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City Matters 115

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City Matters

DIP YOUR TOES IN Sadler’s Wells have brought back their massive annual dance festival which gives both new and old visitors a taste of what’s to come this year Page 10 YEAR OF THE RAT Chinese New Year hits the Square Mile yet again, with some of the best Asian restaurants getting involved with new menus and experiences Page 12 22 Jan - 04 Feb 2020 The City’s SOCIAL ENTERPRISE newspaper with 35,000 READERS Edition 115 £8.9m pledge to replace fire doors Project will also see replacement of fire escape doors from flats and doors to electrical intake cupboards Beethoven Weekender P11 THE City of London is spending £8.9million to replace fire doors on its housing estates following the Grenfell Tower tragedy, writes Julia Gregory, Local Democracy Reporter The Corporation, which has council homes on two estates in the Square Mile as well as eight other estates in six London boroughs, including Southwark and Islington, is replacing doors following a review after the fatal fire in west London. Like other councils, it mounted a review of its fire doors after the blaze and discovered that “the front doors of many units did not meet present standards and were a significant risk to the compartmentation of the units”. Compartmentation is designed to prevent fire spreading throughout a building. It discovered that the doors withstood fire for an average of 16 minutes – which was predicted for doors in their original condition. The new doors should be able to resist a blaze for up to 60 minutes, with a minimum of 30 minutes. The Corporation said that most OVERHAUL: doors on local estates will be upgraded. Photo by Fred Romero (CC). of the front entrance doors were the same ones as were originally installed and have reached the end of their natural life. At the time the timber doors were expected to last between 20 to 30 years. Councillor Randall Anderson, who chairs the community and children’s services committee, said: “Random sample destruction testing of several front entrance doors has indicated an average fire resistance time of 16 minutes. Although this is in line with what was predicted for doors in their original condition, it gives serious cause for concern when set against recommendations from many of the 2018 Fire Risk Assessments.” The project will also see replacement of panel surrounds and fanlight windows, communal corridor fire doors, fire escape doors from flats, and any doors to electrical intake cupboards that need to be fire rated. The move comes after the Corporation voted to install sprinkler systems in flats as a further measure to prevent fires spreading. Last year the council had to send doors for testing in Poland as there was such a backlog, with authorities queueing up to test doors after the death of 72 people at Grenfell in 2017. It will cost the City of London £8.9m to replace the doors, including £990,000 fees and staff costs. It will procure work on an estate by estate basis as the quickest way to bring doors up to standard at the same time across the housing estates. The money will come out of the Corporation’s Housing Revenue Account and will include the replacement of front doors to long leaseholders’ flats, which are also the City Corporation’s responsibility. New architects for Smithfield P14 Our Umbria Food Guide P18

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