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R30m project in Bellville

Posted On Thursday, 12 September 2002 10:01 Published by
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NEIL MULLER Construction, one of the Cape’s leading construction companies, has completed a major refurbishment project on the corner of Voortrekker and Durban Roads in Bellville.

The R30 million contract was undertaken for Quality Street Real Estate, an entity in the OMNICRON Group of Companies, consisting of a gross building area of 19 000m² and a gross lettable area of 1 000m².
NEIL MULLER Construction, one of the Cape’s leading construction companies, has completed a major refurbishment project on the corner of Voortrekker and Durban Roads in Bellville.

The R30 million contract was undertaken for Quality Street Real Estate, an entity in the OMNICRON Group of Companies, consisting of a gross building area of 19 000m² and a gross lettable area of 1 000m². The project involved the internal demolition of both the old Sabel shopping centre and the old Durban Road shopping centre, followed by the refurbishment and construction of the combined area into A-grade office space.

Construction included the building of an extra floor above the existing retail shops, and reinforcing the 35-year old buildings to ensure they could support the extra floor. A new roof was installed across all three buildings, incorporating sky lights and atriums to provide natural light into the spacious working areas. Omnicron were appointed Project Managers, and TV3 Architects, BKS Structural Engineers, BRI Electrical Engineers, and Ekcon Civil and Mechanical Engineers formed the consulting team.

TV3’s design concept evolved within the confines of the urban renewal process of the Bellville CBD, thereby emphasising the improvement of both the convenience and safety of the surrounding area. The central location of the development also offers excellent opportunities regarding accessibility and visibility. However the fragmented nature of the existing structure did not contribute to the creation of a homogeneous landmark.

A sectionalised architectural approach was adopted, where significant portions of the structure were highlighted as features and landmark elements. The subtle uses of various materials within a quiet rhythm harmoniously interconnect all prominent features.

The result is a unique new landmark building creating a strong new identity in the Bellville CBD. The demolition process involved stripping out all existing shops, electrical installations, services and air conditioning, and replacing with new. Various doors, windows and internal walls had to be demolished, resulting in 4000 cubic metres (or 400 truckloads) of rubble and glass being removed from site.

The project was completed within extreme time constraints. The construction statistics during the peak period were as follows:

* 450 people working on site per day

* over 20 000 bricks laid per day

* over 400 bags of cement used per day

* over 600m² of plaster work completed per day

* double shifts including weekends and public holidays were used where necessary

Omnicron, aided by Neil Muller Construction, donated 30 bins of re-usable building material such as timber, doorframes, shop fronts, lights and carpets to the underprivileged communities of Delft, outside of Cape Town, as part of the company’s social responsibility program.