WATCHING concrete being poured may not sound like the most exciting thing in the world, but for Bonhams chairman Robert Brooks the sight filled him with delight and pride.
The event, on April 16, marked the start of
a vital part in the second stage of redeveloping the company's Bond
Street base, which is set to transform their traditional home by
the end of next year to create a state-of-the-art international
This latest work will establish a
metre-thick slab across the site - essential to the entire scheme
as it will form a vital part of the foundations and bulwark to
vibration, with the Crossrail tunnels running just four metres
Having one of Europe's biggest construction
projects just underneath your own ongoing development - with two
grout shafts bordering the site at the surface - may seem enough to
contend with, but the builders, architects and engineers have also
been restricted by the surrounding buildings, a single narrow
access point and all kinds of regulations, ranging from the 'right
to light' of surrounding windows to building in a conservation
Bonhams have also been faced with keeping
their daily business up and running, transferring staff and sales
from the main Bond Street complex to the newly refurbished
Blenstock House next door so that the phase two demolition could go
Ironically, all this has taken place in what
seems to have been their most successful sales period ever,
culminating in the autumn Asian art series. The resulting building
site, shown here, is the result.
Mr Brooks told ATG that the entire
project was well on schedule and that the concrete slab should be
ready by October - the deadline for that stage forced on Bonhams by
the Crossrail development.
The entire scheme is due to be completed by
December next year.