• 10 Dec 2018
    A happy employee is a productive one, which is why it is essential workspaces are light, appealing, and ideally, paragons of energy-efficiency. These characteristics were very much to the fore when it came to building one of the largest distribution hubs in the UK, which included 13,000m2 of Energysaver GRP composite rooflights from the UK and Ireland’s leading rooflight manufacturer, Brett Martin. . Home to a leading homeware retailer, the huge 111,000m2 warehouse at Central Park in Avonmouth covers an impressive amount of ground. In fact, it’s thought to be the biggest single building in the south west; the equivalent size of 15 Wembley Stadiums. Central to the design of the £100m building was a rooflight solution that minimised the use of artificial lighting and reduced running costs associated with such an enormous building. The specification for the 80mm-thick composite panel roof included 13,000m2 of Brett Martin GRP Trilite Energysaver rooflights to bathe the building in natural sunlight and achieve an excellent U-value of 1.3W/m²K.  For a project of such magnitude, it is testament to the skills and dedication of ‘full-envelope’ contractor, FK Group, and the usability of the factory-assembled Brett Martin insulating rooflights (FAIRs) that the warehouse application was completed within an impressive 16-week timeframe. The FAIRs were built-up using a Trilite GRP sheet (3.0kg/m2) to ensure fast, reliable weatherproofing and allow the highest-quality natural daylight into the interior of this widespan building. “High performance, trouble-free Energysaver rooflights used at the Range Warehouse are one of the most cost effective ways of getting natural light into wide span buildings,” commented David Biggs, Commercial Director at Brett Martin Daylight Systems. “Energysaver rooflights are the go-to solution for introducing daylight into these building types, increasing worker productivity and helping warehouses meet their energy efficiency targets.” GRP allows an even spread of daylight, illuminating the warehouse while eliminating the risk of hot spots and solar glare which could disturb the retailer’s staff. A revelation in terms of quality and invention, Brett Martin’s Energysaver composite panel rooflights are innovative triple-skin FAIRs for composite roofs manufactured from GRP. Designed to the same depth as the composite roofing system, Energysaver's flat liner panel sits flush with surrounding metal panels for excellent aesthetics and a neater, trim internal appearance. Delivering U-values from 1.9W/m²K down to 0.9W/m²K, they offer high quality diffused natural daylight, thermal performance and ready-to-fit convenience for widespan buildings. Science supports the benefits of natural daylight in inspiring an uplifting effect upon those exposed to its rays, particularly in workspaces. Rooflights help facilitate this ‘real’ feel good factor, offering an attractive solution to daylighting requirements whilst providing the required insulation values which allow buildings to meet energy saving targets and reduce running costs. Brett Martin has taken rooflight provision to new heights. How so? Well, it not only designs a wide range of rooflight systems to deliver optimum performance, durability, safety and regulation standards – it offers superior technical support, detailed installation instructions and maintenance guidelines to ensure systems perform as promised, and work alongside all other roofing elements. The use of in-plane GRP rooflights from Brett Martin more than played its part in the design and performance of Avonmouth’s ‘super-warehouse’. It’s a shining example of how a building and its occupants perform better in the natural light. Visit: http://www.brettmartin.com  
    51 Posted by Talk. Build
  • A happy employee is a productive one, which is why it is essential workspaces are light, appealing, and ideally, paragons of energy-efficiency. These characteristics were very much to the fore when it came to building one of the largest distribution hubs in the UK, which included 13,000m2 of Energysaver GRP composite rooflights from the UK and Ireland’s leading rooflight manufacturer, Brett Martin. . Home to a leading homeware retailer, the huge 111,000m2 warehouse at Central Park in Avonmouth covers an impressive amount of ground. In fact, it’s thought to be the biggest single building in the south west; the equivalent size of 15 Wembley Stadiums. Central to the design of the £100m building was a rooflight solution that minimised the use of artificial lighting and reduced running costs associated with such an enormous building. The specification for the 80mm-thick composite panel roof included 13,000m2 of Brett Martin GRP Trilite Energysaver rooflights to bathe the building in natural sunlight and achieve an excellent U-value of 1.3W/m²K.  