Harris Lamb Blog – 18th Jan



Jason Brooks

18th January, 2011.

Being Able to Demolish

By Jason Brooks, Building Consultancy Department

‘The art of demolition’.  It is a part of life as a Building Surveyor and Project Manager that we get involved in all aspects of the building process.  In many cases the start of a projects timeline is site preparation and demolition.

The route provides 27 miles of privately funded and operated highway from Coleshill in North Warwickshire to Cannock in South Staffordshire.  The road carried an average 47,592 vehicles on weekdays in the summer of 2010  and from my experience of the Toll Road, private cars form the vast majority of the traffic.
The M6 Toll Road was identified as an “M6 Relief Road” to alleviate congestion on the M6, which is something many people feel has not been adequately addressed and, with one way car tolls at peak periods of £5, this is something to be debated elsewhere.
From a property perspective the benefits have probably been more tangible than the traffic improvements.  The southern end of the Toll Road and the ‘T1’ junction close to J4 M6 coincided with some of the latter stage build projects at the Hams Hall National Distribution Park, a 430 acre business park which ranks as one of the best such employment parks in the UK.
Junctions T2 and T3 appear to largely function as commuter gateways for those living to the south and east of Sutton Coldfield from where national motorway access has improved considerably and the effect on house prices has been positive in these areas.
The access to Junctions T4 and T5 at Weeford and Lichfield has given a stimulus to residential and commercial property markets alike with possibly the biggest winner being the 300 acre Fradley Park, where some of the largest distribution buildings in the area have been built with more to come.  We are marketing the new Fradley Prologis Scheme with 70 acres and units to 700,000 sq ft available to be built and which will be on site shortly.
T6 Burntwood, a forgotten part of the West Midlands conurbation 10 years ago for business and for new build residential perhaps, has not quite been “transformed” but certainly “considerably improved”.
T7 & T8 and the Cannock access points to the Toll Road provided the catalyst that has helped to promote the former coal mining town into a first rate employment location.  Significant development of a cross section of employment type accommodation from offices to manufacturing and warehouse operations has bought vitality to Cannock which I think is largely due to the Toll Road passing the town’s doorstep.
For those drivers who still regularly sit stationary on the M6 between junction 8 and 10 bemoaning the state of the traffic and whether the Toll Road has done the job it promised, the tangible benefits are probably in property as much as traffic counts.  The commercial new build and viability of new schemes along the entire length of the Toll Road has been transformed since the road was built.
For the positive effects of the Toll Road you may look little further than the development and opportunity is has created alongside it.


Coming just days after well known West Midlands Company:- Armoury Demolition & Re-Cycling collapsed into Administration nothwithstanding their having a string of high profile projects such as the New Library of Birmingham in Centenary Square, it seems a little unfair to be talking about demolition projects and how we are seeing a number of sites being cleared in a positive fashion readying plots for regeneration and new build.  However we are seeing signs of developers and site owners readying themselves by having sites cleared.

During 2010 and into 2011 we have had a steady flow of demolition contracts we have had to specify and appoint contractors for.  From 10 acres in Worksop where we had the Nottinghamshire Contractors, Bloom, clear the site of nearly 200,000 sq. ft.  We also have contractors starting on site in Poole, Dorset in the next month to start clearance work of the Old Poole Pottery Factory which is over 60,000 sq. ft.

We work very closely with clients to match their aims and objectives as there can be a variety of demolition solutions depending on plans for a sites onward use.  Buildings are sometimes cleared to provide mitigation of rates liability with little further thought on site development plans, in these cases a cost effective solution is to take down the upper building structure only and leaving slabs and yards in place which in many cases can help onward potential for open storage uses.  Planning for demolition works involves liaison not only with the client team but potentially with neighbouring occupiers and the Local Authority.

Full demolition and remediation can be provided when client’s plans are more advanced for onward development and rebuilding on site.  In these cases we work closely alongside ground and site remediation experts who dovetail with the specialisms that demolition contractors bring.

Choosing and appointing the right contractor is key in delivering satisfactory and timely demolition prospects for clients.

If you need advice on demolition or site clearance projects please contact one of the Building Consultancy team.

Jason can be reached on 0121 455 9455 or via email: jason.brooks@harrislamb.com

Disclaimer: The views expressed within this article or weblog (‘blog’) are the personal views of the contributors and authors only and do not necessarily reflect the views of any named companies or thier employees.