The school has confirmed that its intention is to rebuild it in due course but the existing structure has not adequately survived the 15th June fire for a second refurbishment attempt.
Work began yesterday (10th July 2018) on manually dismantling dangerous sections of the Mackintosh Building, brick by brick and block by block. It is being done to a methodology developed by structural engineer David Narro Associates and contractor Reigart.
“The primary aim of the initial works is to make the building safe and structurally stable,” said Dominic Echlin of David Narro Associates. “It is important to understand that our agreed approach is the safest way to dismantle the dangerous elements of the building and, importantly, ensure there is no damage to nearby properties or risk to those working on site.”
“The contractor is starting today to reduce the height of the high level walls on the south side of the building, carefully taking down damaged and unstable masonry. With the machinery brought to site the contractor can work on several ‘fronts’, so after a start today in the middle of the south façade, we will quickly move on to reducing height to the top parts of the southeast corner and east façade. Work will then follow on the west end and then parts of north façade,” he added. “This sequence has been determined so we keep the building as stable as possible and the dismantling controlled throughout the process.”
The Reigart demolition workers are using mobile elevating work platforms (MEWP) and crane hoists. The main crane is in position and three further cranes will be brought in. The work is expected to take several weeks.
Last month’s fire came as Kier was nearing completion of a £25m restoration of the building following an earlier fire in May 2014. Following the second fire, Kier’s contract was terminated.