PROJECTS: INDUSTRIAL WORKS, DEFECTS & DISPUTES
Industrial building technology is highly engineering driven and can be specialized. Problems with buildings above ground are uncommon as most buildings are pure engineered structures built to specification.
PRE-CAST REINFORCED CONCRETE BUILDINGS
One area where we occasionally see problems are pre-cast reinforced concrete buildings where differential movement can be problematic.
Design and documentation of such buildings is highly cost driven which does not always leave room for appropriate attention to jointing, thermal movement and other such subtleties.
As with residential and industrial buildings, foundation movements are a common cause of problems.
Industrial buildings are not subject to statutory warrantees and although this does not prohibit litigation under negligence most property owners take a pretty pragmatic approach to disputes and complicated disputes over minor issues are unusual.
INDUSTRIAL PAVEMENT SLABS
A common area of underperformance and disputes are industrial pavement slabs. The design of such slabs is a complex and subtle area of engineering with attention to joints and edge thickenings being particularly important.
Usually there are no statutory inspections for such works and quality control on site is not always ideal, attention to curing is particularly important to minimize and control cracking.
The heavy nature, large areas and often high value uses of these pavements makes them a potentially serious problem when they underperform. Worse, almost invariably the only remedial approach is demolition and reconstruction.
HISTORIC INDUSTRIAL BUILDINGS
Historic industrial buildings requiring restoration invariably require special attention after years of neglect. Australia has been slow to recognize the importance of heritage structures. Engineers Australia's heritage body Engineering Heritage Australia has been proactive in this area.