This impressive motorway-style service station delivers an impressive finish…
A first for Lowry Building & Civil Engineering, the impressive new Maxol service station at Tannaghmore, County Antrim, highlights the changing face of service stations in Northern Ireland.
The project was also a first for Maxol, a fourth-generation family business. The company has around 100 petrol stations in Northern Ireland, but Tannaghmore is its first motorway-style station.
Located on the A26 between Ballymena and Antrim, it replaces a former filling station. However, the new £3.75m development is light years away from its predecessor.
The 2.5-acre site includes a truck facility, internal seating for 100 people, free Wifi and parking for 45 cars while also featuring a Spar convenience store and food franchises including healthy fast food chain Freshly Chopped, as well as Irish kebab and burger giant Abrakebabra, and coffee giant Starbucks.
Lowry Building & Civil Engineering is delighted to have been involved in this project as it again highlights the company’s versatility.
“This is the first time we have worked on a project of this nature but everything ran really smoothly,” explained Stephen Harpur, Senior Contracts Manager. “Maxol is such a respected name, and we enjoyed a superb working relationship with them throughout.”
As Stephen explained, the fact a service station had already been on the site proved more of a hindrance than a help.
“We had to completely clear the site, including the old fuel tanks and pipework,” he said. “This was a challenging task that required a lot of co-ordination, particularly from a health and safety perspective. This was also the case when we came to installing the new fuel tanks and pipework, with a Petroleum Officer from the NIEA on hand to ensure we were meeting the stringent regulations.
“Health and safety is always an essential element of every construction project we work on, but for this job it was taken to a whole new level. It was a good experience though and will hold us in good stead for the future.”
In addition to removing the existing fuel tanks and replacing them with a new system, Lowry Building & Civil Engineering also demolished an existing building on the site to create a blank slate to work from.
The groundwork included extensive piling and the installation of a precast concrete slab in preparation for the erection of the new forecourt and store being erected.
“Of the £3.75million spent on the project, approximately £1.5m was on the groundworks and £1m on the fuel element, with the remainder on the shop, including the fit-out so you can see that the vast majority of the investment is actually unseen.”
Despite this, the project has been finished to a high standard that is far removing from the petrol smelling, wilting flower selling forecourts of the past.
Lowry Building & Civil Engineering had to work closely with the interior design and fit-out teams from the various food franchises on this aspect of the project.
“This required a lot of co-ordination but, overall, it ran really smoothly,” concluded Stephen.
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