The world famous Harrods Department Store known to locals as the ‘Palace of Knightsbridge’ is renowned as the premier department store in the United Kingdom.
For many years all goods were transferred manually through a very narrow tunnel under Brompton Road near where the Department Store was founded by Charles Henry Harrod.
These facilities required an upgrade and a solution was found with the construction of a new large diameter access road tunnel, which was built from the site of the old Knightsbridge Crown Court at the rear of the Department Store to the centre of Harrods’ sub-basement. Harrods purchased the old Crown Court and demolished it in order to provide vehicle access via the new tunnel directly to the store basement.
While constructing this tunnel, Harrods also carried out construction works to in-fill the central light well; itmsoil were to monitor the basement of the store while this was undertaken.
A vital consideration during the construction work was to protect the historic buildings. Extensive automated monitoring provided by itmsoil ensured that the two basements, the retained façade of the court and adjacent residential properties did not suffer from any structural damage due to settlement.
The excavation down to tunnel level at Knightsbridge Crown Court was one of the deepest ever undertaken in central London at the time. itmsoil provided inclinometers that were installed around the diaphragm wall to monitor whether lateral movements exceeded design parameters; the liquid level systems and in-place inclinometers provided cutting-edge technological solutions to the project.