NBS Source

Erie Basin

by 3A Composites GmbH

Two fifteen-story residential towers, like a pair of ballerinas, soar upwards high above the northernmost Salford Quays in Manchester. Slender backs linked together, they fan out towards the water and have earned the title the “Duet”. Anyone who moves into one of these apartments in the middle of the new Media City is part of the transformation and economic boom which, over the last twenty years, has seen Manchester change from an industrial city with high rates of unemployment into a trendy location for the creative, cultural and media industries. The city of subcultures has long since become a strong location for financial and service sectors, and has to offer appropriate housing. So, the Duet offers higher-priced accommodation with a sophisticated but youthful and fashionable interior. The tower’s façade, in glass and ALUCOBOND® tray panels, falls into angular folds and, like the position of the two buildings themselves, responds to its location. Because however much Manchester may change, one thing remains the same: there is less sunshine here than in other parts in England. Autumn brings grey skies and rain; sunshine hours are rare during this time. Thanks to mild temperatures, this does not change even in winter. So those who can afford to, make the most of the scarce sunlight by opening their apartments up to face south and stretching upwards high above the horizon. People living on the higher floors of the towers on the Quays, therefore, are less likely to be affected by autumnal melancholy. The angled, fan-shaped façade, featuring floor-to-ceiling glazing on all the south-facing surfaces, allows more light to flood into the apartments and offers exclusive, uninterrupted views all the way to Manchester United's stadium over the lower neighbouring buildings. At the same time, the orientation of the two towers ensures a good deal of privacy in the apartments. Incidentally, the ALUCOBOND® tray panels in three different shades of red and with different levels of gloss, echo the city’s colour palette: the dominant tone in Manchester is reddish-brown, like the naturally aged, different hues of brick. This duet of glass and ALUCOBOND® unites both: the old, rust-red Manchester, as well as the new one, with its glass clad skyscrapers.


Project: Erie Basin, Manchester | United Kingdom

Architect: Sheppard Robson Architects, London | United Kingdom

Fabricator: Premo Fabrications, Newton Aycliffe | United Kingdom

Installer: FK Group, Altrincham | United Kingdom

Façade System: Tray Panels on bolts

Year of Construction: 2019

Product: ALUCOBOND® A2 solid Pigmento Red

Photos & Drawings: John Kees Photography & Premo Fabrications + FK Group

Products featured in this case study

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ALUCOBOND® A2 - rainscreen cladding

ALUCOBOND® A2 - rainscreen cladding

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