A commercial retail unit was extensively adapted to accommodate the Cornwall Centre’s newest incoming tenant, H&M. The renovations involved demolition of the interior finishes, bank vault and floor structures while maintaining the heritage façade which consists of exterior brick and tyndall stone. Micropiles, pile caps, structural steel, elevator core and slab flooring and a new roof fit-out the Havik building for the new H&M. The floors in the new structure are at the same elevation as those in the Cornwall Centre, allowing H&M to extend from the Havik building directly into the mall on both levels. Inside H&M, visitors move around the space with ease using the new elevator and two new escalators.
Before construction could begin on the new structure, we first needed to brace the bank building’s exterior walls. The typical temporary bracing strategy required support from floor beams, which weren’t accessible without demolition. As an alternative bracing plan would have increased costs significantly and extended the schedule, we engaged a local structural engineer and structural steel trade contractor to develop an economical approach.
Flexibility and creative planning can overcome nearly any type of obstacle that arises. The discovery of asbestos vermiculite threatened to add more than four weeks to the schedule, but through in-house mitigation we were able to keep to the original completion date.
Throughout construction, the project team emailed details of upcoming activity to business owners, letting them know how construction activities might affect their operations. This helped us sequence the project phases and area kept business owners abreast of changes taking place in their neighborhood.
The much-anticipated H&M store opened its doors in the spring of 2018.