Record Hall, Hatton Square, London

Following an £18.4m refurbishment designed by Karakusevic Carson Architects, Record Hall has been transformed from an outdated former record depository, into a state-of-the-art, six-floor business centre with a striking exterior.

The brief given to Karakusevic Carson Architects by owners Workspace was to redevelop the 1920s structure on Leather Lane, part of the Hatton Garden Conservation Area, into a modern building that offers cost effective workshops suitable for companies working in both the jewellery and media & creative industries.

Redeveloped by main contractor HG Construction, Record Hall now offers 61,000 sq. ft. of office and studio space. The project involved refurbishing the existing four-storey building and adding a two-storey roof extension.

The upper levels of the building, including the new extension, are clad in striking Proteus HR Aluminium panels with a bespoke bronze United Anodisers (540) finish; chosen to reflect the heritage of the area, which has been at the centre of London’s jewellery trade since medieval times.

Installed by FPP Facades, Proteus HR was also specified because it is a lightweight, strong and versatile cladding panel that creates an optically flat aesthetic. The integrated modular rainscreen panels feature an aluminium honeycomb core, structurally bonded between two thin gauges of lightweight metal skin to create an optically flat panel.

In addition, Proteus Facades fabricated bespoke extruded vertical and horizontal fins with an identical finish, which gives the impression that the cladding panels are recessed into the building. This further compartmentalises the façade against the existing brickwork and complements the art deco window styles that, when illuminated in the evenings, shimmer in the light and provides further countenance to the striking design for passers-by.

Inclusion of the rainscreen cladding not only offers appealing aesthetics but adds to the energy efficiency by allowing the incorporation of high levels of insulation behind the panel – the relatively thinner panels allow increased insulation thickness on the inner structure whilst still maintaining the ventilated cavity behind the panels.

The Proteus HR panels provide the building with protection from the elements, too, including elevated windspeeds in this built up area with narrow streets dominated by medium rise structures.

Along with efficient new building services, the incorporation of high-performance insulation to both new and existing elements of fabric and a wildflower green roof have all contributed to the achievement of a BREEAM Excellent rating.

The aim of the redevelopment at Record Hall is to support new and growing businesses to thrive. Boasting 86 units ranging from 170 to 7,000 sq. ft., the building encompasses a Club Workspace outpost, the company’s coworking brand, along with ground floor café ‘The Archive’, high-tech meeting rooms, a co-working lounge and roof terraces offering views across the City.

Formed of two distinct parts, the building is situated in a tight site on a narrow street, which resulted in the street-facing elevation resembling more of a back entrance. As such, the architects also extended outwards to the boundary line to reorganise the interior and bring the main entrance to the centre of the plan to give it a direct visual relationship with a new lightwell.

Karakusevic Carson Architects commented: “The Record Hall project demonstrates how intelligent design can bring clarity and character to what was a previously complex and incoherent site and create a place where old and new cannot simply co-exist but flourish.”

 

Photography courtesy – Quintin Lake

York House, Kings Cross, London

Once described as unwelcoming and foreboding, York House in Kings Cross, which dates back to 1981, featured a complex brick façade, with a set back entrance and very small windows giving the building a stand-offish appearance as well as a poorly lit interior.

Following a £13 million refurbishment, the building, purchased by The Office Group, which provides flexible workspaces in London, Leeds and Bristol, has been transformed into a bright, co-working space, suitable for London’s thriving and growing businesses.

Designed by Architects dMFK, the 70,000sq. ft, eight storey redevelopment features both modern and traditional elements. An original Torigenus cast aluminium sculpture sits on the east side of the building, created by sculptor Geoffrey Clarke, whilst bold new additions include a double height entrance with offices above, as well as a set back roof extension and terrace on the 7th floor.

Proteus SC Perforated Aluminium cladding panels wrap around a parapet along the new terrace in a bespoke repeated zig zag profile, which blends softly with the sky and complements a brick lattice façade, set on a 45-degree angle. The perforated panels also span various windows on the upper elements of the building.

The Proteus SC cladding system at York House, manufactured from 2mm aluminium sheets, was specified with an Interpon D2525 Anodic Bronze Polyester Powder Coat (PPC) finish to all sides and 40mm perforations in a regular triangular grid.

