Case Studies

Redwood, Tullamore


Civil and Structural Engineering


Related Services

Structural Engineering

People To Contact

Overview of service

ORS were appointed by Capital Homes in Q2 2018 to provide Civil and Structural services for a proposed residential development at Clara Road, Tullamore, Co. Offaly. The site is located in the heart of Tullamore and is less than 1km north of the town centre.

Together with the project Architects, Kenny Lyons and Associates, ORS were engaged at the earliest stage in the project before any concept layouts or survey information was available.  The preliminary stages of the project involved the gathering of information on the site and included desktop studies, procurement of topographical surveys and geotechnical investigations and engagement with the Local Authority and Irish Water.

A planning application was lodged for the first phase of development in Q1 2019 for the initial phase of development which included a total of 99 units. Planning was granted for 98 units in July 2019. A subsequent planning application in 2021 resulted in the grant of an additional 8 units making the total development 106 units. The granted development included a mix of detached, semi detached and mid terrace 2, 3 and 4 bedroom units. 

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Redwood 2
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ORS worked with the design team and client at detailed design stage to prepare tender drawings and specifications for the development. The works were divided into three packages – enabling works encompassing the 800m of surface water drainage required outside the site, the internal civils package including site development, roads and civils services and the structural package. A number of structural forms for the units were considered and evaluated including traditional double leaf masonry construction and timber frame with masonry outer leaf construction however the form adopted was a more modern method – ICF (Insulated Concrete Form) Construction.

The benefits of the selected construction method included speed of build, thermal performance, air tightness, structural robustness and flexible design.  

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Redwood 3
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Project challenges

Civil & Structural Solutions

One of the main constraints of the site was the lack of an available public surface water drainage connection. Subsoil ground conditions were found to be a sandy gravelly clay relatively consistent across the site and therefore were deemed unsuitable for infiltration of surface water. 

ORS prepared an engineering feasibility report to evaluate options for site servicing, including water mains, wastewater and surface water services. Although a number of options were evaluated, the final selected option for surface water servicing involved the construction of an 800m new gravity surface water drainage from the south end of the site to connect to an existing drainage main adjacent to the Clara Road roundabout located to the southwest. 


Sustainable structural design was adopted through the use of structural timber elements, including engineered timber floor joists and prefabricated roof trusses. The adopted foundation design and ICF wall design are efficient in the use of concrete and reinforcement to reduce carbon footprint. Also, the adoption of a raft-type foundation reduced the excavation depths required and hence reduced the volume of material to be transported off-site. 

Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SuDS) were adopted in the surface water drainage solution by installing an attenuation system to cater for the runoff from a 1 in 100-year storm event of critical duration plus an allowance for climate change. The adopted solution ensures that flows off the site are controlled to greenfield runoff rates and therefore minimises the impact or risk of flooding downstream of the site. 

The completed units are NZEB compliant and A2 rated with a very high-quality finish. The use of the ICF structure was a key component in achieving this energy rating and allowing a premium finish to the units. Exceptional collaboration of the design team, client and contractor and full buy-in from all parties helped deliver this as a premium housing development and one of the finest examples in the midlands and surrounds. 

Works are still ongoing on the site, with a further 32 units due for completion by the end of 2023. 


Key Contacts

  • David Mc Cormack Director
    Group 8501 2
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    David McCormack


  • Mark Heslin Civil Structural Lead
    Group 8501 2
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    Mark Heslin

    Associate and Civil & Structural Engineering Lead

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Block A, Marlinstown
Business Park, Mullingar,
Co.Westmeath, Ireland.
N91 W5NN

Pembr, 127 Baggot Street Lower, Baggotrath Dublin, D02 F634

Eyre Square,
H91 HY51

Office 4, Spencer House,
High Road, Letterkenny,
Co. Donegal,
Ireland. F92 PX8N

Republic of Work,
12 S Mall,
Centre, Cork,
T12 RD43

ORS has satellite offices in Newry and Maynooth.

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