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Metal roof and cladding coating using Liqausil's BBA Approved Metalseal

Metal roof and cladding coating using Liqausil's BBA Approved Metalseal

Liquasil Ltd

Metalseal 20 was specified to re-brand a small industrial estate in Swindon. Roofs and external cladding were all stripped of existing finishes using vapour blasting. Cut edge corrosion was treated using SWT Primer and all metal surfaces were coated with BBA Approved Metalseal 20 roof & cladding coating. The finish is now graffiti proof, with any graffiti simply washing off with water, with no ghosting residue. The project is covered by the unique Liquasil latent defects insurance guarantee (including cover for professional design).
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Precoated Aluminium Cladding - Property Development, West Bromwich

Precoated Aluminium Cladding - Property Development, West Bromwich

Metal Solutions Limited

Aluminium is an established and well used metal in Architecture. In the development of the Eastern Gateway apartments, Accord Indesign have been courageous in combining colour with shape and form creating a multi-layered, multi-coloured and highly visual façade. The variety of cladding solutions is successful breaking up the façade as well as providing a strong commercial versus residential statement. Interlocking Shingles breaking up the central core and interlocking reveal panels that create a linear regimentation in close keeping the traditional brick-built buildings along the High Street. Blended colours deliver a high level of interest.
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GKD: Metal mesh encapsulates gateway to the Campus Melaten

GKD: Metal mesh encapsulates gateway to the Campus Melaten

GKD - GEBR. KUFFERATH AG

With 16 research clusters, one of the largest technology-oriented research landscapes in Europe is being created on the RWTH Aachen Campus. The distinguishing feature of the Bio-Medical Engineering Cluster, which can be seen from great distances, is the new CT2 Center for Teaching and Training of the Medical Faculty of the RWTH Aachen University. As the first investor-financed building in this Cluster, it marks another milestone. In a Europe-wide investor selection process, Frauenrath group of companies, Heinsberg, and the architects from slapa oberholz pszczulny | sop architects, Dusseldorf, won the order with their distinctive concept. They designed the building as a standalone construction that is flooded with light and takes on the role of a gateway to the Campus Melaten thanks to its shape and prominent position. Two of the façades are clad with 1,900 square meters of OMEGA 1520 metal mesh from GKD – Gebr. Kufferath AG.As an elite center of learning, RWTH Aachen University is one of the state’s flagship institutions in higher education. Around 44,500 students, 550 professors, and almost ten times as many research associates help secure the reputation of the RWTH as an internationally renowned university – above all for technical and medical degree programs. Founded in 1870, the university’s campuses are spread across the city. With an unprecedented Excellence Initiative, RWTH Aachen University has been expanding its reputation as one of the world’s leading technical universities since 2009. The RWTH Aachen Campus consists of the Campus Central – with the historic main building and the distinctive Super C meeting center in the shadow of the cathedral and city hall –, Campus Melaten and Campus West. The result is a campus that integrates into urban life. On a total area of 800,000 square meters, 16 research clusters are being built successively to answer future questions arising from the challenges of megatrends. Six of these clusters are already in the course of implementation. These include the Bio-Medical Engineering Cluster in the direct vicinity of University Hospital Aachen. This consists of four centers, each of which is dedicated to a specific field. In these operating units, academics from the Faculties of Medicine, Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Natural Sciences collaborate with experts from industry on methods and products that are set to revolutionize both diagnosis and therapy.Visually seamless façadeThe CT2 Center for Teaching and Training is the first investor-financed building in the Bio-Medical Engineering Cluster. The seven-storey building was constructed with an investment volume of around €20 million. By networking theory and clinical practice the building offers state-of-the-art training opportunities for students of Medicine, Dentistry, and Biomedical Engineering. It also sets new standards in the further training of physicians and medical personnel, as well as the testing of medical equipment. The aim here was for the CT² to also reflect this function in terms of its architectural design. The architects from sop designed a cube on the slightly sloping terrain that resembles an inverted “U” thanks to its fully glazed upper façades and thereby has the appearance of a gigantic gateway to the campus located behind it. This impression is underlined by the projecting exposed concrete of the side walls which serves to frame the frontal façade. The lateral façades with ribbon windows along their length are spanned by a shimmering skin made of metallic mesh that creates a visually seamless surface. At the same time, the spaces located behind it remain visible thanks to the transparency of the metal fabric. This shell comprises twelve panels of OMEGA 1520 stainless steel mesh – each measuring 29.5 meters long by 5.4 meters wide. There were several reasons behind the decision to go with the woven membrane. These include the fact that the metallic skin underlines the building’s high-tech aspirations and lends the field of biomedical technology both a contemporary and appropriate face. Interacting with the glass façades, it facilitates communication between the interior and exterior. The attachment type is also in keeping with the philosophy of design purism. In line with the patented Fusiomesh NG system, the upper and lower edge of the stainless steel mesh is embedded in a special adhesive between two flat profiles and thereby bonded. Clamping forks ensure that the mesh can be perfectly aligned and handle the requisite static preload based on the anticipated wind and impact loads. The panels are attached to a continuous steel profile in a way that makes them visible at the bottom. At the top edge of the building, on the other hand, the material is bent over backward, so that only a fine edge of the mesh can be seen here. To reduce horizontal movement and the shearing forces at a façade height of 29.5 meters, seven stainless steel tubes run horizontally behind the mesh as intermediate attachment levels. The mesh is then attached to these tubes from the outside with wire clamps that are invisible once fitted. GKD not only manufactured and assembled the mesh for this project, but also took care of the installation.Efficient contribution to sustainabilityBeside the special aesthetics of the metallic membrane, its functional properties were the key reasons for its selection. For example, the stainless steel shell serves as solar protection that reduces the surface temperature of the façade. Yet despite this, the open mesh structure still allows unrestricted natural daylight into the rooms, as well as clear outward views. As such, it not only contributes to improving the building’s energy balance, but also makes it a more pleasant place to spend time and thereby helps boost employee performance. Since stainless steel can be fully recycled at the end of its useful life, the membrane also supports the sophisticated sustainability concept of the new building. The openness and interaction already visible from outside continue consistently into the atrium housed inside the building that is flooded with light. Numerous bridges and wide galleries allow a wide range of visual connections with all floors. The guiding principle of communication and interdisciplinary collaboration then becomes a reality that can be experienced throughout the entire building. Further highlights include a multifunctional auditorium that can house 400 people, as well as a demonstration operating theater equipped with the latest technologies. As and when necessary, these two functional rooms can be combined with the foyer in the basement to create an end-to-end event area which can, for example, be used for symposia. When operated at maximum capacity, the building can then host up to 1,200 guests. Its shimmering stainless steel mesh façade allows the gateway to the future to be seen from great distances.
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Walsall - Metal Roof Coating

Walsall - Metal Roof Coating

Liquasil Ltd

This 6,500m² metal roof at Axcess 10 Business Park, Walsall was soiled, delaminating and affected by spot corrosion in numerous areas, which would have eventually spread and perforated the sheets if a treatment was not applied.Bosworth Cladding Services Ltd ensured that the roof was cleaned and the peeling factory finish was removed with a 4000 psi pressure washer. The laps were ground back and primed as necessary.The whole roof area was then coated with Liquasil's single-coat BBA Certified Metalseal 20 system to provide a 20 year product guarantee upon completion.The completed installation left a metal roof on its way to failure looking brand new, with a protective silicone coating that will last 20 years.For more information, or to make an enquiry, contact Liquasil on 0121 709 5352.
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The best aluminium cladding for private residence

The best aluminium cladding for private residence

Technowood UK

Aluminium and real timber claddingThe best aluminium cladding for your private home, extension, renovation is Technowood ® cladding. It is faster than most cladding systems to install and has been available for almost 30 years. Tried, tested, analyzed and put through its paces in some of the toughest weather locations Technowood has proved itself a worthy product.How does Timber cladding weatherThere are many solid timbers used as conventional cladding, the main complaint being that the weathering is inconsistent. The colours fade at different rates which may look unsightly.UV light damages wood because it breaks down the wood’s lignin. Lignin is a component of wood that strengthens the cell walls and holds the fibres together. This process is called photo-oxidation.Technowood doesn’t suffer in the same way. This is because the manufacturing process of the veneer and the resins used to replace the lignin; thus negating the short comings of normal timber.You can’t really stop natural timber from weathering. However, with Technowood you can be assured of consistency.How to avoid water staining on claddingAvoiding water stains on timber cladding is something of a myth. Unless you maintain your cladding almost weekly there will always be indications of water staining. It is a product exposed to the elements and as such will be at least damp for most of the year; therefore will show water staining.Completed in 2012 this project is in Samsun, turkey. Receives full exposure from the sun and heavy rain (don’t think it doesn’t rain in Turkey as it does, it snows too). This project called for Technowood because it would keep the natural colour of the timber for much longer compared to normal timber cladding.Can normal timber cladding be warrantied?Under normal circumstances, you can’t warranty normal timber; unless it has gone through pressure treating or surface treatment that has such a warranty. These warranties are not ambiguous so long as the treatment process is followed to the letter of instruction.“The warranty for Technowood products is 20 years”.Salt Spray TestingSalt spray testing, a practice of checking the corrosion resistance of the surface of materials that have a coating. During salt spray testing, an accelerated corrosive attack is produced in order to measure the performance. This demonstrates how well the coating protects the metal. “Salt spray test has been done to our veneered material by IFT Rosenheim Germany and its succeeded.” Technowood aluminium and timber veneer claddingThe products available from Technowood are in standard width dimensions from 100mm, 150mm and 200mm. They look like real wood because it’s a real wood veneer. The product has very little to no maintenance; It also carries Fire Rating A2. This is perfect to future proof your propertyWe have a showroom in Sky House Design centre where you may visit for free samples, brochures and consultation.
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Rainscreen Cladding at Lyons Place, Westminster

Rainscreen Cladding at Lyons Place, Westminster

Dales Fabrications Ltd - Aluminium Eaves Products

Location: Lyons Place, Westminster, London NW8 8NLProject Type: Mixed Use Development Cost: £36m Products: S-Canopy SFX Soffit Cladding, SFX Rainscreen Vertical Cladding, SFX Soffit Cladding, SFX Support System, Circular Column Casings Finish: S-Canopy, Soffit & Rainscreen: Syntha Pulvin RAL 9002 Matt Grey WhiteColumn Casing: Syntha Pulvin RAL 8080 Matt Metallic Bronze Fire rating: A2 s1, d0 Non-combustible(Reaction to Fire EN BS 13501-1:2018). Client: Almacantar Ltd Architect: Farrells Main Contractor: Galliford Try Sub Contractor: CCS Facades
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Metal Roof Coating in Suffolk

