GOING FOR SIX AT CHISWICK September 2013
The addition of Building 6 to Chiswick Park reinforces its status as one of the most sustainable business parks in the UK, if not the world, showcasing the latest innovations in solar shading from Levolux.
As the eleventh of twelve buildings to be constructed at Chiswick Park, Building 6 is possibly the most ambitious yet undertaken by the Blackstone Group. Designed to achieve a BREEAM ‘excellent’ rating by acclaimed architects at Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, Building 6, like other buildings on the park, employs cutting-edge technology to maintain optimum comfort levels, while reducing energy consumption.
Building 6 is the largest to be completed at Chiswick Park, offering 215,000 sq ft of high quality office space, arranged over nine floors. Continuing a theme that started when the park was conceived back in 1999, Building 6 employs a distinctive, integrated solar control system to regulate and control internal temperatures.
Levolux was invited to develop a custom solar shading solution, as it has done previously at the park, most notably on Building 5. Renowned for its progressive and uncompromising approach to solar control, Levolux worked closely with the architect to devise a custom solution for Building 6.
The term ‘super louvres’ was first coined following the conception of over-sized louvres by Levolux in 2005, for inclusion on Chiswick Park’s Building 5. As a prominent feature on the building, the ‘super louvres’, which included 700mm wide single-piece extruded aluminium louvres, form part of an integrated solar shading solution, which has proven to be extremely effective. Today, the ‘super louvres’ are recognised as one of the most distinguishing features at Chiswick Park.
The solar shading solution applied to Building 6 incorporates the largest horizontal Fins Levolux has ever produced. In total, Levolux fitted 361 Fabricated Fins, each measuring an impressive 1.2 metres in width, applied across three elevations. The ‘wing’ shaped Fins have an attractive perforated aluminium skin and are capable of free spanning up to 9 metres.
The support system used for the Fins utilises a unique configuration of concrete encased steel columns at low level, cast aluminium column bases, extruded aluminium columns and stainless steel bracing members. The entire louvre assembly is tied back to the façade using ‘v’ shaped brackets, set at alternate floor levels. This allows the structure to be lightweight, efficient and visually unobtrusive.
To optimise the solar shading solution, Levolux linked the Fins to a series of motors and an intelligent control system. Fins on each elevation can be rotated simultaneously as a group, from a fully open or horizontal position in dull conditions, through an angle of 60 degrees, to a closed position in bright conditions.
Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC’s) take into account the position and intensity of the sun as it passes overhead as well as monitoring external light levels and wind speeds on the roof. This ensures the Fins are automatically and precisely manoeuvred into the optimum position, without disturbing occupants.
At ground floor level, Levolux installed its external I-Blade Walkway system on three elevations, above an undercroft car park. The 1.2 metre wide walkway comprises 31 panels, divided into four sections which allow access to the façade at ground floor level. The open structure of the I-Blade walkway aids natural ventilation of the building at low level.
Throughout the building, Levolux fitted 623 manually operated Venetian Blinds, featuring 80mm wide, solid roll-formed slats. Blinds can be raised, lowered or tilted locally to satisfy light and glare control requirements.
To complete the solution, Levolux installed 12 of its 780 motorised Roller Blinds at high level on the ground floor, within the Reception area. The Blinds, which can be raised or lowered at the click of a switch, feature a custom head box and cover plate. The inclusion of 2mm guide wires helps to keep the 2.9 metre wide fabric ripple-free and perfectly aligned. A cool, grey fabric, with an openness factor of 5%, allows excellent control of glare levels while allowing daylight to filter through.
All extruded aluminium Fins and walkway components are finished in an attractive silver anodised finish, while supporting components have been given a durable metallic silver polyester powder coating.
All Levolux systems, whether they be motorised ‘Super Louvres’ or Roller Blinds, are backed with the company’s design, manufacture and installation package. The company’s experience in bespoke Solar Shading is second to none worldwide.
Chiswick Park provides 1.5 million sq feet of office space, accommodating more than 6,000 employees, from leading international organisations. The radical design of Building 6, equipped with a comprehensive solar shading solution from Levolux, provides workers with a cool, comfortable environment in which they really can “enjoy work”.