We have received a statement from the council about the preparatory works for the new building on Coburg Crescent:
“In May 2018, following concerns about existing soil conditions at the Coburg Crescent site, a further round of soil investigations were commissioned. The resulting survey has now been received by Farrans, our preferred contractor.
The apparent presence of ground water within the soil profile assumed by the previous survey findings necessitated a very robust design response from the structural engineer, meaning deeper piles below ground and the need to utilise waterproof concrete. This in turn generated concerns around the cost of the project and negative impact on length of the construction period.
The locations for the trial pit and boreholes for the new survey were carefully considered, given the perceived higher water table level around the southern/ Palace Road boundary.
Very positively the latest set of results indicate that the moisture encountered higher up in the soil profile is not present at lower depths, where the piled foundations will be formed.
The main contractor will now review this latest set of results and develop their design for the building structure accordingly.
We believe that this will result in a less robust approach to sub-structure design, without the need for waterproofing, which in turn should, reduce the time needed for delivery of the works, thereby lessening any disruption to local residents and also having a positive cost impact.
Further information will therefore be available in August once the design has been revised.”
Construction of the new building was originally planned to start in winter 2017, so is already well behind schedule.