University of Salford


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The Project

In the summer of 2016, Johnsons Business Moves were awarded the major five-phase decant project at the University of Salford. The University invested £80 million in a brand new development in the heart of their Peel Park campus. The new 16,000sqm Arts Building development was purpose built to accommodate the schools of music, performance, art and design.

The new 7 storey high Adelphi Building was completed on the 17th June 2016, providing accommodation for the recording studios, flexible theatre, performance rooms, café, specialist teaching space, general teaching, administration accommodation and ancillary spaces. An early handover of server rooms, workshops and recording studios took place in May.

We provided the University with a project management team to undertake the decant from the existing Adelphi Campus into the New Adelphi over four phases with an optional 5th.

Phase 1
Workshops / Recording Studios – decommissioning commenced 23rd May, moving the following week

Phase 2
Specialist Spaces (Recording Studios, Store Rooms, Theatre, Rehearsals/Studio Theatres, Green Room, Ensemble/Tuition/Band Rooms, Wardrobe, TV Acting Studios, Dance Studios, PC Suites (250 PC/Mac Units), Photography Studios, Fashion, Architecture, Graphics/Visual Arts Library & Technical Staff – Throughout late June and early July 2016

Phase 3
Management, Admin & Academic Staff (150 staff) – August 2016.

Phase 4
Library Stock move. Late August to early September 2016

Phase 5
Graphics Print room from Media City UK to New Adelphi – December 2016

The Challenge

  • Providing a consistent, capable and experienced team throughout all five phases of the project
  • University staff not being ready to relocate
  • Large items would not fit in the lift as the architect had measured them incorrectly before construction of the lift commenced
  • Moving pieces of kit containing oil or liquid
  • Reconfiguring racking/having the right parts to enable this
  • Working with the University to ensure books were available throughout the project (tracking the Dewey Numbers)
  • Ensuring the sections had the capacity for the volume of books
  • Physical floor elements (pillars/fire doors/floor boxes) etc.

The Solution

  • We made sure the expertise and experience of the teams provided remained consistent for the duration of the four phases carried out so far. With little deviation between
  • We reviewed and altered the move programme to provide any staff not ready to relocate with more time to prepare themselves. We allocated an extra team of Packers to assist them with packing their crates
  • We hired a mobile crane and removed the windows to allow us to safely relocate all heavy/large items, as required
  • Pre-planning and ensuring we had the required parts in advance of the moves
  • Regular reporting to client POC as to sections being completed where the books are throughout the process
  • Proving experienced and flexible team to reposition the racking to accommodate overlooked physical items etc

The Outcome
By providing a flexible and accommodating team to this project, we were able to deliver it within the required timeframes for the University. We liaised with the Building Manager throughout the process, providing regular updates and reporting in to the key stakeholders when required. So far, this project has proved to be successful, with the University being very happy with our progress.

Client Testimonial
“We have received some very positive feedback from our stakeholders/end-users regarding the process and professionalism of the crews during the decant. All went above and beyond what the University expected, especially due to the compressed nature of the program. Johnsons moved 200 staff and near 400 PC’s and macs. The move was completed on time and within budget. Due to the late delivery of the building, during the mobilisation phase the crews ‘can do’ attitude and ability to be flexible enabled the decant to be flexible enough to adapt to the changing needs of the project. Overall, the team during the active decant – especially Lianne Jackson and Adrian Brownlee – were extremely professional, personable and knew the job, which enabled them to actively solve issues before they become critical problems to the project. I would recommend the service to other FM’s within the sector.” Marcus Young, Building Manager.