Metal Roof Coating in Suffolk

Liquasil Ltd

The original factory finish to the metal roof of this property was failing, with the coating delaminating badly due to UV damage. The gutterless eaves construction meant that both the roofs and cladding had to be coated. Metalseal was specified because it is available in any RAL colour., In this case, Juniper Green was required. The original finish was removed with 4000psi pressure washers , before corrosion was treated with Liquasil's corrosion primer before Metalseal 20 was applied.
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New Public Services Hub to open its doors in Ellesmere Port

New Public Services Hub to open its doors in Ellesmere Port

Metal Technology Ltd

'The Portal' is a new £16 million public services hub in Ellesmere Port, delivered by Vinci Construction UK for Cheshire West and Chester Council. The new facility will be home to more than 500 council and public sector staff, a Job Centre Plus and a Citizen’s Advice Bureau.The building has been constructed with many environmentally friendly elements including solar panels, air source heat pump and electric vehicle charging points. The Portal’s envelope is wrapped at the top and bottom with an attractive, copper coloured metal cladding and a newly formed public realm area will surround the exterior, with bench seating and green landscaped sections.Internally, 'The Portal' consists of large open plan working areas with smaller subsection meeting rooms, break out and kitchen spaces which are present on each level and a main central staircase for circulation.Metal Technology Ltd supplied its 10-35Hi+ commercial entrance doors and System 17 capped curtain walling for the large, glazed sections of the build to approved fabricator and installer RED Systems Limited.Due to open its doors in Spring, it’s fantastic to have been involved in this state-of-the-art, commercial project, which is a catalyst for the wider Ellesmere Port Town Centre regeneration master plan.
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STEREO-KINETIC dynamic wall cladding system made from freely-moving stainless steel sheets

STEREO-KINETIC dynamic wall cladding system made from freely-moving stainless steel sheets

Lang+Fulton

The frontage of the Ocean Terminal shopping centre in Edinburgh has received a radical makeover as part of a major investment to increase footfall by enhancing the visitor experience. The extension has been covered with STEREO-KINETIC cladding; hundreds of freely-moving stainless steel sheets suspended from grating panels. Gusts of wind, traffic, even people walking by cause the metal rectangles to ripple in an ever-changing display. The kinetic artwork has been designed in such a way as to allow the passage of natural daylight through the underlying window openings on the second floor level.
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PRIVATE VILLA, FACADE CLADDING, DEMANDING STRUCTURES AND MASSIVE CANTILEVERS

PRIVATE VILLA, FACADE CLADDING, DEMANDING STRUCTURES AND MASSIVE CANTILEVERS

Technowood UK

Designed by architects from Qatar, this complex villa has a very different design from the usual house models; Clean and angular forms which are broken up with massive section of timber structures. These structures are not ordinarily large section of timber. They are created in house at Technowood and serve as a “reduced timber option”. Furthermore, with only using 2% when compared to using sold timber for the same project.Stone, metals and glass are the main texture of the design. These white tones of concrete structured against panels of natural timber, it’s most eye-catching feature. Located in Dohada, one of the most modern cities of Qatar, this futuristic house is also accompanied by the tranquil nature of the pool and the wooden sunbathing areas surrounding the secluded exterior.When working with designs for projects, Technowood allows the Architect to think big and realise big at the same time. Unsupported beams of this natural material can span up to 12 metres unsupported… imagine this section in a hard wood, the weight would be tonnes in comparison to the lightweight Technowood option.Credits and Further informationLocationDohada, QatarMaterialsCantilevered Bris Soleil, solid forms and cladding in TechnowoodProjectPrivate Villa
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Natural Aluminium – 'Echoes of the Past'

Natural Aluminium – 'Echoes of the Past'

Metal Solutions Limited

The St Michael & All Angels church Birkenhead with a Natural Mill finish Aluminium designed by Richard O’Mahony of the F.X. Velarde Partnership opening in September 1965. Awarded RIBA Bronze Medal in 1967. Aluminium has changed very little over the decades remaining an established metal of choice. Extremely lightweight with a strength and durability liked by installers. The material structure makes it ideal for vertical cladding where a flat aspect is required. Bright Aluminium surfaces will adopt a Patina in favour of a matt grey tone.
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Traditional Textures Copper Patina - Cheese Barge, Paddington Canal

Traditional Textures Copper Patina - Cheese Barge, Paddington Canal

Metal Solutions Limited

British Land commissioned Adam Richards Architects to design a custom-built barge for a new London restaurant, The Cheese Barge. The floating restaurant creates a distinctive focal point and destination for Paddington Central and the wider area. The boat’s curving, sloping roof is clad externally in Traditional Textures Copper Patina Precoated Aluminium metal to replicate aged copper. On the underside of this roof, a copper colour is visible from inside the boat, creating a warm and convivial interior as it gathers the light reflected off the surface of the water.
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ZM Silesia Preaged Zinc - Old Bakery, Ashford Kent

ZM Silesia Preaged Zinc - Old Bakery, Ashford Kent

Metal Solutions Limited

This old Bakery in Ashford Kent was no longer in use, it was purchased by a developer and planning was granted to bring this back in to use by refurbishment into habitable residential flats. One of the requirements were to sustain the commercial properties of the building but also to give it a modern look. Metal Solutions offered ZM Silesia Pre-aged zinc in a 0.8mm gauge, the light catches the characteristics of the slight oil canned aesthetics this angle seam cladding provides and delivered exactly what the planners were looking for.
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GreenCoat PLX Glacial Green - Aspext, Wick Lane, London E3

GreenCoat PLX Glacial Green - Aspext, Wick Lane, London E3

Metal Solutions Limited

Aspext is located close to the Lea Valley, a short walk from the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and its range of facilities. The area, known as Hackney Wick is a community full of culture undergoing a wealth of regeneration following the London 2012 Olympics and boasts an wide array of galleries, bars and restaurants. The apartment building, one of six individual buildings on the Wick Lane development provides a selection of one, two & three bedroom apartments.The design incorporates Standing Seams at 200mm, 300mm, 400mm & 500mm centres in a random arrangement wrapping both the vertical façade and across the roof areas.GreenCoat PLX RAL 6027, Glacial Green was selected as it offered the Architect the bespoke colour selection. A separate low level building on the site is clad and roofed using GreenCoat PLX Metallic Silver in a similar random seam layout. 
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Aurubis Nordic Green - Private Development, Northwest London

Aurubis Nordic Green - Private Development, Northwest London

Metal Solutions Limited

Due to the increased popularity of outside living space, this property in Northwest London has maximised this opportunity to increase their privacy from one neighbour with an unusually shaped extension providing the freedom of opening up the entire area. To try and keep in with the local surroundings they wanted to use copper for their cladding that would complement their design. Natural copper can take a long time to weather to a green finish. Metal Solutions offered Aurubis Nordic Green which is a pre-patinated copper where they can benefit from the aged finish from the day it was installed.
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The Granary, Barking

The Granary, Barking

FOAMGLAS®

FOAMGLAS® READY BOARD T4+Architects: Pollard Thomas Edwards ArchitectsConstruction: 2010 - 2012Application: Façade: FOAMGLAS® Slab W+F, 150 mm thick, adhesive fixed;Metal Pitched Roof: FOAMGLAS® READY BOARD T4+, 200 mm thick, adhesive fixedCladding: KME, Tecu BronzeFor the renovation of the façade and the pitched metal roof, FOAMGLAS® was chosen for its resistance to water and for its excellent long-term thermal performance: combined with FOAMGLAS®, the metal roof and façade can last well over 200 years.The grade II listed 120 year old Granary building and the Malthouse are among the oldest buildings within the East London district of Barking and Dagenham. In 2009 the redevelopment master plan was prepared by Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects. Design for the Granary and Malthouse was carried out by Pollard Thomas Edwards Architects whom certainly achieved the client’s key requirements for sustainability, and energy efficiency.Steve Drury, Rooff development director commented: "At an early stage FOAMGLAS® was specified for its environmental qualities and long term reliability. It is impervious to water and water-vapour and it actually provided an element of exterior weatherproofing as the building works progressed: the interior works could commence whist the metal façade was still being installed. FOAMGLAS® insulation, with its unique cladding fixing system, kept thermal bridging to a minimum; the resulting U-value performance exceeds Building Regulations by more than 25%.With time, the KME Tecu Bronze exterior will take on a natural patina. The metal exterior has a potential lifetime of well over 200 years, hence it’s very important to use the right insulation with a proven long term thermal performance.With FOAMGLAS® thermal ageing does not take place. It is the ideal insulation to be combined with roof and façade materials such as KME Tecu Bronze.For the pitched roof FOAMGLAS® READY BOARD T4+ was bonded and sealed to the timber board structure with PC®11 adhesive. Metal Plates type PC® SP 150/150 were inserted into the FOAMGLAS® READY BOARD. A 180 g/ m2 sanded bitumen membrane was torch applied onto the surface.
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Rust finish façade Gerrards Cross

Rust finish façade Gerrards Cross

Powdertech (Corby) Ltd

Aston House is a collection of thirty-two apartments in Gerrards Cross, Buckinghamshire.The one and two bedroomed interiors are complemented by a mix of classic protruding balconies and Juliet balconies, as well as terraces for the top floor homes. The external envelope has a brick-work skin up to the 4th floor and the fifth-floor penthouse apartments have metal rain screen cladding panels. There is also rain screen cladding around the ground floor entrance lobbies.Popular earthy, natural shadesThe architects wanted a warm, natural shade to complement the pale sand coloured brick work. ‘Rusted steel’ from our Landscape/Terrain range was chosen to coat 850sq metres of mild steel forming the rain screen cladding. All the powders we use conform to fire reaction rating A2-s1,d0 and have a 25-year guarantee for gloss, colour and adhesion.BenefitsPowdertech has years of experience in applying additional coating where needed to protect vulnerable metal surfaces. We call this our Plus+ service.Powdertech’s flexible plant can coat a wide variety of shapes and sizes of architectural metal work and fabrications.Powdertech has over 30-years’ experience in professional architectural powder coating.Powdertech has a very wide range of both standard and unusual powder coating shades and textures.Powdertech's rigorous non-chrome pre-treatment system offers the best preparation for architectural aluminium.
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World-class concert acoustics

