Like a series of arches that interlock, intersect, separate and stand out, the new twenty-four-bed intermediate care unit at North Manchester Hospital in England is both unsettling and intriguing on the eye, in equal measure. Designed by the Lewis and Hickey firm of architects, in close collaboration with Terreal, this project to accommodate patients convalescing before they return home plays a transitional role in terms of its design and appearance too.
Terreal cladding Piterak® Slim and Maestral® Slim in glazed white are used to clad the façade in terracotta panels. Built on a green, sloping site, it juggles with scale, levels, and perspective to create a warm and homely aspect, quite different from traditional hospital conventions.
Terreal Terracotta Rainscreen Cladding
The façade has a single white glazed finish but using two Terreal products that, when subtly combined together, add dynamism and a contoured appearance. In order to create a monolithic effect, the architects chose the large format Piterak Slim 60 cm cladding system for the building’s “backbone”. This is a product with two key strengths that make it perfectly suited to the project: a closed joint that adds uniformity and smooth appearance, as well as the flexibility of being suitable to install both horizontally and vertically.
For the outsize arches, looking like giant football goals, the Maestral Slim 20 cm cladding won universal approval. Arranged vertically, in rows of three, it makes the building look longer, creating the impression of dominating the landscape.
A very successful approach was achieved thanks to the twin technical challenge taken up by the Terreal teams for the insulating panels on the arches. In order to deal with the corner angles, the Maestral Slim attachment system was adapted so it would not be visible. The largest challenge was dealing with the fact it was impossible to attach the clips to the edges of pieces cut diagonally for joining vertical and horizontal sections. This was solved by making a linear cut on the back of the terracotta so that the clips could grip onto the inside of the product. Ingenious and totally invisible. This was a superb technical feat, showing attention to detail and producing a great overall effect.
Why Terreal Terracotta Cladding Façade?
Terreal's teams’ availability and involvement was a real support, right from the start of the project. That enabled to go over a number of technical matters. Terracotta cladding products meet the architect's requirements in every respect, particularly as regards their resistance to bad weather and the ability to last a long time. Terracotta façade is inspirational, never goes out of fashion and ages fantastically well.
|Project name ||North Manchester hospital |
|Location ||Manchester, UK |
|Architect ||Lewis & Hickey |
|Client ||North Manchester General Hospital |