For a project of such magnitude, it is testament to the skills and dedication of ‘full-envelope’ contractor, FK Group, and the usability of the factory-assembled Brett Martin insulating rooflights (FAIRs) that the warehouse application was completed within an impressive 16-week timeframe. The FAIRs were built-up using a Trilite GRP sheet (3.0kg/m2) to ensure fast, reliable weatherproofing and allow the highest-quality natural daylight into the interior of this widespan building. “High performance, trouble-free Energysaver rooflights used at the Range Warehouse are one of the most cost effective ways of getting natural light into wide span buildings,” commented David Biggs, Commercial Director at Brett Martin Daylight Systems. “Energysaver rooflights are the go-to solution for introducing daylight into these building types, increasing worker productivity and helping warehouses meet their energy efficiency targets.” GRP allows an even spread of daylight, illuminating the warehouse while eliminating the risk of hot spots and solar glare which could disturb the retailer’s staff. A revelation in terms of quality and invention, Brett Martin’s Energysaver composite panel rooflights are innovative triple-skin FAIRs for composite roofs manufactured from GRP. Designed to the same depth as the composite roofing system, Energysaver's flat liner panel sits flush with surrounding metal panels for excellent aesthetics and a neater, trim internal appearance. Delivering U-values from 1.9W/m²K down to 0.9W/m²K, they offer high quality diffused natural daylight, thermal performance and ready-to-fit convenience for widespan buildings. Science supports the benefits of natural daylight in inspiring an uplifting effect upon those exposed to its rays, particularly in workspaces. Rooflights help facilitate this ‘real’ feel good factor, offering an attractive solution to daylighting requirements whilst providing the required insulation values which allow buildings to meet energy saving targets and reduce running costs. Brett Martin has taken rooflight provision to new heights. How so? Well, it not only designs a wide range of rooflight systems to deliver optimum performance, durability, safety and regulation standards – it offers superior technical support, detailed installation instructions and maintenance guidelines to ensure systems perform as promised, and work alongside all other roofing elements. The use of in-plane GRP rooflights from Brett Martin more than played its part in the design and performance of Avonmouth’s ‘super-warehouse’. It’s a shining example of how a building and its occupants perform better in the natural light. Visit: http://www.brettmartin.com  
    Dec 10, 2018 51
  • 04 Dec 2018
    Distinguishing your company from competitors can be a challenge, especially now tradespeople can easily enrol on courses to give their business that defining edge. But often, these courses fail to strike a crucial balance between time onsite and time in the classroom, meaning that participants walk away with less practical knowhow than they had originally hoped. Fortunately enough Baumit, leading experts in external wall insulation and façade systems, offer exceptional courses tiered at bronze, silver and gold level. Designed to educate participants on a broad range of EWI installations and practices, these courses provide vital theoretical and practical experience in façade systems, creating an essential balance between the two.  A true success since opening in February 2018, Ben Warren, Managing Director at Baumit, reflects on the year, giving some insight into the academy’s future plans for 2019 and beyond.   What’s on offer at the academy? Here at Baumit, one of our key drivers is to make beautiful, healthy homes for people to live in. Whether that is striking exteriors or interiors, we provide solutions that ensure buildings are made to last. This philosophy, to give relevant tradespeople the opportunity to create better spaces for their clients, is at the heart of our on-site, purpose-built training academy based at Baumit HQ Aylesford, Kent. Yet, the other element of our academy is, of course, to enable companies to add another area of expertise to their business. Not only are companies providing their customers with the most reliable and advanced EWI solutions on the market, they are widening their individual skillsets, adding vital strings to their bow. As such, the 62 people who have walked through Baumit’s doors to complete either a bronze, silver or gold course have gone on to significantly improve their offerings. Those who finished the bronze course have expanded their practical and theoretical rendering knowledge and plan on returning to participate in the silver course to become a Baumit-approved installer. For those who have become Baumit-certified, on completion of the gold course, they are now looking to work with us in the future as Baumit-approved partners. We have developed these courses to reflect the industry’s evolving diversity. Our programme range is designed to meet everyone’s criteria; whether you are starting out in EWI or want to grow and develop your business to work with one of the largest EWI manufacturers in the world. These site-based scenarios provide hands-on, ‘real-life experience’ in dealing with regular challenges faced by installers.  