Velocity Village occupies a four-acre site and provides more than 600,000ft² of residential and commercial space in the centre of Sheffield.Designed by Axis Architecture, the extensive façade replacement was carried out by Glassolutions working with main contractor Jessops Construction.
A Replacement Glazing Project to Add Light and Life to the City’s Business District
The buildings are all faced in acid-washed concrete, steel and glass in dramatic contrast to the scheme’s red-brick surroundings and adding sparkle, light and life to the city’s business district.
The architectural style is bold in its contemporary simplicity and has created a stylish landmark which successfully integrates urban living, learning and working environments. Each elevation is almost completely enclosed in Wicona curtain walling to maximise light, with floor-to-ceiling glazing allowing views of the Peak District, the landscaped courtyards or across the city.
Structural Glazing for Every Elevation to Improve a Mixed-use Development
WICTEC 50 SG structural glazing was used on every elevation of the four buildings to replace the original curtain walling which was no longer watertight, and to improve the overall quality of each development.
The façade specification was to create a ‘like-for-like’ frameless glass appearance to mirror the original architectural design. This was achieved using the WICTEC 50 SG system which features a ‘toggle’ to retain the glazed units within the infill channel. This option is fast and efficient to install, and delivers a frameless appearance as an alternative to silicone bonding.
Maximising Off-site Working for Faster Installation
The Wicona curtain walling was also semi-unitised, which allowed the fabrication and assembly of the glazing units off site for faster and more accurate installation – an important benefit as the buildings were occupied throughout the façade replacement. An area of the glazing on the V2 office building was also faceted across seven storeys.
In addition to the curtain walling, Wicona also supplied:
- Solar shading using fixed aluminium louvres
- Open-in, side hung WICLINE evo 65 aluminium casement windows inserted into the curtain walling at every level on each building
- WICSLIDE 23 sliding doors to the penthouse balconies at the top of the V3 apartment building
- WICSTYLE 65 evo outward-opening doors for access to the balconies for all the other residential units.
The Architect’s Perspective
Kevin Seers, Director of Axis Architecture said, “The curtain walling was a critical element because these four buildings had such an extensive amount of glazing. We needed to retain the appearance of continuous glass and the original façade design as closely as possible.”
“The Wicona façade system was sufficiently flexible and versatile to meet the design criteria and integrated well with the windows and doors. The WICTEC 50 SG curtain walling has successfully and closely reflected the appearance of the original buildings and we are extremely happy with the end result. The glazing is all performing well and each building looks fantastic. The façade replacement has really helped to revitalise the whole development. We would definitely use Wicona’s systems again.”
Office, University and Residential Accommodation in a Single Scheme
Velocity Village provides high quality office accommodation across seven floors and 443 premium apartments set around landscaped courtyards. The largest building, V2, is now the languages faculty for the University of Sheffield. V3 and V4 are residential buildings providing one and two bedroom apartments over seven and eight floors. V5 is a standalone building comprising 24 two bedroom luxury apartments over four upper floors, with office space on the ground floor.
A Curtain Walling Range for Optimum Creative Freedom
WICTEC curtain walling can be used to create vertical and angled façades; sloped and 3D glazed roofs and atria, and other geometric constructions. There is an extensive range of openings for natural ventilation; a wide variety of profiles for optimum creative freedom, and additional options for enhanced burglar and bullet resistance and fire protection, without changing the overall appearance of the facade.
The Project Team
- Architects: Axis Architecture
- Main contractor: Jessops Construction
- Façade construction: Glassolutions
- Aluminium façade solutions: Wicona