Keynsham Civic Centre & One Stop Shop
Project: Keynsham Civic Centre & One Stop Shop
Company: B & K Structures
Technology: Glulam and CLT
The £34m redevelopment included the demolition of the existing Town Hall, outdated 1960’s shops and the library - replacing the buildings with new low carbon council office space for 688 people, 20,000ft2 retail spaces, a new library and a one-stop-shop for council and other public sector services.
The site is situated around two new pedestrian streets, a market square and new car parking areas.
The redevelopment of the Town Hall site provides an opportunity to create high quality, mixed use facilities in a central location at the heart of the town centre.
Sustainability was a key aspect of the scheme. Energy efficiency was built into the design which was specified to achieve the top DEC (Display Energy Certificate) ‘A’ rating under the Governments Energy Performance Certification scheme. This is the highest rating possible and is given to buildings producing the lowest CO2 emissions - only a small percentage of office buildings have ever received this accolade.
B & K Structures were appointed to provide the structure for the two storey Town hall, which comprised glulam beams, cross laminated timber (CLT) panels, steel and concrete panels (PCU).
The idea behind the build was to create a low embedded and energy efficient structure for the North Somerset Council Offices. The offices were part of the council’s plans to reduce and rationalise the amount of office space used from 12 to just four locations. The council’s carbon footprint generated by its buildings operational energy use will reduce by up to 70%.
The cross laminated timber wall panels are incorporated within a steel frame. Both the floors and the roof are constructed from alternating CLT and concrete in order to produce thermal properties – blending the radiant heat absorption of concrete with the unique aesthetic and low thermal conductivity of CLT. The ceiling soffits remain clear, with services running through the concrete plates. The concrete planks have embedded water pipes that were fitted in the factory in order to help cool the structure. Both the precast concrete and timber floor sections are painted white and left exposed to reflect light back into the building. The lift cores were also built using cross laminated timber as well as all of the stair cores throughout the rest of the project.
Two types of connections were used for this build. These consisted of bolted and steel tie rods. The bolted connections were standard throughout the design. The steel tie rods that were used to support the floor and the roof are a unique design – taking into account the structural complexity and loadings while also providing aesthetic appeal.
Outcome / results / success factor
The highlights of this project for B & K Structures included the achievement of developing an optimised hybrid structure of timber, steel and concrete, to create an energy efficient, low carbon public building with the striking aesthetic appeal of exposed timber. The finished build was 90% more energy efficient than the previous one. This was down to the choice of cross laminated timber as the main structural element and a rigorous design process.
The building has already been widely recognised and commended for its sustainable credentials and has recently been awarded with the RIBA South West Award and the RIBA South West Sustainability Award.
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