The newly finished Páirc Uí Chaoimh is now an impressive, modern facility which has already made a very positive impact, providing a wonderful experience for both players and spectators alike, and whose high-class facilities for conferences and exhibitions have attracted new visitors and businesses to the area.
Both the foul and surface water pumping stations were required to be up to 6m deep, while diversion works for the north drainage channel needed cofferdam trench sheeting and heavy bracing based on a specialised temporary works design.
This was particularly challenging as there were many unrecorded live service routes. Our ‘Service Avoidance Procedures’ (SAP) pack was used very effectively to successfully manage this risk.
Up to eight cranes (two tower cranes, two crawler cranes and four mobiles) were operating on site simultaneously. In such a busy environment, the daily ‘Whiteboard Meetings’ at 7.45am were vital for reviewing ongoing operations and agreeing upon detailed plans for lifting procedures. Exceptional lifts (such as the South Stand roof trusses) were preceded by ‘town hall meetings’ where all site personnel were assembled and a toolbox talk given on the procedures and restricted areas involved.
A 4D BIM animated model was used to refine the construction logic and helped ensure the design and construction team understood the sequence and coordination required.
Accurate setting out and dimensional control was achieved using electronic distance measurement with total station instrumentation.
The final dimensional checks prior to lifting roof trusses were carried out using automatic 360O rotating EDM geo-positioning sensors. These scanned the barcode to achieve exceptional accuracy in locating 50mm diameter holding-down bolts.
Regular communication with the Ballintemple Area Residents Association (BARA) and frequent notices to local businesses, combined with traffic management, road maintenance and prominent directional and safety signage meant that we were able to manage this important aspect of the project with minimal disruption.
As stadium owners, the countywide Gaelic games controllers of the Cork County Board also played a strong part in maintaining community relations during the project, both inviting the residents association to tour the site during construction, and inviting local residents and business owners to a new stadium visit and corporate reception upon completion.
We also developed a revised traffic management plan, including new logistics and access/egress routes, for major events in the stadium, and this has been tried and tested to the complete satisfaction of the local community. While their previous experiences of matchday congestion and disruption had been an ongoing source of frustration for locals, our post-construction efforts have massively resolved concerns in this regard.
We are proud to say that our delivery of the new Páirc Uí Chaoimh isn’t just a good news story for Cork city in itself - it has also given added impetus to the CCC (Cork County Council) in their aim to complete the 32-hectare redevelopment of the wider Marina Park area which surrounds the stadium.
The all-weather pitch hosts a large number of juvenile (mini blitzes) and schools GAA matches on a weekly basis with access to the upgraded changing rooms. This creates a very positive impression for all the volunteers and players involved, knowing their participation is valued and there is great optimism for the future development of the GAA in the region.
The removal of old, disused sheds and the opening up of previously restricted areas has enhanced the value of property in the area. It has also eliminated anti-social behaviour and removed an undesirable association with a previously dilapidated and squalid environment.