Canary Wharf Contractors
Already achieving one of the greatest ever feats of engineering in transforming the once derelict Docklands into 97 acres of London’s sought-after office and retail space, the Canary Wharf Group has earned itself an impressive pedigree.
Managing and delivering all of the Group’s construction projects is its Canary Wharf Contractors Ltd (CWCL) division, which has enjoyed a long-held partnership with the Considerate Constructors Scheme (CCS).
An Associate Member of the Scheme, CWCL has demonstrated a considerable number of high performing registrations during the past 17 years, including its Canary Wharf Crossrail Station, which has received four CCS National Site Awards.
Commenting on the project’s considerable successes, CWCL’s Damien Gannon said:
We are very pleased with our achievements. The awards are a testament to the hard work by the team in delivering a successful and high profile project.
Our company philosophy is to deliver a world-class project whilst adopting a considerate approach in how we manage our projects and the various interfaces we have with the local community and existing neighbours.
There have been many tangible benefits associated with the Scheme.
We have found that the Scheme has helped us focus on the various areas which has enabled us to portray a positive image of our project and the construction industry.
The Scheme’s Code mirrors our company values and ethos. The Scheme assists us in becoming great ambassadors for the industry and the next generation of construction professionals.
Mr Gannon said that CWCL is fully committed to protecting the environment, ensuring that site image and presentation is of an excellent standard, that its workforce is respected and valued for its ongoing contribution and can work in safety.
He added: “We work tirelessly to nurture a positive safety culture and create a safe working environment. Furthermore, we have an opportunity to have a positive impact on our local community, through various projects we get involved with.”
Commenting on CWCL’s many community initiatives at its Crossrail Station site, Scheme Monitor John Sayers said:
Community integration is far more extensive than a standard report page could do justice to.
CWCL support the Railway Children charity (helping street children), St Matthias Community Centre, the Docklands Primary School in order to supply a ‘Bikeability Level 1 Course’ for school children during the summer holidays, to train them in safe cycling.
Community group leaders from Poplar and the Isle of Dogs were able to visit the rooftop area of the project to view the space that will be available for their own projects after completion in 2015.
A 4th RoSPA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) Gold Award is evidence of outstanding safety performance.
The ultimate formation of parkland with inclusion of rainwater harvesting and flood control measures are advanced indeed.
Mr Gannon outlines in sequence how CWCL fulfilled the Scheme’s five-point Code of Considerate Practice on its Canary Wharf Crossrail Project:-
Care about Appearance
For such a high profile project, caring about appearance is always very high on the agenda. From the moment the workforce walk onto the project, we want them to feel they are part of something special, and not just another construction site.
We ensure housekeeping standards are always high as it helps instil the mind-set of a safe and high quality site.
The external image and branding are also carefully considered with respect to site storage area, the boundary surrounding the project and the signage and information displayed to members of the public and construction enthusiasts.
Respect the Community
As mentioned above, our project has had an opportunity to have a positive impact within our local community. Working with the local community workers and leaders, we have been involved in numerous community projects which involved our site Trade Contractors, utilising the skills of the workforce. I would like to think that the relationships we have built up have left a positive impression and greater understanding of what a considerate constructor really means. We keep them regularly updated via newsletters, and for the last 4 years we have opened up the site to the public through the London Open House Weekend.
Protect the Environment
The project was built in the middle of the dock, so protecting the environment was always a key consideration. Our approach to protecting the environment was not just to meet the minimum requirements but to exceed them. A good example of where we reduced our carbon footprint and impact on the highways is when we removed the majority of the spoil from site via barges and not tipper trucks. The site undertakes a daily regime of removing debris from the dock. More often the debris is rubbish from other sources and not our construction activities. As a result of our approach we have seen a variety of wildlife make their homes and nests in around the site.
Secure everyone’s Safety
Safety is a core value for the organisation and creating a good safety culture on our site is important. We have worked with our Trade Contractors to develop a collaborative safely culture. We have run a number of safety initiatives on site, ranging from a mini safety expo with our suppliers, to health awareness days with our occupational nurse. We are keen to recognise those who work safely and positively reinforce these behaviours. We have held for the whole site hog roast barbeque days in the summer and given all the operatives a Christmas dinner in the winter to thank the workforce for their contributions and efforts in creating this positive safety culture. As a testament to the collaborative approach and the safety culture, the site has been awarded 4 Gold RosPA awards.
Value their Workforce
We have always prided ourselves in creating a site that values their workforce, from the amenities offered to the way the management interact with the workforce. There can be challenges associated with such a diverse workforce. These are overcome through understanding their needs and gathering feedback on a regular basis through suggestion cards, face-to-face surveys and other workforce forums held.
Asked about any challenges the project had encountered, Mr Gannon said:
The biggest challenge we have faced is making sure we are innovative whilst maintaining the excellent standards set.
The project has been running for over five years and each year we have had to look at ways to innovate. The CCS has been a big driver to help us think ‘out of the box’ and look at how we integrate the Code of Considerate Practice into our day-to-day site management.
The Scheme is invaluable in creating a consistent benchmark for construction sites to work towards.
It gives specific direction and support for sites to improve and raise their profile. As a result of the Scheme, I feel it is producing great champions for the industry and constantly raising the bar for sites to aspire to.
The Scheme is extremely worthwhile and has added enormous value to how we operate as a site.