22 October 2015
The previous building on the site in Lowestoft, was very dilapidated having been vacant for many years and the cost of renovation it was unviable. The new scheme provides 9no. new detached, semi-detached and bungalow dwellings with garaging.
Initially our engineer under took a structural appraisal of the existing building which had previously been a school and prior to that, a manor house. This found that following the historic vandalism of the roof, including the removal of the lead valley, water had penetrated the structure. This was penetration had initially led to rotting of the timber elements such as the roof and floor which, as they began to collapse, destabilised the masonry wall.
The conclusion to the report was that the timber structure was beyond repair and significant sections of the masonry required rebuilding and therefore the client decided that utilising the existing structure was not viable.
As part of the planning process, our engineers carried out a Phase 1 contamination report and when this highlighted potential historic tanks on site, undertook testing and a Phase 1 contamination report. The conclusion of the reports was that there was no notable contamination on which allowed the use of soakaways and permeable paving systems. This eliminated any surface water discharge from the site.
The properties are of traditional construction but included pre cast floors and balconies. Careful detailing was required to avoid thermal bridging between the cold external balcony and the internal floors.