Laing O’Rourke hits Everton FC stadium milestone

UK construction company Laing O’Rourke has reached “major milestones” in the construction of Everton Football Club’s new football stadium.   

The contractor has laid the first of the foundations for the new €580 million stadium, which is being built on the semi-derelict Bramley-Moore Dock on the River Mersey in Liverpool, England.

The contractor carried out the first foundation pour for the stadium’s north elevation on Thursday of last week. The pour forms a concrete pile cap that will “create a stable base for the distribution of the building load”.

David Jackson, Project Engineer at Laing O’Rourke, said, “It is a massive milestone to see the concrete going into the ground as we cap off some of our first piles. This also represents the first time our structural and foundation work comes above the current ground level.”

Laing O’Rourke has so far installed 300 supporting piles at depths of between 15 and 20m into the northern and southern wharves of the site.

“Each of the 2,500 completed piles, drilled at the current rate of 21 per day, will eventually be capped and, in turn, form the sub-structure for the skeleton of the 52,888-capacity stadium that will rise from the ground on the waterfront site,” said the company.

Jackson said, “While the piling process continues across northern and southern sides of the dock, we have also been excavating and testing those piles, we’ve dropped in 30 tonnes of pre-fabricated reinforcement, put in casting items, bolt sets and drainage and today we’re pouring in the concrete to cap the piles and create a stable foundation.

“Doing this will offer us a larger area for the distribution of the weight of the stadium on to the piles.”

Laing O’Rourke has also now completed three quarters of the infilling works to Bramley-Moore Dock, using around 315,000 cubic metres of fluidised sand to displace the water inside it.

Andy Boynton, a civil engineer at Laing O’Rourke, said, “This is quite a significant moment in the infill process.

“Visually the sand is now above the waterline in the western section of the dock, we’ve disconnected the floating pipeline and have been discharging sand directly from the steel pipelines.”

“The sand pumped in from the dredger is now being pushed around by the bulldozer on this platform of sand in the dock and will be spread east and compressed to squeeze out any moisture.

“Over the next few weeks we’ll see this rolling sand front progress over to the east side of the dock which will mean all the water will disappear. In the new year, once the sand has been compacted, we can look at moving the piling operations into the infilled dock.

“We have made good progress and we are approximately three quarters of the way through the infill after depositing 315,000 cubic meters of sand into Bramley-Moore Dock and remain on track for completion of the infill by the end of January.”

The construction of Everton FC’s new home at Bramley-Moore Dock is being spearheaded by investment company Peek Group, and forms part of the £5.5 billion Liverpool Waters development scheme.

The project, which is being supported by local enterprise group Northern Powerhouse Partnership, is currently expected to be completed in time for the 2023-2024 football season.

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