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Archive for May, 2009

Redevelopment of 11 Upper Montagu Street – June Update

Friday, May 29th, 2009
Now that the scaffolding has been in place for a number of weeks, we have had a thorough inspection of all of the windows at the property.  The Conservation Officer has requested that we repair as much as we can, but as shown on the picture, the state of the sashes in many cases requires complete replacement.  Furthermore, the window boxes on the third floor (especially in the rear) need replacing as well.
Years of neglect have also resulted in some of the cills splitting with a need to replace these with cast concrete facsimiles.  To the rear of the property, a lot of the brickwork needs repointing and Elsworth and Bond are presently routing this out in preparation for repair. 
The metal railings to the front first floor and ground floor have been ground down and rubbed free of any rust and coated with red oxide paint.  There is the need to appoint a specialist to repair these where necessary.

The rear extension has now been built with a flat roof extension including two new velux windows to provide extra light into the kitchen.  We have continued to maintain very good working relations with our neighbours at Beverston Mews, who had been concerned about the noise and disruption caused by major building works.
Work in the basement is continuing with Renderseal starting the application of Sika cement to the walls.  Their first job was to prepare the brickwork with a needle gun in order that the new plaster would adhere to it’s surface.  Once this had been completed, Elsworth & Bond will apply a final coat of Unibond Plaster finish.  Work in the three vaulted ceilings under the road has not been as straightforward as there has been a great deal of damp penetration.  However, a period of warm, bright sunshine will assist us in drying these areas out for the Sika application.
Structural work on the ground floor is now completed and the new raised bathroom floor is in place.  We have also started to rebuild the brickwork for the new Georgian window to the rear bedroom and are waiting to hear from the Conservation Officer to approve our final design before completing the finished brickwork.
The majority of all the multi finish plastering has now been completed on the first, second and third floors and Elsworth & Bond have instructed a specialist contractor to complete the lath and lime plaster.  This process is much slower and more expensive but is a requirement of the Conservation Officer to restore the internal fabric of the property on a like for like basis.  They will also be assigned with the installation repair of all the cornicing at the property.
In certain areas of the property, we have had to take up flooring to re-route waste pipes as the original location adjacent to the fireplaces is impractical and would result in unnecessary boxing to the corners of some of the rooms.  We have also routed ducting pipes through floors and ceilings to the rear of the property as it is important that all the kitchen areas have sufficient extraction as in the most part they are American style facilities in living areas.
Now that the first fix of electrics (except the basement) are complete, we have installed all TV, telephone, smoke detectors and radiator points.  The plumbers have also finished most of the first fixing to the bathrooms on the first, second and third floors.
There is no doubt that Elsworth & Bond are moving along swiftly with this project and I counted at least twenty contractors working on the site at any one time.  There is a real sense that we have broken the back of this contract, and with the summer months ahead of us, are looking forward to working on the finishes and returning this Grade II Listed Property to its former glory.



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 – May Update

Friday, May 1st, 2009
The building work on this project is progressing well, and whilst we thought that all of the structural work had been completed, we are faced with new challenges with this Grade II Listed Building. 
By exposing a number of beams, we have found more evidence of woodworm, which inevitably results in new steels or timbers.  
Removing the existing Georgian window on the ground floor has also revealed rusted steels and poor workmanship which Elsworth & Bond will be reconstructing to modern day standards.  The result of this and many more areas of poor building integrity is increasing the construction costs and time of this complex building and refurbishment project.
The property has now been completely scaffolded, which will enable the builders to commence work on the exterior of the property. 
A meeting is being held with the Architects, Michael Phillips & Associates, and the Conservation Officer at Westminster City Council to decide on the style and finish of the windows throughout.  In preparation for this, all of the existing cast iron water downpipes and soil pipes have been removed.  A consignment of 2,500 original stock bricks has been delivered for the building of the rear extension.
Paul Brodie has agreed to enter into a Licence Agreement for the owners of the properties in Beverston Mews, to allow Unique Scaffolding to erect their equipment over the side entrance and rear elevation of 11 Upper Montagu Street.  This provides us with a period of twelve weeks to carry out the necessary work by Elsworth & Bond.
Although all of the internal fireplaces are being bricked up, we have had all of the chimneys swept for safety reasons, which revealed further structural movement that has now been repaired.  The lower ground floor has now been structurally completed and the electricians will shortly be chasing out for commencement of their first fix.  Once this is done, Renderseal will be instructed to carry out all of their tanking work, which will provide a water free environment for the apartment.
The electricians have completed their first fix on the first, second and third floors and are now starting on the ground floor.  Paul Brodie has decided that all of the downlighters in the property will be 12 volt low voltage dimmable fixtures.
The plasterer, Jim Briscoe, has been instructed to commence work with the new cornicing on Monday 11 May 2009 and it will be his responsibility to repair any existing cornicing that has been damaged, which is a requirement of our Listed Building Consent.  We are, where possible, plasterboarding and plastering with multi finish on the walls and ceilings, however there are some parts where again, our Listed Building Consent demands repair and replacement of lath and lime plaster.

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