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Archive for March, 2009

Redevelopment of 11 Upper Montagu Street – April Update

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

A further site meeting between Michael Phillips Associates, Elsworth & Bond and Paul Brodie took place on Tuesday 24 March 2009.  The primary purpose of this meeting was to be introduced to the new Conservation Officer at Westminster City Council, Miss Lucy Davis.  Although the ultimate responsibility still rests with Matthew Pendleton, we discussed in detail the modifications that Michael Phillips is proposing with the layout of the property that requires listed building consent.  These primarily deal with the following areas:

Lower Ground Floor
To provide a separate kitchen and an en suite bathroom for bedroom 2 under the existing stone staircase.

Ground Floor
The replanning of the bathroom and shower facility for this two bedroom apartment.

Third Floor
Moving the front door of this apartment onto the third floor and replanning the three bedroom apartment more suitably.

Discussions with Lucy Davis also revolved around fire lining walls and ceilings between each individual flat whilst maintaining lath and plaster walls and ceilings where they exist.  There is always a fine line between maintaining the fabric of this Grade II Listed building and bringing it up to modern day standards.  We also have to consider the cost issue in the time and labour of rebuilding lime plaster walls.  In fact, most of the lime plaster ceilings on the second floor collapsed and we have retained the lath and double tacked fire lined board underside.  This will enable us to fit modern downlighters as a result.

All of the concrete has now been poured into the basement, providing a perfectly flat surface within a one degree tolerance.  All of the brickwork has been hacked back to provide a key for the damp proofing work to be carried out by Renderseal and we expect this work to be completed by the end of April 2009.  All of the rainwater and soil pipes have been air tested and proved to be operating perfectly.

The bay window on the first floor has been entirely demolished and taken away.  We will have curved steel supports manufactured and delivered within the next few weeks.

The curved internal bathroom on the second floor has now been entirely removed and steels put in place to support the new structure.  Once this has been completed, we will use the space for an ensuite shower room and toilet.

Elsworth & Bond continue to find areas of rotten wood which need to be cut out and replaced.  This typically is in areas where old baths and showers used to be located and years of leaking have resulted in rotten timbers.

Although final plans and specifications were agreed with Magnet for the supply and installation of kitchens, Paul and Helen Brodie have spent considerable time with Red Mount Ltd at 151-155 Seymour Place, London W1.  They have provided similar prices but with much more flexibility of design and colour schemes, which we believe will suit this Grade II Listed property.  This is especially true for the kitchen on the first floor which will enable us to incorporate the original arch within it’s design.  The finished designs will be sent to Michael Phillips in order that the electrical layout can be completed for first fixing.

A decision has also been made to finish all of the flooring within the apartments with laminate flooring manufactured by Karndean.  We have chosen Oak Royal RL02 Summer Oak 48″ x 7″ planks which have individual markings, providing a very realistic and durable finish.  The present supply only quotation is £21 per square metre and will require specialist fitting.

A further site meeting has been scheduled for Thursday 2 April 2009.

Project Information: Freeholders: P R & G J Brodie, Bankers: Adam & Co , Accountants: Haslers, Architects: Michael Phillips Associates, Contractors: Elsworth & Bond

Redevelopment of 11 Upper Montagu Street – March Update

Thursday, March 5th, 2009

Progress over the last three or four weeks has been relatively slow as Elsworth & Bond have been concentrating on works to be carried out in the basement.  The number of labourers has increased from seven to fourteen to carry out the labour intensive work of removing over 50 tonnes of rubble in the basement area.  This has been done with the use of kangos and then manually bagging the waste for removal by skips and grab lorries on the ground floor level outside the property.

The right level has now been struck and new rainwater and waste pipes have been laid throughout the basement with the precaution of installing three anti flood valve chambers to the external courtyard, internal hallway and to the front of the property.  These chambers are double sealed and whilst expensive to purchase and install are a necessary precaution in this vulnerable area after heavy downpours. 

 The process of fitting a damp course membrane, steel reinforcement and concrete is progressing, which will enable the builders to finish with a 30/50 cm screed to provide a perfectly flat finish.  This will be carried out once Rentoseal have completely tanked out the basement area which will provide us with a 25 year guarantee for any water ingress that might occur in future.

Due to the digging out, some internal walls had to be removed and rebuilt with engineering bricks to maintain the integrity of the foundations.  The advantage of all this work has enabled us to reconsider the layout of the basement area and incorporate a self contained kitchen and a further ensuite bathroom for Bedroom 2.  This will enhance both the apartment’s value and rental once the development has finished.

We have also agreed with the builder to make use of all the vaults underside of Upper Montagu Street for the meters, water tanks, dustbins & general storage for cleaners, etc. 

Our Architects, Michael Phillips Associates, in conjunction with Paul Brodie, have now completed the electrical layouts for first fix and are presently working on the plumbing layout throughout the building.  The bathroom layouts have also been completed and prices obtained from Marble Arch Bathrooms for the supply of equipment.  We are still finalizing the kitchen layouts and although Magnet have provided detailed plans and pricing, we are obtaining further estimates from Redmount Ltd in Seymour Place, London W1.

Paul Brodie has received prices for the fire alarm and smoke detection system from both EMS Radio Fire & Security Systems and Greg & Co.  The former have recommended a radio system at a cost of £12,000 plus VAT.  It was therefore agreed to instruct Greg & Co to install a hard wire system whilst the property is in it’s present state at half this price and work will commence within the next two weeks.

Soundproofing of the floors has been a continual discussion point and it has now been agreed that further discussions will continue with the Building Control Officer, Jason Dunn, with a view to insulating under the existing boards where plugging does not exist and installing Isocheck 15T on top of the existing floorboards, with a further layer of 6mm plywood and finish with a laminated floor covering which will provide a practical finish throughout the apartments.  This will minimize the height of the threshold between the apartments and the common area, reduce sound transmission between the apartments and reduce costs.

Project Information:  Freeholders:  P R & G J Brodie, Bankers:  Adam & Co , Accountants:  Haslers, Architects:  Michael Phillips Associates, Contractors:  Elsworth & Bond