Development update November 2016
Progress to date…
Well the best news is that the building works are on schedule meaning that we see the removal of the scaffolding towards the end of March 2017 and handover the units to the new tenants. New stores should be ready to open their doors to the public during May.
The area around the hoarding still feels a little dark still so plans are afoot to further increase the lighting levels very soon.
As part of the improvement works automatic door sensors have been installed on both sets of doors leading to the upper mall from the car park making access easier for customers with pushchairs and wheelchairs.
Behind the hoarding
Demolition behind the hoarding is now almost complete with only a few small areas of flooring remaining. The reinforced concrete columns and lift structure have been completely cleared to allow for the construction of the new concourse and retail units.
The steel work which forms the structure for the new lifts and walkways has been installed. The photos give an idea of what the newly configured space will look like. Steels have been installed and tin decking which has been reinforced to form a surface on which to pour concrete for the walkways.
Pouring concrete is noisy work and the contractors have been working to ensure that any pours are completed before 9am to ensure that staff and customers are not inconvenienced.
The escalator openings in the old Waterstones unit have now been infilled and the lower balcony where Costa Coffee external seating was situated has been raised to bring it level to the rest new mall flooring.
Once the concrete has been pour has been completed, the next stage of the works will be to construct the blockwork surrounding the new lift shafts. The blockwork dividing the units will be built at a later stage to ensure that the contractors have as much room as possible to move their equipment around behind the hoarding.
In January, the contractor will be lifting the existing mall floor tiles and screed at upper mall level in readiness for laying the new mall flooring. This work will need to be carried out in stages in order to minimise disruption to retailers and visitors.
Once the new shop fronts have been installed at ground floor the mall floor tiles will be laid behind the hoarding. Once the contractor has laid as much tiling as possible, the hoarding will come down and be replaced with a low level hoarding. This hoarding will be used to create walkways while the contractor carried out tiling in the public areas. Hoarding removal scheduled for the end of March 2017.