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Mayor Helps Lay Foundations For Ashdown Technology College

The Mayor of Poole, Cllr Graham Wilson, visited Ashdown Technology College on Wednesday 2 November to see the main construction phase of the schools’ £15m redevelopment programme begin with the installation of 127, 12-metre long piles.

These will form the foundations of the impressive two storey extension at the front of the school, which is on track to open to students in September 2012.

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The Mayor of Poole and students see construction work at Ashdown Technology College

Martin Krause, Balfour Beatty Project Manager, said: "This work marks a significant milestone in the construction of the project and we are delighted the Mayor could be part of it. We will continue laying the foundations and commence the concrete frame which will be complete in early 2012."

Due to the ground conditions and close proximity of the building site to the school, traditional piling equipment which noisily drives pre-constructed piles into the ground will not be used. 

Instead, to reduce noise levels and vibrations, subcontractor Colets Piling will use a drilling method known as ‘Continuous Flight Auger’.  As the drill, or auger, is withdrawn concrete is pumped through its centre, filling the bore hole.  A reinforcement cage is then pushed through the wet concrete.

The entire process is monitored by the operator of the 30 tonne piling rig, using on-board instrumentation to know the depth, rotations and concrete pressure.

Cllr Graham Wilson, the Mayor of Poole, said: "As a retired Senior Engineering Manager I find this type of work and equipment fascinating and it’s been great fun to get behind the controls. I’ll be watching the project develop with interest and can’t wait to see the finished building."

Martin Krause added: "By this time next year, the building will be complete and students will be enjoying the new facilities.  We will then be working on phase 2 of the project; extensively redeveloping the existing school building to bring it up to standard with the new extension."

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