Bradford College: Building for the Future

Work on the college’s sophisticated new 50 million complex is well under way

Data & Facts

  • Project
    • New £ 50 million building for the Bradford College
  • Contractor
    • BAM Construction, Leeds, UK
  • Subcontractor
    • GRKC LLP, Wetherby, UK
  • MEVA Systems
    • Wall formwork system Mammut for walls, shaft cores and columns
    • H20 girders and shaft platform girders
    • KLK 230 climbing scaffolds
    • MEP props and customised table forms
    • MEVA FormSet safety mesh
  • Formwork engineering
    • MEVA Formwork Systems Ltd., Tamworth, UK

A challenging project that asks for versatile formwork

Bradford College is currently in the process of creating a further multi-million pound campus in the heart of Bradford. It includes a new 6 to 7-storey building, which will provide an innovative and technology rich learning environment for students. The eco-friendly campus design will have a light and airy feel and will be harmonious to the large-scale mill and warehouse buildings that characterise parts of Bradford.

The new building is the second phase of Bradford College’s Accommodation Strategy which aims at achieving efficiencies by reducing both the number of sites and overall quantity of space that it occupies. The College’s new build will replace the Westbrook, McMillan, Appleton and Old Buildings. The Westbrook Building will be demolished and the remaining buildings will either be sold or put to other use. The new building measures 23,000 m² in size and is built on the College’s existing City Centre site and on the site of the former Randall Well Building.

A challenging project that asks for versatile formwork
Work on the new building commenced in summer 2012 with the pile caps being prepared ahead for early start of the reinforced concrete cores. Due to a constant change in the floor areas and architectural voids in the slab, the falsework solution needed to be both flexible and user friendly. Reinforced Concrete Frame specialist GRKC LLP chose MEVA as suppliers for the walls, columns and slabs and following early involvement the contractor was able to add his ideas to the many standard solutions available. Logistically, ­deliveries needed to be scheduled in to avoid blocking the limited preparation area and access road.

Heavy-duty system Mammut for walls, columns and cores
MEVA’s flagship product Mammut was flexible enough to offer solutions for the construction of the retaining walls, cores and columns with many of the panels being recycled into new areas of the project as the site progressed. Mammut wall formwork is able to achieve pour pressures of 97 kN/m², meaning faster pouring of the walls was possible. The core walls utilised the KLK 230 platforms to enable the formwork to be attached to the previous wall via cast-in anchors. The internal formwork rested on the internal shaft platform beams which are telescopic to adapt to the various sizes of cells. H20 beam timber girders are used to complete the platform and enable the entire area to be secured for worker access.

Post tensioned slabs formed with standard table forms
4200 m² of post tensioned slabs per level were formed using standard table forms built on site by GRKC LLP. This solution enabled the tables to be built complete with edge protection at ground level – inclusive of the 3-ply hire boards – giving a total area of 12.5 m² which is then lifted into place on the slab with the MEVA supplied C-Hook. The column layout somewhat dictated the size of the tables used. For architectural reasons most of the soffit was to be exposed and sub­sequently the tables where overlaid with plywood. MEVA supplied ME and MEP props to support the table forms and when combined with the SKK folding prop head allowed the complete assembly to be removed via C-Hook without the need for ­dismantling of the props. This also accommodated the many upstand walls found around the perimeter edge, which many traditional systems cannot accommodate.

The project teams of GRKC LLP and MEVA worked closely together through­out all stages of the project to help deliver the project within the timetable.

And here‘s what Steve Scales, General Foreman GRKC  LLP, says: “Appointing MEVA Formwork Systems Ltd. as designers & suppliers of Formwork & Falsework to this project has enabled us to achieve the very high specification of concrete finishes required. The project is now being recognised locally for the quality finish delivered and I would have no hesitation in using MEVA on future projects.”