Royal Brompton Hospital Diagnostic Imaging Centre, Chelsea, London
Royal Brompton Hospital Diagnostic Imaging Centre, Chelsea, London: construction of four-level diagnostic unit, completed in 143 weeks.
Client: Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Foundation Trust
Contract: NEC, design and build
About the Project
Below ground, in the new double basement that took this diagnostic unit scheme as far below the surface as it rises above it, was where all Matt Davis’s big project challenges happened.
With the basement sandwiched between two existing buildings, Matt had to support the live hospital buildings as well as the hospital’s sole access road while constructing it. When it became clear that a much larger portion of the existing building to which the new-build would link would have to be demolished than first thought, he advanced the piling and pile caps ahead of demolition so a new portal steel frame could take the load of the entire existing building.
In a quiet, high-end residential area, Matt installed preformed sheet piles for the basement using static loading without noise and vibration. His early deployment of a tower crane allowed the bottom two levels of propping to be lifted in. The crane’s steel frame had to be progressively braced as the surrounding earth that supported it was excavated for the basement.
Less than a week following the installation of three MRI scanners in the upper basement, he faced disaster when the newly finished area was engulfed by a flood. It was a desperate moment, but Matt remained calm and led a storming recovery. Within an hour, all 33,000 litres of standing water had been removed, and a full-blown remediation programme was under way.