We congratulate Building on the informative and “cheerleading” article celebrating British construction and design (9 July, page 34) at the British pavilion at the Shanghai Expo
Mace are to be applauded for resolving an incredibly complex project and the co-ordination of so many “parts” across the globe to achieve this. Most of all, the client and its team of advisers should be applauded for having the courage and conviction to select Thomas Heatherwick’s ingenious proposal.
Building should, however, be wary of situations where any one party subverts the role of the team. Designers and contractors are equally guilty of this, particularly under the adoring eye of respected magazines. Behind any such construction is usually an amazing idea (Heatherwick’s in this case) and what holds it together is the glue of necessity: a bunch of consultants are needed to turn the idea to a reality, and it is put together by excellent construction teams.
In this instance, Mace and Adams Kara Taylor supported the concept at competition stage, developed the detailed design and gave assurances. This meant that not only was the concept designable, but also buildable prior to procurement teams coming on board.
There were many challenges and often compromises but consensus from teams in the UK and China is what got us through. There was much learned by both sides and we must not betray our pride in teamwork as it is this that deserves the most accolades.
Albert Williamson-Taylor and Hanif Kara, Adams Kara Taylor