News, views and opinions from the UK roofing industry

Fleetbank House

Working around plant and ductwork, M&J Group battled against a tight schedule to make this roof watertight for office tenants, helping to win it Reinforced Bitumen Membranes Award 2017

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The 11-storey Fleetbank House is a typical office building constructed in 1964, with tenants including a mix of private companies, governmental organisations and public bodies. The roof is packed with plant and ductwork, which could not be moved or altered.

At a glance:

  • Roofing Contractor: M&J
  • Building Type: Commercial office
  • Location: City of London
  • Roof Type: Reinforced Bitumen Membrane
  • Manufacturer: IKO Plc
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Complexity

The lack of open space on the roof made this a particularly complex project, with 95% of the job comprising intricate details. A cold applied liquid system might typically be installed in such circumstances, however, M&J Group opted to install a Reinforced Bitumen Membrane for more robustness, while keeping down cost. This meant that each detail needed to be examined and the best method agreed between the contracts manager and project manager.

Project management

The challenging working conditions and time constraints meant that project management had to be exceptional in order for the project to be completed before the deadline. M&J carefully planned every stage of the process, with close communication with the client and contract administration team, including weekly project management meetings.

About M&J Group

M&J Group are one of the largest specialist construction companies in the UK, with extensive knowledge of flat roofing and total building envelope works. M&J’s flat roofing experience includes reinforced bituminous membranes, green roofs, hot melt, single ply and cold applied liquid roofing.

www.mjconstructiongroup.co.uk

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Workmanship

Although an extremely robust material, there are inherent fire risks associated with installing Reinforced Bitumen Membranes, which was exacerbated by the proximity of large amounts of plant and cabling. All joints were therefore welded using a hot air gun rather than a gas torch in order to prevent the risk of fire. Great care was given to the neatness and attention to detail across the entire roof.

The challenges

Physically getting into very tight spaces and being able to install the membranes correctly was a significant challenge but so too was the very tight timescale for completing the project. There were significant financial implications of the building tenants not being able to access their offices so the team was required to work around the clock to get the building watertight in time for the opening of the office space below.

M&J Group says:

The neatness and workmanship was exceptional, especially given the complex nature of this roof. There aren’t many contractors in the country that would be willing to take on such a job, which was proved by the number of contractors pulling out at an early stage of the tendering process. M&J worked tirelessly from the specification and design to the installation, ensuring that the building was fully watertight, with zero disruptions to the internal offices and completed to a very tight deadline.