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Helicopter quickest way of replacing air con units

News | Published:

EYES turned to the skies over Admiral Park on Saturday morning, when a helicopter was used to lift new air conditioning chillers onto the roof of Dorey Court.

The French-registered Super Puma helicopter flew from France to Jersey on Friday and then flew the Guernsey on Saturday morning where a 50-metre steel cable was fitted to allow it to replace the air conditioning units on Dorey Court. (Pictures by Adrian Miller, 21317770)

The operation was part of the £1.8m. refurbishment work being undertaken by Brockton Capital.

The process took about half an hour and during this time the section of Elizabeth Avenue between the sea front and the roundabout by Waitrose was closed.

Savills was the appointed project managers for the scheme. ‘Due to logistical restrictions we were unable to get a mobile crane of the required lifting capacity to the island so a helicopter was our only option,’ said associate director Paul Watts.

‘The helicopter also allowed us to ensure the works could take place quickly and with minimal disruption to neighbouring businesses and residents, as well as building tenants.’

Amalgamated Facilities Management is the appointed contractor for the refurbishment project and sourced the helicopter for the lifting.

‘We are very pleased with how the installation went and would certainly consider employing this approach again,’ said AFM project manager Nick Young.

A Super Puma helicopter was used in the operation.

Civil Protection volunteers were brought in to manage the traffic and keep people away from the main zone of operations, but since there had been little publicity for the work there was only a small crowd of onlookers.

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A raised area at nearby Trafalgar Court made a natural viewing platform for the spectators, many of whom turned up at 8.30am, but went away and came back later when they learned the work would not take place until about 11.

In the event, the helicopter arrived at about 11.45 and the old air conditioning units were lowered onto a waiting trailer while the new ones were lifted up.

Among those watching was aviation enthusiast Richard Grimes and his grandson, Max Butterfield, 3. Mr Grimes was looking forward to seeing the helicopter: ‘I can’t say I’ve ever seen a Puma over here,’ he said.

Max said he had seen helicopters at an air show he had visited in Edinburgh, but he did not like the idea of going up in one.

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Also watching was the Tadd family – mum and dad Sarah and David with Joseph, 4, Aaron, 6, and Amelie, 3.

Mr Tadd knew the helicopter was coming since he had spent Friday preparing the old air conditioning unit to be removed. ‘I was up on the roof helping strip it out; everything had to be cleared off.

‘We made a pilgrimage here at half past eight,’ he said. ‘The children all love helicopters.’

n The refurbishment of the 45,000sq. ft Dorey Court began on 25 April and is scheduled to be completed in phases by March 2019. New tenants will move into the building once the first phases of works are completed.

Mark Ogier

By Mark Ogier
News reporter

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