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McAlpine wins £29m Big Ben revamp contract

Sir Robert McAlpine’s special projects division has bagged scaffolding and preconstruction service agreement contracts to revamp Big Ben.

The team will begin work on constructing the scaffolding so conservation can begin in January 2017.

The overall repair works will span three years to conserve the Elizabeth Tower, the Great Clock and the Great Bell, also known as Big Ben (see box).

The PCSA will be used to allow further detailed planning for the conservation of the Elizabeth Tower, the Great Clock and additional modernisation, while the scaffolding construction is ongoing.

Big Ben repairs:

  • Repair problems identified with the Elizabeth Tower and the Great Clock, which cannot be rectified while the clock is in action.
  • Conserve significant elements of the tower, as designed by architects Charles Barry and Augustus Welby Pugin.
  • Repair and redecorate the interior, renew the building services and carry out work to improve health and safety and fire prevention.
  • Increase energy efficiency to reduce the tower’s environmental impact.

The scaffolding construction and PCSA is expected to cost £3.5m, while the conservation as a whole is expected to cost £29m.

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