The part-demolition of an existing Tesco unit to allow the construction of Primark and Co-op shells; works also included alterations to an SU2 unit, retention of two existing sub-stations and formation of a service access tunnel.

The Brief

The scheme aimed to bring significant regenerative benefits to Walsall, transforming the town centre into a premier shopping destination boasting major retailers such as Primark. Moreover, Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council believed that the employment opportunities created would act as a catalyst for further investment, attracting new high-profile tenants while securing the continued support of existing organisations e.g. Debenhams.

Our Response

As Pick Everard has a wealth of experience within NEC3 Project Management, their preferred contract management solutions, Sypro NEC3, was implemented across this project. A significant number of risks were identified pre-contract; risk workshops were carried out with the contractor as part of the pre-construction service agreement activities, establishing who was best placed to manage these risks and developing action plans to mitigate these. Budgets were set against all risks highlighted, which were reviewed and formed part of the monthly reporting process throughout. Any risks identified were raised as early warning notices on Sypro and reviewed initially by telephone/conference calls, then via weekly meetings attended by all.

Key facts

  • Contractor fulfilled tenant liaison role to ensure any issues were addressed quickly
  • Significant events occurred which impacted time and cost: asbestos was found despite a clean build certificate being issued, chloride was detected in Co-op first-floor slab resulting in need for cathodic protection, delays by electricity supplier and lack of site information on existing structures and services.
  • Early notification, collaborative discussion, decision-making and re-programming minimised delays to achieve target completion dates.
  • Identifying site-wide observations/concerns/issues early to promote collaborative working, ensuring these were addressed as efficiently as possible. This was achieved through the NEC supervisor undertaking weekly inspections and providing reports to all parties within 48 hours of inspection.
  • An in-house technical assurance team was appointed with a technical lead to guide the client from inception.

Project Information

Client: Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council

Value: £6,000,000