Author Topic: Another building crumbles.  (Read 2637 times)

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Offline corndog

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Another building crumbles.
« on: June 17, 2019, 12:46:14 PM »
In our mad rush to create  higher denisty living, allowing us to cram more people into our ever increasingly over populated cities, are we getting buildings, that within a year there are major defects occurring. Is this just the tip of the iceberg or just  coincidental bad luck..

Offline jw2170

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2019, 01:22:25 PM »
I am hoping it is not the tip of the iceberg.  There is oversuply in Sydney and still they keep going...
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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2019, 01:32:00 PM »
Honestly - hands up if anyone is surprised....
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Offline Champin

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2019, 01:48:12 PM »
There was a report a number of years ago about the quality or lack thereof of steel coming out of Korea and China. The report stated, with the engineers ability to fine tune projects with the minimal amount of steel use,  decreasing the cost of said project, the jobs aren't in effect built with the structural integrity they engineered into them.
 An example of this is Melbourne's faress wheel. Cracks where discovered. It was implied there were certain impurities in the steel affecting the welds along the heat affected zone.
 Maybe with the race to build things at a cost to compete on the national and international market, this breakdown of quality assurance is the sacrifice the big guys are willing to make. Albeit at a cost of life.
 Not like it hasn't been done before.

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Offline Hoyks

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2019, 06:02:48 PM »
I think its a combination of factors.
Plenty of crappy building products being imported, but the big one is that many councils have stopped having building inspectors actually doing inspections before slabs are poured or work is completed and now require developers to self assess their work and issue certificates of compliance... then there is good old corruption.


I'm interested in the crying foul as there is no one that can sue or claim against to recoup some of the building expenses and the gumment should do something.
My house has termites (100% confirmed when I stripped out the spare room, wife sprung an echidna trying to break into my daughters room, so guessing they are there too), but there is no one I can complain to or claim against. $200k+ on top of the mortgage to build and knock down, but what can you do?

Offline GBC

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2019, 06:13:22 AM »
The pics I saw showed cracked sub floor Besser blocks which point to footing issues. These are common enough. Looks like it could be a beat up unless there are bigger issues not shown in the article I saw. All steel used on bigger jobs needs to prove strength and is certified, no matter where it is from and MOST of it is Chinese direct or via wholesalers. There were issues years ago with quality but since the hydro power came on line they have come to the fore.
The certifying engineer inspects all structural and reinforcing steel prior to pouring.
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Offline Jeepers Creepers

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #6 on: June 18, 2019, 06:48:58 AM »
The pics I saw showed cracked sub floor Besser blocks which point to footing issues. These are common enough. Looks like it could be a beat up unless there are bigger issues not shown in the article I saw. All steel used on bigger jobs needs to prove strength and is certified, no matter where it is from and MOST of it is Chinese direct or via wholesalers. There were issues years ago with quality but since the hydro power came on line they have come to the fore.
The certifying engineer inspects all structural and reinforcing steel prior to pouring.

Where the hell do you come off posting crap like that.
There is no place on these sorts of threads for informative, sensible information which is, most likely, true and correct.
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Offline GBC

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #7 on: June 18, 2019, 06:52:16 AM »
Where the hell do you come off posting crap like that.
There is no place on these sorts of threads for informative, sensible information which is, most likely, true and correct.
Sorry, I woke up early. Pre first coffee post and a distinct lack of smart arsery. My apologies


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Offline Mace

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #8 on: June 18, 2019, 10:17:32 AM »
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/jun/18/cracked-up-how-can-apartment-buyers-guard-against-a-defective-purchase


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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2019, 11:38:01 AM »
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/jun/18/cracked-up-how-can-apartment-buyers-guard-against-a-defective-purchase
buy 20+yr old units LOL...
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Offline Pottsy

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2019, 11:40:08 AM »
The apartment owners are now being asked to find 80k each to effect $1mil repairs, where the hell are people supposed to find that kind of money.
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Offline Rumpig

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2019, 11:44:45 AM »
The certifying engineer inspects all structural and reinforcing steel prior to pouring.
x2 on above on any building i’ve ever worked on...never worked on big high rise projects though, but any multi storey suspended concrete slab we did on our unit complexes was always engineer inspected before a pour
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Offline GGV8Cruza

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2019, 12:19:46 PM »
x2 on above on any building i’ve ever worked on...never worked on big high rise projects though, but any multi storey suspended concrete slab we did on our unit complexes was always engineer inspected before a pour

That's the way it works most times. Here is the problem these days

An engineer designs a slab to hold up all the relevant loads. We price the project off the drawings. We then contract a concretor to do the works and they get there PT (post tensioning) engineer to redesign the slabs which removes a lot of the steel and replaces it with stands and ducts to support the relevant loads. If you saw a PT slab prior to pouring you would wonder how it stays in place sometimes.

