Post by Everton News. on Dec 31, 2023 21:19:58 GMT
It has been another year of phenomenal progress at Everton Stadium.
The skeletal appearance of the Club’s future home has developed dramatically throughout 2023, to offer genuine glimpses of what the 52,888-seater stadium will look like when completed in a year’s time.
And heading into the final 12 months of the largest single-site private sector development in the country, Project Director Gareth Jacques insisted it was construction partner Laing O’Rourke’s aim to “finish in style”.
He said: “The project has become a benchmark for delivering stadiums efficiently using modern methods of construction, and to be on schedule after two-and-a-half years of technical, logistical and global influencing problems is a fantastic achievement.
“The successes of the project will, however, forever go hand-in-hand with consideration of the devastating loss of our colleague Michael Jones earlier this year.
“Everything we achieve as a team is done for Michael, his family and the Club and all we can do is our best to make them proud.”
He added: “The team have worked really, really hard throughout 2023 and everyone involved with the project deserves a good break.
“When we return in January, we’ll be taking some time to get the site back up and running safely and when everything is in good order, we’ll be going for it, so stay tuned because you will see a lot of new developments and features”.
The size and scale of Everton Stadium - one of the most sustainable and environmentally-friendly football stadia ever built - is truly breathtaking.
Rising majestically on the banks of the royal blue Mersey, the imposing structure is a modern amphitheatre of epic proportions.
An iconic curved roof continues to take shape, with the perforated barrel roofing sections undergoing final testing ahead of installation.
Beneath that, 731 columns of red brick facades clad the exterior, using a total of 520,000 bricks and hung in sequence to subtly reveal elements of the famous Archibald Leitch truss that are evident in the historic Goodison Park latticework designed by the Scottish stadium architect.
Within the four walls, the myriad of rooms and vast internal spaces are evolving fast, as the stadium bowl itself closes in on completion.
The final ground floor slab in the east stand was poured before the Christmas shutdown, allowing the concrete to cure fully before rakers and the final sections of concrete terracing can be installed in the new year. The entire lower tier can then be overlaid with the blue seating identical to the 12,500 already installed across three of the four upper tiers.
In the middle of the stadium, an upgrade to the centre spot has become a fun feature, with a mini-pitch complete with fake grass and pitch markings installed.
Gareth said: “It’s nice to mark where the centre spot is and now that we don’t have cranes and heavy traffic it’s less of a problem, logistically, so we thought we’d refresh the area by making a little pitch as a bit of fun. It also gives the drone flyers something to look at!”
The players’ tunnel has been constructed in the west stand, offering a good reference point to where the Blues’ will emerge for the first time in a competitive fixture in August 2025. In the bowels of the stand, the home dressing room and accompanying hydraulic pool are well under way.
Beneath the steeply-raked south stand, 60 per cent of the concourse areas are complete, turnstiles fitted and double escalators to the upper level in place, while angled glazing installations ensure internal work can progress at speed. High-level glazing is also being installed in both the north and south stands, with curved sections of glass that blend into the edges soon to be fitted.
With all terracing units in place, the concrete super riser in the south stand can clearly be seen, providing a ‘barrier’ between the safe standing of the lower tier and the seating in the upper tier which, when packed with 13,000 passionate Evertonians, will give the impression of one giant wave of fans.
Cabling is currently being connected to provide power to the site, as part of the critical path that will result in useable power throughout the building from the start of April, further aiding internal works. Externally, just under one-third of the 30,000m sq fan plaza has been paved by skilled craftsmen from Vetter, a specialist stone contractor and partner of Laing O’Rourke.
The second of six steel pedestrian gates has been positioned in the boundary wall, and lighting columns are installed across the plaza, along with decorative benches and heritage assets such as historic railway lines. Beds are strategically placed to eventually house trees that will act as wind mitigation.
The adjoining Hydraulic Tower and Engine House, which provides ties to the site’s historic past as a world-famous maritime port, has undergone huge remedial work. The building is now watertight and, with the addition of new roofing, the impressive building has been formally handed back to the Club for the next phase of internal works.
On the western edge of the stadium, the second phase of the western terrace will develop in the early months of the new year. Concrete slabs will be poured and concrete rakers and terracing positioned ahead of steel contractor Severfield mirroring the structure already installed – and fast developing - on the southern side of the stand.
The exterior of the north stand sees 90 per cent of the black cladding, providing contrast to the red brick, completed, and paving installed across the walkway.
The giant screen already installed atop the north stand is now being replicated in the face of the south stand roof, with installations beginning ahead of schedule before the December shutdown.
The social value of Everton Stadium is another impressive aspect of the project. As we enter the final year of the build, figures show that 69 per cent of the workforce are from the locally defined area, with over 100 apprentices now working on, or contributing towards the stadium.
Almost 22,500 students have been engaged in the project through a wide-ranging series of activities, with 27 community and educational site visits undertaken.
Workers from the site have volunteered at Everton in the Community’s food pantry and generously donated food and toys for young children across the region, collected by Laing O’Rourke and the wider supply chain.
Overall, the total social value, including the economic benefit, is valued at £208m. However, in overcoming all of the challenges listed above, the work has been overshadowed by the tragic death of Jones.
The 26-year-old lifelong Evertonian, from Kirkby, lost his life while working on-site in August, devastating family and friends, his work colleagues at Laing O’Rourke and everyone at Everton Football Club.
Gareth insisted: “Nothing we have achieved comes close to helping with the sadness of losing Michael.
“The one thing I talk about with the team all the time is that we need to build this better than any other stadium to make Michael’s family proud and to acknowledge the contribution he made to delivering Everton’s new home.
“We are going to finish this project in style and Everton Stadium will be a monument to his contribution and his memory.”
Work on Everton FC’s new stadium at Bramley Moore Dock has kicked off for 2024 with the pouring of floor slabs, installation of glazing, laying of external drainage and more.
Construction of the new 52,888 capacity stadium remains on schedule to complete by the end of this year, though the team does not expect to start playing matches there until 2025.
Construction of the £500M stadium on the banks of the River Mersey has overcome its challenging location and made significant progress over the course of 2023.
To start off the new year, concrete floor slabs have been poured on the “expansive first level” of the western terrace, according to the club. This floor, as well as the “cascading” steps down to ground level, will provide “spectacular” views across the River Mersey.
The western terrace saw the steel framework completed on its southern half before the new year, and the concrete rakers are in place to support the double-stepped terracing units that will soon be installed.
At the ground level of the south stand exterior, the supporting columns are being encased with specially made concrete moulds that fix around the steel base. The will protect the sub-structure.
Across the upper steel work of the south stand’s exterior, glazed panels are being installed. Everton says this “wall of glass” will “provide a stunning contrast to the towering, angled steelwork and first floor concourse below”.
External drainage is also being laid across the length of the outside of the south stand. This will be completed prior to the start of paving.
On the inside of the south stand, work has started to install the 1,250 LED panels that will make up the giant screen. The screen on the north stand was completed just before the festive season. www.newcivilengineer.com/