During the construction of BAA’s new Terminal 5 at Heathrow, we were approached to advise on the construction of four ramps at the rear of the car park. Each ramp, 23m in diameter and 17m high, wrapped around large vent shafts from the underground station. Our Client, Malling Products Ltd, part of the Laing O’Rourke Group, asked us to review the preliminary design with the project team. This design incorporated very tall precast concrete shaft panels that we identified could be difficult to crane into place, so we proposed casting a ring of wall panels for each storey height. Each ring was split into four segments approximately 10 tonnes each so they were easier to handle. Working with our team partners Practech Design Studio Ltd and the Contractor’s design managers, we derived a method to tie the segments together and then erect the architectural columns, parapets and ramp deck panels in sequence around the shaft for each of the five stories. The extensive discussions and planning for this project all paid off as the four ramps were erected safely and within the challenging program.
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