World-class concert acoustics

GKD - GEBR. KUFFERATH AG

The Koningin Elisabethzaal in the northern Belgian seaport of Antwerp is unusual in every respect. Located at the heart of an architecturally charming city, structurally merged with a world-famous zoo, and boasting an immensely varied history as a concert hall, it transformed from an acoustic ugly duckling into a gleaming swan of aural experience. At the core of this metamorphosis is the design by the renowned American acoustician Larry Kirkegaard, who completely remodeled the hall acoustically. Golden metal fabric by GKD – GEBR. KUFFERATH AG (GKD) plays a key role in his concept. The woven texture really underlines the one-of-a-kind spatial experience in its use as large-scale cladding for ceiling, walls, and balustrades.One of 65 participants in an international competition to redesign and remodel the Koningin Elisabethzaal, the consortium comprised of SimpsonHaugh Architects (London) and Kirkegaard Associates (Chicago) produced the winning design. Kirkegaard’s ambitious concept, which employed structural and technical agility to aim for nothing less than a world-class standard for the new concert hall, played no small part in this success. The original hall was opened in 1897, served as a hospital ward during the First World War, morphed into a venue for boxing and wrestling matches during the Olympic Games a few years later, and was reopened in 1960 following major destruction in the Second World War. The fan-shaped design of this building, which was not intended to be used purely as a concert hall, contributed greatly to its poor acoustics, which achieved only six out of ten points on the rating scale. Plus, although it provided a stage, there were no rehearsal rooms for the orchestra and soloists. One aim of the new building was therefore to finally offer a home to the Antwerp Symphony Orchestra. The new Koningin Elisabethzaal is the centerpiece of the Elisabeth Center, which was also newly built as an ultramodern 25,000-square-meter conference center. When redesigning the concert hall, the planners decided to reduce its size in order to optimize the acoustics. This resulted in an enormous light-flooded foyer with atrium in the Elisabeth Center. Architect Ian Simpson embedded the new building into the historical complex in such a way that the art nouveau façades that had previously been hidden by the building were revealed once more and the old halls remained largely untouched. One of these halls, the Loos Hall, connects the new 2,000-square-meter concert hall with the historical part and also serves as the foyer of the Elisabeth Center. With its high stuccoed ceilings and rich marble decor, it provides a representative space for exhibitions and receptions. The new four-story building comprises various conference and meeting rooms for up to 1,900 participants, the concert hall with a capacity of 2,000 guests, extensive logistics facilities, VIP and catering areas, administrative offices, and soundproofed rehearsal rooms.An acoustic embrace in a shoe boxThe designers selected a shoe box shape for the concert hall, which classical music lovers deem to be a guarantee of optimum acoustics. This is aided by a perfectly balanced distance between the stage and the wall and an unusual seating arrangement in the parterre and the two galleries. Doing without a permanent apron also prevents a loss of sound. A curved wall means that the largest distance between the stage and audience seats is 30 meters, so that every guest feels part of what is happening on stage and can see and hear equally well from all seats. Movable reflectors clad in metal fabric and suspended from the ceiling as well as frames covered in the same fabric ensure that the sound is able to unfold throughout the entire hall. At the same time, the semitransparent membranes conceal the bare ceiling and the technical installations above. In designing the walls, Kirkegaard Associates chose a wave-shaped oak wainscoting. The cavities were filled with lava sand to prevent vibrations. With this construction, the acousticians drew on the sound experience of earlier concert halls, which employed arm-thick stone walls to reflect low-frequency sound back into the hall. As such, the walls and the rear wall of the stage in the Koningin Elisabethzaal form an acoustic embrace which ensures that the echo is not absorbed but is fully reflected to the stage.Metal fabric for good soundThe same fabric that was used for the ceiling elements also covers the movable reflectors on the back wall of the stage: gold-colored powder-coated Alu 6010. For the ceiling and stage wall, GKD fitted a total of 204 frames, some of them wave-shaped, with 1,600 square meters of this fabric type. Four-meter-long and 2.50-meter-wide panels were fastened to the frames provided by the customer with thin stainless steel wires at intervals of ten centimeters. GKD also incorporated the cutouts for the lights exactly according to the specifications. A first for the weave specialists was that the entire construction consisting of frames and fabric was then coated in the desired shade of gold. This required special pretreatment in order to ensure homogeneous coloring of the components made from different materials – steel and aluminum. Prior to selecting the material, Kirkegaard Associates had carried out extensive tests on the GKD fabrics in order to achieve the best possible sound and space experience. As such, GKD was involved in the planning process with architects and acousticians from a very early stage. The decisive factor in opting for metal fabric was the acoustic neutrality. In addition, the exclusive look, flexibility, and robustness of the GKD fabrics corresponded to the ambitious design concept. That is why the fabric from GKD – Omega 1520 with gold-colored coated weft – was also chosen for the balustrades of the galleries. It fits flexibly to the bidirectionally curved corners of the balustrade and is also resistant to impact thanks to tensioning in the direction of the cable. When fitting the front and rear of the balustrade elements with 400 square meters of this fabric type, the curve needed to be followed exactly. GKD selected a slightly conical panel cut for this purpose in order to realize the radius by tracing a polygon.The clever interaction between the design of the hall shape, ceiling, wall, and balustrade is what gives the new Koningin Elisabethzaal its excellent acoustics: with 9.3 out of 10 points on the rating scale, it is considered almost perfect. At the opening concert, Belgium’s Queen Mathilde personally handed over the hall, which offers a world-class space and sound experience, to the public.
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The Blue Whale

The Blue Whale

GKD - GEBR. KUFFERATH AG

Starting from Buenos Aires, the tango argentino conquered the world in the 1920s. Today the Argentinian capital is seen as the Paris of the South and is equally famous for its European flair as for its world-class cultural offering. The country’s colonial past has characterised the architecture and atmosphere of the city right up to the present day. And now, with the opening of the Centro Cultural Kirchner in the heart of Buenos Aires, the metropolis boasts the largest cultural centre in Latin America, which few cultural buildings worldwide can measure up to. Although it is officially named after the former President Néstor Kirchner, the building is commonly known as Ballena Azul (Blue Whale). It owes this name to its interior, whale-formed concert hall wing with an area of 2.200 square meters that forms a central element of B4FS arquitectos’ design. Its visually seamless shell made of Escale metallic fabric from GKD – GEBR. KUFFERATH AG reflects the blue paintwork of the skirting and walls. As the new base of the national symphony orchestra, the shimmering ellipsoid really makes the new landmark of Buenos Aires stand out.With a population of around 11.5 million, more than a quarter of all Argentinians live in the Buenos Aires region. Since the city’s building boom in the wake of the economic upturn of the 1990s, glittering skyscrapers, luxury hotels and exclusive loft apartments have been a common sight in the centre of the bustling metropolis. The old docks have been remodelled as high-class promenades that attract tourists and Argentinians alike to their restaurants, boutiques and bars. The historic city centre is home to the former Correo Central, the grand headquarters of the Argentinian postal service opened in 1928. In 2006 the then President Néstor Kirchner decided to renovate the listed palace and turn it into a superlative cultural centre. Following his death in 2010, his wife and successor as President, Christina Fernández de Kirchner, continued to pursue this idea until the project was completed in 2015. The planners from the Argentinian architectural firm B4FS prevailed in an international architectural competition for the renovation of the tradition-steeped main post office. Their design, a mix of architectural avant-garde and faithful restoration, aimed to create a place where culture could be encountered and experienced over 116 000 square meters in a space that is emblematic and people-oriented in equal measure. Thanks to its location on the Parque del Bicentenario between the historical centre with numerous important buildings and the modernised harbour area of Puerto Madero, the cultural centre became a revived, attractive focal point for the whole area.Breathtaking combination of monument and avant-gardeThe purely symmetrical design – both wings of the building are exactly the same – reflects the strict architectural concept of the planners. A sophisticated network of freely accessible areas on the various floors connects the modern function rooms with the historical parts of the building. The architects from B4FS thus combine painstakingly restored furniture, plasterwork, ironwork and woodwork with brave architectural structures and modern construction materials. Behind the faithfully restored façade, the restored elegance of neoclassicism enters into a fascinating union with the expressiveness of the modern. Even when entering the spacious foyer, almost 5 000 restored letterboxes, tables and chairs really bring the tradition-steeped building to life. The main dome of the palace, the slated roof of which was replaced by 496 window panes with an integrated LED lighting system, plays a key part in this effect. This construction lights up the dome in all colours during the evening and at night. For state visits, the lights show the colours of the guests’ respective national flags. As the city’s first public viewing platform, the crowning glass dome on the ninth floor also allows the Porteños (people of the port), as the people of Buenos Aires call themselves, to enjoy previously unknown views. Moreover, with three restaurants and its possible use as a function room it also offers an arena for culinary pleasure and entertainment. Alluding to the traditional chandeliers in theatres, the architects designed two glass rooms, fixed in place by Virendeel girders, that hover two levels above the stage. With an area of 220 square meters, this gigantic, abstract chandelier is planned as a flexibly usable space for art exhibitions of all kinds.Woven metallic dress for three-dimensional structureThe real attraction of the building, the enormous Blue Whale, can be found beneath the chandelier allegory. Its curved stomach contains a concert hall with space for 1 950 spectators in the stalls and on the balconies, as well as a chamber music hall that accommodates 540 listeners. For its construction, the respective building section was gutted behind the original façade and a large steel cage set up as a supporting structure. The colossal construction has a fascinating effect thanks to its shimmering skin, which seamlessly covers the ellipsoidal body and gently reflects the blue of the surrounding walls and skirting. When choosing a flexible material that would completely encase the idiosyncratic structure, the architects opted for Escale 7 x 1 metallic fabric from GKD – GEBR. KUFFERATH AG. This mesh can be formed in three dimensions and has already been tried and tested in a multitude of famous buildings – including Bertelsmann’s “Planet m” pavilion at Expo 2000 in Hanover or the “Children’s Palace” children’s hospital in Guangzhou – impressively demonstrating its ability to provide completely homogeneous cladding. For the shell of the Whale, the architects chose a customised version of the mesh with 70 millimetre-high stainless steel spirals and aluminium rods. For the cladding, which covers a total area of 5.500 square meters, GKD manufactured over 1 200 individual elements that were fixed to the top and bottom of the shape-giving frame structure using fastening hooks without any visible joints or connections. The international network of the world’s leading manufacturer of architectural metallic fabric proved its worth once again in the realisation of this challenging project: even during the detailed planning phase GKD was able to rely on the expertise of planners from form TL from Radolfzell, who specialise in 3D structures and with whom GKD had already successfully collaborated for the projects in Hanover and Guangzhou. The elements were mounted in the former main post building in Buenos Aires by the local GKD representative office in Argentina, Gutmetal. Following the official opening by the Argentinian President Christina Fernández de Kirchner, Buenos Aires now boasts a new landmark in the form of the Centro Cultural, allowing the past, the present and the future to be experienced under one roof.
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Golden membrane as an expression of corporate philosophy

