Developer: Urban I
Architect: Cartwright Pickard Architects
Main contractor: ROK
Products: MX Faceted and MX62 curtain walling; FXi65 top hung casement windows
A landmark 16-storey tower in Sheffield is one of the first UK applications of Technal’s MX faceted curtain walling system.
This is a spectacular fully glazed residential tower that has regenerated an important brownfield site on a main gateway into the city and overlooking the River Don.
The curtain walling carries clear low E glazing to the vision areas and insulated glass panels with a ceramic coating in a striking palette of four shades of blue. Used in a random pattern for a shimmering effect, the opaque units conceal the building structure and add interest to the face of the building.
Uninterrupted Floor-to-floor Glazing
The use of the MX faceted option allowed the architects to express the curve of the building, which is accentuated with the specification of smaller panel sizes. The MX system was sufficiently flexible to accommodate both an opening light and a louvered vent in one 850mm wide unit, for uninterrupted floor-to-floor glazing.
Accommodating Large Spans of Glass
The project is also the first application of Technal’s new MX62 curtain wall. This latest option for MX Visible Grid features a 62mm module, which allows specifiers to accommodate larger dimensions and maximise natural light. Here, it was used to provide large spans of glass to the bar and restaurant unit on the ground floor.
A dark grey cap for the system complements the blue ceramic-coated panels, and clear external glass creates a more reflective finish for the façade. Around 250 of Technal’s FXi65 top hung aluminium casement windows were inserted into the curtain walling to naturally ventilate the apartments.
The Architect’s Perspective
Peter Cartwright, Director, Cartwright Pickard Architects:
“Our aim for this project was to provide a building that would stand out on the city skyline and become a strong urban landmark.”
“Our solution was to design a façade with innovative use of colour, detailing and a high quality specification that would also complement the surrounding industrial architecture. We are delighted with the finished scheme.”
“Our early discussions with the planning and conservation teams encouraged us to design a taller contemporary tower which gave a clear distinction between what’s new and the existing listed warehouse.”
“Technal’s products are performing really well. The curtain walling provides great definition which accentuates the height of the tower. The systems achieved the level of quality we were looking for, with a superb finish and we think the completed building looks even better than the original computer-generated images.”
“The MX system allowed us to deliver the stringent acoustic performance we needed because of the building’s location near a busy road, and without the need for any adaptation. We were also impressed with its thermal performance qualities which easily achieved the required U values. This is an excellent, highly flexible system which has interfaced very well.”
MX Curtain Walling
The MX curtain walling suite has all the aesthetic, durability and low maintenance qualities of aluminium, combined with innovative façade technology and construction features. Constant 52mm sight lines for the mullion and transoms provide a uniform appearance across the range of options – low to high rise curtain walling; ribbon, structural, beaded, faceted and sloped glazing.
MX Visible Grid will accommodate 6mm to 32mm glazing, available as a flat façade or faceted up to 20°. The faceted glazing uses a standard cast face-fixed spigot for a facet of ±10°, and a transom block with specially designed pressure plates, caps and adaptors for 10° to 20° facets.
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