Each panel, installed by Richardson Roofing, is supported by a recessed aluminium PPC framing system devised by Proteus Facades and coloured to match. The unique fixings discreetly hold the cladding system in place whilst allowing for a thinner perforated skin to be used without resulting in deflection or distortion, helping the façade remain both aesthetically pleasing and within budget requirements.

Furthermore, careful placement of the perforations allows for natural light to pass through new enlarged windows, comfortably illuminating the interior of the once darkened building, with no need for blinds and reducing the level of artificial lighting required. This, alongside the installation of solar panels, premium insulation and double glazing (taking the efficiency rating from G to A), have resulted in the redevelopment achieving a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ certification.

Proteus SC is an engineered panel system that is offered in either solid, perforated or mesh panel formats. By utilising an extensive range of metals, colours, textures and forms it can add another dimension to any façade cladding project. The system can be manufactured between 1mm and 5mm in thickness and an acoustic insulation layer encapsulated within the panel. For internal applications Proteus Facades can provide contrasting fabric inserts when the panels are perforated.

As The Office Group’s 38th workspace to open in the UK, and fourth in Kings Cross, York House has been completely regenerated into a luxurious sought-after building featuring state-of-the-art amenities including a café, gym, library and roof gardens with panoramic views of the city.

Alongside dMFK and Proteus Facades, other businesses involved in the redevelopment scheme, which officially opened at the end of 2019, include QS Quantem, structural engineer Webb Yates and contractor Collins Construction.

28 – 30 Hoxton Street, London (Project Drum)

Aviva, a British multinational insurance company and pensions provider, identified Hoxton Square as the ideal location to create a campus of offices and relocate its Digital Garage; a dedicated space where technical specialists, creative designers and business leaders collaborate to develop new ideas and services. As part of the development, known as Project Drum, Aviva purchased 28-30 Hoxton Square along with other buildings in the area.

28-30 Hoxton Square required a substantial level of refurbishment, which created the opportunity to extend the property to increase capacity and improve accessibility and the layout between two front facing blocks. Architects TTSP redesigned the three-storey structure, with an entirely new floor added to the front and rear elevations as well as the demolition of a single storey centre, which was rebuilt to four storeys.

A major part of the brief given to TTSP was to ensure that historic structural elements of the building were retained and left exposed whilst all new visible external elements were over-clad to harmonise with the original features. Working closely with TTSP, Proteus Facades provided support with the design of the rainscreen cladding system to ensure this challenge was met.

Proteus HR TECU Patina Madrid panels, installed by Openwood Facades Ltd, were chosen for the double height storey which sits atop of the central part of the building, with architectural fins to the south elevations and window frames designed to match. The patterned copper finish of the Proteus material perfectly complements the colours and textures of the surrounding buildings, whilst staying in keeping with the heritage of the original site that dates to the 1700s.

Proteus HR VM Zinc Quartz rainscreen cladding was also specified for the roof level of 28- 30 Hoxton Square, which provides a long, maintenance-free life and offers adaptability to various design styles ranging from traditional to modern.

Proteus HR was specified for both the TECU Patina Madrid and VM Zinc Quartz materials at Hoxton because it is a lightweight, strong and versatile cladding panel that creates an optically flat aesthetic that is highly suited for building facades. The integrated modular rainscreen system features an aluminium honeycomb core, structurally bonded between two thin gauges of lightweight metal skin to create an optically flat panel that is available in aluminium, steel, zinc, stainless steel, copper alloys and other materials.

To mirror the design of the external façade, Proteus HR TECU Patina Madrid panels were also specified for use on a double-width lift lobby, which acts as a bright and bold mid-section connecting various internal departments, including a state-of-the-art AV centre.

In addition, Proteus Facades supplied mesh screens fixed to windows along the rear elevation in a Polyester Powder Coated (PPC) finish, which remains a popular choice with architects because of its long-term performance and cost benefits.

All factors which resulted in the development being named as a finalist for the Mixology19 Awards in the Medium Commercial Interiors of the Year category.

Proteus Facades offers one of the widest ranges of TECU copper and copper alloys in the UK. This includes TECU Brass, TECU Copper, TECU Bronze, TECU Patina Madrid, TECU Gold, TECU Zinn, a tin-plated copper that weathers from silver to subtle grey tones, along with many others.

