Baker Barracks – A partnership built to last
The Government has committed £1.8 billion to the Regular Army Basing Plan which is to be invested into infrastructure across the UK. The funding will provide around 1,500 new homes for service families, 4,500 new single living accommodation bed spaces and working, technical and training infrastructure.
Dominic O’Brien, Director at Spaceway discusses how the transformation of an old air craft hangar at Baker Barracks in Thorney Island, is a shining example of helping the British Army relocate, reconfigure, disband or re-role over 100 army units.
Baker Barracks are on the site of the former RAF Thorney Island airbase, situated between Portsmouth and Chichester and has seen a major transformation with over £27 million invested. The final stage of the project saw Kier awarded a £9.7 million contract to cover the building of a new training centre, armoury and office suite extension and a new perimeter fence.
As part of the new office suite, Spaceway, a design and build, industrial specialist contractor, was appointed by Kier and the MOD to manage this area of work.
The work undertaken included the installation of a huge 9.000sq.ft, two-tier mezzanine floor. The refurbishment has created much needed and essential workspace, and made full use of the cubic capacity, maximising all possible space within the old aircraft hangar building.
The installation of the new mezzanine floor allowed for the creation of new offices on the first floor, plant space and storage on the second floor. In addition to the 12 enclosed vehicle maintenance spaces on the ground floor. This area will be used for specialist teams to work on vehicles in a clean environment.
The project, which took just 16 weeks to complete, was delivered on time and to budget.
Speaking about the decision to work with Spaceway, Scott Ross, Senior Requirements Manager, ABP, from the Ministry of Defence, said: “In 2016, due to a late design change at Baker Barracks, we required a solution for office and store accommodation within an existing hanger. Working with Kier, construction proposals were put forward by a number of companies. The decision to use Spaceway’s offering was easy due to their understanding of our requirements and time scales. They offered a robust product that would be “squaddie proof” as well as being modern and complementary to the existing structure.”
What really stood out to both Kier and the MOD, was the all-encompassing approach the team would take, from design, build and handover of the work to the end user.
As this work was part of a much larger project, this approach allowed the team at Kier to concentrate on other aspects which needed their project management skills and abilities.
To complete the project, Kier committed to refurbishing the Sussex Arms in order to give something back to the community and provide a place for families living on site to get together and socialise. The Sussex Arms consisted of a multi-purpose area which comprised of a games room, main family room, venue room and a small bar. The site was in a state of total disrepair and urgent need of refurbishment to transform the space into something useable.
Speaking about the community commitment to refurbish the Sussex Arms, Gary Trudgett, Head of Marketing at Spaceway said: “Giving something back to the people on the base is really rewarding and we are delighted to have been a part of this project.”
For more information about the project visit: www.spaceway.co.uk