Address: 290 Wellington Street, Perth, WA 6000
Project Value: $3.6 Million
Construction Time: 58 weeks
Architect: The Buchan Group Architects
Lotterywest’s centennial gift to the Red Cross gave them the vital funding they needed to proceed with the construction of the 600m2 level three extension to their existing facility.
Through the ABN Group’s charitable relationship with the Red Cross, PACT Construction was invited to submit for the competitively priced tender, which they were delighted to win.
The extension, which was required to integrate perfectly with the existing building, would comprise offices, staff administration facilities and ‘clean’ rooms for blood cord to be taken, kept and cryogenically frozen for use in the future.
According to Jason Kunkler, General Manager of PACT Construction, the company was more than up to the task. “We selected a lightweight concrete structure with structural steel roof because of the applied loads to existing footings, which enabled us to speed up the build process,” he explained.
The high level medical use of the building required extremely strict hygiene control.
“It’s called ‘clean room construction’,” said Mr Kunkler. “We had to design the ceiling space with the finest of detail so that contaminant particles wouldn’t get into the air-conditioning and spread. The ceiling acted as an air plume, so we needed a raft of controls around this. Handling the installation of liquid nitrogen was also an interesting challenge.”
The meticulous extension had to take place while the current building remained fully operational. “We were operating right above people working in the existing building, requiring us to coordinate all noise, vibration and dust so that it didn’t disrupt their duties,” recalled Mr Kunkler.
“We also had to ensure that our project labour and supply deliveries were well coordinated so as to not stop the general public coming in to give blood. We remained in constant communication with the Red Cross so we knew what their activities would be and programmed accordingly.”
Adding to the complexities of the project was its location. The site is bounded by Wellington Street at the front, a Youth Hostel to the west, PTA rail lines to the rear and a major Western Power substation to the east.
“Main roads and public transport routes surrounded the site,” informed Mr Kunkler. “We overcame this through meticulous planning, programming and communication. We also constantly reviewed and monitored our activities so we didn’t affect the other property owners.
“Wellington Street is a very busy street. We employed traffic control as and when required to coordinate deliveries to site. We also worked closely with the City of Perth to direct lane closures when necessary and liaised with the PTA in terms of large crane and material movements on the project.”
The Red Cross project proved a rewarding experience for the client, the community and PACT Construction. “This was a great opportunity to further strengthen our project management and communication skills,” affirmed Mr Kunkler.
“We successfully completed the project, meeting all standards for hygiene and quality on a busy CBD site. There were minimal interruptions to surrounding parties and the extension integrates into the existing building façade really well.”