What’s next for the academy? Looking into the future of Baumit’s training academy, there are plenty of exciting prospects emerging on our horizons. First and foremost, we wish to build on the great foundations we have laid, as the training academy has been an even greater success than we initially hoped. In its current form, the academy is at the stage it needs to be; everyone who participates in the courses comments on how their experiences are unlike any other programmes they have completed, and are extremely impressed with the course content. We invested a huge amount of time refining the course structure, so we hope to continue in this strain to ensure we create the best learning environment for our participants. In terms of the future, we hope to continue to attract new people to the course, where another key focus will be on previous applicants and people in associated trades. We have plans to widen our pool of interest, encouraging the latter to apply to the silver or gold course to become future partners and give clients the most supreme EWI solutions on the market. Another larger ambition is to get the course into colleges, to define a new generation of tradespeople using Baumit’s application and products. Although this will take some time and investment, one day we hope to teach students a new way to hone their skills, inspiring future generations of EWI installers. Lastly, we have to give attention where it is due to course leader Chris Kendall, Field Engineer at Baumit. With 30 experience working as a contractor, Chris has been at Baumit since March 2017 and is a crucial part of the training academy. His expertise, experience, and constructive teaching techniques are second to none, where his involvement has been hugely instrumental in the current success of the training academy. This year has been fantastic for the Baumit Training Academy. We have developed and grown as an educational hub and are glad to be offering some of the best EWI courses in the UK, which will hopefully continue to be a success throughout 2019 and well into the future. For more information on Baumit Training Academy see: http://info.baumit.co.uk/baumit-academy-courses
    185 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Distinguishing your company from competitors can be a challenge, especially now tradespeople can easily enrol on courses to give their business that defining edge. But often, these courses fail to strike a crucial balance between time onsite and time in the classroom, meaning that participants walk away with less practical knowhow than they had originally hoped. Fortunately enough Baumit, leading experts in external wall insulation and façade systems, offer exceptional courses tiered at bronze, silver and gold level. Designed to educate participants on a broad range of EWI installations and practices, these courses provide vital theoretical and practical experience in façade systems, creating an essential balance between the two.  A true success since opening in February 2018, Ben Warren, Managing Director at Baumit, reflects on the year, giving some insight into the academy’s future plans for 2019 and beyond.   What’s on offer at the academy? Here at Baumit, one of our key drivers is to make beautiful, healthy homes for people to live in. Whether that is striking exteriors or interiors, we provide solutions that ensure buildings are made to last. This philosophy, to give relevant tradespeople the opportunity to create better spaces for their clients, is at the heart of our on-site, purpose-built training academy based at Baumit HQ Aylesford, Kent. Yet, the other element of our academy is, of course, to enable companies to add another area of expertise to their business. Not only are companies providing their customers with the most reliable and advanced EWI solutions on the market, they are widening their individual skillsets, adding vital strings to their bow. As such, the 62 people who have walked through Baumit’s doors to complete either a bronze, silver or gold course have gone on to significantly improve their offerings. Those who finished the bronze course have expanded their practical and theoretical rendering knowledge and plan on returning to participate in the silver course to become a Baumit-approved installer. For those who have become Baumit-certified, on completion of the gold course, they are now looking to work with us in the future as Baumit-approved partners. We have developed these courses to reflect the industry’s evolving diversity. Our programme range is designed to meet everyone’s criteria; whether you are starting out in EWI or want to grow and develop your business to work with one of the largest EWI manufacturers in the world. These site-based scenarios provide hands-on, ‘real-life experience’ in dealing with regular challenges faced by installers.  What’s next for the academy? Looking into the future of Baumit’s training academy, there are plenty of exciting prospects emerging on our horizons. First and foremost, we wish to build on the great foundations we have laid, as the training academy has been an even greater success than we initially hoped. In its current form, the academy is at the stage it needs to be; everyone who participates in the courses comments on how their experiences are unlike any other programmes they have completed, and are extremely impressed with the course content. We invested a huge amount of time refining the course structure, so we hope to continue in this strain to ensure we create the best learning environment for our participants. In terms of the future, we hope to continue to attract new people to the course, where another key focus will be on previous applicants and people in associated trades. We have plans to widen our pool of interest, encouraging the latter to apply to the silver or gold course to become future partners and give clients the most supreme EWI solutions on the market. Another larger ambition is to get the course into colleges, to define a new generation of tradespeople using Baumit’s application and products. Although this will take some time and investment, one day we hope to