Back to top

New living space in Stockport

Contractors: Carpenter Build Ltd, Liverpool

An exciting new development in Stockport, England, comprises two residential buildings with 202 apartments for the private rental sector. The Springmount Mill apartments are named after a mill that once stood on the site. The construction company is using MEVA formwork technology for the first time.

Carpenter Build Ltd. profits from the advantages of MEVA formwork systems

The Brinksway (106 flats) and Springmount (96) blocks are located in a pedestrian and cyclist- friendly environment. The property benefits from an elevated position providing attractive views across the Mersey River and the adjacent school playing fields to the Pennines in the distance. The north-south fall across the site is around 10 m and the master plan takes account of this level change by incorporating multi-storey car parking underneath the accommodation. The building design and brick façade reflect the character of the original factory building on the same spot. The two newly constructed buildings have eight and six storeys respectively, and up to three levels of parking below, with over 200 spaces. L7 Architects are responsible for the design across this stylish site with Carpenter Build Ltd. managing the site and construction. As Carpenter Build decided that reinforced concrete framework was the best overall solution for this and other projects, they invested in MEVA formwork, falsework, access products and services.


Rapid progress on site with MevaDec

Around 2,500 m² of slab area will be concreted for each floor. Carpenter Build learned about the MevaDec system at a product demonstration and decided to use the system for the first time because of its speed, safety, quality and light weight. When it came to concreting the floor slabs, MevaDec impressed not only with its low weight, but also because it is not constrained by any fixed grid and can be flexibly adapted to any layout and slab thickness. 

The Carpenter Build workers used 160/80 cm panels, weighing only 16 kg/m², while catering for virtually all requirements. The smooth surface of the alkus all-plastic facing allowed flawless surfaces to be cast. Effortless handling of the easy-to-clean MevaDec panels is further simplified by the ergonomic grip profile. The system provides for panel installation from above and below while simultaneously accommodating three slab-forming methods: the panel method, the primary-and-secondary beam method, and the drop-head-beam-panel method. The latter is based on only three components: panels, primary beams and props with drop heads. Regardless of which formwork method is most suitable for the construction project, the same components are always used. The methods can also be easily combined. MevaDec can be flexibly adapted to any building layout and slab thickness. Minimised filler areas allow for quick and easy construction. Other time-saving features that have benefitted the contractor include the closed aluminium profile with a high-grade powder-coated finish and the alkus facings, which reduce concrete adhesion and facilitate cleaning.

The drop-head beam element method has paid off in Stockport. Drop heads mounted on props allow for early stripping. With just a few hammer blows, the beams and panels can be lowered by 19 cm and then stripped and used for the next pouring cycle. It is thus possible to complete a slab in three days. Carpenter Build has saved a lot of time and achieved faster construction progress with significantly lower material, storage space and transport requirements. Predefined distances for the construction props ensure safety and optimised material supply on the construction site. This saves up to 40% on props and gives the crew more freedom of movement under the formwork. The falsework and edge protection can be easily erected from below, which increases the working height safety. Once built, the integral wind uplift protection ensures minimal work is required to complete the deck.


Balconies secured with MEP

MEP shoring with H20 beams provides safe support during construction of the balcony areas on the Springmount Hill project. Here too, less is more. The small number of basic parts – props, extensions and frames – facilitates storage and logistics. MEP is a versatile system for supporting slab formwork (such as MevaDec), slab tables, beams and precast units for heights up to 21 m high with little labour required. Similar to the MevaDec drop head, a quick-lowering system takes the load off the prop with a single hammer blow.


AluStar masters every challenge

Fast working procedures are being achieved on this project by using only one formwork system for the erection of walls, cores and columns. Carpenter Build has relied on MEVA‘s AluStar formwork. Lightweight and easy to handle, this universal aluminium hand-set formwork range is ideal for crane-free use, saving time and money. The convenient ergonomic grip makes AluStar panels easy to hold, transport, position and precision-assemble at the required location. Thanks to its universal applicability and straightforward handling, AluStar is an established and popular choice for residential and commercial developments, making light work of heavy tasks. On the walls, 3.30 m high panels are used to pour entire floor heights in one cycle. On the columns, 2.70 m high panels are used. MEVA designed column formwork for this with AluStar elements on all four sides.

