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York St John University, Creative Centre


Project: Creative Centre, York St John University

Client: Tate+Co Architects

Scope of project: Design and supply 24 bespoke-sized rooflights for the roof of a triple-height atrium to fit within apertures in a glulam timber grid.

Products: 24 bespoke sized em.glaze rooflights, some with concealed actuator smoke vents

The Challenge

The roof of the striking 14m, triple-height atrium, which forms the centrepiece of the newly opened Creative Centre at York St John University, features a glulam timber roof grid. Architects Tate+Co wanted to punctuate that grid with bespoke sized rooflights to bring even more light into a space which is used as an exhibition, teaching and theatre space, as well as somewhere for students to mix and relax.

The rooflights had to have a sleek, minimalist aesthetic, in line with the overall design intent of the atrium and, because almost all the services in the atrium are hidden, needed to be available with matching concealed actuator smoke vents.

The Solution

Whitesales designed and supplied 24 bespoke-sized em.glaze rooflights which suited the specification perfectly. The flush-glazed glass-to-edge design of the em.glaze units with flat sealed glass units fitted within a fully welded, thermally broken aluminium frame achieved the lean, crisp look the architects were looking for. The fact that they were also available with fully concealed actuators in the smoke vents supplied by our affiliate business Sertus was an added bonus.

All the rooflights were supplied for the project complete with preformed 300mm PVC splayed upstands, which enabled them to be fitted directly into the glulam grid, saving the contractors time on site. They were also fitted with specially coated glazing which allowed for a degree of solar gain and contributing to the low energy requirements of the BREEAM Excellent rated building.

The Benefits

As well as the meeting the design specification, Whitesales’ technical team helped to ensure that the em.glaze rooflights could be installed quickly and efficiently by the main contractors Kier Construction. We estimate that our recommendation to supply the units with preformed 300mm PVC splayed upstands saved the roofing team at least two weeks on site because they didn’t have to construct the upstands themselves and the integrated splay made waterproofing the roof a lot easier.

Tate+Co Director Andy Baker-Falkner is delighted with the em.glaze units: “We liked the lean, crisp design of the Whitesales em.glaze units, particularly with the clean white reveal and option for fully concealed vent actuators.”

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