New British Library:
Phase 1A: Stages: 1AA & 1AB
March ‘86 to April ’92, 7 Years
Site based with SO (Superintendent Officer = Contract Administrator = Resident Architect)
Project Management: PSA Projects
Architect: Colin St. John Wilson & Partners Ltd.
Construction Management: Laing Management Ltd.
Design Life and Quality:
This project has a design life of ‘Long life and maintainable’ appropriate for public buildings, meaning a minimum of 120 years, for the building and its fit-out, whilst the structure and substructure design life were 250 and 500 years respectively. This resulted in the use of methods of construction which were a fusion of both unusual and traditional, as well as choosing tried and tested product under the then PSA MoB Method of Building scheme, BBA Agrément Certified products and systems and the specification of BSI Kitemarked product.
- Project Specification built around PSA Property Services Agency GenSpec
- embellished with ASWS SPECIFICATION many new work sections and Preliminaries to fill the gaps in PSA Specification, and adopting NBS specification where it filled the gap.
- Many new preliminaries and work sections were created on this project
- See Green Building Specification
- GenSpec Ref > CAWS+ Ref CAWS+ Title
- PS1 > A90 Performance Specification
- ___ > H11 Curtain Walling (before CWCT and NBS)
- SGA1 > H13 Structural Glass Assemblies
- ___ > H43 Flat metal panel cladding
- ESS1 > L15 External Solar shading
- LVR1 > L19 Ventilation Louvers
- ____ > L40 Glass (Performance Specification)
- ___ > K Vitreous enamel cladding (used internally)
- ___ > K32 Terrazzo Toilet Cubicles
- PRAF1 > K41 Platform Raised Access Floors
- SES1 > K42 Suspended External Soffits
- ____ > N20 Furniture
- N20 Furniture
- Leather bindings & Linings
- Linoleum linings
- Conservation Laboratory Furniture
- ____ > Mobile Book Shelving
- SVWOE1 > U14 Smoke Vent/Window Opening Equipment
- ____ > N25 Access & Cleaning cradles
- MET0 > Z11.0 Purpous Made Metalwork: Generally
- MET1 > Z11.1 Purpous Made Metalwork: Mild steel
- MET2 > Z11.2 Purpous Made Metalwork: Aluminium
- MET3 > Z11.3 Purpous Made Metalwork: Austenitic stainless steel
- MET4 > Z11.4 Purpous Made Metalwork: Copper and Copper Alloy (bronze doors and ironmongery)
- ___ > Z22 Sealants (Performance Specification)
- ___ > Z31 Polyseter Powder Coating
- MET1 > Z34 Hot Dip Galvanizing
- Brick, natural stone, natural slate and natural asphalt are used extensively.
- At this time very little was being done or published on sustainability, planet friendliness, health and safety of builders, etc and these were not high on anyone’s agenda on this and many other projects.
- The design of the dimly lit Exhibition Hall furniture required Afromosia veneer and hardwood to be stained black and 4 coats of acid catalyst lacqure, I argued (in a office where questioning the partners was not the done thing) against any veneer being used let alone Afromosia CSJW refused to budge, but the built furniture could be plastic or stained MDF, who knows?
- Cellular glass slab and board and stone mineral wool thermal insulation were specified extensively whilst foamed plastics were not permitted by the DS.
- Ramin a species on the CITES lists was called for by CSJW on shelf nosing in store rooms I requested that this was substituted in the specifications.
- Stocks of English Oak were insufficient for this large project so crown-cut American White Oak veneer and hardwood was used in all private and public spaces including reading rooms, chosen for its figure free appearance so as to allow the book collections to stand out.
- Swiss herd cow leather free from barbed wire scars and linoleum were used extensively in reading room furniture surfaces.
- Polyester powder coated aluminium is used extensively on the external envelope because of its long life expectancy and its low VOC.
- UV filtration is used in all glazing and luminaires to reduce the risk of damage to books and prolongs the life of all finishes in the building.
- Solar shading is used extensively to maximise passage of daylight whilst minimising passage of sunlight and UV light by reflecting it off as many UV absorbent surfaces as possible.
- Some Solar shading is active and computer controlled, it learns where the sun is at different times of the day and year and how to maximise available daylight.
BrianSpecMan aka Brian Murphy
- 11th April 2013