All the materials are available pre-patinated, which bypasses the gradual weathering process, so that the cladding panels take on the beautiful earth tones from the day the façade is installed. Proteus Facades also offers a range of other surface treatments that avoid, delay or accelerate the weathering process.

Originally built in the 1700’s as an upmarket residential development, by the late 20th century Hoxton Square became the place to be for artists, musicians, photographers and other creatives in London, which attracted crowds from across the city. As digital technologies have prevailed however the area is now home to a number of leading digital and tech led businesses like Aviva.

24 King William Street, London

The £23 million renovation of the 80,730 ft² building, located on the northern approach to London Bridge, was designed by Ben Adams Architects and includes the addition of two new storeys.

An elegant reception area comprises of a double height entrance hall leading into a lift lobby, finished with Portland stone floors and feature walls in marble and leather, with brass accents throughout. To reflect the style within, striking perforated Proteus SC TECU Brass panels and bespoke vertical fins and trim flashings, with an Artisan hand applied patinated finish were specified for the ground level, street facing elevations.

The fins at 24 King William Street are designed around a rigid bespoke aluminium extrusion that connects to the curtain wall glazing system. The outer TECU Brass element of the fins are profiled in shape and taper across the length to generate an angled effect – the fins increasingly extend outwards as they ascend – whilst the connection of the material to the extrusion and the window frame remains constant.

The internal aluminium structure of the fins provides the necessary support and structural connection back to the curtain walling. This also created a depth at the rear, hiding the curtain wall system from plain view and giving passers by the perception that the fins float in front of the glazing system.

The combination of thin gauge brass material and internal aluminium support framework ensured that this element of the façade met budgetary requirements. Proteus’s in-house expertise also overcame the difficult folding requirements of the TECU Brass fin profile, which were towards the limits of current bending technology.

The fins are complemented by Proteus SC perforated panels, which are fixed over insulated spandrel panels within the curtain wall system. These panels hide the ventilation elements of the curtain wall and blend the fins and curtain wall system together. The panels were finished with the Artisan patination effect which is created by applying a fine linear /orbital grain brush effect to the face of the material before having the chemical application and sealing. The panels will gradually weather over time and continue to embellish the already highly desirable warm ochre hues of the Artisan hand patinated finish.

The TECU Brass is developed by blending copper and zinc, which creates an extremely tough, robust façade and then applying a patinated finish that adds texture and contrast, giving a richly aged aesthetic. This rich diversity of the copper-alloy material allows unparalleled variety and high-quality aesthetics, complementing the natural stone and brass tones of the lobby.

A touch of zinc

The rear elevation of the nine-storey building near Monument station features an equally impressive façade complete with Proteus HR Graphite Grey Rheinzinc rainscreen panels. This zinc material then wraps up and over, forming a curved zinc roofing system which blends vertical and horizontal elevations into one. The material is gaining favour with architects and developers as it provides a long, maintenance-free life and offers adaptability to various design styles ranging from traditional to modern.

Once dominated by rambling plant rooms, the interior of the zinc roof is now home to state of the art offices overlooking the City and the River Thames. A limestone façade featured on the front of the building connects to the roof through Proteus’ perforated flat sheets in a United Anodisers UnAtex bespoke finish.

These United Anodisers UnAtex panels are also integrated within the windows on the top two floors, and then flow up and onto the roof generating the patterned effect, while making is look like the façade and roof become one element.

Together this juxtaposition of materials has helped to bring an outdated and under-utilised 1980’s office building back into use; transforming it into a modern, aesthetically pleasing structure that stands out amongst many others in a prominent and sought-after location within the Capital.

Redeveloped to a Grade A specification, the building includes a tranquil new garden coupled with new retail spaces at ground floor level.

4 Longwalk, Stockley Park

4 Longwalk in Stockley Park has remained faithful to the original Arup-designed building, with a new dynamic entrance, atrium and dramatic roof soffit featuring Proteus HR high gloss panels in RAL 7004 Signal Grey.

Identical Proteus HR high gloss panels were used at the rear of the building to create a vertical band of rainscreen cladding that runs up the building over a stair core and ground level entrance and walkway.

The Proteus HR soffit panels, specified by Barr Gazetas architects, form a striking, reflective underside of the large 19m cantilevered roof that shelters the front forecourt and vehicle drop off point, adding drama to the main entrance.