The PT engineer signs off and then an inspector comes from the building surveyor who unfortunately has little idea about what they are looking at. Council do not inspect these types of structural elements as they too would have little to no idea of what is going on. (sorry to anyone who is an inspector as PT is another world to most)

Then its time to pour the concrete and the trucks turn up and add as much water as they want to the mix to make it easy to pump and also easy to place and finish. While placing the concrete the over sized concretors are jumping all over the reo and PT and squashing bar chairs which are supposed to keep it in a particular place in the slab to work effectively in holding up the slab.

So you can see why sometimes there are issues. I am very particular when pouring these slabs and I do it most weeks during the initial construction of the structure of a building. Our QA and standards are high and when a pour is underway I do not leave the deck during placement. The dollar is driving down quality and cutting corners is happening in detriment of building structure stability and finish.

GG


Offline Rumpig

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #13 on: June 18, 2019, 07:13:23 PM »
That's the way it works most times. Here is the problem these days

An engineer designs a slab to hold up all the relevant loads. We price the project off the drawings. We then contract a concretor to do the works and they get there PT (post tensioning) engineer to redesign the slabs which removes a lot of the steel and replaces it with stands and ducts to support the relevant loads. If you saw a PT slab prior to pouring you would wonder how it stays in place sometimes.

The PT engineer signs off and then an inspector comes from the building surveyor who unfortunately has little idea about what they are looking at. Council do not inspect these types of structural elements as they too would have little to no idea of what is going on. (sorry to anyone who is an inspector as PT is another world to most)

Then its time to pour the concrete and the trucks turn up and add as much water as they want to the mix to make it easy to pump and also easy to place and finish. While placing the concrete the over sized concretors are jumping all over the reo and PT and squashing bar chairs which are supposed to keep it in a particular place in the slab to work effectively in holding up the slab.

So you can see why sometimes there are issues. I am very particular when pouring these slabs and I do it most weeks during the initial construction of the structure of a building. Our QA and standards are high and when a pour is underway I do not leave the deck during placement. The dollar is driving down quality and cutting corners is happening in detriment of building structure stability and finish.

GG
we have done a few units that had post tension slabs in them...had the concrete blow apart in one spot once when they were tensioning it up. It did amaze me how the slab rose up from the formwork in a few places once tensioned it
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Offline GGV8Cruza

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #14 on: June 19, 2019, 06:02:08 AM »
we have done a few units that had post tension slabs in them...had the concrete blow apart in one spot once when they were tensioning it up. It did amaze me how the slab rose up from the formwork in a few places once tensioned it

I had a pop yesterday on the underside of the slab. Not from the tensioning of the strands but from the grouting of the ducts. A bit of high strength mortar will be needed to fix the soffit.

GG

Offline rotare

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #15 on: June 21, 2019, 10:17:40 AM »
Quote
The dollar is driving down quality and cutting corners is happening in detriment of building structure stability and finish.


This is the issue - cost cutting and a continual pressure on everyone in the construction process to reduce costs.

I'm in engineering, structural and civil design.  To win any work we have to cut the guts out of our fees, to the point we're pricing stuff now simply to keep people employed and the doors open - there's no margin for profit on most stuff and the fee is about covering our costs.

Everyone wants designs that will reduce their construction costs, good engineering takes time, but no-one wants to pay for it.   

We often quote stuff from preliminary architectural designs.  We win the work, only to find later when we receive the finalised architectural the plans have been changed without any consultation with us, which impacts on the engineering design.  We'll point out the new design needs more steel (as an example), but the response generally is the construction costs have been fixed, there's no allowance for changes, so find another way to make it work.  Usually this means making compromises on the structure's integrity or performance, or reducing the factor of safety.  Push this point and as engineers we're told we are too conservative, and it will be the last time we get to quote work with this developer or builder....

Third party certifiers sign off on the work because they also know that if they make too much noise, they won't end up on the preferred supplier list, plus if anything goes wrong it will be the design engineers that cop it first, anyways.

Talk with anyone in the construction process and it's generally the same story.  Not many are making money, no-one wants to pay for quality work so naturally corners get cut.  It's all about doing everything as cheap as possible.

Not sure who to ultimately blame for this mess, but it's been described by a few as the 'profitless boom'.  There will be more building failures in time, without a doubt.   

       

Offline Bird

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #16 on: June 21, 2019, 10:21:12 AM »
Quote from: rotare
... good engineering takes time, but no-one wants to pay for it.

sadly this is in all industries..
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Offline GBC

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #17 on: June 21, 2019, 10:26:03 AM »


This is the issue - cost cutting and a continual pressure on everyone in the construction process to reduce costs.

I'm in engineering, structural and civil design.  To win any work we have to cut the guts out of our fees, to the point we're pricing stuff now simply to keep people employed and the doors open - there's no margin for profit on most stuff and the fee is about covering our costs.

Everyone wants designs that will reduce their construction costs, good engineering takes time, but no-one wants to pay for it.   

