An imaginative scheme for Bournemouth’s new Central Library has been created by architects BDP, using large spans of Technal’s specially adapted MC curtain walling.

The library is one of the Treasury’s Pathfinder projects, financed under the Private Finance Initiative.  The £10m development, built by Henry Jones, is a key part of the regeneration of the Triangle area of Bournemouth.  The scheme provides speculative retail accommodation on the two lower levels, and a library arranged on the two open plan upper floors.

The MC system holds large spans of clear toughened low E Planitherm double glazed units, up to 3.9m by 1.7m in size, which flood the interior with natural light.  Finished in silver, the curtain walling is facetted around the main entrance.  Here, the curve gains height and slopes downwards along the building.  MC facetted glazing was also used for one of the side elevations to achieve a subtle concave curve under the roof line.

The curtain wall, which was fabricated and installed by Saint Gobain Solaglas, supports striking silver mesh screens for solar shading above the main entrance, and brise soleil sun shading above the ribbon glazing to the south elevation.  Special caps accentuate the vertical sections to add further interest to the external envelope.

Commenting on the design, Keith Papa, Project Architect at BDP said, “Our aim was to use a high proportion of glazing to create a light, airy interior in keeping with the informality of the space.  We wanted a simple, clean system, which would not interfere with the clarity of the architecture and yet would still be sufficiently robust to accommodate such large panes of glass.  Technal’s MC system helped us achieve this and gave us the flexibility to emphasise the verticality of the glazed façades, with the use of a pronounced feature cap.”

Technal’s MC suite illustrates the design possibilities of aluminium and glass, and enables architects to explore more complex shapes and forms with the reassurance of a proven, high performance system.  Options in the range include tilt/turn and top hung concealed windows, facetted and sloped roof glazing, and high-rise grid curtain walls.

MC aluminium curtain walling