Inside the Rialto Regeneration Project #3

18th Oct 2015

How do you remove ~70 tonne plaza columns?

One would expect to see a jackhammer chipping the concrete back to a steel crucifix centered inside the column. Then I heard about a diamond wire saw being used by Delta to slice each column into 7 clean sections each weighing about 9.6 tonnes, before craning them out. This, I had to see.

Expecting to see an elaborate, modern bit of machinery clipped to the column like an inverse jump form system, I was surprised to see this….

A simple, yet exceptionally efficient method which is significantly less disruptive to our office tenants. The wire saw, typically used in granite and marble quarries, is about 7mm thick and takes around 1.5 to 2 hours to slice through each section of a Rialto plaza column.

Meanwhile ….. demolition works continue across the rest of the plaza and low rise floors. Delta’s recycling programme is tremendous. Bricks, concrete, steel, copper, glass and plaster is all separated on site.

In the next edition, I’ll discuss the removal of Robbs Annex and the associated heritage building issues confronted during the planning and design phase.