Project Description

An inner-city mixed residential and commercial use building with significant site restrictions.

This project was a triangular shaped block of flats that was being built between a mainline railway that ran into Liverpool Street Station, London and two highways. Due to the proximity of the site to the Network Rail’s assets, including a bridge over one of the highways, all designs and plans had to be approved by Network Rail.

We inherited the design for this project through an alternative tender bid and took the design through our usual vigorous investigation process to challenge all assumptions. Investigation is one of our guarantees to clients. We do not accept the status quo or assume that completed plans won’t have missed anything or there is an alternative solution.

In the case of the Westgate, we found that the original design hadn’t allowed for columns to be stacked up throughout the building; meaning a number of thicker transfer slabs had to be introduced. By slightly adjusting the bedroom walls and tweaking some of the apartment layouts we were able to stack the columns throughout the building and remove 2 of the 3 transfer slabs.

We also noticed that the original design had incorporated a floor screed on top of the concrete slabs. We recommended a power floated floor which not only reduced the loads on each floor by 1.8kN/m2 but is a quicker and more cost-effective process of polishing the existing concrete floor than screeding. It also allowed SWJ to push the limits of an 250mm thick flat slab, reducing the number of columns, pile caps and piles.


Project Team

Client: Notting Hill Genesis

Architect: Sprunt Ltd

Contractor: Places For People (formally Allenbuild)

By using advanced technology to model the design in 3D we found the previous consultants hadn’t allowed for the varying ground levels between the site next door, Netil Market and the new building.  This could have caused an issue if it had only been spotted later on in the project. It could have meant the optimal solution was not possible due to access restriction, however with early identification of the issue, we recommended a simple solution that created a wider patio area for the building so the levels could be maintained throughout. See rendered image of the solution.

SWJ Consulting can usually save clients time and money through an alternative bid by investigating sites thoroughly and challenging existing plans.

Contact the team at SWJ on 01993 255085 or to discuss the needs and constraints of your project.

Rendered image of the solution