teach students a new way to hone their skills, inspiring future generations of EWI installers. Lastly, we have to give attention where it is due to course leader Chris Kendall, Field Engineer at Baumit. With 30 experience working as a contractor, Chris has been at Baumit since March 2017 and is a crucial part of the training academy. His expertise, experience, and constructive teaching techniques are second to none, where his involvement has been hugely instrumental in the current success of the training academy. This year has been fantastic for the Baumit Training Academy. We have developed and grown as an educational hub and are glad to be offering some of the best EWI courses in the UK, which will hopefully continue to be a success throughout 2019 and well into the future. For more information on Baumit Training Academy see: http://info.baumit.co.uk/baumit-academy-courses
    Dec 04, 2018 185
  • 03 Dec 2018
    Since the construction giant Carillion’s liquidation at the beginning of the year, the government has released regulations to target late payers in the public sector in an attempt to resolve the delayed payment crisis. In light of this government order released a few months ago by Parliamentary Secretary Oliver Dowden, private sector clients and developers have been asked to follow suit in order to assure transparency and reliability across the entire sector. But what are the solutions to stop delayed payments from occuring? Matthew Jones, CEO of Open ECX, discusses how the industry might tackle this issue collectively to put better payment processes into practice. Recent government intervention in lieu of Carillion’s collapse exemplifies how much of a grave inconvenience delayed payments can be, especially if left unresolved. In effect, government measures will make it easier for subcontractors to report poor payment methods to the authorities. In an ideal world, no business wants to add to the stress already evident during the invoice and payment process, whether large or small scale. Although delayed payments can occur for a variety of reasons, whether related to unsolicited administrative errors or employee illness, contractors should still strive to make the subcontractor payment process as easy and straightforward as possible. In order to prevent late payments, the government will offer advisory, constructive workshops to help companies with their project management and payment plans. Solutions such as these should help prevent any delayed payments, allowing contractors the time to consider the impact of their delay and providing contractors with helpful advice to better manage their current payment processes. Overall, this initiative will ensure employees and businesses will not suffer as a consequence.   Even though the Carillion collapse is a stand-alone case, nonetheless, it begs several questions on how and why payments were so late. But moving forward, it is important to identify key solutions to prevent further financial catastrophes from occuring. All contractors desire a risk-free environment in which their payment processes are rigorous, safe and reliable; such solutions allow contractors to be more organised and efficient with their payments, preventing any late payments from slipping beneath the surface. A potential solution is to digitise all payment and invoice processes so that contractors pay their subcontractors in a timely fashion whilst maintaining a healthy, risk-free environment for themselves. Designed for medium to large contractors, WebContractor is a useful tool which manages the subcontractor applications for payment process, as well as other subcontractor concerns; insurances and bonds, self-billing invoices, authenticated VAT receipts, minor works, work order instructions for example, offering a great solution for the industry as a whole. Subcontractors access an online portal for easy and timely submission of payment applications while contractors take advantage of the workflow and reminder features designed to streamline the management of approvals. For contractors, this is a great support mechanism, designed to enhance visibility, control and compliance of the subcontractor application process, lightening the associated administrative workload. Not only do digital processes alleviate any messy paperwork from mounting up, they ensure both contractor and subcontractor are kept up to date with payments and invoices.  Contractors benefit from increased efficiencies, improved clarity around cash flow, and a far more accurate understanding of their liabilities at any given time. Potential risks, such as litigation, can be potentially avoided, as a thorough, reliable system such as WebContractor has been employed. Subcontractors gain visibility of the progress of their various applications for payment – something that will help them with their business planning. Applications for payment are securely stored for subcontractors and contractors to access payment applications at any given time. Time is always of the essence especially in terms of managing cash flow, meaning digital platforms are a sensible and necessary solution to combating late payments. With the right technology, processes associated with applications for payment can become efficient, standardised, transparent and quick. Most importantly, the automation of these processes can allow for tracking and management across the whole supply chain, which reduces risk and