Golden membrane as an expression of corporate philosophy

GKD - GEBR. KUFFERATH AG

In China, the name Shenzhen is associated with frenetic pace. The city’s metamorphosis from a fishing village with 30,000 residents into a 15-million strong metropolis took just 30 years. A start-up at this location required only two decades to become the world’s fourth largest industrial enterprise. Tencent, the high-tech concern that started out as an e-mail provider, has already overtaken Facebook in terms of its market value. The new HQ of the high-flying company was designed by NBBJ Architects from New York as a statement of a new era of campus buildings. Two towers made of glass and steel, that shimmer in the sun and unite the copper-colored pedestrian bridges, resemble robots hugging one another. When deciding on the cladding for the gigantic atrium, the company went for a golden metal fabric from GKD – GEBR. KUFFERATH AG, which was recommended by French designer Alain Bony.Shenzhen lies directly on the border with Hong Kong in the Southern Chinese province of Guangdong. Named a special economic zone in 1980, the once sleepy fishing village has developed into a prosperous market economy under state control. Countless skyscrapers today form a skyline that can hold its own in comparisons with Manhattan. One in three smartphones sold in the world is fabricated here. Yet Shenzhen has developed from the world’s workbench into China’s Silicon Valley. The majority of residents are less than 30 years old. Numerous international concerns are based here, and nowhere in China is the per capita income higher. Thanks to massive economic growth, Shenzhen is one of the fastest growing cities in China, making property in the city a geographically restricted commodity. Despite being one of the city’s most famous children, Internet giant Tencent is still not well known outside China. The inventor of the two most popular apps in China – QQ and WeChat – is today also market leader for online games, offers video streaming services, and generates 20 percent of its revenue from advertising alone. The company has been working hard on international expansion for quite some time and has shareholdings in various companies, including Snapchat and Tesla. It has been enjoying constant and fast growth since being founded. Just one year after completion of the first new company building in Shenzhen for 15,000 employees, planning work started on a new global HQ, which offers enough space for a further 12,000 employees. Tencent commissioned the renowned American architecture firm NBBJ, which has already built many award-winning headquarters for high-tech companies such as Amazon, Google, Microsoft, or Samsung, to design the new building. The team around Jonathan Ward fended off six competitors to win the order with a completely new campus concept. Tencent was looking for a classic campus based on the US model. The goal was to create a comfortable central meeting point in a spacious, attractive, natural environment, where people could automatically meet, chat, and find new ideas. However, the plot for the new HQ was located right in the heart of the city at an intersection of the multi-laned city expressways. As such, the only way to secure sufficient space in the small footprint was to design a skyscraper. Yet Tencent was concerned that a building of this type would not allow employees from various teams, departments, corridors, and floors to engage in regular contact with one another. NBBJ therefore merged the benefits of both approaches – inspiring spaciousness and inner city spatial efficiency – to create a completely new concept that re-imagines the campus idea and implements it vertically. To this end, the concept of a skyscraper was divided up into two buildings and then given the qualities of a classic campus. The Tencent Seafront Towers comprise two towers, boasting 50 and 39 floors respectively, which were constructed to give the appearance of being slightly intertwined with one another. The offset height reduces the load of the tropical winds common in the region, while at the same time providing ventilation for the atrium located between the two towers. The towers also provide shade for one another and thereby support the intelligent integrated energy concept.The key to the vertical campus concept, however, are the three skybridges, which cross as horizontal meeting areas. From a visual perspective, the copper-colored walkways give the towers a soul, as they appear to be hugging one another. They are logically referred to as links and make a contribution to movement and networking with topic-specific offers. While the link on the first floor above the lobby with café, exhibition space and auditorium is used for cultural exchange, the central link on the 21st floor is ideal for rest, recovery and health promotion. Staff can relax and unwind here in meditation rooms, a basketball court, a gym, a swimming pool, games rooms and even a running track. The highest of the three links on the 34th floor is dedicated to the topic of knowledge, boasting a library and multiple conference rooms. All of the links have roof terraces containing landscaped gardens. To ensure that they actually cater to their intended function as places of communication, collaboration, and inspiration, the architects at NBBJ designed an elevator system for the HQ, so that all employees can regularly spend time in these meeting areas. Express elevators from the lobby travel only as far as the bridges. The employees then enter local elevators to take them to their floor. From a design perspective, this is the fastest way to reach any office or location in the towers. This makes the links the perfect counterpart to the central square in a traditional campus, where employees automatically meet, even if they work in different buildings. They engage in spontaneous conversations here on their way from the bus station located beneath the towers or the parking areas to their office, in the queue for the juice bar or even on their way to play sports. Thanks to the bridges, these social meeting points are distributed across the entire HQ like in a city. This allows social networks, the key focus of operations for Tencent, to become genuinely accessible and experienceable. This systematically designed and yet organic networking produces precisely the kind of synergies that lead to the collaboration and inspiration Tencent strives for – as a prerequisite for further growth.The conceptual design of the lobby, which is open to the public from two sides, provides for additional hustle and bustle, as well as social meetings. This makes it a much-used route from other parts of the city to the Nanshan high-tech district. Just like the entire building, this central intersection between the inside and outside world was designed by the architects as a conscious statement of networking. When cladding three sides of the atrium, which is located above the lobby, the architects therefore chose metal fabric from GKD. A total of 1,850 square meters of this material is used to create a golden net that encapsulates the three-floor auditorium. Some 28 panels, each measuring four meters wide and 16.5 meters high, were used to create these hanging shrouds. Their sophisticated texture facilitates views into the atrium from the lobby, as well as open views down into the entrance hall. The textile shell also serves as efficient fall guard protection here. Visually, it acts like a delicate veil in harmonizing the effects of the corridors and rooms of the atrium located behind it. GKD was commissioned with developing a new special fabric for the design of the cladding. To create it, golden-anodized aluminum wires and tubes were interwoven in three-wire warp wire groups made of untreated stainless steel at varying intervals. The various diameters of the fabric components – 4 mm thick wires and 12 mm thick tubes – lead to significant differences in tension in the weaving process. These were completely equalized using special weaving techniques, so that the fabric reliably complies with the static requirements of the large-format skin. Installation of the special fabric also required the experts from Germany to demonstrate their decades of expertise. For example, the tubes had to be aligned precisely in the panels to create the appearance of a seemingly endless texture. Definition of the golden color to be used was also a particular requirement of the planners. The homogeneity of this color not only needed to be guaranteed across the entire area, but also meet the high expectations of the designers with regard to the appearance of the fabric when viewed in various light conditions. The subtle luster of the soft golden color ultimately chosen allows the atrium to appear caressed by the sun and lends the lobby a sense of warmth to contrast with its cool gray marble floor, walls, and aluminum screens. In the atrium itself, the selected color scheme also matches the wooden finish of the wall and ceiling cladding. The golden membrane then acts like a fine business card for the HQ, which underlines the image of a truly important concern thanks to its size and aesthetics and combines this with maximum interaction of the environment and employees.
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MahaNakhon – Bangkok’s new icon

MahaNakhon – Bangkok’s new icon

GKD - GEBR. KUFFERATH AG

Temples and dream beaches with turquoise-blue water make Thailand a sought-after destination for tourists from all over the world. The capital Bangkok, with a population of some nine million, is a city of contrasts with irresistible magic. In contrast to many other Asian megacities, however, the city has few contemporary architectural highlights. The German architect Ole Scheeren created Bangkok’s new landmark in the form of the 314-meter high MahaNakhon. A gently spiraling, perforated belt of glass balconies and terraces forming a staggered arrangement gives the reflective louvered façade its unmistakable, pixelated face. The MahaNakhon is complemented by the seven-story shopping temple Cube and a fully automated parking garage. For the cladding of the parking garage, the architect chose PC-Sambesi metal mesh from GKD – GEBR. KUFFERATH AG. Alongside the extraordinary aesthetics, its proven low-maintenance solar protection and reliable fall guard protection properties were crucial factors behind this decision.In Bangkok, facets of village and megacity, Buddhism and business are thrown together in a seemingly random way to form a fascinating mix of cosmopolitan flair and centuries-old traditions. The formerly quiet residence city was transformed into a pulsating metropolis that is home to millions of people in just six centuries. Since the 1980s, fully air-conditioned office towers, malls and apartment blocks have been shooting up like mushrooms. Today, the hectic Asian way of life dominates Buddhist tranquility. This contrasting nature is reflected everywhere in the face of the city. Alongside the Grand Palace, more than 400 temples bear witness to the rich culture of the capital, which stand side-by-side with Chinese pagodas, colonial-style buildings, dreary tin huts and gigantic glass malls. Scattered prestige buildings such as the 20-story Robot Building, the Nation Tower, the colors and form of which recall cubism, or the naive-looking Elephant Building complete the city’s chaotic skyline.Tower of superlativesWhen commissioning the MahaNakhon, the building owner, PACE Development Corporation Ltd., desired a building that sets an outstanding architectural highlight while also being integrated in the city as a public place and a worthy addition to Bangkok’s contradictory mix of tradition and modernity. Ole Scheeren took up the exuberant dynamics of the metropolis in his design and created a new urban center across an area of 135,000 square meters. This is also reflected by its name MahaNakhon, which means Big City. The three-part complex consisting of the tower itself, the Cube and a parking tower graces the city’s financial district. Across 77 floors, the tower offers space for 209 luxury apartments with between 125 and 830 square meters, 155 hotel rooms and numerous shops and restaurants. A particular highlight is the 3,500 square meter Skybar, which grants previously unknown views of Bangkok from a height of 300 meters. However, the MahaNakhon’s character as a new icon of the city is due to the staggered glass balconies and terraces, which give the giant the feel of an incomplete building with a vertical twist. From a distance, the fragmented pixel belt resembles a helix – an association that was consciously chosen by the architect as a synonym for genesis and development. At the same time he uses the image of the seemingly randomly arranged pixels to visualize the intricacy and chaotic dynamics of the urban structure. The apparently missing pixels also give the viewer the feeling that they are peering into the interior of the building.The future of parkingThe winding pixelated belt of the tower, which starts at the peak of the tower, ends at the spacious indoor and outdoor terraces in the sales and gastronomic area on the lowest seven floors of the MahaNakhon. Together with the exterior of the neighboring Cube mall, they form an outdoor atrium as a public event location. A parking tower rises behind the Cube, offering space for almost 900 cars over 10,400 square meters with an automated parking and retrieval system. In order to adapt the appearance of this structure to the luxurious overall ambience, the architect chose shimmering PC-Sambesi stainless steel mesh from GKD – GEBR. KUFFERATH AG for the cladding. A total of 464 framed mesh panels, each 2.9 meters high and up to 1.8 meters wide, subtly take up the visual appearance of the louvered façade of the MahaNakhon. As a discreet companion to the reflective surface of the tower, they also reflect the surroundings and the frequently changing sky that is a feature of the country. Some 2,100 square meters of rigid mesh lend the parking garage an elegant look. In addition to the high-quality appearance of the metallic skin, the architect was also convinced by the ease with which the cladding can be maintained. The attractive shell fulfills two functional roles: it serves as reliable fall guard protection on all floors, while also playing a key role in supporting the environmentally friendly overall concept of the MahaNakhon complex. In the tropical climate of Bangkok, the light- and air-permeable membrane proves its worth as an effective solar protection solution, which also enables natural climate control of the parking tower. Because daylight can enter the building freely, less electric lighting is required. In monsoon seasons the mesh also protects the parked vehicles from driving rain. The stainless steel, which is almost 100 percent recyclable at the end of its service life, also improves the ecological footprint of the building complex. The MahaNakhon was opened in August 2016 in the heart of Bangkok following an eight-year planning and construction phase. Today, the country’s tallest building is constantly in dialog with the city and its people. As such, Bangkok’s new landmark links opportunities for identification and participation with the role of an ambassador for a city on the rise.
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Three Bridges Station

