The scope of the contract was to upgrade the heating systems to the publicly accessible areas of Tower Bridge with the installation and commissioning of two new bespoke non-condensing boilers designed to heat all areas of the towers simultaneously.
The two existing plant rooms located at either end of the bridge were replaced one by one so that service was always maintained. New heating was installed including radiant panel heating to the glass floored viewing gallery together with all new distribution pipe, custom ‘antique’ radiators and a bespoke controls system.
The work commenced in the North Tower with the strip out and removal of the boiler installation and associated pumps, valves, pressurisation units, expansion vessels and pipework. A two phase programme of work ensured a heating source was maintained throughout the upgrading works. The same was repeated in the South Tower.
The major challenge was to integrate modern press-fit pipework, radiant panels and radiators into a heritage environment without making it appear as some garish afterthought and to achieve this TBG worked closely with the City of London to produce a finished result of which we are proud.
All works were carried out while the building was still in use for public access for touring, plus special events in a safe manner, on time and within budget. We were very mindful that whilst working on a national monument such as Tower Bridge, even the normally simple activities such as material deliveries and rubbish removal have to be carefully scheduled around the life of the bridge and we are happy to state that the complete works were carried out without a major clash.
Tower Bridge is an iconic symbol of London, recognised the world over. Not only is it a major tourist attraction, but also a Grade 1 listed structure and a lifting bascule bridge – with over 700 openings per year. Add to that the constant demand as a venue for hosting corporate events, private functions, educational visits and arts installations. Clearly any refurbishment of such a unique asset would require careful planning and sensitive implementation. TBG was engaged to replace the ageing boiler plant and distribution pipework in The Bridge. Their project manager John Pearson, who was a very visible presence onsite, carried out the works to the highest standard and with the least amount of disruption. The project was completed to specification, on time and within budget – showing great sympathy and respect for the location.