London & South East, NHBC Awards

New Central: Woking’s award-winning development

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NHBC New Central

New Central is a £55 million mixed-use housing and retail development currently taking shape in Woking.

The project is being constructed in Woking Town Centre, Surrey and comprises the construction of ten multi-storey mixed-use buildings and six town houses. The mixed-use buildings are predominantly being used for accommodation purposes and include 450 apartments, along with ten retail units, an office block and a resident’s only gym.

A below ground 350-space car park will also be installed in the development and will run throughout the entire footprint of the site.

Midgard Ltd – part of the JRL Group – is the main contractor on the project and has worked closely with a number of JRL Group companies including: Miller Piling, J Reddington Ltd, Thames Reinforcement, London Concrete Pumping, London Tower Cranes, Stairmaster and UK Facades. The project architect is KDS Associates and the structural engineers are Walsh Associates.

Grady Joinery is manufacturing and installing over 700 windows on the site and has been involved with the project for the past six months.

NHBC New Central

MHD Group Ltd is working on all the internal sealants around kitchenware and bathware on the New Central project, as well as all the external sealant works.

MHD Group Ltd Director, Anthony Betts, said:

“It’s a massively important project for us and has led to a lot of work on future projects. We will also start on the next phase of the New Central project soon.”

Funding for the project is being provided through a joint venture by Barratt Southern Counties and CCH.

Work began on New Central in February 2010. The development is a completely new venture for Woking and replaces a former Brownfield site which previously occupied the land.

New Central is split into ten individual buildings with eight of the structures reserved for housing. Building one is a 21-storey structure measuring 54,000 sq feet and comprising 80 apartments, whilst the second building on the development is 14-storeys high, measures 25,000 sq feet and comprises 34 apartments.

The remaining six buildings include a ten-storey building housing 106 apartments, a seven-storey building housing 68 apartments, a six-storey building with 40 apartments, two five-storey buildings housing 38 and 52 apartments and a four-storey building comprising 25 apartments.

The two remaining buildings on the New Central site will be kept for office and retail space.

NHBC New Central

The office block measures 50,000 sq feet, whilst the retail building will measures 12,400 sq feet and is divided into ten individual units. Within the development a gym, cafe and concierge office will also be included.

The multi-storey buildings are being constructed from a concrete frame with steel reinforcement and steel frame system. The exterior facade of the buildings will be completed with a mix of terracotta tiles, Environwall render and brickwork. A number of the apartments will also include solar panels.

In addition to the ten main buildings on the site six townhouses will also be constructed and a mix of hard and soft landscaping will also be included. Landscape will incorporate a water feature and a sculpture commissioned by a local artist.

Midgard Ltd Construction Manager, Joe Naughten, said:

“Midgard Ltd has completed 140 apartments, the office block, eight retail units and 140 parking spaces. We have 310 apartments, 2400 sq feet of retail, a gym, concierge office and 210 parking spaces left to deliver before December 2013.

“So far the development has been a huge success, running on schedule, on budget and with 95% of the properties offered for sale now sold.

“Midgard Ltd works with Barratt Homes on a partnership basis rather than a traditional client/main contractor basis and this partnership is evident in the quality of the finished product as well as the aftercare service given to the purchasers.”

NHBC New Central

Joe Naughten added:

“For me personally the success of this project is very important. You have to put your life and soul project of this size and to see it come to fruition gives me enormous satisfaction.

“This project will become an extension of Guildford Road high street and will offer a good source of affordable housing within commuter distance to London. New Central will provide more retail space to the high street and it will bring added vibrancy to the area once the development has reached full occupancy.”

The construction of New Central marks a significant phase in the development of housing within Woking. The tallest building on the site – the 21-storey apartment block – will be Woking’s tallest building and its inclusion is in keeping with Woking Borough’s drive towards creating high-rise developments within Woking town centre.

The development has been instrumental in helping Barratt Homes maintain its 5-Star Home Builders Federation status.

New Central has also been designed to incorporate the highest standards in thermal and acoustic insulation. The extensive use of insulated render to the exterior of the block adds to the thermal quality of the building and the internal party wall construction is designed to offer the maximum acoustic protection between each apartment.

Joe Naughten said:

“This is a landmark development in the heart of Woking and I am proud to be a part of the delivery team.

“Midgard Ltd has been awarded a Silver Award at the recently held Considerate Contractors Awards, we have achieved a BREEAM ‘Very Good’ rating for the office block and we have had several external safety and quality audits which have been all very positive. Now we have received the Pride in the Job Quality Award.”

Joe Naughten added:

“To me, winning a Pride in the Job Quality Award is recognition, not only my hard work and effort put into producing the high quality product that Midgard Ltd is delivering to our client, but also that of the entire Midgard site team. A development of this scale cannot be delivered, to the high standard it so far has, without the hard work of many individuals.”

Grady Joinery Director, Arthur Grady commented:

“Grady Joinery is a window and door manufacturer with the capacity to produce approximately 3000 windows per week. The work we are completing on New Central is typical of the type of work that we conduct on developments of this size however we value being a part of such an important project as this.

“We are currently in the final stages of window fitting, so we will be reaching completion of our part of the project very shortly.

“It is very important for us at Grady Joinery to be involved with Midgard Ltd on this project. The company has developed a high level of quality on this project and to be a part of this is a good testament of our own working practices which we adhere to.

“It’s great to know that we – along with all of the other contractors and subcontractors – have been a contributing element to the success of this project. There is a good team on site at New Central and it is proving to be very rewarding for all involved.”

New Central is due to reach completion in December 2013.

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