Three Bridges Station

A J Wells & Sons

AJ Wells designed, manufactured and installed just over 1000m2 of vitreous enamel wall cladding with a metal ceiling to modernise the public areas of Three Bridges Station and provide easy access to hidden electrical and telecommunication services.The metal soffit was designed and installed to act as both a water management system and create an aesthetically pleasing ceiling in the subway and platform access areas. The ceiling also incorporated inspection hatches so that the underside of the rail bridges could be inspected periodically by the relevant parties.AJ Wells carried out the installation work under extremely challenging conditions as Three Bridges station is open 24 hours a day throughout the year. As a result the majority of works could only be carried out during the evening and in the early hours of the morning when customer traffic flow was at a minimum.AJ Wells worked closely with the other trades on the project in order to ensure that all interfaces achieved their required purpose.KEY FEATURES:• Vitreous Enamel Cladding system• PM13 ceilingA.J WELLS SERVICES:• Design• Manufacture• Installation
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The Cuillin

The Cuillin

Lindab Ltd

Stunning Scottish new buildFor the MacLeod family, the beauty of their new countryside home had to compete with that of the fabulous views overlooking the Ythan river, Bennachie and the Prop of Ythsie in the North East of Scotland. Design and build company, Cairnrowan believe in selecting premium products that not just look good but are high quality and sustainable. They selected Lindab for these reasons and due to having a good range of colours and finishes to select from.The Silver Metallic coated galvanised guttering and downpipes complement the exterior of the building which has Siberian larch cladding and seamless rendered fascades with varying height dry stone walls which come together around a 7m high gable window to create a stunning building. Cairnrowan were pleased with the products and will continue to use them on other projects, manager Kate Davidson said, “they look fabulous, high quality, complementing the build” and more importantly the MacLeod’s are very happy with the end result, stating, “The eye for detail and quality in Cairnrowan work is excellent” Stunning Scottish new buildFor the MacLeod family, the beauty of their new countryside home had to compete with that of the fabulous views overlooking the Ythan river, Bennachie and the Prop of Ythsie in the North East of Scotland. Design and build company, Cairnrowan believe in selecting premium products that not just look good but are high quality and sustainable. They selected Lindab for these reasons and due to having a good range of colours and finishes to select from.The Silver Metallic coated galvanised guttering and downpipes complement the exterior of the building which has Siberian larch cladding and seamless rendered fascades with varying height dry stone walls which come together around a 7m high gable window to create a stunning building. Cairnrowan were pleased with the products and will continue to use them on other projects, manager Kate Davidson said, “they look fabulous, high quality, complementing the build” and more importantly the MacLeod’s are very happy with the end result, stating, “The eye for detail and quality in Cairnrowan work is excellent” 
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Kunsthalle Mannheim museum of modern and contemporary art

Kunsthalle Mannheim museum of modern and contemporary art

GKD - GEBR. KUFFERATH AG

The Kunsthalle Mannheim museum of modern and contemporary art was opened at the end of 2017 by Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier. As Germany’s largest new museum building, it is a prime example of both civic commitment and architectural skill. The private patrons initiative – with SAP founder Hans-Werner Hector alone donating EUR 50 million – was what made the bold design at Friedrichsplatz possible. Based on the concept developed by the architects von Gerkan, Marg and Partners, a city within the city was created here, which reinterprets classic museum architecture while honoring Mannheim’s historical city layout. The composition of room-forming cubes is visually connected by a sophisticated façade made of bronze-coloured stainless steel fabric from GKD – GEBR. KUFFERATH AG (GKD). The translucent shell creates a subtle dialog between the inside and outside world. At the same time, the masterfully varying transparency of the fabric translates the scale of the building, creating a balanced sense of near and far.Following a construction period of around two and half years, the museum ensemble comprising the Billing Building from 1907, the connecting Athene Wing, and the new Kunsthalle museum building – named the Hector Building after the main benefactor – presents itself as an inviting whole. The Kunsthalle museum building replaces the rather dilapidated Mitzlaff Building, an extension constructed in 1983. The new building, developed by gmp as the winner of a two-stage architecture competition, respects the art nouveau architecture of the old building through its consciously reduced language. The architects created a monolithic, seamless concrete structure for the prominent location which fits in harmoniously with the development at Friedrichplatz and blends with the historic building. Their concept of transforming the museum into a city within the city comprises 13 cubes of different heights and widths that are offset from one another. As a tribute to Mannheim’s chessboard city layout, sometimes also referred to as the city of squares, a network of open and closed rooms was created with alternating perspectives depending on the location of the viewer. Seven of these cubes are grouped around the heart of the new Kunsthalle Mannheim, the 22-meter-high open atrium that boasts an area of 700 square meters. The cubes are connected to one another via galleries, terraces, and bridges. These guide visitors around the space and then back to their starting point in the atrium. The museum’s visitor experience thereby reflects the dynamics and architecture of a city. A total of three exhibition levels offer new presentation opportunities, including the full-height city window on the first floor, which offers an impressive view of the water tower. The atrium, which is covered by a glass roof and therefore flooded with light, grants fascinating views in all directions. Even without an admission ticket, visitors can enter the building, immerse themselves in its atmosphere, and take a few minutes out to enjoy a coffee. The feeling of wide open space and cosmopolitanism stimulate a sense of curiosity among visitors to explore the other rooms. At the same time, the window-like façade creates a sense of togetherness between the city and the museum, ensuring that everyone feels at ease.Woven work of artThis feeling is underlined by the stainless steel fabric façade cladding. It unites the real urban environment with its artistic counterpart and allows the city and museum visitors to come together and participate in one another’s lives. To this end, the architects went with a significantly higher degree of transparency for the fabric in front of the large-format glazed surfaces than for that cladding the fiber cement panels in front of the cubes. This varying degree of transparency preserves the effect of the architectural concept, regardless of the viewing distance. Despite the colossal dimensions of the building’s structure and façade, the woven skin loses nothing of its textile effect even from a distance. This was made possible by the fabric design developed by GKD especially for this project, which acts like a work of art in its own right. The company wove stainless steel wires and tubes of two different diameters – 3 mm and 25 mm – into four-wire warp wire groups made of untreated stainless steel. The key here was to use weaving techniques to completely balance out the varying stress ratios in the fabric due to the differences in wire thickness, so that the façade would withstand the strict static requirements caused by wind and snow. However, the exceptional fabric design also had to face another challenge: to replicate the precisely stipulated colour tone of the woven skin chosen, itself selected following a lengthy decision-making process. Despite the various metal mesh components employed, including cables, wires, tubes, and tube side closures, its homogeneity needed to be guaranteed across the entire surface. GKD’s many years of experience with coating technologies and their effects on buildings proved invaluable here. For example, the wires were coated in a continuous process, while the tubes were painted together with the closures in a spraying process and all then interwoven with the untreated warp wire groups.A total of 72 panels, each measuring around 20 meters in length and 3.26 meters in width, were used to create the sophisticated skin which lends the Kunsthalle its versatile face. With the discreet brilliance of the warm bronze tone, the finished fabric reflects the colour of the sandstone used in neighboring buildings. The large, stainless steel fabric façade measures over 4,600 square meters and changes its appearance throughout the day, in all weather conditions, from near or far. During daylight hours, it reflects the sunlight and its surroundings with the water tower and urban life. In the evening, it employs an intelligent lighting concept from below which transforms the Kunsthalle into the illuminated focal point of Mannheim’s most elegant square. The transparent façade grants unobstructed views of the city and the water tower from inside the museum. At the same time, it offers passers-by inviting insights into what goes on inside the museum. The metal fabric façade thereby establishes a connection between the city and the museum, which effortlessly succeeds in striking a perfect balance between reduced design language and desired emotionality.
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Sytner Mini Dealership - Slough

Sytner Mini Dealership - Slough

Johnstone's Trade Paints - a brand of PPG Industries

Johnstone’s Trade’s products have been the driving force behind a striking new-look Mini dealership. For the exterior metal cladding, Johnstone’s Metal Defence System Steel & Cladding Topcoat in black was used to provide excellent protection from corrosion, ensuring the building will continue to stand out for years to come. Johnstone’s Covaplus Vinyl Matt, specified in both off white and orange, was applied to the dealership’s interior to showcase the superb cars on show, with a superb finish free from flashing.
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An artistic interpretation of multicultural interaction

