Shortlist Gallery

Best use of fibre cement cladding panels

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#1 Addington Valley Academy - Eden Facades with Valcan
Based in Croydon, Addington Valley Academy is a new Special Free School for children and young people with autism and learning difficulties.

With 150 places for children and young people aged between 2 – 19 years old, Addington Valley Academy is an inclusive and ambitious school offering outstanding facilities to children with special educational needs.

Designed by Noviun Architects, the project at Addington Valley Academy involved the demolition of the old community centre that had previously stood on the site, re-landscaping the area, and the construction of a new, steel-framed school building.

Having worked with Kier Construction on many projects previously, we pre-qualified for the project at Addington Valley through the Kier supply chain process and were awarded the contract based on our technical review and previous experience.

#2 BLACK AND WHITE Building – Mid Group with Gordian Building Solutions
The new Black & White Building is London’s tallest timber office building. Waugh Thistleton Architects specified 8mm Equitone Natura Charcoal from Gordian Building Solutions. A large number of different panel sizes were needed for the façade, all of which had to be supplied to a specific installation schedule, with elements of fabrication and pre-assembly.

Fibre cement panels from Gordian were specified because the team demonstrated an understanding of the architects’ requirements – a need for low carbon materials - and here they did an excellent job of raising awareness of the environmental benefits of the fibre cement. Gordian was also specified because of their ability to fabricate and pre-assemble the fibre cement panels. This helped satisfy important offsite benefits of this low carbon build.

Being lightweight was an important benefit on this project because it meant the fibre cement panels minimised loadings on the foundations, helping make significant material and embodied energy savings.

Gordian cut the fibre cement panels to size and fabricated them, taking into account rail fixing dimension on site. This ensured that they could be presented to the SFS framing system to facilitate rapid installation onto the timber frame structure. The fibre cement cladding panels were mechanically secret fixed using SFS TUFS Rivets and Nvelope NV3 bracket and rails.

They were secured using hangers and undercut stud anchors to provide a concealed fixing. The horizontal channel profiles were fixed to the vertical profiles. The fibre cement panels were then hung from and secured to the horizontal profiles with hangers and adjustable hangers.

The NV3 brackets were manufactured from recycled aluminium and Gordian, working with SFS, the manufacturer, made the architects aware of this before specification stage. It was an important consideration for this low carbon, sustainable build.

#3 East Park, University of Exeter - Longworth Building Services with Valcan
East Park Student Accommodation in Exeter is the University's largest on-campus accommodation build since 2012 and forms part of a larger plan to create an additional 1,500 bedrooms.

The new development has 1,182 new bedrooms, arranged in flats shared by between six and 10 students, with communal kitchen, living and dining facilities.

The residences are laid out across three terraces, with a green spine to connect all levels. Meadows flow up to the building facades to form a network of informal recreation spaces around the site, while over 400 trees have been planted.

The strong geometry of the buildings juxtaposes the 35m height difference of the sloping site, allowing varying forms that work within the approved Building Heights Parameters Plan, while reducing the impact on the countryside views for the neighbouring local community.

Longworth Building Services were appointed to design, supply and install the rainscreen facade across 11 blocks, totalling approximately 11,000m2 of cladding area. The majority of the facade is clad in an 8mm thick face fixed Valcan Ceramapanel, with Proteus SC aluminium rainscreen to the infill and stair cores.

#4 Leon Restaurant, Leeds – Leon with Gordian Building Solutions
Leon’s new restaurant in Leeds benefits from Patina Rough 545, a light coloured fibre cement cladding panel. It was chosen because it complements the retailer’s corporate colours as well as creating a visually interesting façade. The subtle, natural finish on the fibre cement panels reflect light differently, creating a more engaging façade compared to a smooth surfaced cladding panel. In addition, Patina Rough is a durable fibre cement board, so will provide Leon with a low maintenance façade.

Gordian was chosen as the supplied of the fibre cement Patina Rough panels because of its expertise in supplying precision panels on demanding lead times. This ensured a rapid build on site, with a successful handover of the façade exactly to schedule.

Once in place the panels develop a natural, hardwearing patina. However, the velvety surface, like most cladding panels, can be damaged and so Gordian had to devote close attention to handling during cutting, fabrication and delivering. It was Gordian’s expertise in fabricating and handling large cladding panels that steered the customer towards fibre cement. It was the texture, subtle colour and surface variation that attracted the decision team at Leon to the Rough Patina 545.

The colour chosen was 545, which has hues and textures of natural, off-white limestone. The client particularly liked the look and feel of 545, after viewing all the samples presented by Gordian.

The single largest challenge on this project was identifying a cladding panel that met the demanding aesthetics expectations of Leon. In addition, these had to be supplied as large panel format to create the visual effect that the customer was looking for.

#5 Milltimber Primary School - Avtek (Scotland) with Vivalda Scotland
Situated six miles to the south west of Aberdeen, the new purpose-built Milltimber Primary School will ensure that pupils living in the growing catchment area can continue to attend their local primary school with other children from their community. The current primary school is operating at almost full capacity with a school role of 253 pupils, with this forecast to rise to 342 by 2023.

The new site will provide enhanced outdoor play spaces and PE facilities to promote health, fitness and wellbeing, as well as better opportunities for outdoor curricular learning and social interaction, leading to improved mental health.

#6 Sandy Park Hotel, Exeter - TAC Projects with Vivalda London
The spectacular, £40 million development is the latest feature in the expansion of the Sandy Park site, following on from the re-developed East Stand at the beginning of the year.

The hotel forms a striking landmark as you approach the city, sitting astride the M5 only a stone’s throw from the stadium, offering fans and businesses alike an all-encompassing experience at Sandy Park.