Exterior Profiles Ltd had been contracted by Bovis Lend Lease to install the exterior glass facade in Leeds City Centre’s newest development, Bridgewater Place. When completed, it will be 105m high – the tallest building in Leeds. The construction involves two structures being joined together by an eight-storey glass atrium.

Exterior Profiles wanted to create a runway system around the exterior of the building, enabling the glass panels to be hoisted into position before being installed. This system had been developed by LGH for Exterior Profiles when they collaborated on a job several years earlier. However, the complex shape of the building prevented this from being a viable solution.

Instead, LGH were able to design and supply four counter balanced floor cranes, which were light enough to be easily manoeuvred between floors using the external lift, enabling the panels to be fitted quickly and cost effectively.

The floor cranes were designed to be positioned a number of floors above the level where the installation was taking place and a chainblock lowered to the installation level to attach the glass panel. The crane could then be used to raise the panel vertically and manoeuvre outside the building before installing in the correct position.

In addition to the counter balanced floor cranes, LGH also designed and manufactured a number of ‘Philly’ trollies. This enabled boxes, each containing two glass panels, to be safely unloaded from the transport and moved to the relevant floor in preparation for installation. A turnover lifting beam was also devised, which was fitted with webbing slings, in order to enable the glass panels to be removed from their transportation cases, before being rotated 90 degrees and laid horizontally on skates. From this point the floor crane could be attached to carry out the vertical lift.