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Video – Boogie-woogie demolition man…

Demolition worker wows Kings Cross commuters.

A man described only as a demolition worker has been filmed entertaining commuters at London’s famous Kings Cross Station with an impromptu boogie-woogie session on a piano.

If anyone can identify the man or the company he works for, we’d love to hear from them.

Decision imminent on collapsed Genoa bridge…

Demolition plan to be presented in wake of collapse that killed 43 people.

A demolition project for Genoa’s collapsed Morandi Bridge will be presented by Autostrade per l’Italia “within five days,” Liguria Governor and emergency commissioner Giovanni Toti has said.

“Autostrade will present us with the definitive plan for the demolition of the Morandi Bridge,” he told a council meeting. “The plan will be illustrated to the technical committees and first and foremost to the prosecutors whose decision it is to de-sequester the area and get to the truth on the causes of the tragedy.”

The collapse on 14 August killed 43 people, and has been the source of rumour and speculation ever since.

According to a report in the UK newspaper – The Independent – the Italian engineer who designed the bridge warned of the risk of corrosion as much as four decades ago.

Riccardo Morandi wrote a report in 1979 recommending constant maintenance of the structure to remove all traces of rust and fill in exposed patches on the reinforcements.

The report produced 12 years after the bridge bearing his name was opened referred to a “well-known loss of superficial chemical resistance of the concrete” because of sea air and pollution from a nearby steel plant.

Read more here.

Demolition chief pleads guilty…

Former Cleveland demolition bureau chief pleads guilty to extorting, accepting bribes.

The city of Cleveland’s former demolition bureau chief has admitted to soliciting and accepting thousands of dollars in bribes from contractors in exchange for a leg up in obtaining city jobs.

Rufus Taylor pleaded guilty to extortion and bribery in a federally funded program.

The 60-year-old, who retired from the city in January after working there for 30 years, gave preferential treatment to two contractors in exchange for information about upcoming projects for demolition and abatement. He and the contractors agreed to take bribes in exchange for the information, and Taylor received cash over several years, authorities say.

The federal government has not identified the contractors.

Prosecutors say Taylor and “Contractor 1” met in November 2013 to discuss a demolition job on Parkwood Drive. They agreed that the contractor would pay Taylor $8,000 in cash in return for Taylor putting the contractor on the bid list, authorities say.

The contractor won the bid on Nov. 12, 2013, gave Taylor $3,000 in cash in December 2013 and $5,000 between November 2013 and November 2015, according to charging documents.

Taylor also told the contractor about an emergency demolition job on East 123rd Street and Coltman Road in October 2015 and asked the contractor for $12,000. The contractor won abatement work but never paid the bribe to Taylor, authorities say.

Then, with a second contractor, Taylor provided bid numbers for a demolition job on Cedar Avenue in August 2015. That contractor submitted the lowest bid, won the job and paid Taylor $5,000, authorities say.

Read more here.

Mile Cross costs escalate…

Contamination drives up demolition costs at Norwich site.

Demolishing Norwich’s Mile Cross depot, to make way for hundreds of new homes, will cost almost £2m – because the site is so contaminated, council bosses have revealed.

Councillors will next week be asked to agree to make £1.98 millon available for works at the site, where investigations found chemical contaminants such as asbestos, along with low levels of ground gas.

Demolition of buildings at the 10.5 acre site, off Mile Cross Road, would cost an estimated £700,000, but a contamination specialist said a further £1.2m would need to be go on decontamination.

Not all would come from City Hall’s coffers. The government has made nearly £1m available through a grant, which the council has to match fund.

The council has applied to its own planning committee for demolition permission and the ruling Labour cabinet will decide next Wednesday whether to agree the budget for the demolition.

Read more here.

Ireland’s most expensive house faces demolition…

Country’s most expensive house to make way for larger mansion.

A trust linked to billionaire Dermot Desmond has secured planning permission to demolish a house on Dublin’s Shrewsbury Road, which remains the most expensive residence ever sold in the State at €58 million, and construct a 1,600 square metre mansion in its place.

Three previous applications to knock down and replace Walford were rejected by planners but Mr Desmond’s Celtic Trustees Ltd has been given the green light to do so. The house, located on a on a 1.77 acre site in Ballsbridge, was built in 1902 and has fallen into disrepair in recent times.

The Desmond linked trust paid €14.25 million for Walford in December 2016 and the planning permission granted allows the development of a property almost three times larger than the existing 553 square metre house.