Proteus design staff engineered the soffit system to achieve the optimum outcome for the client, architects and installer. This involved increasing the thickness of the aluminium skin on the soffit panels, enabling their span to be maximised in line with the architect’s brief.

Increasing the panel skin thickness also had the effect of minimising the structural requirement on the soffit system, meaning Proteus was able to optimise material usage to meet the overall budget set for this element of the building.

Each soffit panel is supported by the Proteus aluminium carrier system and ancillary components. All Proteus HR cladding and soffit panels are designed with tight radii at the edges for superior sightlines. They are anchored to the cantilevered roof structure with invisible fixings, accentuating the sheer, smooth high gloss aesthetic.

A link with the original Arup building design is maintained through a large circular penetration that is punched through the projecting roof, which also creates additional light and space. Proteus assisted during design, detailing and installation of this circular aperture to ensure it integrated perfectly with the soffit.

The design team at Proteus Facades worked with Deepdale Solutions, the cladding and soffit installer, to create an engineered solution on this challenging project, with visual purity of the soffit and rainscreen cladding being the overall architectural requirement.

“We felt that the tone set by the high gloss finish on the Proteus HR soffit panels achieved the aesthetics we were seeking on this project,” said a spokesperson from Barr Gazetas Ltd. “The Proteus’ HR system with a RAL 7004 Signal Grey gloss finish accentuates the full quadruple height reception area, increasing the impact and presence of the entrance in keeping with the scale of the building.”

Proteus HR is an integrated modular rainscreen system with an aluminium honeycomb core, structurally bonded between two thin gauges of lightweight metal skin to create an optically flat panel. It is available in steel, aluminium, zinc, stainless steel, copper alloys and other materials.

The standard gauge Proteus HR metal skin is capable of maintaining a perfectly optically flat surface. This means cladding and soffit systems specified with Proteus HR are lightweight, strong and with exceptional flatness, combined with tight radii at the edges and with high resistance to impact, thermal bow and ‘oil canning’

The original 4 Longwalk was designed by Arup Associates and completed in the early 1990s. Barr Gazetas architects were commissioned to carry out an extensive refurbishment, including fitting the building out to CAT A standard and achieved an EPC A and BREEAM Excellent, with the works completed by Kier Construction

70 Wilson Street, London

70 Wilson Street has been refurbished and extended in collaboration with Low Carbon Workplace to create a highly efficient, futureproof office space with BREEAM Excellent rating based on low carbon standards.

This was a highly complex façade that pushed the limits of technical performance, design engineering and manufacturing capabilities.

Proteus worked with A Studio, the architects for 70 Wilson Street to overcome a number of project specific challenges.

Proteus Facades provided a series of panel systems all covered with a TECU Iron Two material in a number of formats, including solid honeycomb panels, perforated screens and insulated spandrel panels.

The main visual panels on Wilson Street include vertical and horizontal beam cladding of Proteus HR panels. These panels connect to structural aluminium PPC Proteus spandrel panels that have built in steel beams to assist in taking the loading of the external visual panels.

The perforated screens sitting in front of the Kawneer glazing system were designed to span floor to floor and incorporate steel framing within the panels, cleverly cloaked with the TECU material to blend into the overall façade. The connection of these Proteus SC brise soliel panels was integrated with the design of the structural spandrel panels so they visually look as though they are floating in the air.

At the higher levels of the building the panels are integrated with the Kawneer curtain walling system. The architectural team had designed a glazing pattern of 1500mm widths, creating the challenge of integrating the TECU Iron 2 material, which was available in a 1000mm maximum sheet width.

Proteus, working with the installer, JPJ Installations, designing a multi faced spandrel panel to overcome this issue. The glazing unit sizes we’re compartmentalised into panel cassette sizes that could be produced from the base material. These four panels were then joined together and formed into one spandrel panel with integrated insulation and structurally supported and tied together with horizontal steel cross members, before finally being anchored back to the curtain walling.

Once this engineering challenge had been overcome, a combination of Proteus cladding systems in TECU Iron Two – solid and perforated face formats – were specified by A Studio architects.

“We knew that the façade for 70 Wilson Street was going to present a number of engineering and manufacturing challenges,” said Nick Gazanis, Associate Architect at A Studio. “That is why we identified a façade supplier that had the expertise to cope with the refit, new build and facade retention elements of this project.”