helps to build a clear and transparent picture of the finances affecting the business. Digitised systems for management of subcontractor invoices are the solution to stop late payments from occuring. Whilst the government’s recent measures must be recognised as offering an opportunity for both the public and private sector to push for change in the industry, services such as WebContractor are a tangible, accessible method to ensure contractors keep on top of the multiple payments they have to process each month. Given subcontractors can send payment applications directly, without the need for manual submissions, it improves accuracy, hastens the process and eliminates time costs as well as lost paperwork. Enhancing methods for managing applications for payment across the sector will benefit the industry’s credibility plus the health of all businesses operating within the sector. Even though it was a dark time for the construction industry, many positive lessons for the future can be learnt from Carillion’s collapse. Seeing the implementation of government intervention signifies the level of support it is willing to give the industry. But internal measures must also be taken by the industry itself, where digital application for payment and subcontractor management platforms are a worthy solution. Not only do these systems ensure subcontractors get paid on time, they reduce risk to contractors’ businesses. Turning to more rigorous, digital payment processes will preserve contractor and subcontractor integrity and the wider construction industry as a whole. Visit:  www.openecx.co.uk  
    130 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Since the construction giant Carillion’s liquidation at the beginning of the year, the government has released regulations to target late payers in the public sector in an attempt to resolve the delayed payment crisis. In light of this government order released a few months ago by Parliamentary Secretary Oliver Dowden, private sector clients and developers have been asked to follow suit in order to assure transparency and reliability across the entire sector. But what are the solutions to stop delayed payments from occuring? Matthew Jones, CEO of Open ECX, discusses how the industry might tackle this issue collectively to put better payment processes into practice. Recent government intervention in lieu of Carillion’s collapse exemplifies how much of a grave inconvenience delayed payments can be, especially if left unresolved. In effect, government measures will make it easier for subcontractors to report poor payment methods to the authorities. In an ideal world, no business wants to add to the stress already evident during the invoice and payment process, whether large or small scale. Although delayed payments can occur for a variety of reasons, whether related to unsolicited administrative errors or employee illness, contractors should still strive to make the subcontractor payment process as easy and straightforward as possible. In order to prevent late payments, the government will offer advisory, constructive workshops to help companies with their project management and payment plans. Solutions such as these should help prevent any delayed payments, allowing contractors the time to consider the impact of their delay and providing contractors with helpful advice to better manage their current payment processes. Overall, this initiative will ensure employees and businesses will not suffer as a consequence.   Even though the Carillion collapse is a stand-alone case, nonetheless, it begs several questions on how and why payments were so late. But moving forward, it is important to identify key solutions to prevent further financial catastrophes from occuring. All contractors desire a risk-free environment in which their payment processes are rigorous, safe and reliable; such solutions allow contractors to be more organised and efficient with their payments, preventing any late payments from slipping beneath the surface. A potential solution is to digitise all payment and invoice processes so that contractors pay their subcontractors in a timely fashion whilst maintaining a healthy, risk-free environment for themselves. Designed for medium to large contractors, WebContractor is a useful tool which manages the subcontractor applications for payment process, as well as other subcontractor concerns; insurances and bonds, self-billing invoices, authenticated VAT receipts, minor works, work order instructions for example, offering a great solution for the industry as a whole. Subcontractors access an online portal for easy and timely submission of payment applications while contractors take advantage of the workflow and reminder features designed to streamline the management of approvals. For contractors, this is a great support mechanism, designed to enhance visibility, control and compliance of the subcontractor application process, lightening the associated administrative workload. Not only do digital processes alleviate any messy paperwork from mounting up, they ensure both contractor and subcontractor are kept up to date with payments and invoices.  