James & Taylor has helped craft a façade that enhances the historical setting of what is thought to be London’s most important new technology innovation building – using Eyetech expanded mesh made from a specially selected brass that gradually weathers to a subtle palette of autumnal hues.
Architect NBBJ called in James & Taylor, one of the UK’s leading designers and suppliers of building façades, for expert advice early on during the design for the new Queen Mary Bio Enterprises Innovation Centre in London E1. They worked together to create the façade that provides both rainscreen protection and solar shading. The golden brass, manufactured by KME Tecu, will gradually mellow to warm shades of red and brown, enhancing the character of the new building as it settles into its surroundings in the local conservation area.
James & Taylor has developed the Eyetech system in partnership with The Expanded Metal Company, an originator of the metal expanding process. Eyetech has already been used to front a number of major buildings around the world – including New York’s Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Young Vic theatre and Stephen Lawrence Centre in London.
John Champion, Technical Director at James & Taylor said: “Eyetech was an ideal material for this façade because it combined textural qualities with cleanliness of line and a very subtle, variegated color palette.”
Architect Ingo Braun of NBBJ said, “The façade design is unique in that it utilizes one material and a simple concept to provide the first line of defense against all weathers – UV light, rain, wind and physical impact - while creating a contextual façade that relates to the historic surrounding. At the same time it creates a memorable, innovative image for the new centre and Queen Mary, University of London.
“The use of brass ensures that its typical, characteristic aging further enhances the appearance of the building over time. The depth of the material and deep frames around each panel create rich shadow play and color variations.”
The new Queen Mary Bio Enterprises Innovation Centre will provide modern, highly adaptable laboratory and office space for biotechnology, cleantech and technology start-up companies as well as more established ones, plus business support and university teaching facilities. It is next door to a major London medical school and is expected to attract companies both from the University of London and further afield.
For more information on James & Taylor products, go to www.jamesandtaylor.co.uk.