Kennet Walk – External Refurbishment
Keegans was appointed to provide contract administration services for the management of external repairs, redecoration and window and balcony/patio door replacement to the rear elevations of two post-2000 residential blocks in Reading, Berkshire. All flats were privately Let so they required Section 20 Consultation and the board of directors of the residents’ committee had to be kept closely involved.
We were involved from early on in the project so were able to produce detailed drawings of the block and submitted the planning applications for the window replacement. We tendered the works and awarded the contract to the successful tenderer. Once on site we held monthly progress meetings with on site, along with the client’s representative. We also carried out weekly site inspections to ensure the works were progressing as they should and to a high quality. After these weekly visits, we produced brief project reports to keep the client abreast of the works on site.
One of the main challenges faced during the project was the poor build quality of the blocks which meant that several Contract Variation Instructions had to be issued in order to remedy any damaged or defective parts of the block which could not have been foreseen in the early stages. These unforeseen works were all covered by the provisional and contingency sums which meant that they did not come at any extra cost to the client.
Fortunately, access to the properties was generally better than expected which meant that the works managed to progress quicker than expected and that overall completed ahead of schedule.
Another challenge faced was gaining access to one flat on the second floor of one of the blocks. The property was unoccupied and the leaseholder was living abroad and was not responding to our communications. This meant access still had not been gained by the time the rest of the works had been completed and the scaffold had to be taken down in order to avoid incurring additional costs. Shortly after this, it was discovered the flat was being re-possessed and the company dealing with the matter was keen for the window replacement works to go ahead. We managed to arrange collection of the keys, have a scaffold tower erected and the new windows installed within a matter of days and the works were still completed within the contract period.