Measured building survey enables fire safety improvements at Savills’ residential building

Iain Tubby of CADS
Survey Case Study by Iain Tubby Survey Services Manager 07/02/2024

CADS’ survey team were selected by Savills to deliver a measured survey to include GIA (gross internal area) and NIA (net internal area) calculations of luxury Mayfair apartments.

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Measured building survey enables fire safety improvements at Savills’ residential building

Surveying luxury Central London flats for world-leading property agent, Savills

London-based Savills is a real estate services company, providing a wide range of property-related services across the UK and internationally.

Savills approached CADS with a need for a measured survey of Queensbury Court – a block of luxury residential flats in Mayfair, Central London.

Situated in a prime location – adjacent to Hyde Park Corner – Queensbury Court consists of flats arranged over the ground floor and five upper floors, as well as a basement car park which is shared with a nearby office block.

Savills’ required a measured survey to gain up-to-date information on the premises, due to a need to update the building’s fire alarm system to meet new legislation changes.

Measured building survey enables fire safety improvements at Savills’ residential building

Understanding Savills’ requirements and establishing the scope

We worked with Savills to understand their full requirements prior to carrying out the measured building survey.

In order to comply with new regulations for fire safety legal provisions within section 156 of the Building Safety Act 2022, Savills needed to understand the height of the Queensbury Court building from street level up to the top floor as the height of a building affects the level of fire precautions required.

Also, Savills needed up-to-date scale drawings of the internal spaces, as well as correct GIA and NIA measurements of the building for the purpose of insurance and valuation calculations.

This information needed to be obtained prior to October 2023 when the new fire safety guidance came into force.

Undertaking a measured building survey of the apartment building

The CADS survey team spent two days on site in July 2023.

Our flexible team worked around the availability of access to the flats to survey the interior communal areas and apartments within the building. Working efficiently and effectively, around one hour was required per single storey flat, and around two hours for the duplex flats.

We captured features throughout the building including wall heights, door and window heights, columns, beams, stairs and lifts, as well as fixtures and fittings such as sanitary ware, fixed furniture, kitchen fixtures and changes in floor finish.

Measured building survey enables fire safety improvements at Savills’ residential building

Measured building survey to create an energy model for a Savills’ Earth London office

Our experienced survey team were appointed by Savills’ Earth Sustainable design team to conduct a measured building survey of a prominent city office space – Exchequer Court – in London. CADS delivered 2D floor plans and external elevations for Savills’ Earth to use when carrying out an energy assessment.

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Measured building survey enables fire safety improvements at Savills’ residential building

Delivering 2D plans and GIA and NIA calculations

Following completion of the survey, we provided Savills with point cloud survey data and 2D drawings of each floor of the building.

This included the entrance lobby, concierge office, bathroom, storeroom and electrical room on the ground floor, as well as the interiors of the flats and communal corridors of floors one to five.

On the plans, we noted heights, room names and/or room usage, location of incoming mains services where identifiable and marked fire exits.

In addition to this, we provided accurate GIA and NIA calculations for each floor.

Using our deliverables to improve fire safety measures

The deliverables we provided gave Savills the information they needed to upgrade the fire alarm system at Queensbury Court – and comply with new fire safety regulations under the Building Safety Act 2022, by 1st October 2023.

This act was introduced following the building safety failures which led to the fire at Grenfell Tower in London in 2017. Section 156 of the act featured a number of amendments to the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (FSO) to improve fire safety in all buildings regulated by the FSO.

As Phase 3 of these improvements, estate managers and property developers must strengthen their fire safety measures by:

  • Improving cooperation and coordination between Responsible Persons (RPs)
  • Increasing requirements in relation to the recording and sharing of fire safety information to create a continual record throughout a building’s lifespan
  • Making it easier for enforcement authorities to act against non-compliance
  • Ensuring residents have access to comprehensive information about fire safety in their building
Measured building survey enables fire safety improvements at Savills’ residential building
Measured building survey enables fire safety improvements at Savills’ residential building

Adhering to the Building Safety Act 2022

This project was part of a wider trend in the surveying industry.

Following the updates to the Building Safety Act 2022 – which included the new fire safety rules – real estate managers and property developers are making a number of changes to their buildings to comply with these updates.

One of the most significant rules is that all high-rise residential buildings which are at least 18 metres or seven storeys tall, with two or more residential units, should be registered with the Building Safety Regulator by 1st October 2023.

As part of this process, many are commissioning the measured building surveys we deliver to obtain accurate and reliable building data to inform the changes and comply with regulations.

Get accurate and reliable data with CADS

We deliver surveying services for clients across the UK.

Here at CADS, we have a team of experienced and knowledgeable surveyors who provide a wide range of measured surveys for our clients. Whether you need a measured building survey or GIS asset mapping, a Revit model or Matterport survey, 3D laser scanning or a drone survey - our team capture accurate data within your scope and timescale. Speak to a member of our team today to find out more.

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