South Bristol Skills Academy
Proud winner of the Queen's Award for Enterprise 2015

South Bristol Skills Academy

  • Client / City of Bristol
  • Sector / Education
  • Architect / Archial Architects/AWW
  • Main Contractor / Cowlin Construction
  • Location / Bristol
  • Products / Cladding, Complex Structures, Roofing
  • Value / £2.3m
  • Completed / April 2009

Designed by Archial Architects and delivered by the Bristol office of architects AWW, the Skills Academy’s striking roof and side wall cladding has been created using over 3000 individual Kalzip XT sheets. Inspired by its location on the site of a former aerodrome, the ‘hanger’ design of the Skills Academy building sees the roof canopy gently curve over to meet the wall cladding. With no straight elevations, the use of a highly flexible product was essential and so Lakesmere pioneered the use of Kalzip XT, working closely with supply chain partner Kalzip at tender stage to construct its own 3D model to demonstrate how the company could successfully and cost-effectively deliver the project.

The use of 3D modeling also played a vital role in facilitating the design of the supporting steelwork. Owing to the zero tolerance of XT, the substructure had to sustain the maximum tolerance to meet the necessary thermal and acoustic requirements and with no standard solution available, Lakesmere was required to draw upon its experience of using XT on other schemes to develop and design a bespoke solution.

Once Lakesmere had got to grips with the complex geometry of the cladding design, the team faced the next challenge of bringing the architect’s brief to life. With no room for error, Lakesmere actively participated in the manufacturing process. Working alongside Kalzip, Lakesmere initiated a move to refine the quality assurance procedures for the XT system as well as taking over responsibility of checking each of the individual sheets.

City of Bristol College’s new Skills Academy is one of the Lakesmere’s most challenging installations and to date, the company remains the first and only UK company to work with the new Kalzip XT system.

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