A new wall for Chalmers Crescent

The work carried out by Viewpoint’s Property Services is varied and wide reaching. A good example of this was the work completed in August to the rear boundary wall to the communal garden area at our Chalmers Crescent development. The wall overlooks a very busy public thoroughfare, Lovers Loan. Affectionately dubbed “the 2nd great wall”, in September 2014 this one hundred feet long, ten feet high, solid stone Victorian retaining wall had started to show signs of movement due to ground subsidence and age. An immediate action plan was put into place by Viewpoint’s Property Services team to deal with any pressing public safety issues. The problem was compounded by several very large mature trees having encroached on the wall and these were gradually pushing the wall into the lane. Unfortunately, the wall unexpectedly collapsed late one night, but due to the regular inspection visits and robust safety measures already in place much of it was contained and there were no injuries.

A project such as this can be complex in nature. There were many avenues of consultation and various permissions that had to be dealt with before the reconstruction work could begin. Property Services forged very good relations with the local Community Council, the Grange Association, local residents and City of Edinburgh Council officials. The Viewpoint project team consisted of a maintenance officer, structural engineer, building surveyor and the works had to be fully tendered to ensure that this high value investment achieved the best quality and value for money for tenants.

Edinburgh based Corstorphine Roofing and Building successfully won the tender, and work started on site in late February this year. The first thing that we had to do was arrange for the lane to be closed for several weeks so that the work could be managed safely. The complete removal and clearance of numerous large mature trees formed the first part of the project and with this done, we were able to then start the mammoth task of the major reconstruction of the stone wall which included bringing in several tons of traditional matching stone as part of the restoration work . Some of the many stages of the wall rebuilding can be seen in the accompanying photos. Once the ground has had a chance to settle we hope to be able replant the grounds with suitable species of tree in consultation with our tree experts.

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