Business as usual during retail centre upgrade

3 Colours was commissioned to recoat the timber façade on Stockland’s retail and residential complex known as Cammeray Square, located in a high traffic area close to the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Since building completion, the attractive façade had deteriorated badly over a relatively short time due to the high level of exposure to harsh weather.

The project involved sanding back the timber surfaces before applying the finishing coats of decking stain. 3 Colours was presented with several challenges, including facilitating the retail outlets to continue trading with minimal disruption to their customers, as well as the usual considerations of impact on residents.

Safety first

Height and safety issues necessitated installation of scaffolding, and pedestrian traffic areas required overhead hoarding to provide protection from possible falling objects. Retail outlets and restaurants were consulted regarding placement of scaffolding supports. Obstruction of retail signage was minimised and banners were placed on scaffolding to inform customers that it was ‘business as usual’.

Timber preparation

Prior to staining, the timber required extensive preparation to remove thick, polyurethane varnish. The timber joins needed to be prepared manually using a chisel to gouge out the polyurethane before applying belt sanders. As use of sanders created a lot of dust, 3 Colours agreed with centre management and retailers that no sanding works would take place between 1pm and 2pm each day, and none at all over the weekend, so peak trading times were not disrupted.

Enviromental consideration

To minimise air-borne dust, sucking bags were used on the belt sanders in addition to vacuum cleaners. 3 Colours also used cover sheets to protect the retail and residential properties adjacent to the work. Once sanding was completed, 3 Colours applied 3 coats of Wattyl Weathergard Decking Stain, combining colours to match the existing colour scheme. This hardwearing substrate is also water-based, making the clean up easier and more environmentally friendly.

Timber finish

The project was completed in four weeks, including installing and dismantling scaffolding.

Feedback from the executive committee indicates their satisfaction with the management of this project and the success of the outcome.

“On behalf of the Executive Committee I would like to thank you and your team for the very professional work carried out in sanding and recoating the wooden facade of our building. The completed work is a credit to your company and many people have remarked how good it now looks. We recognise that it was not an easy project, keeping both residents and retailers happy, but with your prompt assistance in dealing with any issues as they arose, the work was able to proceed swiftly with minimum interference to all concerned.”

-Executive Committee, Cammeray Square