An artistic interpretation of multicultural interaction

GKD - GEBR. KUFFERATH AG

Case studiesAn artistic interpretation of multicultural interactionWith 3.5 million inhabitants, the region surrounding the Twin Cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis is among the 20 largest metropolitan areas in the United States. The Mississippi separates the capital of Minnesota, Saint Paul, from Cedar-Riverside, which is also known as West Bank. Day by day, tens of thousands of people commute between these three communities to get to work, university or school. The state implemented a comprehensive municipal rail project to bring the 100-year-old infrastructure consisting of buses and congested roads into line with these requirements. A key element of this mammoth project is the so-called Central Corridor Light Rail Transit (CCLRT) with the transport hub West Bank Station. The AECOM firm of architects designed a two-story station at this location. To ensure protection from the sun, the building was provided with large-scale cladding in the form of Omega 1510 and 1550 metal fabrics from GKD – GEBR. KUFFERATH AG. Through etching and the addition of stainless steel birds, the shimmering façade was transformed into an expressive work of art that reflects the eventful immigration history of the region. Scandinavian immigrants sought a new life in the settlement on the upper stretch of the Mississippi in Minnesota, USA, in the middle of the 19th century. These initial settlements grew to become the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, which are today an important economic and cultural center in the Midwestern United States. As the manufacturing industry went from strength to strength, the region attracted increasing numbers of migrants from all over the world from the beginning of the 20th century onward. Today, the region is viewed as a melting pot of nations, where over 100 different languages are spoken. However, the rapid population growth also took the transport infrastructure of the densely populated area to its limits as early as the 1970s. As a result, planning work on the largest local transport project in the history of Minnesota began in 1981, which also comprised the Central Corridor Light Rail Transit with the METRO Green Line. Today, this connects the centers of the Twin Cities with several of the most populous areas in the conurbation, also crossing the Mississippi.A real eye-catcher: multifunctional solar protectionThe architectural firm AECOM, which was charged with the task of realization, concentrated not only on functionality and aesthetics, but also on public art when designing the stations. For the particularly well-frequented West Bank Station, they chose a solar protection façade made of GKD metallic fabric. The textile skin in front of the extensively glazed station reflects sunlight, thus preventing the two-story building from heating up excessively in summer. At the same time, its transparency grants unhindered views of the outside surroundings and also, through the interior lighting, from the outside in. This visibility conveys a feeling of subjective safety to passengers. Meanwhile, the high light transmission of the woven structure ensures a pleasant atmosphere and lots of natural light. Despite its intricate feel, the robust stainless steel fabric will withstand the adverse weather conditions that often prevail here with wind, rain, snow or frost for many years. The fabric even provides effective protection from the vandalism so often seen at public transport stops. What’s more, the material guarantees the cost-effectiveness required for transport buildings thanks to its durability and freedom from maintenance. The shimmering membrane couples this complex and broad range of functions with an extraordinary visual appearance: as a delicate veil, it follows the stepped architecture of West Bank Station and lends a sense of visual peace to its detailed façade. Spotlights fitted outside create targeted light effects that change according to the position of the viewer and thus give the transparent fabric an unexpectedly opaque appearance.Signs of life: a public work of artThis effect is given an additional dimension thanks to a creative interpretation by Nancy Blum, an artist, critic and art lecturer who is very well-known in the USA. The architects’ concept for three of the city stations for CCLRT included her integrated artworks. The woven stainless steel fabric skin at West Bank Station inspired Nancy Blum to create an artwork visualizing the eventful history of Cedar-Riverside as a transit point for people from many different nations. That’s why the metal fabric panels in front of the stairways were to be decorated with ethnic patterns, with designs reminiscent of the three main regions of origin of the immigrants – Scandinavia, Asia and Eastern Africa. GKD realized this artistic idea by means of etchings on the Omega 1510 fabric. The smooth upper surface and relatively dense structure of this fabric make it particularly well-suited for this procedure, in which the fabric surface is modified slightly. On the basis of the patterns designed by Nancy Blum, GKD produced a screen that covered all surfaces that were not to be altered. The fabric specialist then used a blasting agent to modify the metallic surface precisely according to the artist’s specification. The durable patterns created using this method were instantly resistant to UV and severe weather conditions without the need for any special treatment. Daylight transmittance also remains just as high. Depending on the incidence of light and the viewing angle, the patterns can appear either transparent or opaque. However, they derive their special effect through their seamless integration into the building. Nancy Blum added a third dimension to these etched patterns by having silhouette-style pictures of migratory birds typical of the regions mounted on both treated and untreated woven panels. These large stainless steel motifs link the coming and going of the various migrant groups with that of the migratory birds, which follow them on their journey along the Mississippi. Combined with the ethnic patterns, this creates an almost poetic image of dynamic interaction in a region steeped in such a rich tradition.
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Spirit Aerospace Glasgow

Spirit Aerospace Glasgow

Soundtect

Eikon Design has successfully undertaken a major renovation of the Spirit AeroSystems main reception area, creating a stylish, energised space that integrates perfectly with the new corporate branding on its recently completed, world-class £28m Aerospace Innovation Centre.Spirit AeroSystems is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of Aerostructures for commercial airplanes, defence platforms, and business and regional jets. Eikon Design won the contract to design and project manage the reception area renovation.From the start, the designer felt that the refurbished reception area needed to reflect the dynamism and vitality projected by the Innovation Centre. The designers first thoughts were that they had to explore ways of using quality lighting and natural daylight on surfaces to create an impressive, engaging experience for visitors.The colour scheme - The designer Susan Anderson chose a neutral colour scheme that would reflect that used on the exterior of the Aerospace Innovation Centre, which was predominantly silver and grey. Surfaces – HARMONY pre-fixed slatted acoustic felt . Susan wanted to bring the reception area to life with surfaces that had different textures, depending on the light available and where the visitor stood in the room. After researching the market, Susan chose the Harmony ribbed-felt wall acoustic panels which Saxen sourced from the manufacturers, Soundtect. They were the perfect solution – grey fibre slats on a black acoustic sheet, as they had the structure, texture and colour she was looking for. Plus they were hypoallergenic and non-toxic, with up to 1.0 NRC (noise reduction co-efficient) – and a totally sustainable addition to the project, having been manufactured third-generation from recycled PET.The PET (polyethylene terephthalate) bottles are first recycled into exhibition carpets and then, at the end of their short second life, converted again into highly efficient acoustic felt by carefully re-layering the fibres to use as the core for this impressive, elegant, ribbed acoustic treatment.The Harmony panels are manufactured with fireproofing built-in, because the original carpet fibres were already fireproof so this critical safety component is integral to the product and not simply sprayed on. The Cause was responsible for fitting all the ribbed Harmony wall panels.The wooden wall panels behind the reception desk were dated, so the designer decided to repurpose them.- they were prepped, base coat applied and sprayed with two beautiful tones of metallic silver by Scottish Architectural Spray painters. Visual contrast was provided by prepped and coated matt white wall areas. LightingHaving found the perfect panelling, the designer had to consider the lighting and the role it would play. She worked with Seren Lighting, using a combination of existing products and bespoke lighting in ways which were both innovative and functional – using light to define spaces and surfaces. Depending on the way they were lit – whether artificial light, natural light or a mixture of both – the texture on the Harmony panels created subtly different moods. Also, as there is a fair amount of daylight flooding into the reception, the atmosphere of the whole space changed with the passing of time and the amount of daylight with both the ribbed and silver metallic panels creating different atmospheres depending on where you stood. All the lights installed in the project follow ‘circular economy’ principles and can be cost-effectively maintained and serviced – parts can be replaced with no need to throw the whole light away and buy a new one. The reception deskFor most of the day in summer and for short periods in winter, the reception area is flooded with natural light from two sides, so lighting the reception desk workstation needed a careful response.The workstation was located behind the reception desk, so using standard lighting methods would have detracted from the overall impression and been unnecessary for long periods. In developing the solution, the designer followed the basic principle, ‘put light where you want it, when you need it’. So an LED ultra-effect strip in diffuse profile was used under the top surface of the reception desk which threw a subtle light onto where the receptionist was working on the computer. The receptionist can switch this strip on or off as appropriate.The Cause remodelled and reformatted the reception desk to the design, which involved removing the angled elements and large posts, and replacing them with a concealed door. They also fitted the reception desk surface with a stylish, matt, dark-grey laminate, installing the lighting, graphic panel and ribbed panelling to the front. The panelling’s flexibility ensured a perfect fit around the curve in the reception desk.The reception desk skirting was painted the same colour as the staircase handrail.The Wing LightsThese were designed to develop the Wing Lights from first principle. The Wing Lights deliver light upwards, so it bounces off the various surfaces to enhance the textures and reflective differences. They also project a visual link to the ‘star’ element of the Spirit AeroSystems logo and took several attempts to create the final geometric shape. However, the Wing Lights now act as dramatic focal point within the space, capturing the essence of Spirit AeroSystems’ business and the designers overall design vision.CeilingThe existing suspended ceiling was off-white in colour, and looked rather tired so it was spray-painted with a dark metallic silver, which transformed the appearance of the ceiling and changed the whole look of the reception area. Lighting the upper-level walkwayThere were issues with uneven wall surfaces on the upper-level walkway. The solution was to apply architecturally inspired Harmony, lit by dramatic custom-made LEDs, to create the total effect – an utterly stunning, modern wall. The lights used were twin gimbal heads – round lights that can swivel in two directions. These were specially adapted from standard lights in the Seren range. The twin gimbal heads were installed in false pockets, clad with ribbed-felt. They provide functional lighting to the walkway, while adding a dramatic effect on the wall panelling.Finally, a pelmet was constructed to conceal a new LED Cob profile, allowing it to wash diffused light between the ribbed features of the Harmony panelling.The panels above the pelmet were spray-painted silver – the same colour as the ceiling – to give a much more dramatic effect.Other features…The wooden bannister handrail was stripped back and layered with different metallic colours to give a changing surface effect with different shadows and highlights. It was then coated in a high-gloss lacquer. This introduced an accent of colour, which also reflected the company’s corporate colours.StructuresDominating the reception area are two high columns, one of which contains a lift. Given the solidity and simplicity of the shapes, the designer decided on a lighting solution that would create an architectural feel, so she used beam-controlled light bars at the top of the structures to project a subtle wash down the full length of the columns.Carpets and furnitureThe existing carpet tiles were removed and upgraded. They were colour coordinated with the new, striking Italian Quadrifoglio furniture, sourced through Saxen. This furniture was the cornerstone of the designers vision vision, and its style, shape, colours and textures tie the space together.ConclusionThe success of the project was very much down to careful planning, creative thought and good people working together. Products used: Freestyle. Harmony
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River Street Tower, Manchester

