Award-winning best practice at McGee Group’s One Nine Elms project – two luxury skyscrapers spanning 56 and 47 storeys over London

McGee is a specialist subcontractor and main contractor providing a broad spectrum of construction, decontamination, demolition and civil engineering services.

For its One Nine Elms project, McGee was appointed by Dalian Wanda for the demolition of the existing Market Towers buildings, with works beginning in May 2014 and completing by April 2015. This work led to the company receiving a silver Green Apple Environment Award. Click on the following link to read McGee’s account of this achievement.

Following the main demolition works, McGee was then engaged with the enabling and early works package in conjunction with Balfour Beatty Ground Engineering and this work was expected to complete during the summer of 2017.

Outlining the project, Project Manager Chris Foulser said:

“The end result of the development will see over 50 storeys of skyscraper soar into the sky, offering residents unrivalled views of London’s most famous landmarks, including The Shard, London Eye and Westminster Abbey. One Nine Elms will set a new standard for the city, offering luxurious private apartments alongside a world-class five-star hotel.”

What particular challenges have you faced in relation to the community, environment or the workforce on this project, and how have you overcome these?

The One Nine Elms development is located in a thriving residential community with high-end tenanted blocks of flats and some commercial businesses overlooking the site. Therefore from the onset of the project, neighbourly relations were of paramount importance. In conjunction with the client’s communications office, meetings with neighbours and a bespoke site communications website were set up.

Initially, monthly community liaison meetings were held in the site offices and then local venues to which local neighbours were invited for project updates and to discuss any neighbourly issues. These were attended by client representatives and any other interested stakeholders who expressed an interest. These meetings are now held quarterly as site works are less intrusive in their nature for neighbours, following the completion of the demolition phase of the project.

Any updates on site activity or information of interest pertaining to the site are e-mailed directly to registered neighbours via the dedicated website. A weekly site activity log is posted with works planned for the forthcoming week, noting any noisy works or out-of-hours deliveries.

Here are some examples of best practice the McGee project team implemented on this project, specifically in relation to the community, the environment and safety:

  • Supporting ‘Wear it Pink’: The One Nine Elms site team donned pink high visibility vests and held site cake sales in aid of Wear it Pink 2015 and 2016, contributing to the awards success for McGee at the 2016 London Construction Awards. You can find out more about this successful day by clicking onto the following link:
  • Raising awareness of Prostate Cancer: Working with Prostate Cancer UK, the leading UK charity for men with prostate cancer and prostate problems, we have raised awareness of the disease to the workforce at One Nine Elms. A Prostate Cancer UK volunteer and someone who has experienced prostate cancer in the past delivered an informative talk to the site team during a morning break time. The talk included information on how to spot symptoms of prostate cancer, diagnosis and treatment. There was also time for questions to be asked at the end, either within the group or on a one-to-one basis.
  • Children learn about staying safe around construction sites: In June 2016, McGee’s One Nine Elms site team played a key role in Banstead Infant’s school assembly which saw 370 four to seven-year-olds learn about staying safe on and around construction sites, with a little help from special guest, Ivor Goodsite!  McGee also spoke about how great it is to work in construction. For more information on this initiative, click onto the following link here.
  • ‘The McGeeden project’: Our green-fingered site team worked hard to create a homely touch on site. They named their pot plant garden ‘the McGeeden project’.
  • Using mobile apps on site: Chris Foulser, Project Manager at McGee’s One Nine Elms project, said: “The introduction of the ‘Inspection Manager’ application into our working environment has allowed us far greater control and confidence in ensuring that all of our inspection requirements are met and completed. It has assisted in significantly reducing the previously large volumes of paperwork generated and allows on-the-spot checks to be made to ensure compliance.”
  • Nine Elms is crowned a Green Apple Environment Award winner 2016 for its consideration of the environment. (Bronze, silver or gold award to be presented at The Houses of Parliament on Friday 11th November). 
  • Working in the community to help keep cyclists safe: As a champion of safety, both on and off our projects, we are determined to play our part in making cycle journeys as risk-free as possible. That’s why we’re wholehearted supporters of the CLOCS initiative to protect vulnerable road users. We’re committed to educating our HGV drivers about the best way to share the road and providing cyclists with extra insights and valuable tips intended to keep them – and their bicycles – safe.
  • Exchanging places: As we operate one of the largest and most recognised fleets of tipper lorries in the UK, we take our responsibilities extremely seriously. This is why we are supporting the Metropolitan Police and City Police by providing lorries to the Cycle Task Forces for their ‘Exchanging Places’ events which are designed to raise awareness of cycle safety. Several Exchanging Places events have been held on site at One Nine Elms during the course of the project. The events were supported and attended by the Metropolitan Police Cycle Task Force, Bike Register and premier maintenance provider, Havebike. The events gave passers-by the opportunity to exchange places with a driver or police officer for an in-cab safety briefing to get a better understanding of what a lorry driver can and cannot see. Whilst in the cab, a demonstration of where the vehicle blind spots exist also took place. Free bike markings and registrations, maintenance, safety checks and giveaways were all on offer at the events. And not forgetting the complimentary refreshments courtesy of the site team!
  • To read about the McGee team’s health and safety recognition, click on the following link:  
  • Traffic marshals: For a McGee article outlining traffic marshal training at the One Nine Elms project, click here.

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