Take a quick glance through the hoardings on Cornmarket and you’ll be able to see that work is progressing steadily on the redevelopment of the Northgate House site. Our construction partner BAM has been closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and carried out a review in late-March to ensure all necessary measures were in place for its team to work safely under the current restrictions. As a result building work has been able to continue over the past two months and the site is visibly changed.
The pour of the basement slab (which happens in stages) is nearing completion, with the horizontal pipework for the ground source heat pumps being installed progressively as the slab has gone down.
Installation of the liner walls is finished and work has now begun to construct the ground floor slab formwork, which is what you’ll see if you look through the viewing windows in the hoardings. Other work has included the construction of a lift pit, the beginnings of the main staircase framework and preparation of drainage channels.
Over the next few weeks this installation work will continue and the aim is to begin the pour of the ground floor slab in the next 2-3 weeks.
Once completed, this landmark building (designed by MICA) will be home to a new College quad, city centre postgraduate accommodation, retail units, a Digital Hub and inspiring, accessible multi-purpose teaching and learning spaces. It will also allow the College to be more outward-looking, enabling the public to access events, exhibitions and public-engagement talks more easily.
Throughout the project, BAM is making sure that it keeps local business and authorities informed on what’s happening. The current pandemic has not stood in the way of that community engagement, although communications are being done by email rather than in person. BAM is also continuing to work with Oxford Brookes University’s Construction Department, delivering lectures on Temporary Works, Project Management Plans, Logistics and Traffic Management to engineering students via webinars.