas of hard standing within the site.
CBL’s mobile crusher was used to crush the arisings to a 6F2 specification; the materials were reused on site to backfill any voids that resulted from the removal of the foundations. Upon completion the site was capped and finished with the site won crushed material which was grading to the contours of the surrounding area.