Birmingham University’s new £55 million sports centre, scheduled to open September 2016, has been constructed using robust materials that will improve with age, enhancing the heritage of the Edgbaston campus buildings. Designed by London-based architects Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands, the 13,200-sqm complex includes Birmingham’s first 50-metre swimming pool, featuring a moveable floor to accommodate a variety of aquatic activities. Among the other facilities are a sports hall with 700 bleacher seats and twelve badminton courts, a hybrid sports hall, six squash courts, a dojo and a climbing wall.
The steel-framed, multi-block project is clad in red brick and copper panels. The innovative façade specification for the copper-clad main block required a high-performance, UV-stable breather membrane to ensure long-term protection to the building envelope. The solution was Powerlon© UV Colour, a technically advanced membrane supplied by Industrial Textiles and Plastics Ltd that is particularly suitable for exposed installations behind timber, glass and metal mesh façades.
In addition to exceptional UV stability and flame retardancy to Class O, the membrane has outstanding breathability, allowing moisture to diffuse quickly to provide good climatic comfort and conditions. The Powerlon© UV Colour in “coal” colourway was installed by NDM (Metal Roofing and Cladding) Ltd at the complex, which has been engineered to provide an Environmental Performance Certificate “A” rating.
“The superior durability of Powerlon© UV will provide long-term protection for this high-performance centre,” said Marc van der Voort, Managing Director of ITP.