Contractors benefit from increased efficiencies, improved clarity around cash flow, and a far more accurate understanding of their liabilities at any given time. Potential risks, such as litigation, can be potentially avoided, as a thorough, reliable system such as WebContractor has been employed. Subcontractors gain visibility of the progress of their various applications for payment – something that will help them with their business planning. Applications for payment are securely stored for subcontractors and contractors to access payment applications at any given time. Time is always of the essence especially in terms of managing cash flow, meaning digital platforms are a sensible and necessary solution to combating late payments. With the right technology, processes associated with applications for payment can become efficient, standardised, transparent and quick. Most importantly, the automation of these processes can allow for tracking and management across the whole supply chain, which reduces risk and helps to build a clear and transparent picture of the finances affecting the business. Digitised systems for management of subcontractor invoices are the solution to stop late payments from occuring. Whilst the government’s recent measures must be recognised as offering an opportunity for both the public and private sector to push for change in the industry, services such as WebContractor are a tangible, accessible method to ensure contractors keep on top of the multiple payments they have to process each month. Given subcontractors can send payment applications directly, without the need for manual submissions, it improves accuracy, hastens the process and eliminates time costs as well as lost paperwork. Enhancing methods for managing applications for payment across the sector will benefit the industry’s credibility plus the health of all businesses operating within the sector. Even though it was a dark time for the construction industry, many positive lessons for the future can be learnt from Carillion’s collapse. Seeing the implementation of government intervention signifies the level of support it is willing to give the industry. But internal measures must also be taken by the industry itself, where digital application for payment and subcontractor management platforms are a worthy solution. Not only do these systems ensure subcontractors get paid on time, they reduce risk to contractors’ businesses. Turning to more rigorous, digital payment processes will preserve contractor and subcontractor integrity and the wider construction industry as a whole. Visit:  www.openecx.co.uk  
    Dec 03, 2018 130
  • 29 Nov 2018
    Not our usual kind of construction blog but we at talk.build thought this was a fun event and deserved an airing. We hope you agree What happens when waste management and rugby collide? A kicking extravaganza, as it turns out! Back in July, Championship rugby team London Irish hosted a kicking competition with their main sponsors, waste management experts Powerday. Skips and wheelie bins, all varying in size, were set up as targets for the players, making for an interesting spectacle. If you’re intrigued to see who came out on top, take a look at the video below. Video https://adtrak-3.wistia.com/medias/lu8ba5csdo Powerday provided skips and wheelie bins of varying sizes to serve as targets - the smaller the target, the higher the score. The players then battled it out to see who could come out on top, with each player getting three attempts to build up points. It’s certainly harder than it looks. If you think you could best the professionals, why don’t you try your hand at the online game, London Irish’s Rugby Kick Challenge? Warning: it’s highly addictive! The game is sponsored by Powerday and allows you to choose one of 10 players to take 10 kicks with. Go for the gold skip for 10 points, or the blue skips for 5 points each. Watch the direction bar and click at the right moment to hit the skips. Happy kicking. Play the Game - https://www.powerday.co.uk/rugby-kick-challenge/ Don’t forget to share your score on Facebook and Twitter to stake your claim to the skip-kicking crown.  
    155 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Not our usual kind of construction blog but we at talk.build thought this was a fun event and deserved an airing. We hope you agree What happens when waste management and rugby collide? A kicking extravaganza, as it turns out! Back in July, Championship rugby team London Irish hosted a kicking competition with their main sponsors, waste management experts Powerday. Skips and wheelie bins, all varying in size, were set up as targets for the players, making for an interesting spectacle. If you’re intrigued to see who came out on top, take a look at the video below. Video https://adtrak-3.wistia.com/medias/lu8ba5csdo Powerday provided skips and wheelie bins of varying sizes to serve as targets - the smaller the target, the higher the score. The players then battled it out to see who could come out on top, with each player getting three attempts to build up points. It’s certainly harder than it looks. If you think you could best the professionals, why don’t you try your hand at the online game, London Irish’s Rugby Kick Challenge? Warning: it’s highly addictive! The game is sponsored by Powerday and allows you to choose one of 10 players to take 10 kicks with. Go for the gold skip for 10 points, or the blue skips for 5 points each. Watch the direction bar and click at the right moment to hit the skips. Happy kicking. Play the Game - https://www.powerday.co.uk/rugby-kick-challenge/ Don’t forget to share your score on Facebook and Twitter to stake your claim to the skip-kicking crown.  
