A Proteus bronze façade has transformed this building at the University of London
A design that is as respectful as it is exciting are the hallmarks of the £57m new Emily Wilding Davison Building at Royal Holloway, University of London’s Egham campus, clad using Proteus HR TECU Bronze materials.
The east side of the striking 10,000 sq m building, which expands the university’s library provision, now features the brown-red to brown-grey and ochre tones of Proteus HR’s TECU Bronze cladding panels.
The scheme, designed by Associated Architects, features Proteus HR panels which consist of an aluminium honeycomb core for strength and rigidity, structurally bonded between two thin gauges of TECU Bronze material, to create an optically flat face with tight radii. The Proteus HR cladding is fixed to composite panels that incorporate high levels of insulation.
The Emily Wilding Davison Building is a striking design yet one that sits harmoniously in a site steeped in history, flanked on one side by the Grade I listed Gothic revival building and surrounded by one of the most beautiful natural campus landscapes of any university in the world.
Proteus HR TECU Bronze was selected by Associated Architects because the ochre’s, browns and reds resulting from the natural weathering of the material was considered to harmonise with the colour of the brick and clay roof tiles of the Grade I structure beyond.
The size and shape of the TECU Bronze cladding panels featured heavily during the design stage, with a decision taken to go with elongated portrait format panels with horizontal joints that aligned with projecting feature ‘tree-house’ meeting pods.
The sensitive design response came out of a number of constraints imposed by topological aspects of the site, with one principal factor being a need to limit the height of the new building so that it remained clearly subservient to the Gothic Revival Grade I Listed Founders Building.
In response, the Emily Wilding Building doesn’t exceed three storeys above ground, whilst use of the vertical module TECU Bronze cladding panels avoids the façade appearing squat. A basement floor was excavated into the sloping site, maximising the useable space.
Proteus Façade’s TECU Bronze, which is an alloy of copper and zinc, provides the façade with outstanding mechanical abrasion and corrosion resistant properties as well as being maintenance free.
The main contractor was Osborne, one of the leading construction businesses in the UK. The Proteus HR TECU Bronze cladding panels were installed by Colorminium, who were involved in all aspect of the façade from two years prior to commencement of the build, working with Associated Architects and Proteus Facades during the process and undertaking the design in a full 3D BIM Revit format.
Proteus offers one of the widest ranges of TECU copper and copper alloys in the UK. This includes TECU Copper, TECU Bronze, TECU Brass, TECU Gold, TECU Zinn, a tin-plated copper that offers all the advantages of copper but weathers from silver to subtle grey tones.
The materials are also available pre-patinated, which bypasses the gradual weathering process, so that the cladding panels take on the beautiful earth tones from the day the façade is installed.
The TECU Bronze cladding fitted on the Emily Wilding Davison Building was supplied in its natural warm, reddish brown state, which will develop in a manner characteristic for bronze through the effects of weathering.
For more copper alloy cladding from Proteus Facades, visit: www.proteusfacades.com or call: 0151 545 5075.
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