Demolition finishes and building begins

AFTER months of demolition work at the two largest sites on Ipswich Waterfront, the first tentative steps towards building a new skyline have started.

AFTER months of demolition work at the two largest sites on Ipswich Waterfront, the first tentative steps towards building a new skyline have started.

Preparatory work for the new City Living flats on the site of the former Albion Maltings has now started with ground stabilisation taking place.

This involves laying a plastic sheet and creating a flat surface to allow massive piling machines to be brought in to start laying the foundations of the new flats.

Construction work on the site is due to start in earnest late next month or in early November when huge piles will be driven into the ground to create foundations for the next buildings.

These will include two 14-storey blocks of flats and a new headquarters and performance space for the Red Rose Chain theatre group.

Developer City Living is then expected to outline details of the new development, which is expected to take more than two years to complete. It is not expected to be completed until early 2009.

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The new development retains the heart of the Victorian maltings facing on to the Wet Dock and that is expected to include space for new cafés, restaurants, or small shops.

Project manager Richard Guppy said: “Works to demolish the large malt house buildings are now complete, and with the efforts of Suffolk County Council archaeology unit we are now able to commence the construction of the piled foundations in October 2006.

“Works will then proceed on to permanent construction of the first phase of the scheme within the next few weeks.”

Construction on the neighbouring Cranfields site is also scheduled to start next month with construction giant Laing O'Rourke due to start piling on foundations for the development, which will include a 23-storey tower block of flats, the tallest in Suffolk.

Like the Albion site, construction there is expected to take more than two years with the first people due to move in during the first half of 2009.

Weblink: www.citiylivingproperty.co.uk

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