Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Refurbishment is well underway

The refurbishment of New College is well underway.  After 42 years we are renovating all the original rooms and all courtyards. In the process we will transform the central courtyard into an indoor/outdoor space complete with:

New Games Room
New Lounge
Shared kitchen for residents to do some cooking for themselves
A new bridge on the 3rd floor to connect east and west and provide another recreation space
A glass and polycarbonate 'detached' roof over the courtyard
5 new studio apartments for visiting scholars on the ground floor
A new central stairway connecting the dining room to the courtyard and its new facilities

Work is due for completion before O'Week. Progress over the first four weeks has been rapid. The following are just some of the highlights.

1. All rooms have now had all soft and hard demolition work completed. This involves removal of wardrobes, shelves, electrical fittings, carpet, brick columns (the ones that made it hard to position beds) widening of the wardrobe cavity etc. As well, all common rooms have been stripped and enlarged in some cases (with removal of 'dog boxes' and some courtyard rooms).

An enlarged common room

2. The critical demolition of the skylights and courtyard surface is well underway. This requires scaffolding from underneath, infilling of the cavities and eventually resurfacing of the whole courtyard.

Scaffolding from the Dining room allows rubble to be extracted from above 

3. The erection of the crane on the the 20th December has helped to speed things along.

4. Fit out of Level 3 rooms has commenced, with electrical services, plumbing, fire services and carpeting commencing.

A new sprinkler system raises fire safety to the highest level

5. The Senior RA flat and guest room have gone and services for the new studios for visiting scholars commenced.

All in all, excellent progress has been made in spite of Sydney's wet weather. Many workers will be on site between Christmas and New Year. I hope to do new posts every week to keep everyone informed.

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