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_MERO-Schmidlin Congratulated by Kier for County Hall remodelling project at Trowbridge.
MERO-Schmidlin have been congratulated by Kier Western for their Raised Access Flooring package on the £18m Wiltshire County Council, County Hall project at Trowbridge.
MERO-Schmidlin worked alongside Kier and architects Stride Treglown to completely remodel an exterior paved area to convert it into a contemporary interior atrium for use by County Hall staff and public alike.
The new space is part of a major construction project to consolidate the counties workforce in one cost effective facility built around the existing County Hall facility. The project has been programmed within two specific phases allowing the local authority to transfer staff from older uneconomical facilities into this more modern complex which will be far more flexible in addition to offering a more cost effective building model. The facility started with a very challenging brief for Stride Treglown centred around sustainability, running costs and hitting a minimum BREEAM standard of Very Good. Kier are in fact on target to achieve an excellent rating by the conclusion of Phase Two.
The existing exterior site consisted of paving at various differing levels which was to be transformed into a level courtyard in which all of the building services of the surrounding structures would be linked. The 'Plenum' beneath the flooring not only housed all of the major building control services but also needed to be airtight so as not to interfere with the air conditioned and naturally vented areas within the new courtyard.
The height of the 'new' floor required a void in some areas of up to 900mm. this was to allow access to the plant and equipments as well as achieving a 'common level' within the new facility.
With 1100 square metres of hollow flooring there were nuMEROus requirements for precision cutting to allow for regular inspection access and air diffuser vents. With a large floor area within a E.T.FE. canopied building there were complex calculations within the design process to allow for expansion bearing in mind the differing temperatures between the above and below floor areas. Expansion movement joints were needed to be integrated within the raised flooring without spoiling the aesthetics of the overall surface.
One of the major challenges was in installing a raised floor simultaneously with a 15m ETFE canopy. Due to the challenging programme it was clear that these would be carried out at the same time and as such there was extra load bearing demands on the raised floor system to take very heavy duty access equipment which will be supported by the floor system whilst they were being employed to provide elevated access to the crews fitting the Ethylene-Tetra-Fluoro-Ethylene (ETFE), roof which would eventually cover the whole courtyard. These extra demands required stress calculations within the design process and extensive bridging facilities to carry wide ducting spans and access chamber covers.
MERO-Schmidlin are very experienced at this process as the floors within modern building projects are continually required to be accessed throughout the build programme. The latest technology in bonding materials is used to provide a significant level of factory finishing thus avoiding 'wet trades' on site so that areas were almost immediately accessible rather than waiting for compounds to cure or dry. A series of MERO Combi T36 Calcium Sulphate interlocking backing panels were employed together with factory fitted Porcelain Tiles which covered the whole floor area. With heavy plant and continuous high level construction taking place, it was imperative that a thorough protection system was put in place not only on the finished flooring but also for the 'listed' stone facade of the existing building.
Greg Brock, Project Surveyor for Kier Western was very complimentary of MERO-Schmidlin within both the pre-contract process and their work on site. Their Can-Do attitude was very influential in the procurement process. whilst they had to offer a very competitive bid within the tender process, MERO-Schmidin provided a tour of several projects in the South East where they had completed similarly complex Raised Access Flooring Systems which were acclaimed by contractor and client alike. These personal inspections of completed projects were complimented by nuMEROus written references to the quality of MERO-Schmidlin's work and problem solving, these instilled great confidence with both the contractor and the client that Kier were selecting the best partner for a project of this stature and complexity.
"MERO-Schmidlin did tick all of the boxes. They were very easy to work with in terms of their Can-Do attitude and their approachability and were also competitively priced" Greg Brock, Kier Western
Greg Brock went on to say "As part of our Pre-Tender negotiations we received a number of references from contractors saying that MERO-Schmidlin were very pro-active on site and had a can-do attitude when dealing with any problems. We knew in advance that there was going to be 'issues' with the flooring and that it wasn't going to be a straightforward install. Their project managers worked with us on all of the issues on site and came up with the solutions."
"We have now moved on to Phase Two of the project and will certainly be considering using MERO-Schmidlin for this element of works, and again on future projects" Kier Western 15/3/2013
Architects: Stride Treglown
Raised Access Flooring Contractors:
Images Courtesy of Stride Treglown Architects
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