    Nov 29, 2018 155
  • 22 Nov 2018
    Time is of the essence in business, particularly the roofing business, writes Mahroof Hussain, Area Technical Manager at Sika-Trocal. Delays, however minimal, incurred during commercial new-build or refurbishment projects can lead to unexpected costs to the client. When someone falls behind schedule in a multi-trade works programme, the knock-on effect can be disastrous. If a roof’s waterproofing is held-up, interior works are also likely to be delayed with the building not being weatherproof. This means the installation of floors, walls, electrics, plumbing and the like are also put on hold. The overall effect of this type of stalling could set a project back weeks and months, rather than hours or days.  Rapid development Product innovation and the streamlining of the building process itself is vital to helping contractors, developers, etc, fulfil the project expectations. Sika-Trocal’s Type S waterproof membrane presents a fine example of a system created specifically for the 21st century roofing market. Suitable for new and refurbishment projects, the Type S system uses dedicated Sika-Trocal laminated discs to fasten the membrane and the insulation to the substrate. Mechanical fixing has been proven to speed-up the roof waterproofing process by up to 30%. The improved application time is due to solvent-welding methods devised to fuse the overlapping membrane rolls; a practice pioneered by Sika in the UK. Employing this process, rather than the more traditional heat-welding method, also results in a neater, more attractive waterproof finish. Heat welding requires a temperature of more than 350°C in order to successfully fuse membrane layers. Although there is no naked flame involved, in inexperienced hands a membrane is at risk of discoloration using this method. Mechanically- fixed, solvent-welded membranes also require less equipment to install. This benefit, along with its time-saving attributes which reduce on-site working hours, means the Type S system helps cut pollution caused by machine-based emissions. Wind resistant  The Type S system comprises of a vapour control layer, insulation and membrane which is held in place by Sika-Trocal discs. These are spot-welded to the membrane. The fixings allow the whole system to be mechanically-fastened to a roof’s structural deck. The added strength this provides makes the Type S membrane an ideal waterproof solution for roofs located in exposed areas where high wind uplift is a common hazard. Speed of installation and reliable, long-term performance are the properties which attract contractors and renowned commercial brands to specify Sika-Trocal’s Type S. Supermarket stores nationwide have historically been fitted with the system. Its rapid delivery minimises disruption to businesses, hence its specification in September for a new supermarket site where its installation across a 600m2 roof area was completed in just  three days. The system’s speedy installation doesn’t compromise its quality, however. It is why Sika-Trocal’s Type S system is the rapid, long-term solution when it comes to waterproof roofing. Visit: www.sika.co.uk
    176 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Time is of the essence in business, particularly the roofing business, writes Mahroof Hussain, Area Technical Manager at Sika-Trocal. Delays, however minimal, incurred during commercial new-build or refurbishment projects can lead to unexpected costs to the client. When someone falls behind schedule in a multi-trade works programme, the knock-on effect can be disastrous. If a roof’s waterproofing is held-up, interior works are also likely to be delayed with the building not being weatherproof. This means the installation of floors, walls, electrics, plumbing and the like are also put on hold. The overall effect of this type of stalling could set a project back weeks and months, rather than hours or days.  Rapid development Product innovation and the streamlining of the building process itself is vital to helping contractors, developers, etc, fulfil the project expectations. Sika-Trocal’s Type S waterproof membrane presents a fine example of a system created specifically for the 21st century roofing market. Suitable for new and refurbishment projects, the Type S system uses dedicated Sika-Trocal laminated discs to fasten the membrane and the insulation to the substrate. Mechanical fixing has been proven to speed-up the roof waterproofing process by up to 30%. The improved application time is due to solvent-welding methods devised to fuse the overlapping membrane rolls; a practice pioneered by Sika in the UK. Employing this process, rather than the more traditional heat-welding method, also results in a neater, more attractive waterproof finish. Heat welding requires a temperature of more than 350°C in order to successfully fuse membrane layers. Although there is no naked flame involved, in inexperienced hands a membrane is at risk of discoloration using this method. Mechanically- fixed, solvent-welded membranes also require less equipment to install. This benefit, along with its time-saving attributes which reduce on-site working hours, means the Type S system helps cut pollution caused by machine-based emissions. Wind resistant  The Type S system comprises of a vapour control layer, insulation and membrane which is held in place by Sika-Trocal discs. These are spot-welded to the membrane. The fixings allow the whole system to be mechanically-fastened to a roof’s structural deck. The added strength this provides makes the Type S membrane an ideal waterproof solution for roofs located in exposed areas where high wind uplift is a common hazard. Speed of installation and reliable, long-term performance are the properties which attract contractors and renowned commercial brands to specify Sika-Trocal’s Type S. Supermarket stores nationwide have historically been fitted with the system. Its rapid delivery minimises disruption to businesses, hence its specification in September for a new supermarket site where its installation across a 600m2 roof area was completed in just  three days. The system’s speedy installation doesn’t compromise its quality, however. It is why Sika-Trocal’s Type S system is the rapid, long-term solution when it comes to waterproof roofing. Visit: www.sika.co.uk
