mhs homes is one of the UK’s leading social housing providers. When the agency commissioned Hazle McCormack Young LLP of Tunbridge, Wells, England to design for it a new headquarters building, energy efficiency was among the expressed priorities. For the architect’s part, it had priorities too, and one of them was to make sure the standing seam metal roof system chosen for the project was the very best available. In choosing Kalzip, the firm got the roof system it wanted and the technical support it needed to see the building’s challenging roof design through to successful completion.
Located on the grounds of the historic Chatham Maritime dockyards, the new five-story, 43,000 sq. ft. building—dubbed Broadside—brings mhs homes’ six locations together under one roof. The structure has a number of interesting architectural highlights, including a single-sloping metal roof that curves at the eave to form the building’s front facade. Set within the facade are windows of varying radii, all sized to coordinate with the width of the Kalzip standing seam panels.
James Galpin of Hazle McCormack Young LLP, said of the project, “The building uses less than a quarter of the energy of a similar sized air-conditioned building and has become a new identity for the mhs homes group. Kalzip’s performance is great and the aesthetics have been achieved, but not without the efforts we expected.”
Located between the Victorian pump house and historic covered slips to the south of the site, the $12.3 million building has three main facades – the curved Kalzip roof to reflect the profile of the covered slips, saw tooth riverfront glazing to give the office areas unrestricted views of the river and Upnor Castle, and a four-story brick screen wall which embraces the grand elliptical piazza of the South East England Development Agency (SEEDA) masterplan.
“The Kalzip roof forms one of three critical elements of the design and is deliberately articulated from the other facade materials by virtue of its profile and shape,” said Galpin. The building’s design minimizes its impact on the environment and uses energy in a responsible manner. Night time air is circulated through the structure of the building to provide heating and cooling without mechanical air conditioning and its thermal performance is in excess of current building regulations.
Kalzip-approved Teamkal member TR Freeman installed the stucco embossed 65/500, smooth-curved aluminum standing seam panels on structural decking with liner, insulation and a clear vapor retarder. In all, approximately 10,000 sq. ft. of the .035”-thick aluminium panels were featured on the job. The company’s Gary Webb said, “Although the roof was simple to install, the vertical face was a little more difficult as the sheets were approximately 55 feet long and had a series of varying radii. We were given assistance from Kalzip’s project co-ordinator Ralph Ellis and although slow to install, due to access and scaffolding impeding our works, the installation went very well.
“A design challenge that had to be overcome was the window setting out. However, again with the assistance of the Kalzip supervisors, we overcame the problem and the project looks extremely attractive. Considering the installation took place in the winter, with high winds coming off the estuary, the finished work hides the difficulties encountered during the installation.”
The steel frame building with brick cavity walls, insulated cladding, special concrete slabs (for comfort cooling without using air conditioning), aluminium and timber composite windows and the aluminium standing seam roof and facade was erected by Wallis, a division of Kier Regional, Maidstone, UK.