River Street Tower, Manchester

Sotech Ltd

6500SQM OF OPTIMA FC IN COR-TEN WEATHERED STEEL RAINSCREEN PANELS HAVE BEEN USED IN THE STATE-OF-THE-ART STUDENT ACCOMMODATION ON RIVER STREET.As described by Architect Simpson Haugh, the student accommodation comprises three distinct volumes: a volume stepping from ten storeys fronting Garwood Street, down to five storeys facing River Street, and a 32-storey tower.Cor-Ten, a steel alloy which forms a rust-like appearance over 18 – 36 months, was selected for the project due to its striking appearance and in tribute to the copper shades surrounding River Street’s built environment. Cor-Ten is immediately recognisable with its bright red and orange tones.The strong textures of the Cor-Ten provide a fantastic contrast to the dark-blue glass cladding covering the inner elevations.Originally designed for use in coal carriages in 1930s American, the name Cor-Ten was patented in 1933 by U.S Steel, deriving its name from ‘Corrosion Resistance’ and ‘Tensile Strength’.Whilst it might look like the metal is rusting, the outer layer of the metal is actually undergoing a planned corrosion process under the influence of outdoor weather elements, which protects the metal from further corrosion over time.Referencing the corrosion process, Sotech Specification Manager Charlie Mclaughlin said: “Cor-Ten panels developed a patina in-situ on the buildings as a response to the elements. The local climate should be ideal. It was great to do another job with Simpson Haugh, especially on a site just a stone throw from their office.”Sotech’s Optima FC secret fix hook-on rainscreen system was installed to carry the panels, this fully tested system had the added precautions of stainless steel hooks and polyester powder coated rails to eliminate any bimetallic reaction between the Corten panels and aluminium support system.As you can see from the project photos, the Cor-Ten panels were perforated with hole cluster patterns positioned to coordinate with extractor vent outlets in the backing wall. This is achieved through a laser cutting process.As experts in the industry with over 30 years’ experience, Sotech wasn’t just involved at the manufacturing stage, but were engaged from design stage, offering details, advice and budget costs during the project.With 792 bedrooms and state of the art social space, the building fills a spot in Manchester’s landscape that had been empty for years.
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The Onyx Building, Lancaster Circus, Birmingham

The Onyx Building, Lancaster Circus, Birmingham

Sotech Ltd

1,500/M2 3mm Aluminium 1050 Grade H14 in Optima FC and Optima TFC systems has been used in the completion of the striking Onyx Building, Lancaster Circus in Birmingham. Optima FC was selected as the client required a hook-on cladding system with secret fixings for the main extent of the face. Optima TFC was then used in a mechanical fix for the slatted window cover panels due to barrier loading requirements.The building, which has been designed to achieve a BREEAM Excellent rating, comprises of two bold, angular towers with sharply defined ‘razor’ edges and a smooth, highly detailed, gloss black finish, rising 13 and 24 storeys respectively. The towers are anchored by a middle section rising to 10 storeys and finished with a traditional, matt brick with defined window reveals and texture.The Optima FC & Optima TFC systems were used with bespoke detailing where the main façade (Optima FC Hook On) met with a slatted window cover panel (Optima TFC).Sotech and Axalta Coatings created colour matches to Alucobond 887 & Alucobond 888 Metallics to allow this project to proceed via a powder coating route.Now available for students, the 1025 building occupies one of the most prominent sites in the heart of Birmingham City, positioned between Vesey Street, Lench Street and New Town Row.TESTIMONIALSJamie Smith, Estimator:“It’s an eye catching building in a busy area of Birmingham. The mixture of Axalta 887 & Axalta 888 Metallic is almost alien against the traditional brick and terracotta buildings within its proximity.Phil Fisk, Axalta:“The striking, dark colours chosen for this project were bespoke metallic products bonded to gain the highest application stability. Manufactured using Axalta’s Super-durable Polyester resins incorporating higher grade pigments and stabilisers, the enhanced coating provides outstanding exterior durability as well as looking aesthetically impressive”.
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North Acre: A Stunning Barn Conversion

North Acre: A Stunning Barn Conversion

Gowercroft Joinery Limited

North Acre, a magnificent five-bedroom barn conversion, commands breathtaking views over the picturesque countryside near Shaftesbury in Dorset's Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.Gowercroft products used:Peveril Lift and Slide DoorsKedleston Tilt and Turn WindowsMelbourne DoorsHardwick Casement WindowsAccoya®Vanessa and Bruce Jones, longing to build their dream home in the countryside, were thrilled when they discovered a spacious plot with an abandoned steel-framed agricultural building.The 400-square-meter south-facing structure, once a cattle shed, held immense potential for their vision of a modern, open-plan, eco-friendly family home."North Acre's location captivated us instantly. We realised that, with the right design, this industrial-looking farm building could be transformed into a light-filled, airy sanctuary for our family," shared Vanessa Jones.Uniquely Integrated DesignCampbell Jackson Architects approached the conversion with a focus on celebrating the structure's grand scale, shape, and utilitarian simplicity."Our philosophy is to create buildings that are harmonious and appropriate for their surroundings, revealing the distinctive qualities of each project. In this case, we aimed to maintain the barn's unassuming presence within the rural landscape while welcoming the stunning views into its light-filled interior spaces," explained Jamie Campbell.The original concrete hardstanding served as the footprint for the new design, with the core steel framework supporting a metal-clad roof. The use of pre-cast concrete panels at lower levels and extensive Siberian larch cladding contribute to a contemporary and understated aesthetic.Thoughtfully Framed ViewsThe south-facing elevation of the design purposefully responds to the panoramic views. Landscape Tilt and Turn windows and Lift and Slide doors from Gowercroft Joinery were carefully incorporated, allowing for perfectly framed vistas."We sought high-quality traditional timber windows and doors that would seamlessly blend with the concrete lintels and the Siberian larch cladding. Over time, the cladding will naturally weather from its original blond colour to a sun-bleached patina," shared Jamie.Gowercroft's windows and doors, renowned for their silver-grey translucent finish, were chosen for their contemporary aesthetic. The Accoya® timber's grain pattern shines through, complementing the desired tone.Throughout the project, Gowercroft supplied 22 Accoya® tilt and turn windows and four doors, all finished with their exclusive semi-transparent grey coating. These windows and doors enhance the flow between interior living spaces and offer captivating views of an exquisite indoor winter garden.The Perfect Match"We are absolutely thrilled with our new home. Campbell Jackson Architects' remarkable design has brought our original vision to life in ways beyond our imagination. The quality and beauty of the timber windows and doors from Gowercroft complete the picture," expressed Vanessa Jones.The Gowercroft team went above and beyond, ensuring that every detail, both technical and aesthetic, was meticulously considered to ensure their windows and doors were the perfect match for the new home. The specially developed micro-porous protective finish from Italy guarantees exceptional performance and virtually maintenance-free enjoyment.North Acre stands as a testament to the successful collaboration between Campbell Jackson Architects and Gowercroft, where architectural excellence and exquisite craftsmanship converge.
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Contemporary retirement living enhanced with Vandersanden brick slips

Contemporary retirement living enhanced with Vandersanden brick slips

Vandersanden Brick

Woodlands is a high-quality retirement scheme of 17 luxury apartments by PegasusLife, now part of Lifestory, in exclusive Canford Cliffs, Dorset. Designed by Snug Architects, the building’s striking, contemporary form is crafted to include a carefully specified combination of whitewashed, vertical timber cladding, glazed balconies, bronze-coloured windows and white Antro facing brick slips from leading brick innovator, Vandersanden. “It was the team at PegasusLife that first suggested using Vandersanden brick slips,” explains Mike Worthington, director at Snug Architects. “The very stylish Antro brick complements the whitewashed timber cladding and the bronze metal colour of the windows very well to provide an incredibly mature material palette.” Within walking distance of the beach, Woodlands stands on Flaghead Road amongst age-old pines. The building’s architecture was inspired by its setting and, although bold and contemporary, relates harmoniously to the scale of the surrounding housing. The structure was conceived as a three-storey modern brick envelope with a basement car park that has lift access. Woodlands was built using a reinforced concrete frame construction. Instead of traditional brickwork, Gebrik Brick Cladding Panels featuring Vandersanden’s Antro brick slips were supplied by Aquarian Cladding for the project. These were constructed off-site and installed straight onto the building frame. By using Gebrik panels, the aesthetics of the building were maintained as originally designed while minimising on-site works. A further advantage was that the build programme was more efficient than with traditional construction as the building was watertight more quickly, so interior spaces could be fitted out in tandem with work to the exterior. To complete the facade, Antro brick pistols and splayed/canted brick specials were employed with the bricks wrapped underneath the soffit of window and balcony openings. Vandersanden’s Antro stock facing bricks have a sanded-coated and creased structure. They are a mix of different kinds of clay forms and made with 100% natural resources; the loam that forms the most important base material dates from the Ice Age. By using specific sand types for the surface covering, the desired colour is achieved. Mike Worthington says: “The Vandersanden bricks are good quality and provided the basis for a beautiful and mature materiality for this retirement living development which we were delighted with. They’ve weathered very well and we’re regularly complimented on the scheme and asked who supplied the bricks. We’re very proud of it.” Canford Cliffs is an affluent suburb of Poole with a significant population of retired people. PegasusLife is a retirement living provider on a mission to fundamentally re-think retirement living in the UK. Unsurprisingly, Woodlands was shortlisted for the 2017 RIBA South West Awards. Further details on Snug Architects are available at https://www.snugarchitects.co.uk. To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link 
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Coláiste an Chláirín

