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Non-compliant cladding found on stalled Royal Liverpool Hospital

Royal Liverpool University Hospital by HKS and NBBJ
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Non-compliant cladding has been found on HKS and NBBJ’s Royal Liverpool Hospital project, further frustrating efforts to get the stalled scheme finished

The Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals Trust said an issue had been identified with material installed by failed contractor Carillion on the troubled £335 million job.

The scheme, to create a 94,000m² hospital, providing about 650 beds and 20 operating theatres, was initially scheduled to complete in 2017. But this was pushed back to spring 2018 and no progress has been made on site since Carillion went into liquidation in January. 

Now a report by structural engineers Arup, commissioned by the funding consortium behind the project, has revealed the extent of works still required. 

In a statement, the Trust said Carillion had told it that all cladding used on the hospital had been specified and installed to meet fire safety standards including HTM05-02, which applies the Building Regulations to health premises.

But the Trust added: ’The recent review has found this not to be the case with some parts of the cladding […] Arup has identified the requirement for further improvements to the structure and to cladding.’

The Trust has the option to cancel its contract with the funding consortium – comprising the European Investment Bank and Legal & General pensions fund – if the hospital has not been handed over by the end of this month. It is understood that the Trust could seek government funding to finish the scheme if it can’t secure a deal with the consortium.

’If the contract was terminated, we would need to engage the lenders in complex discussions regarding the status of their investment. These discussions would need to be resolved before a new contract to complete the hospital could be agreed,’ warned the Trust.

‘In the meantime, discussions between the government and the funders to agree a way forward are continuing and we expect these discussions to generate an agreed outcome very soon.’

HKS and NBBJ – which won the scheme back in 2013 – have been contacted for comment.

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