February Construction Blog
With spring in the air and less than a year before we reopen the doors to King Edward, there is an increased pace on site and time appears to be just flying along! This February’s update on construction includes completion of the elevator shaft, pile foundations for our onsite armatures, and further detailing of attic studios just ahead of our tenant proposal submission deadline.
Since our last update the attic studios have progressed in fine fashion. With framed in walls, roof insulation and skylight frames in place – one can see the vision for these spaces really begin to take shape.
Drywall and plastering has also been initiated, bringing a sense of fresh whiteness to the ceiling, while accentuating the contrast between rough sandstone and exposed brick walls. This new dramatic ceiling-scape against historic building suggest a unique spatial condition like that of a contemporary installation within a historic space.
Recently completed in time for this entry is also a small pièce de ré·sis·tance for these forth floor studios – the cupola skylight framing. After much deliberation, we are pleased that a solution to address the weather-tightness of the roof while also revealing a view up to the historic cupola has been resolved.
With space for gallery exhibitions, informal seating, and a great cupola view above, we recognize that this will certainly become a unique gathering place for our artist community in the years to come.
Reaching new heights has also been achieved for the elevator shaft this month. After initiating the shaft foundations in December, masons have now completed the final 4th floor of concrete block wall earlier this month.
Completing the structure for the elevator now includes a steel hanging beam and concrete pad that encloses the top of the shaft up in the attic. After filming some of the elevator shaft construction, a calm has once again returned to the attic with that portion of the construction complete.
Down in the lower mechanical room where our video captures the new heat recovery unit being installed, we are pleased to have the temporary wall opening now enclosed.
With new concrete foundation wall and support columns, we can now rest easier knowing that the engineered temporary shoring (that for several months held up three stories of stone school above) has been replaced successfully with permanent structure now in place.
With plaster repair and paint scheduled for the mechanical spaces, we are still waiting to unwrap our mechanical air handling “present” from a few months back.
As the new heat recovery unit along with boilers are now in their installed location awaiting connection to the rest of the building, the new electrical main panels are in place also getting ready for action. In the coming weeks we anticipate our new electrical to be energized and our use of temporary generator power to come to an end.
On the exterior of the building while window installation and stone repair eagerly awaits spring weather, there has been other recent change underway. For one, rebar cages for the new piles are now on site awaiting installation to support the new west wing theatre foundations.
Along the exterior of the south facade, scaffold stairs provide a temporary fire escape and recall the historic stairs once providing emergency egress.
These historic stairs on the north side of the school were removed in the 70s but added an interesting character element to the historic school back in their day.
To the north, we now have concrete piles in place for our service enclosure that will house site irrigation equipment to power supply, bike lockup and recycling collection. To the east of the school, piles are now also in place for our east armature that will provide an adaptable structure for arts programming and play enclosure for our Montessori tots.
Early in the month a new concrete pad was also installed where our new north entrance will soon begin to take shape.
With a calendar shift to Spring in the coming weeks, we are certainly looking forward to more greenery on the horizon and to work on the exterior grounds and building to resume once again. Stay tuned for the construction action in the month ahead.