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Aperture

GLASSOLUTIONS manufactures and installs a glazed façade for Aperture, a new community hub on the Greenwich Peninsula, to meet tight guidelines for aesthetics and energy efficiency.

Aperture forms part of the regeneration of Greenwich Peninsula, an ambitious project led by property developer Knight Dragon who are seeking to create a new culture district for London. Covering 150 acres to the east of central London, this is currently one of Europe’s largest regeneration projects and eventually will provide 15,720 new homes along 1.6 miles of the Thames waterfront, as well as shops, hotels, schools and public spaces.

 

Described by Knight Dragon as ‘a modern village hall’, Aperture is a mixed-use community hub located where the Parkside neighbourhood meets Lower Riverside. The building comprises a retail unit, café, and flexible spaces on the ground floor for community use, with nursery, prayer space, estate management facilities and gym on the floors above. 


Overview

Commissioned by main contractor Kier Construction to manufacture and install the building’s façade, GLASSOLUTIONS’ Contracting team was required to meet a range of tight guidelines for aesthetics and energy efficiency. A notable feature of architects DSDHA’s design for Aperture was the inclusion of high levels of glazing at ground floor level, with the aim of creating a light, bright interior to emphasise the open and welcoming nature of the community hub. These plans required GLASSOLUTIONS to design and specify an attractive glazed building envelope with narrow sightlines and a minimum of visible fixtures to let in as much daylight as possible.

 

Additionally, Aperture’s design aims to achieve a BREEAM rating of Very Good for energy performance and efficiency. This required the glazing specification to account for intelligent ventilation solutions, as well as minimising solar gain to reduce the need for air conditioning.


Products Used

To meet the requirements laid out in the design brief, GLASSOLUTIONS manufactured and installed a glazed building envelope comprising the Contracting division’s flagship VS-1 curtain walling system, supplemented with traditional curtain walling for at the ground floor.

 

The VS-1 installation for Aperture is unique and bespoke, including continuous full high feature fins to minimise the building’s solar gain and enhance thermal and acoustic comfort. The original concept was to use standard curtain walling with a bespoke fin attached; however, the properties of VS-1 suited the design perfectly and this was chosen as the final design solution.

 

VS-1’s highly engineered simplicity allowed the installation to meet the brief, delivering both streamlined aesthetics and efficiency benefits. The system allows the façade to be held away from the mullion without the use of obtrusive bolt fixings or transoms. This means that the glass wall visually ‘floats’, presenting an entirely glazed surface that lets in as much daylight as possible to enhance the building’s visual appeal as well as the comfort of its occupants. 

 

For the areas of the building’s envelope fitted with the VS-1 system, Glassolutions delivered thermal comfort and security with the installation of 10mm SGG Securit heat soak toughened SKN 174 II glass paired with 21.5mm SGG Stadip Securit heat soak toughened inner panes, with a silicon seal creating the units’ 16mm cavity. The system also accommodated bespoke storey-height anodised insulated cladding panels, with perforated sinusoidal rainscreen, to meet the architectural concept.

 

For Aperture’s ground and lower floors, resilience and toughness were priorities for the glass specification. Glazing for these areas comprised outer panes of 8mm and 10mm COOL-LITE SKN176 II, heat soak toughened for extra strength and reduced breakability. This was paired with inner panes of 10.8mm SGG STADIP PROTECT, separated with a 90% filled argon gas cavity fitted with 16mm black warm edge spacers to reduce heat transfer.


Outcomes

GLASSOLUTIONS commercial manager John Foster said: “The GLASSOLUTIONS commercial team was very pleased to secure the contract for the Aperture’s glazing design and installation, and we are delighted that our flagship VS-1 system proved the ideal choice to meet the aesthetic and practical specifications for the building envelope.

 

“As a community hub for the new Greenwich Peninsula regeneration, Aperture will be a space where local residents can gather, celebrate, work, play, pray, and eat together. GLASSOLUTIONS is proud to have been involved in the construction of a building which will serve its community in so many different ways.”


Products

VS-1 - Curtain Walling

VS-1 is a new type of curtain wall – a mullion only system where the glass is held away from the mullion so the glass wall visually ‘floats’

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