He added; “In terms of façade engineering, 70 Wilson Street is a masterpiece, yet the observer is unaware of the amount of design ingenuity that went into creating what is a stunning overall aesthetic, because it is completely hidden behind the panels.”

The Proteus façade elements were specified in KME’s new TECU Patina Iron Two material, which was chosen by A Studio and the developer, Stanhope, because it combines an attractive natural copper surface finish, with the weathered look of steel. It retains all the benefits of copper, such as excellent formability and unrivalled durability, with long term low maintenance.

The material creates an ever changing aesthetic, depending on whether it is in light or shade, dry or wet. Its natural weathered appearance matures over time to create subtle mellow tones.

Additional scheduling complexity during installation of the façade arose because 70 Wilson Street is located in a very busy part of the City of London. This required planning of deliveries in fine detail and ensuring the façade elements fitted right, first time, with no margin for error. Proteus assembles all façade elements in its manufacturing facility to ensure they fitted on site.

The developer and owner of 70 Wilson Street is Stanhope. Main contractor was Wilmott Dixon. Façade installer was Essex-based JPJ Installations Ltd.

No.1 Hardman Street, Manchester

With work complete by Eric Wright Construction in July 2014, and cladding sub-contractor Cover Structure Ltd, the distinctive external materials provide a strong visual identity.  The main building envelope consists of a simple black composite cladding panel with large window inserts, and a Proteus SC bespoke perforated aluminium white screen to the front half of the building. Openings of various sizes in the Proteus SC perforated screen create a pattern across the elevation which animates the façade as well as providing shading and screening to the window openings behind. At night the façade is illuminated within the cavity giving the building a colourful evening identity.

Although the façade looks very simple the screen is extremely technically challenging. Fine tolerances were required at the interface between cladding, window openings and structural floor edges, to ensure the main brackets were accurately set out to receive the precision manufactured panels. The Proteus SC perforated panels were then designed to span floor to floor, by the inclusion of an aluminium box section into the vertical edges of the panel. This design made the panels extremely heavy, and required early involvement of the sub-contractor to ensure a safe construction methodology while allowing the site operatives tolerance in the installation process.

At ground floor and around the parapet of the building, the insulated panels have been finished with a Proteus HR honeycomb rainscreen panel with a Rimex Colourtex Blue Pippin Patterned Stainless Steel. This finish subtly changes with varying light conditions. In bright sunlight, the Stainless Steel Panels seem to mirror the blue skies above, while in darker conditions, the appearance is similar to that of the simple black panel on the rear elevation.

BSkyB Studios Wind Turbine, London

The 100kW 55m “Northwind 100” turbine at Sky’s £233million state-of-the-art headquarters is expected to produce approximately 133,100kWh per year or up to 60% of the studio’s annual office lighting requirement, with the carbon payback being slightly over two years.

The site houses high-intensity functions including data centres and recording, post-production and transmission facilities for Sky’s broadcast and sports news departments.

The elongated triangular pyramid mast coils upwards in a twisting motion, tapering at the top, thus architecturally expressing the rotational dynamics of the turbine. Its mast is clad in 1,600m2 of anodised aluminium Proteus SC panels to a design in alliance with Wintech-Group that met a hat-trick of requirements – aesthetic, ecological and structural.

The Proteus design team worked with Wintech on a solution for the design and positioning of the turbine’s single-skin panels using a Proteus installation system. Wintech then created a bespoke piece of software to model the façade construction and automate the production of each of the individual 200 façade panels and ancillary components. The perforations were designed to enable fastening points on the vertical sub-structure to be covered.

This process of automating the production of 3D complex geometry façades and that can produce detailed manufacture information provided significant benefits including a greatly reduced design programme and a substantial reduction in design costs. The software output provided individual files that were used by a CNC (Computer Numerical Control) punch to perforate and shape each individual panel, avoiding the need for any interpretation of design information.

The turbine operates in conjunction with biomass-fired cooling and heating power (CCHP), naturally ventilated studio and office space, rainwater harvesting and energy-efficient lighting. It was estimated to offset the equivalent amount of CO2 as driving 370,000 miles in a typical petrol-powered car each year and is currently exceeding expectations, delivering significant energy at low wind speeds.