In each building, three cores of different sizes had to be cast for lifts and staircases – one big and two smaller ones. In view of the small size, it was easier to use MEVAs telescopic shaft platforms with trailing platforms, thus eliminating the use of scaffold in the core and reducing the number of formwork crane lifts. This solution enabled the deployment of scaffolding in the core area to be avoided and the number of formwork crane lifts to be reduced. As the beams are telescopically adjustable, they can also be used on future Carpenter Build projects.

Shear walls were cast at the front of the parking levels for structural purposes. Glass panels will later be installed between the walls as a feature. Originally, conventional scaffolding was to be used for access for the external formwork. However, the folding working platform KAB from MEVA was deemed to provide significant advantages, as it is more effective than traditional scaffolding in terms of material and labour costs. The brackets can support formwork and access loads and have proven themselves in the tight access area between the buildings front elevation and the site perimeter. KAB is also being used for similar works throughout the project.


Exposed concrete surfaces

As the wall surfaces of the parking levels are visible, the alkus all-plastic panels – fitted as standard in the MEVA formwork, i.e. also in MevaDec and AluStar – ensured uniformly high surface quality finish and fulfilled the highest architectural concrete requirements. The robust facing with its smooth surface and a 7-year warranty guarantees top-class concrete quality even after more than 1,000 uses over their long life cycle. The alkus face is flush with the panel frame, minimising the tramlines seen in typical panel formwork.


Robust and easy to clean

Using the alkus all-plastic facing, the construction company has fulfilled the stringent requirements on the quality of the concrete with aplomb. The flatness tolerances of the walls have been easily complied with thanks to AluStar’s closed, robust and torsionally rigid steel frame profile for fresh-concrete pressure loads of 60 kN/m². During the numerous assembly and stripping cycles, the reduced concrete adhesion and the ease with which the alkus facing and the aluminium frames can be cleaned have paid off.


Effective and efficient process ensured

Elliot Booth, Commercial & Technical Director, Carpenter Build Ltd: “We approached our formwork options with great care, ensuring that we not only had a great product to work with but a strong client support system. MEVA ticked those boxes for us. The MevaDec and AluStar lightweight panels are easy to handle and adaptable to a range of situations and environments as well as being very user friendly. It was important to us to choose a supplier that offered a holistic approach and provided services that would support us on site whilst using MEVA formwork. This was provided to us through technical drawing information, on-site support and training, which was key to the successful installation of the product. As well as working well with third parties, the structural engineer, Term Engineering and L7 Architects, MEVA have ensured an effective and efficient process throughout the job.”

Carl Drury, Civils & RC Frame Manager, Carpenter Build Ltd

From start to finish the MEVA designers have made their objectives clear: ensuring safe working and creating easy-to-understand drawings out of complex design situations. This has complemented our working style well and guaranteed the best results on site. At every level of our site staffing structure the team have been pleased with the erecting and dismantling of the formwork, making light of complicated manoeuvres and adjustments as and when required. In particular, the AluStar panels have proven to be a real asset, lightweight and easy to position. The KAB system has given us a simple method for installing access around the external walls without the need to wait for scaffolding.

Carl Drury, Civils & RC Frame Manager, Carpenter Build Ltd

Featured Products:

Carpenter Build Ltd, Liverpool,

Carpenter Investments, Liverpool

Springmount Mill Apartments, ­Stockport, Großbritannien

Term Engineering, Liverpool,

L7 Architects, Liverpool

Engineering and support:
MEVA Formwork Systems Ltd., ­Tamworth (UK)

Subscribe to the MEVA newsletter

MEVA news, worldwide projects and tips & tricks from formwork professionals, digitally and directly to your inbox.


Close search and go back to site