Clarence Park Access Ramp & Steps Replacement

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Progress update 25th September 2017

Clarence Park’s replacement steps and ramp are now fully open.

The structure was partially opened for public use on Tuesday 12th September when the stairs were made temporarily available whilst the ramp was being completed. 

The last remaining work to the stairs was completed on Saturday 23rd September, and the paint left to dry for 24 hours before being fully opened.  

There is still some tidying-up work to do to remove contractor’s tools and materials but this will not affect use or access.

A new planting scheme for the embankment around the structure is currently being designed, this will then be considered by the project’s Task & Finish group . It is anticipated that planting work would then take place over the winter period.

Progress update 8th September 2017

The new steps and ramp could not be opened on 7th September 2017 as had been expected.

Modifications to the columns have now been completed, although this took slightly longer than anticipated. Unfortunately, re-fabrication of a section of ramp is now necessary, which will delay its opening by about 10 days because of the manufacturing process.

The good news is that we will be able to open the steps in advance of the ramp. The contractor has brought in additional steel erectors and ground workers to speed up the remaining operations to allow the steps to be safely opened.

The contractor is now shaping, digging out and preparing the area at the bottom of the steps to ensure it will tie into existing paths in the park. This will be ready for its bituminous surfacing on Saturday 9th September. Final preparation of the hand rail to remove sharp edges will be completed on Monday 11th September. 

A new Oak gate and supporting sections of fence are to be installed at the top of the steps. Whilst a delivery date has not yet been confirmed, this will not further delay opening of the steps. If necessary a temporary gate will be installed until the new gate is fitted.

Progress update 25th August 2017

Most of the components for the new steps and ramp have now arrived on site.

Unfortunately, a design issue was identified soon after the stairs section was assembled. A modification to the columns is necessary, so this has been designed and is currently in the manufacturing process.  

The good news is that the build is continuing on site, so the supporting structural skeleton has been bolted together. Steel erectors are now focusing on fixing bracing members to provide more rigidity. The next phases will see the modifications installed, and the steps, ramp surface, and handrails all fixed into position.

The final phase will be the clearing away of construction debris and making any repairs to the footpath where it abuts the new structure.

Subject to weather conditions and assuming no further unforeseen events, the new structure should be completed on 7th September.

Progress update 3rd August 2017

The drilling operation is taking longer than anticipated but the drilling gang will battle through the unseasonal wet weather and finish the last holes by Friday 4th August.

As a consequence, delivery of the main steel sections was put back and temporarily stored in the factory to minimise the chance of damage on site. 

The good news is the steel sections have now begun to arrive in Clarence Park. Steel erectors have also started installing some of the supporting columns, as well as the supporting steel work for the stairs. 

This progress is much more visible and users of the park will soon see new stairs and ramps emerging from the ground.

Subject to weather conditions and assuming no further unforeseen events, the new structure should be completed by the middle of August.

Delivery vehicles, construction equipment and operatives will continue to access the work area through the Park. Temporary boards have been laid on the grass to lessen the damage caused by heavy vehicles delivering the steel. Our primary consideration remains the safety of park users, so I will continue to make regular visits to site to monitor safety, progress and standards.

A further update note will be posted as the steel structure nears completion.

Progress update 19th July 2017

Work to replace the steps and ramp in Clarence Park is progressing well.

The Contractor has dug 45 holes of varying depth and width and pumped concrete into each to form the foundations. Despite the steep incline of the bank which made excavation work very tricky, and finding an unexpected live electricity cable, the Contractor managed to complete this phase in 12 days. 

The concrete was then left to partially cure for 7 days. The contractor’s surveyor has been setting out bolt hole positions on each foundation pad, and a team is now following behind drilling the 200+ holes in readiness to bolt down the supporting legs.

Steel work will start to be delivered later this week, and then the steps and ramp will begin to be constructed.

Subject to weather conditions and assuming no further unforeseen events, the new structure should be completed by the beginning of August.

Construction vehicles, personnel and materials will continue to access the work area through the Park; this route is being managed very well by the Contractor, with park users safety being our primary consideration.  I and colleagues will continue to make regular visits to site to monitor safety, progress and standards.

We will however let you know if there is likely to be any significant variation to the programme I have set out above.

Progress update 21st June 2017

The design of the foundations and steel work for the ramp and steps is completed. The steel work is now being fabricated in sections to form the structure and will be galvanised, ready for installation. Ground preparation, excavation and casting of the concrete foundations are due to start on 24th June with these works taking 
approximately 10 days to complete. The steel work will be delivered in early July, in sections, because of access restrictions, and will then be assembled on site and installed. This operation will take a minimum of 2 weeks to complete. Subject to weather and assuming no unforeseen events, the new structure should be completed by the end of July.

Progress update 4th May 2017

The existing wooden structure has now been removed, Officers have met the principal contractor on site and the route of the new steps and ramp have been laid out. Next week structural engineers will be on site to carry out bank stability calculations, prior to the offsite design and fabrication of the steel structure. It is anticipated that the assembly of the structure should start in early July for completion at the end of July early August depending on the weather conditions. 

Progress update 26th April 2017

A contract has been awarded for the replacement of the current access ramp and steps at the St Albans City Station / Hatfield Road entrance into Clarence Park.

Work has now started on the removal of the existing wooden structure.

Further updates will be posted regarding the planned work and the schedule once this has been finalised.

Date of last review: 25 September 2017