Ealing Council Award Huge Project to Grenfell Tower Contractor
Intend to keep Rydon as partner for High Lane Estate redevelopment
Ealing Council approved the award of a large contract to the main contractor on the Grenfell Tower development just a few weeks before the fire broke out.
According to Construction News the Council’s main cabinet approved Rydon as the development partner for the £65 million project to build 296 new housing units to replace the High Lane Estate in Hanwell. The Borough Council authorised the executive director of Regeneration and Housing to finalise the contract with Rydon at a meeting on 25 April. The minutes of the meeting state that Rydon’s bid was the most “economically advantageous” of the three tenders, with a “very strong financial offer coupled with excellent construction delivery and programming”.
Construction News say that Ealing Council have confirmed to them that the award of the contract will not be reconsidered despite Rydon being the main contractor on the refurbishment of Grenfell Tower.
Rydon have won the bid to arrange financing and submit a planning application for the demolition of the existing building and their replacement with mixed-tenure housing, which will include a significant element of ‘affordable’ homes. There will be 296 new private and affordable rented homes in the new development which the Council say will reflect the ownership types currently on the estate.
Rydon have stated that all its work on the £8.7 million refurbishment of Grenfell Tower met all required building control, fire regulation and health and safety standards.
Their Chief Executive Robert Bond said, “I am personally shocked and devastated by what has happened at Grenfell Tower and my thoughts are with the families and friends of those affected. We have been working with local authorities for nearly forty years and safety and quality are integral to everything we do at Rydon. I will do all I can to assist in this investigation in order to establish what caused this tragedy. In light of the Public Inquiry, we cannot make any further comment at this time.”
Construction News say that although the decision has been made to go with Rydon for the High Lane Estates contract, the deal has yet to be signed.
Rydon were also involved in the redevelopment of the Green Man Lane estate in which they partnered with A2 Dominion to complete a £155 million project. The same partnership has also won a bid to construct a new building as part of the expansion of the nearby St John’s Primary School.
When we asked them about the use of Rydon on the Green Man Lane project a council spokesperson said,“The new build homes at Green Man Lane and the original 1970s blocks are of different construction to Grenfell Tower. All our new build homes meet modern safety standards and are fully compliant with building control requirements including those of the fire brigade.
Once the contract details are finalised a preferred bidder letter will be signed by both Rydon and Ealing Council and a development proposal agreed which Rydon will take through the planning process.
A spokesperson for Ealing Council told us “The High Lane estate scheme is in a very early stage. All designs will be fully consulted on with residents and partners and will meet all fire safety standards. The current outdated housing blocks will be replaced by new mixed-tenure blocks that meet all modern fire safety standards. There can be no comparison made with the construction methods or materials at Grenfell Tower.”
June 20, 2017