Fashion Spree is a new shopping center in Sydney, Australia. Built in the 1950s, the building was initially developed as the Viscount Caravan manufacturing facility and thereafter turned into the Liverpool Markets, a marketplace for fresh food, before becoming Fashion Spree. As a part of revitalizing this building, it was imperative to maintain its history. In doing so, a lot of expectation was placed upon Transitions to utilize the existing 60-year-old slab that appeared weathered from its past of heavy industrial use, and turned into a high-end product.
The space spans 157,000 square feet now comprising of:
- 113,000 square feet of Husqvarna Hiperfloor polished concrete floors in the mall walkways and in 35 out of 50 retail tenancies.
- 11,000 square feet of epoxy polyurethane flooring system.
- 1,600 square feet of honed concrete floors at the shopping center's entrance.
Transitions completed work in 16 weeks. The installation process started before construction work with floor preparation and removing all existing flooring materials throughout the space. This primarily consisted of epoxy coatings and took nine days with more than 52 tons of concrete dust collected as a result.
Once the floor preparation was complete, all trades started work, while Transitions ground the mall walkways and common areas to fully expose the aggregate. The hard-wearing nature of this product and the ability of Transitions to enter the project early resulted in very minimal, in some cases no, damage to the slab during construction. At the final stages of construction, during store fit-outs, Transitions finished 35 retail tenancies at a rate of seven stores completed every two days.
Primarily the polished concrete floors were finished to a full aggregate exposure, 800 grit, and high-gloss finish with some retail tenancies differing.
Transitions ensured that the flooring products were installed across slabs of varying conditions consistently. They adjusted the processes and systems accordingly to achieve this. Transitions also worked in and around other trades. To assist, remote-controlled grinders were used to both reduce manhours and aid in a more consistent production. The first cut also was completed wet to increase diamond efficiency and reduce wear of the diamonds.
At completion, the slab showed no evidence of the original damage, cut outs, in fills and general wear. It appeared to be a brand new floor on a purpose poured slab, which is a credit to the workmanship of Transitions. The high-gloss finish reduced the requirements of artificial lighting and energy consumption by creating a highly reflective surface to bounce natural light around the center. Aesthetically, the polished concrete floor added an important historical feature to the building in the most impressive way in addition to perfectly complementing the industrial design brief.