Dormer Construction

UoC Science Lecture Theatre Demolition

LOCATION Science Road, Ilam Campus
CLIENT University of Canterbury / Hawkins
VALUE $950,000
PROJECT START November 2013
COMPLETION January 2014


Controlled 17-staged deconstruction and removal of 1961 built 2-level campus lecture theatre building.
Dormer managed deconstruction activities and site access in the operating Ilam campus. The safety and protection of campus students and staff was paramount.  Dormer engaged high reach excavator (22m and 28m booms) and had all necessary demolition attachments to achieve staged “waterfall” demolition technique on a 42m2 footprint. Methodology for all 17stages principally followed deconstructing the building down to second floor and then ground floor level pulling debris towards the excavator. Structures included; shear walls, roofing trusses, inner double-shear wall stair and lift cases, concrete slab on grade, suspended concrete floor, plant room, glazed external perimeter wall, reinforced concrete, steel trusses, steel portal frames, structural steel stringers, joist purlins and steel roofing.  At all times the construction methodology was considered ‘live’ with Dormer being flexible to modify methods/approach once information on the building behaviour was confirmed.  Existing service tunnels were protected (bridged) during deconstruction.



Work carried out on operating campus site (demolished building was connected to other existing buildings via link bridges). We provided due consideration of noise, dust and vibration and protection of campus assets. Dilapidation survey conducted.  All sewer and stormwater laterals were capped, surveyed and photographed. Water carts and water spray from high reach boom used to suppress dust. Disposed and recycled material where possible (steel, metals, clean crushed concrete and blocks).

Health and Safety

Floors were cleaned out thoroughly to ensure maximum debris loading and reduce collapse of the structure.  Soft fit out access provided and only approved access granted once high reach demolition began.  Nil incidents/accidents on operating university campus.