Cranes removal routine from paper’s new home
By Saul Chernos
By Saul Chernos
Tower crane take-downs are a regular occurrence in a city like Toronto, where a construction
boom continues unabated.
So it was no surprise that headline writers weren’t needed when two of the machines were taken down in tandem from atop the building set to house the Globe and Mail daily newspaper over a three-day stretch in mid-March.
The Globe is scheduled to move from its current Front Street West location to the new Globe and Mail Centre, at 351 King Street East, later this year, along with other commercial and retail tenants.
Crews started on a Thursday, using the site’s north crane, a KNF Industries 355i-S-12T, to begin dismantling the building’s south crane, a Pecco SK 200.
“There were elements that could be removed within the confines of the construction site,” said Peter Nikolakakos, director of development with First Gulf, the site developer.
Crews began closing two adjacent streets to traffic early Friday evening, with All Canada Crane using Front Street West as a staging area and setting up a 600-ton Liebherr LTM 1500-8.1 mobile crane on Berkeley Street.
Crews set about removing the north crane, and by midday Saturday its boom was entirely gone. The cab and the remainder of the north crane came down on Sunday morning.
Crews then removed the mobile crane, carrying the various crane components away on flatbed trucks.
Nikolakakos says the entire procedure went smoothly.
“Weather was a positive factor. Crystal clear, blue skies, no wind, and temperatures a few degrees above freezing.”
It’s not uncommon to use one tower crane that’s on-site to help remove another.
“The boom of the north crane was slightly taller than the south crane, so it was used to help dismantle the south crane,” Nikolakakos said.
The Liebherr mobile took some effort to dismantle and remove. “It was such a large beast of a machine that they had to bring in the equipment on four or five flatbeds to take off all the counterweights and extra appendages,” Nikolakakos said.
Nikolakakos described the new Globe and Mail Centre as a 17-storey office building (height of 77 metres plus a mechanical penthouse), with a unique, irregular shape of cantilevered floor plates ranging from as large as 50,000 square feet to a more typical floor plate of 28.000 square feet.
“One crane on its own would not have sufficed for the entire building,” Nikolakakos said. “It was too large a span to have one crane touch both King and Front (streets). We needed to touch each corner of the property.”
Construction started in 2013, and the developer and owner are targeting LEED Canada gold certification.
— Saul Chernos