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    London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham

    Value: Group £19.65m
    Location: London, W11
    Form of Contract: NEC Option B
    Duration: November 2009 - Sept 2011

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Project Brief

Breyer Group were successfully appointed by Hammersmith and Fulham Homes to carry out repairs, overcladding, environmental improvements and associated works to Norland House, Poynter House and Stebbing House, located on the Edward Woods Estate in West London.

The rest of the Edward Woods Estate has been overhauled over the past decade, with the three hard-to-tackle high-rise blocks left until last.

Scope of Work

The aim of this improvement scheme was to improve the living environment for residents in the blocks, and was part of the ongoing regeneration on the estate, benefiting the community as a whole. It was anticipated that the works would not only improve the living conditions of residents and appearance of the blocks, it would also deliver reductions in energy consumption and costs, and hence CO2 emissions.

The scheme incorporated the largest building-integrated renewable energy array in London, generating solar and wind-powered electricity for the buildings’ communal facilities and greatly reduced CO2 emissions attributed to the buildings. Value was added to the towers through the creation of four super-insulated low-carbon flats at each tower’s roof level, and the conversion of under-utilised ground level storage areas into office space for rent to local charitable organisations.

Edward Woods Estate is situated in the north east corner of the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham. The estate provides 754 homes comprising 226 maisonettes and flats in 4 five-storey walk-up podium blocks (Boxmoor, Mortimer, Hume and Swanscombe Houses) and 528 flats in the three tower blocks which are the subject of this Project (Poynter, Stebbing and Norland Houses).

Norland, Poynter and Stebbing Houses are each 24 storey identical blocks (of which 22 storeys contain dwellings), and constructed in the 1960s. The blocks comprise insitu reinforced concrete frames, with cavity flank walls with block inner leaf and brickwork outer leaf, concrete private balconies, PVCu double glazed windows (installed in the early 1990s), all under flat roofs.

Each of the three tower blocks consists of 176 existing homes comprising 44 bedsits, 88 one-bedroom flats and 44 two-bedroom flats. There are currently 466 tenanted and 62 leaseholder homes. Each tower block contains a concierge at ground level.

The works involved within this improvement project included:

  • Substantial but not total overcladding of the three blocks in order to transform their exterior appearance and provide insulation gains - Frame, insulate and overclad the north and south gable ends of the tower blocks, including the light brick return elevations, with a proprietary insulated render system. This work included the removal of the outer leaf of dark brickwork to north and south gable ends of each block.
  • The replacement of the existing glazing to the “slot” facades and installation of double glazed curtain walling including AOVs. Overclad with panels the existing mosaic panels on east and west elevations of the tower blocks.
  • The introduction of renewable energy sources, including wind turbines on the roofs of the blocks and large photovoltaic solar arrays on the south facing vertical facades, in order to generate electricity for services provided by the landlord on the Estate. Structurally strengthening the existing concrete roofs to the two stair towers in each block, so as to provide adequate structural support to the wind turbines.
  • The reduction of wind turbulence at the base of the blocks through the construction of a new canopy and wind barrier to the entrance of each new office unit at the base of each block.
  • Enclosing and bringing into use as office accommodation the underutilised void areas at ground level of the blocks (three in Norland and two in Poynter and Stebbing) including: removal of existing brickwork; installation of glazing etc; installation of roller shutters; internal finishes and provision of services.
  • The addition of new residential high-quality, energy- efficient penthouse flats at roof level on the blocks.
  • Improving the appearance of refuse/recycling bin areas.
  • Replacement of existing electric night storage space
  • heating in bedsit units with new gas fired central
  • heating including new condensing boilers.
  • Demolition of the existing canopies to the main entrances to the three blocks and construction of new.
  • External landscaping and tree planting.
  • Provision of new integral digital television reception system to the three blocks.
  • Renewal of the existing landlords electrical installations.
  • General external repairs and redecorations to thethree blocks and internal communal area repairs andredecorations to Stebbing and Norland Houses.
  • Renewal of lift cabins.

The visual impact of the Edward Woods Estate as a major West London landmark is huge, and these improvement works to the tower blocks have transformed their impact further. The installation of photovoltaic panels to the south-facing facades have comprised the largest of its kind in London. Overall, both we, and LBH&F consider this scheme to be a flagship regeneration project for the borough.