Set within the Hereford Enterprise Zone, Architype has brought innovation to a successful manufacturing company called TRP Sealing Systems.
Replacing the existing building, the new flagship scheme aims to dramatically improve the energy efficiency of the factory and create a Passivhaus office, giving additional credibility to their future exemplary global headquarters. The factory goes beyond promoting the company and the local area, to act as a precedent for future projects designated on the Enterprise Zone.
- Planning Achieved / Nov. ‘13
- Gross Internal Floor Area
- Total Factory / 4,170 sqm
- Total Office / 386 sqm
- Construction Type
- Timber Framed Office and Steel Framed Factory
- Total / £3,600,000
The ideas explored during the feasibility study have evolved to succinctly capture the factory's ‘process driven design’, where the architecture is driven by the manufacturing steps, to aid and improve the overall efficiency of production, business operation and energy use.
These principles are apparent within the design and have heavily informed the orientation, massing, and structural layout of the main factory building and office accommodation. A two building solution has emerged acknowledging the need for a distinct difference in environmental building requirements for the separate uses: factory and office administration.
Design Drivers / Factory Building
High levels of heat generated during manufacturing of the rubber seals presented the challenge of expelling the excess heat; which generally creates an unhealthy temperature to work in.
Contrary to the norm in the UK, the design driver has focused on enabling a quick extraction of heat from the manufacturing process, which was achieved through a rationalised linear plan. Key specialists were brought in to analyse where energy was being lost in the manufacturing process in order to achieve a more efficient design.
Using our comprehensive understanding of building physics, a solution has been conceived that mitigates against solar gain by providing sufficient insulation and minimises south facing glazing. The building fabric therefore acts as a shelter rather than an airtight envelope. Dispersed daylight is provided by large north facing windows.
We have future proofed the design; a regular arrangement of equally sized and spaced structural bays allows for future expansion of the building without disrupting ongoing production.
Design Drivers / Office Building
The design of the office building was based around human comfort factors to accommodate the administrative staff and customer services. The design has been driven by the client's need to minimise energy consumption, achieve passive solar gain and provide well-ventilated spaces to create a comfortable working environment. Appropriate to these requirements, Architype recommended building to the rigorous Passivhaus standard. As part of the Enterprise Zone development, new projects in the zone are required to meet BREEAM Very Good or equivalent, to which the Passivhaus standards exceeds. The marginal increase in capital costs for insulation, higher performance windows, achieving airtightness and mechanical ventilation, is far outweighed by the savings from installing a smaller heating system, eliminating underfloor heating, simpler controls and no requirement for renewables.
Designed correctly, incorporating Passivhaus is cost neutral when compared to a building built to Building Regulations/ BREEAM Very Good standard and continues to offer ongoing savings of reduced running costs.
The building envelope will be constructed from a simple palette of materials:
- a corrugated galvanised sheet rainscreen wrap.
- vertical douglas fir/larch dark stained timber cladding.
- powder coated dark grey aluminium window frames and doors, flashing details, louvre vent panels, cowls and canopy posts.
The choice of materials reflects the industrial character of the building whilst distinguishing between its separate elements; visually unified within the site boundary.
The timber on the gable ends of the factory and to the front of the office provides a defined contrast with the bold, industrial looking galvanised steel ‘wrapper’ which enhances the extruded form reflecting the factory use within.
The carefully engineered landscape incorporates a sustainable urban drainage system (SUDs) to manage the building’s drainage whilst protecting the visual treatment of the landscape with swales and copses. This approach encourages biodiversity and engagement between the factory floor and the natural environment through the large north facing windows.
Factory Day Lighting and Ventilation Strategy
The nature of the building fabric is entirely influenced by the requirements for cooling the presses and ventilating, cooling and lighting the workspace. Ventilation louvres running the length of the factory floor cool the presses and hot air is extracted by mechanically assisted local extract ventilation. The louvres also provide general ambient ventilation and cooling. Daylighting is largely achieved by large north facing windows.
- Quantity Surveyor
- SmithThomas Consult
- M&E Engineers
- Method Consulting Engineers
- Structural Engineers
- Eastwood & Partners
- Landscape Architects
- Illman Young Landscape
- Architecture Energy Consultants
- Elemental Solutions