At the beginning of October 2019, Simon Jones of Technical Production Management appointed Outback Rigging to install a superstructure for the new multipurpose venue Exhibition London, collaboratively owned and operated by venue specialists Broadwick Live and Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield.
The Victorian former ‘Dimco East’ building situated in White City, was originally built in 1899 as a power station for the London railways. Now available for hire, the venue’s two floors have a capacity of 3000.
The Outback team, headed by Conrad Ryan, were contacted at the beginning of October with a very short deadline of the 11 November to install the superstructure. The brief was that the venue needed to appeal to and technically accommodate live music events, however the venue itself was unable to have any additional load applied to the roof. Having assessed the design and overall brief, Outback worked with Total Solution Group, to produce a design that met the client’s requirements.
To allow for additional equipment to be hung within the venue, Outback’s solution was to span the full width of the space, utilising the previously installed Victorian trolley crane beams either side of the building. The trolley beams were 26m apart, resulting in a requirement for three large Mega Truss double runs that spanned between the beams. These provided capacity of approximately 6000kg per truss and allowed Outback to meet the technical brief.
The installation was challenging, due to restricted building access and truss components 5.5m long and 1.8m deep, requiring roads to be closed during overnight deliveries. A Layher gantry was built over the venue staircase, allowing for truss packs to be rolled into the building on skates, attached to hoists on trolley beams and raised onto the first floor. In addition, the floor within the building needed to be strengthened to allow for ground support legs at the stage end where HVAC plant made it impossible to access the crane trolley beams. Outback also provided Exhibition London with electrical infrastructure for the hoists and cable bridges, alongside putting in a suspension package into the ground floor roof space, for lighting corporate events.
The safe management of the installation was highly complex, with all parties involved working closely together to deliver the structure in its entirety very quickly, on schedule for the first event on 11 November. Outback worked with Complete Camera Platforms for the creation of high-level working decks to help in the assembly of the Mega trusses and the crown of the main stage ground support structure. Simon Jones gave his ‘sincere thanks’ to Ryan and his team, ‘for doing a fantastic job’, allowing Exhibition London to deliver back to back events throughout December.
Conrad Ryan said: “Outback Rigging are proud of the work we have produced and are pleased to be returning to Exhibition for a second phase in January 2020, to install further infrastructure. To achieve so much in such a short time frame speaks to the technical and project management skills within Outback.”