Aquinas College Theatre

James & Taylor Ltd.

Cladding supplier James & Taylor has added the final touches to a new sixth form (age 16 and older) college building in Stockport, Greater Manchester, England, with a shimmering curved façade that provides an animated, high-tech finish.

The subtle, reflective face on the £40m project at Aquinas College was created using four different anodized finishes that coat both mirror-polished and highly-etched Senses aluminum (aluminium) tiles.

Architects Broadway Malyan worked with James & Taylor to develop a pattern to ensure the different finishes are distributed cohesively across the façade. James & Taylor supplied 1,758 square meters of tiles. A similar façade on Manchester University’s Michael Smith building won top honors for James & Taylor in the Power of Aluminium Awards 2008.

An unusual feature of the Aquinas College project is the curved aspect to the side elevation of the college’s new theatre. Andrew Barstow, Northern Regional Manager of James & Taylor said; “The Senses tiles roll beautifully around its barreled surfaces, tracing their elliptical arcs perfectly. The highly reflective tiles accentuate the theatre’s curves, mirroring both daily college life and Stockport’s changeable landscape.”

Dr Ambrose Smith, Principal of the college said, ”We have put students at the heart of our new building. Their energy and vitality are its inspiration. We think that it will be an inspirational building for its users and will enhance the neighborhood too.”

Harry Hoodless of Broadway Malyan said: “The façade will contrast but not compete with the existing street scene and the Senses tile provided us with the perfect product to achieve our goal.”

The 3-story building will provide first-class, spacious facilities for students and staff, with sustainability a key element of the design. It has rainwater recycling, natural lighting, and a ventilation system that exchanges heat at high levels of the building, reducing the need for conventional space heating.

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