We often quote stuff from preliminary architectural designs.  We win the work, only to find later when we receive the finalised architectural the plans have been changed without any consultation with us, which impacts on the engineering design.  We'll point out the new design needs more steel (as an example), but the response generally is the construction costs have been fixed, there's no allowance for changes, so find another way to make it work.  Usually this means making compromises on the structure's integrity or performance, or reducing the factor of safety.  Push this point and as engineers we're told we are too conservative, and it will be the last time we get to quote work with this developer or builder....

Third party certifiers sign off on the work because they also know that if they make too much noise, they won't end up on the preferred supplier list, plus if anything goes wrong it will be the design engineers that cop it first, anyways.

Talk with anyone in the construction process and it's generally the same story.  Not many are making money, no-one wants to pay for quality work so naturally corners get cut.  It's all about doing everything as cheap as possible.

Not sure who to ultimately blame for this mess, but it's been described by a few as the 'profitless boom'.  There will be more building failures in time, without a doubt.   

     

Yes, the design and construct commercial/industrial guys have created a lovely cesspool for themselves to play in. We are lucky enough to have fought the good fight, proven our name, sacked the crap clients, and adjusted the business to suit whatever inflows from the trusted developers we work with. Even with trusted clients we get market tested all the time and told we've missed jobs because we are too expensive - they all come back.

Offline GGV8Cruza

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #18 on: June 21, 2019, 10:40:36 AM »
Yes, the design and construct commercial/industrial guys have created a lovely cesspool for themselves to play in. We are lucky enough to have fought the good fight, proven our name, sacked the crap clients, and adjusted the business to suit whatever inflows from the trusted developers we work with. Even with trusted clients we get market tested all the time and told we've missed jobs because we are too expensive - they all come back.

We are in the same boat and its good to build great projects, keep the client and the boss happy.

GG
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Offline rags

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #19 on: June 21, 2019, 07:49:36 PM »
The problems will all be solved very sound as the building industry falls to its knees.

The is a very real emerging problem at the moment. It surrounds insurance for building certifiers, it is getting to the stage where certifiers are nolonger able to get adequate insurance for their risks even if they could afford it. Insurers are pulling the plug on the industry also.

So the problem is that there will be no one to issue building permits, no one to certify the work and no one to issue final certificates. It has the potential,to be worse than the FAI insurance debacle of early 1990s.
Governments need to act before the industry comes to a halt.

Offline Cruiser 105Tvan

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #20 on: June 22, 2019, 12:46:02 AM »
 >:D >:D

It'll be fine Rags, just like all the other stuff, they'll subbie it out to someone from offshore.

 >:D >:D

Even if they did try an enquiry into it, and actually found someone to blame, how long will it take to fix.
How many lives would be disrupted, and at who's cost.
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Offline GBC

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #21 on: June 22, 2019, 06:04:58 AM »
The problems will all be solved very sound as the building industry falls to its knees.

The is a very real emerging problem at the moment. It surrounds insurance for building certifiers, it is getting to the stage where certifiers are nolonger able to get adequate insurance for their risks even if they could afford it. Insurers are pulling the plug on the industry also.

So the problem is that there will be no one to issue building permits, no one to certify the work and no one to issue final certificates. It has the potential,to be worse than the FAI insurance debacle of early 1990s.
Governments need to act before the industry comes to a halt.

PI insurance costs will be forced onto clients like doctors etc. The ACP debarcle down south started that. Insurers and various other professional hangers on haven’t made many lives better anyway.

The poor builders and poor certifiers will be weeded out and the rest will carry on.

Offline achjimmy

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #22 on: June 22, 2019, 09:07:30 AM »
Flying in from Auckland yesterday , had a clear run in over nth Sydney and mascot and you could see hundreds of these new Legoland towers. This problem is going to be the new asbestos in a few years! I just hope that the fix is insular and the tax/levy is loaded on unit owners/builders/developers and not all home owners.
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Offline Bird

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #23 on: June 22, 2019, 01:38:44 PM »
reading an article on mascot mecchano set the owners have agreed to a million buk fund for repairs with some quotes upto 5 mill... where do owners pull that money from? apparently there have been issues in the past where owners received compensation! it must be bad...

i bet as jimmy says this is the tip of teh iceberg...

noting the Opal Towers thing has gone quiet
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Offline Rumpig

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Re: Another building crumbles.
« Reply #24 on: June 22, 2019, 04:03:09 PM »
reading an article on mascot mecchano set the owners have agreed to a million buk fund for repairs with some quotes upto 5 mill... where do owners pull that money from? apparently there have been issues in the past where owners received compensation! it must be bad...

i bet as jimmy says this is the tip of teh iceberg...

noting the Opal Towers thing has gone quiet
i wondered the same thing about where are people getting that money, think I saw on the news that  each unit owner needed to chip in $80K...and that’s just a starting fund. Gotta think a court case will follow as owners chase the builder for that money back.
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