Project1_Layout 1 07/05/2013 CLADDING & SHEETING
Three façades for all seasons
Justin Price, sales director at Aliva UK, explores the variety and quality of cladding available to modern architects as he describes three
contrasting façades from the company’s portfolio of recent projects
With the huge variety of materials
and designs in the architect’s
cladding palette, there is a façade
out there to put the finishing
touches to the most demanding
of projects. A trio of recently completed façades
by Aliva UK shows how careful specification,
design and attention to detail can produce a
striking and beautiful building.
For the luxury 29-storey Merano development
on the embankment, in central London’s largest
regeneration area, we supplied a bold, modern
façade of bronze expanded aluminium mesh.
Fitted in bespoke panels designed with Wintech
Engineering, the aluminium cladding creates
confident geometric lines on the external walls
and the penthouse’s terrace areas. The 2.8m x
1.6m panels appear to change colour throughout
the day as the sun hits and refracts the light.
The bold, modern façade exemplifies the
building’s confident architectural style. Strong
geometric lines combine the external columns
and bronze coloured metal mesh side panels
to create a distinctive new look for London’s
riverside, part of the Vauxhall Nine Elms
International architectural practice RSHP
designed the planning scheme, alongside
co-architects EPR Architects. The mesh panels
were crafted meticulously down to exacting
requirements which even included matching
anodised colour for welds and rivets.
Aluminium is a highly sustainable material.
More than half of the aluminium currently
produced in the European Union originates from
recycled raw materials, and this is increasing.
As the energy needed to recycle aluminium is
about 5% of that needed for primary production,
the ecological benefits are clear. Apart from
routine cleaning for aesthetic reasons, aluminium
cladding does not need any maintenance, which
translates into a major cost and ecological
advantage over the lifetime of the building.
Aluminium cladding is also highly reflective,
making it very efficient for light management, and
energy saving. Aluminium ventilated cladding
protects the inner skin of the insulation against
the elements, ensuring a long design life. The
air gap also helps to retain warmth, making it
possible to prevent considerable loss of energy
from a building.
In Newcastle, we created a contemporary yet
classic façade for a student accommodation project
surrounded by eight listed buildings and notable
landmarks. Located near the exit to Newcastle’s
central station, the building required a high-end
finish that was sensitive to local architecture.
042 MAY 2018 RCIMAG.COM
Merano Residences Vita Newcastle
The £16 million building is aimed at the
growing number of international and postgraduate
students arriving in the city. Vita
Newcastle boasts a state-of-the-art student hub
with reception, lounge, games area, gym and
group study space.
All the buildings in the area are finished
with local natural sandstone, but Vita’s curved
structure stands out. Our design team used all of
their creative skills to provide a contemporary, yet
classic design that also came in on budget.
Aliva supplied traditional natural sandstone,
using a lightweight panel for the main body of the
building with zinc shingles for the mansard roof
– echoing the classic styling of the surrounding
buildings. Anodised aluminium window
screens cut in a lattice effect give the building a
contemporary individuality and catch the sun,
adding much-needed illumination to the site.
We sourced the stone from the same local
quarry that had supplied the surrounding
Victorian sandstone blocks – a site that had been
out of operation for some years. Vita was the first
project to be clad in stone from the quarry since
its recent reopening.
The façade for Vita Newcastle comes from
the Aliva Air range, our solution for architects
who wish to use stone, glass, GRC or ceramic
cladding in combination with lightweight, modern
Panels are formed from a layer of stone,
ceramic and glass. This is cut and then bonded to
a composite panel with a stainless-steel backing,
using a BBA-accredited production system. As
well as being ultra-lightweight, the panels can be
manufactured in larger formats than traditional
cladding – up to 4.5m by 1.5m.
In Weston-super-Mare, we delivered a clean, crisp
façade for Weston College in white insulated
render and ceramic tile – featuring a water-jet cut
It is part of a multi-million-pound regeneration
project for the college in Weston-super-Mare’s
historic Winter Gardens. Our brief was to create
a façade that nods to the site’s classic art deco
beginnings, while looking to the future as the
college attracts new students to the seafront site.
Given that more than a third of the heat
in a building is lost through its walls, highquality
insulated render that delivers a crisp,
contemporary finish is a must for any energyconscious
building project, and this façade has
future-proofed the building for generations of
students to come.