Desmond, the largest shareholder in Celtic football club in Glasgow, has recruited former Chelsea Flower Show gold medal winner Marcus Barnett to oversee the creation of a private garden. Other features listed in the application include a subterranean swimming pool, a gym, a cellar, a games room and a staff bedroom looking out onto a sunken courtyard.

Read more here.

Demolition magazine breaks all records…

If you hear a loud thump, that will be the new Demolition mag hitting the doorstep.

Ever since it first topped the 100-page mark, the Demolition magazine has been growing progressively larger with each passing edition.

The latest edition – the Lilac Wine issue – retains that trend, delivering a massive 130 pages of demolition coverage that needs to be seen to be believed.

Included in the new issue is:

And a whole lot more.

You can read each article using the links above, or you can simply dive into the full electronic edition below:

London estates face the axe…

Dozens of council housing estates in London slated for demolition and redevelopment.

The BBC is reporting that more than 31,000 residents will be affected if plans go ahead to regenerate some 118 sites across the capital. While those moves are being seen as encroaching upon social housing and another example of gentrification, the full or partial demolition of more than 100 council estates will surely be welcomed by the UK demolition industry.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan has told councils they must now ballot residents on regeneration plans to secure City Hall funding.

Of the estates to be regenerated, more than 80 will be fully or partially demolished, according to council responses to a BBC freedom of information request.

One of the sites set to see the biggest loss of homes is the Heygate estate in Southwark.

More than 1,200 council properties were torn down between 2011 and 2014 and replaced by a luxury development called Elephant Park.

In Westminster, the city council plans to flatten 300 homes at the Ebury Bridge estate in Pimlico to make way for 750 new properties, the majority of which will be sold on the private market.

Read the full story here.

Contract Awards – Coleman & Company bag gasholder…

Birmingham-based contractor picks up Southall contract.

DemolitionNews understands that Birmingham-based Coleman & Company has been awarded the contract to dismantle Gas Holder Number 1 at The Straight, Southall.

The contract is believed to have a 29-week duration and to be valued in the region of £2.5 million. The client is National Grid.

The Southall contract is the latest in a number of gasholder dismantling and demolition jobs won by Coleman & Company in recent years. Long-term readers might recall that DemolitionNews reported on the dismantling of an MAN gasholder in St Helens back in 2011.

This contract award is brought to you in conjunction with Serino from The Builders’ Conference.

Video – Meredosia bridge blasted…

82-year old bridge sent to bottom of Illinois River.

The old Illinois 104 bridge that crosses the Illinois River at Meredosia was imploded yesterday morning.

Despite heavy rain that ended about 90 minutes before the blast, the entire procedure went as planned, according to John Sestak, a construction field engineer for the Illinois Department of Transportation.

“It pretty much looks just like they drew it up on paper,” said Sestak as he surveyed the fallen pieces of steel protruding above the river surface. “A structural engineer analyzed where the cuts should be based on how much weight the cranes are capable of picking up out of the water. Then they placed the charges accordingly.

“The charges are made of explosives and copper, so when the explosive goes off it melts the copper and accelerates it and the copper is actually what cuts through the steel, like a welding torch,” Sestak said. “They box the charges in and wrap them in rubber to try and limit the amount of shrapnel that is blown away.”

The Illinois River was to be closed to water traffic for 24 hours to give crews enough time to clear the debris. The new alignment of Illinois 104, including the new $86.2 million bridge, also was closed for safety immediately before and after the demolition charges were detonated

Exclusive – Messiah goes for shear scale…

Massive Genesis shear is UK-bound.

DemolitionNews has obtained an exclusive photo that shows a massive Genesis GXP 2500R shear being loaded onto a UK-bound ship on the first leg of its journey Essex and high reach excavator hirer Messiah Corporation.

Messiah claims that the 24.49 tonne shear will be the largest in the UK; and the attachment – the largest in the Genesis XP range – is certainly huge. It boasts a jaw opening of 1.17 metres and a jaw depth of 1.21 metres.

DemolitionNews understands that the unit will ultimately be boom-mounted to deliver optimum power. According to Genesis’ specifications, that will require a carrier of 109 tonnes or more.

New owner Messiah has previously operated a Hitachi EX1200 which would fit the bill. But the company today specialises in the hire of Caterpillar high reach machines; so a Cat 6015B might be a more likely candidate.

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