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CAT B Refurbishment

Exchequer Court, located in London, underwent a CAT B refurbishment project with a total value of £3.0 million. The project was carried out by Artemis Interiors, the main contractor, and Mala Engineering who were the Mechanical, Electrical, and Public Health Services (ME&PH) contractor in which Proton Built Environment undertook the mechanical and public health sectors of the project. The client for the project was AmTrust International, who appointed the contractors to undertake a full CAT B Design and Build fit out of approximately 20,000 sq ft of commercial office space across the 1st, 3rd, and 5th floors. The project team faced challenges in managing noise and maintaining building function as the refurbishment took place in a live building with a reception area below, requiring close coordination with the building management team and client/landlord to implement solutions.

Image by Zach Heiberg

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EXCHEQUER COURT
LONDON

Overview:

Exchequer Court, located in London, underwent a CAT B refurbishment project with a total value of £3.0 million. The project was carried out by Artemis Interiors, the main contractor, and Mala Engineering who were the Mechanical, Electrical, and Public Health Services (ME&PH) contractor in which Proton Built Environment undertook the mechanical and public health sectors of the project. The client for the project was AmTrust International, who appointed the contractors to undertake a full CAT B Design and Build fit out of approximately 20,000 sq ft of commercial office space across the 1st, 3rd, and 5th floors. The project team faced challenges in managing noise and maintaining building function as the refurbishment took place in a live building with a reception area below, requiring close coordination with the building management team and client/landlord to implement solutions.

Project Scope:

The project involved the conversion of the office space from CAT A to CAT B standard, creating cellular office spaces, a reception area, refreshment bar, tech bar, meeting rooms, various tea points, room booking system, and flexible working booths. In addition to the fit out, the project also included the construction of welfare amenities such as shower facilities in the basement, as well as the refurbishment of all WC facilities on the 3rd and 5th floors, which required initial strip out of fixtures and finishes and preliminary demolition works. Specialist design details were also incorporated, including the installation of 5 TopBrewer Scanomat smart-tech coffee machines controlled through an iPad or iPhone, a cloak cupboard, and a feature wall with full height wardrobes with doors on soft close hinges. A bespoke design was implemented in the social hub, featuring a black slatted ceiling system and acoustic ceiling slots on the Ground floor.

Challenges Faced:

The project team faced several challenges during the refurbishment project. One of the main challenges was to sustain business as usual in a live building with a reception area below. This required careful coordination and planning to minimise disruptions to the building's occupants and visitors, as well as managing noise levels to ensure minimal disturbance. Additionally, the team had to maintain the building's function, including integrated Building Management System (BMS) controls and life safety systems, while carrying out the refurbishment works.

Solutions Implemented:

To overcome the challenges, the project team worked closely with the building management team and the client/landlord to develop a detailed plan for noisy works and agreed upon a comprehensive M&E changeover program. Temporary life safety systems were also implemented to ensure compliance with safety regulations during the construction phase. The team employed careful coordination and communication to minimise disruptions to the building's occupants and visitors, and implemented measures to manage noise levels, such as using noise barriers and scheduling noisy works during off-peak hours. Close collaboration and regular communication with the client/landlord and building management team were maintained throughout the project to address any challenges in real-time and implement effective solutions.

Outcome:

Despite the challenges faced, the project was successfully delivered on time and on budget. The CAT B refurbishment of Exchequer Court was completed within the 21-week duration, and the final result met the client's requirements for a high-quality fit out, including the construction of welfare amenities and specialist design details. The project team's close coordination with the building management team and client/landlord, as well as their proactive approach to managing noise and maintaining building function, contributed to the successful outcome of the project. The refurbished office spaces now provide a modern and functional working environment for the building's occupants, meeting the client's expectations.

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