One of the most challenging commercial refurbishment schemes to take place in the heart of London for many years features a number of innovative systems from Faber Blinds.
The scheme at 71 Queen Victoria Street proved a significant and complex construction scheme, consisting of the redesign and redevelopment of the building, offering floor space totalling 187,000 square feet over eight levels.
A dramatic, new large-scale entrance and reception area leads into two atria and floors that have 360 degree glazing to all elevations. Extensive re-modelling of the existing facade of the building has taken place; featuring the installation of 1500m² of glass curtain walling.
Steve Marks, Senior National Contracts Manager for Faber Blinds, explained that the offices have proved an important breakthrough scheme for developers Bouygues, who required a close working relationship with the entire project team.
Faber worked alongside the contractors, site management and SPPARC architects with regular joint meetings to ensure that the installation went as smoothly as possible.
“We installed our EOS 5-11 manual chain operated roller blind system using a pre-specified screen fabric nominated by the architect. We also installed a motorised Faber 1800 rooflight, which was a late addition to the blinds package. We highlighted that the pre-installed blind pockets in the ceiling were positioned a little too far forward into the rooms which potentially would give unwanted light gaps. So we were able to manufacture the blinds a little wider than usual to help overcome the problem.”
Faber also faced other challenges on the project, but the team approach adopted throughout the scheme ensured the offices were completed on time.
“The late addition of the motorised rooflight was potentially a problem for the M&E contractor on site, but the flexibility of the control via a RTS switch system that we could give with the Faber 1800 Fabric Tension System, helped overcome the problem and the rooflight was manufactured and installed within five working days. We worked closely with site management with regard to timing of floor handover dates and were able to deliver and install with sometimes barely 48 hours’ notice being given, such was the tightness of the schedule at the end of the project.”
The result is an impressive new commercial development and working environment, complete with the addition of an extra floor at roof level in order to maximise the lettable area of the new building.