Coláiste an Chláirín

Bauder Ltd

Coláiste an Chláirín Bauder Thermofol single ply waterproofing system with BauderROCK insulationSynopsisThe new Coláiste an Chláirín building in Athenry, Co Galway is a post primary school consisting of classrooms, a special needs unit, sports hall, general-purpose hall, staff amenities and extensive external facilities designed by Smith Kennedy Architects & Healy Partners Architects. The project was managed by JJ Rhatigan and Company and the roofing element appointed to Priority Roofing and Cladding Ltd. The roof of the main building and the gymnasium required flat roof build-ups to meet the specifications as set out in in SDG 02-05-03 (Acoustic Performance in New Primary & Post Primary School Buildings), while meeting the general performance requirements specified within TGD 021-7 2018 (Minimum Performance Standards of Roof Materials and Finishes). The chosen system had to meet an acoustic performance of 35dB indoor ambient noise level (IANL). It was decided that, despite sports halls having a slightly higher IANL threshold, the 35dB performance criteria would be applied across all areas of the school, with control of reverberation being a key consideration in the gym.Bauder Building BoardProject:Coláiste an ChláirínLocation:County GalwayProject type:New BuildRoof size:8550m²Main contractor:JJ Rhatigan & CompanyApproved contractor:Priority Roofing & Cladding LtdThe specification:The Architect specified that the insulation used in the flat roof system should be non-combustible and achieve a U-value of 0.16Wm²k which actually exceeds the thermal requirements as described in the Irish Building Regulations Technical Guidance Document L for flat roofs in schools.BauderROCK was specified to achieve the thermal and acoustic requirements of the design. As a Euroclass A2-s1,d0 non-combustible material, BauderROCK also provided the specified fire performance. This insulation could be used across all roof areas, with some adaptations for the gym which required additional acoustic performance due to the inherent nature of the space. Acoustic infills were used in the troughs of the perforated metal deck, thus combatting the reverberation of the indoor environment.  Products appliedBauder Thermofol PVCAn integrated single ply waterproofing system, featuring a lightweight, cost effective membrane which offers a pleasing aesthetic finish on a flat roof. This system holds fire classification BROOF(t4) for compliance with building regulations under TS 1187 test method 4 for external fire exposure to roofs. BauderROCKHigh density mineral wool insulation.Project challengesOne of the challenges of this project was the ambitious schedule. The use of the self-adhesive air and vapour control layer (AVCL) enabled the trades working within the building to progress quickly without being delayed by weather conditions. BauderROCK is relatively quick to install, as was the lightweight single ply waterproofing.  The resultThe project was finished to time and specification with exceptional workmanship from the fixers at Priority Roofing and Cladding and superb collaboration from all parties throughout. The membrane was finished with standing seams to create a statement look. The roof achieved a U-value of 0.15 W/m2k, exceeding the thermal target, and met or exceeded the 35db IANL requirement across the main building and the sports hall.  The thermal performance, which will hold up for decades to come, will also impart energy efficiency benefits that reduce running costs at the school in the long term. Finally, the non-combustible nature of the mineral wool insulation ensured that the build-up met the fire safety specification.  Advocacy Niall Hanley, Contracts Manager at JJ Rhatigan, the project’s main contractor, said:"Coláiste an Chláirín Athnery was a great success and in particular the use of the self-adhesive AVCL in advance of the build-up allowed works to commence immediately internally, which was critical from a programme perspective.” Kevin Ryan, Director at Priority Roofing, explained:"We found the system both practical and efficient to install. The combination of the availability of the products and the technical backup received was superior to any other system that we have worked with.”  Eoin O’Grady, Associate Director at Healy Partners Architects commented:"We are delighted with the overall delivery of the roof build-up and the performance achieved. The PE hall solution to deal with reverberation noise as well as rainfall noise was very successfully managed. We look forward to working with Bauder on future projects.” 
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Royal West Academy

Royal West Academy

A J Wells & Sons

April 2022 saw the official re-opening of the Royal West of England Academy, Bristol’s oldest art gallery, complete with the building’s striking new external lift shaft. Clad in a large-scale artwork designed by the acclaimed artist, sculptor, and printer maker Peter Randall-Page and produced by A.J Wells and Sons in stunning Vitreous Enamel. We surveyed, designed, manufactured and installed the beautiful vitreous enamel cladding panel system.The Royal West of England Academy (RWA) is in Clifton, Bristol, and is situated in a Grade 2 listed building, which hosts five galleries and an exceptional exhibition program focused on the best of British Art. This project is a wonderful example of how vitreous enamel, a heritage material, can bridge the historical and contemporary. Allowing modern art to fuse with and enhance historical architecture.KEY FEATURES: • Wall installation using WellsClad • Vitreous enamel claddingA.J WELLS SERVICES: • Survey • Design • Metal fabrication • Enamelling • WellsClad framing
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Harrods Fashion Lab

Harrods Fashion Lab

A J Wells & Sons

A.J Wells manufactured and installed over 600 square metres of vitreous enamel cladding panels for the fourth floor of world renowned department store Harrods.The Knightsbridge store unveiled the new section in November 2013 as part of a £200m makeover. In a radical overhaul the Way In fashion section was converted into a 30,000 square foot “Fashion Lab” with cast concrete floors, crackle-glazed wall panels, steel columns and a metal grid ceiling system. The department houses an array of contemporary brands aimed at the younger market.Working with Found Associates, A.J Wells designed and manufactured the wall panels and the framing system. Vitreous enamel was specified for its durability, low maintenance and luxurious surface finish. A unique satin enamel finish was used with a subtle crackle glaze effect. The panels wrapped the walls of the store and formed counters and cash desk bulkheads. The cladding also extended into a café area within the store.The cutting edge scheme, designed by Found Associates, was deliberately minimal with uniform fixtures and fittings and plain enamel walls to counter the confusion often associated with concessions within department stores.KEY FEATURES:• Satin crackle glaze vitreous enamel• Wall cladding• Counter frontage and bulkheadsA.J WELLS SERVICES:• Design & development• Manufacture• Framing• Project management• Installation
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Unique refurb with slates gives UK windmill ultimate coastal weather protection

Unique refurb with slates gives UK windmill ultimate coastal weather protection

Cupa Pizarras

In a stunning architectural statement, CUPA PIZARRAS R17 slate has been specified to meet the design challenges of a former Georgian windmill renovation at Fort Green, near Aldeburgh in Suffolk. The first project of its kind in the UK, the natural slate was individually cut and fixed through expert craftsmanship to accommodate the building’s exterior curve while also providing crucial protection from the harsh coastal environment. Originally, the windmill walls were going to be clad in cedar shingles however, contractor ELC Roofing recommended using the rectangular CUPA R17 slate from CUPA PIZARRAS as a more weather-resistant alternative. ELC Roofing Owner, Edward Carlo, explains: “The R17 is a natural, non-carbonated blue-black slate with non-rusting metallic particles and thin laminations. From our perspective, it’s a tried and tested product that we specify and install on a lot of our projects – especially in coastal situations like this.” The slates, which protect against the salt water and wind, have been fitted on both the windmill’s curved wall, its pitched roof and elsewhere adding design details to the property’s walls. He goes on to say: “Aesthetically, the ocean environment has inspired the material choice with the slate mirroring the scales of a fish. This gives the windmill a dramatic architectural style; one that also sympathetically ties into the slate roof of the neighbouring cottage, which we replaced with CUPA R17 the previous year. “As far as I am aware, nothing like this windmill has been done in the UK. It was a case of starting from scratch to devise the optimum installation method, which involved a lot of detailed calculations.” For the tower, which has a 15m circumference at the base tapering to 11m at the top, the team initially removed the thick render on the windmill wall, taking it back to the original brickwork. Next, to meet the challenge of the curve and tapering of the wall, 50mm counter battens were fitted to the tower’s brickwork. Then, multiple strips of ply were cut and glued together to create the curve. These panels were screwed to the counter battens to provide an anchor for the fixing system. The ply was also primed to protect the surface from water ingress and a breathable membrane applied to protect the brickwork. In terms of fixing the slates to the panels, Edward said: “For a more corrosion and wind-resistant solution, I decided on the French technique of a stainless steel hook fixing system to install the slate, as opposed to nails.” Ensuring the layout worked exactly with the curves, the slate was lasered from top to bottom to perk it out, which took five days to do. Horizontal tiling battens were also marked to ensure the slates were fixed at the right height. Every single slate was cut and fixed individually to accommodate the curve and ensure they aligned with the building’s inset windows as well as other architectural details - a very precise process that required expert levels of craftsmanship. Preventing the slates from getting smaller at height, the team designed-in a series of lead bands that go all around the building at each storey level. These sit underneath the windows to create a consistent appearance visually. The windmill’s domed copper roof existed already and the adjoining tower, which is horizontally clad in a white weatherboard, features a slated pitched roof. ELC Roofing has again used CUPA PIZARRAS spanish slates. In this instance, the roof curves to the back end with four leaded hips to one end and two to the other with a connecting lead ridge. This time the slates were fitted to 20 x 50mm battens with a layer of permeable membrane. This part of the roof also features a striking onion-shaped finial. Expertly crafted by ELC Roofing, the finial is produced out of a patchwork of small pieces of soft copper, topped off with a fish that acts as a weather vane and includes stunning marble eyes. To the other side of the clad tower, CUPA PIZARRAS slate has been used to create a vertical square panel detail to the front of the building and fixed using the hook system again. Commenting on this challenging project, Edward said: “Work on site started before the first Covid-19 lockdown so as well as the challenging weather conditions that a coastal location like this presents, the team also had to complete the work with government guidance and restrictions in place. Regardless, the client is overwhelmed with the end result and so are we.” To find out more about the CUPA PIZARRAS range of natural slate visit: https://www.cupapizarras.com/uk/natural-slate-roofing/
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THE CURVE

THE CURVE

Metalline Architectural Fabrications

News that The Curve in Slough has won an LABC award in the “Best Public Building” category, has delighted Metalline who supplied a wide range of architectural aluminium fabrications on the project. At the heart of a £450m regeneration scheme, The Curve is Sloughʼs premier cultural centre. Now complete, it houses a new library, café, museum, performance venue and learning rooms. The iconic project features a bespoke cladding system curved on plan and in section. The complex geometry involved to the North, East and West elevations meant that Metalline were involved from an early stage with contractors Colorminium, who took responsibility for the detailed design and delivery of the full building envelope. Once Colorminium had specified their requirements for the project to Metalline, the architectural aluminium was supplied promptly and to the exact measurements and detailing. The bespoke cladding system features a range of Metallineʼs curved and straight fascia panels, Secret Fix soffits and curved Secret Fix hook on Unity rainscreen panels complete with welded studs to the rear and curved carrier system. All panels and soffits were finished in a polyester powder coated RAL 9006 metallic silver finish to give the building a modern and high quality appeal. Metallineʼs aluminium rainscreen cladding now has CWCT certification which has provided architects and specifiers with limitless possibilities for their projects enabling them to use unique and elegant rainscreen designs.

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