    Nov 22, 2018 176
  • 21 Nov 2018
    Colour is in vogue in lieu of recent research into colour psychology. These five points will illustrate how and why businesses can inject colour into a building’s exterior in order to enhance and reflect a business’s identity writes   Ben Warren, Managing Director at Baumit. A colour scheme not only has to complement the space, colour choice is crucial to the people or business inhabiting the area. Whether businesses are selecting their own colours, or have a designer specifying a particular scheme, colour is still an important consideration. The following five points illustrate how businesses can make colour work for their spaces: Signify business identity As first encounters are inherently based on visual appearance, colour can be the distinguishing aspect of a business. Although there is a huge weight on the importance of colour, it is important to not feel intimidated by this process. Choosing the colour or colour scheme which reflects an organisation’s ethos is not an easy task, especially when it is designed to complement a business’s identity. Whilst it takes time to determine a colour scheme, it can be a rewarding process which allows businesses to really get to grips with who they are and what they do. Market business identity   Every colour has the capability to leave a lasting impression. Although it is important to select attractive colours, it is also worthwhile to use colour to market business identity. A clear, consistent identity speaks volumes on the aims, objectives and approaches of a business. Unclear and random colours set a confusing image for a business’s brand. Keep employees happy One of the misconceptions about colour is that it only affects mood; in fact, colours shape our physical, emotional and mental state. Typically, blue is known for its stillness and its ability to affect our frame of mind. However, different tones of blue have different meanings. For instance, a light blue will calm the mind and create the feeling of stillness, whereas a more saturated blue would stimulate the mind. If businesses want to utilise colours to increase employee wellbeing and productivity they need to: assess the tasks of the employees, how long they spend in the space and what they want to achieve in that space. Does the employee’s job require a calming environment or a stimulating one? If they are dealing with difficult phone calls all day perhaps a lighter, calming blue would suit the environment, but if they are focusing on mundane tasks for long periods a brighter blue might be preferable. For instance, an office space would be designed differently to a canteen if the required outcome was different. Happy employees say a lot about the business it is representing and having spaces that suit the requirements, whether within interiors or on exterior façades, makes a clear statement about a company’s relationship with its employees. Get support and invest time Selecting a provider who is an expert in colour technology is a crucial requirement. Injecting colour into a building which houses your business is a bold move. But, gaining the support of a provider who understands the technology and theory behind colour choice is a worthwhile investment. Take time to select the perfect colour. Businesses invest time and money developing and honing their strategies, and the same should apply when it comes to considering colour schemes. Follow the 60 – 30 – 10 rule This ratio is a well-known tool created by designers which businesses can choose to use or not. It just depends on whether some organisations require the added support. To ensure a colour scheme looks balanced and calculated, this 60 – 30 – 10 proportion is a useful device. It ensures that the colours are not out of place, nor are they random. Finding the right colours to complement a business’s identity can be a challenge. However, with the right amount of research, consideration and support, colour can be the defining aspect of a business. Whilst some might choose to go green to reinforce their focus on employee wellbeing, others might stay with more modest tones, such as whites and greys, and introduce a blue or yellow into the mix. Every business is different and that is why colour is a great option – it showcases individuality. Take time to find the right colours for your business and see what differences they make. Visit: https://baumit.co.uk
    180 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Colour is in vogue in lieu of recent research into colour psychology. These five points will illustrate how and why businesses can inject colour into a building’s exterior in order to enhance and reflect a business’s identity writes   Ben Warren, Managing Director at Baumit. A colour scheme not only has to complement the space, colour choice is crucial to the people or business inhabiting the area. Whether businesses are selecting their own colours, or have a designer specifying a particular scheme, colour is still an important consideration. The following five points illustrate how businesses can make colour work for their spaces: Signify business identity As first encounters are inherently based on visual appearance, colour can be the distinguishing aspect of a business. Although there is a huge weight on the importance of colour, it is important to not feel intimidated by this process. Choosing the colour or colour scheme which reflects an organisation’s ethos is not an easy task, especially when it is designed to complement a business’s identity. Whilst it takes time to determine a colour scheme, it can be a rewarding process which allows businesses to really get to grips with who they are and what they do. Market business identity   Every colour has the capability to leave a lasting impression. Although it is important to select attractive colours, it is also worthwhile to use colour to market business identity. A clear, consistent identity speaks volumes on the aims, objectives and approaches of a business. Unclear and random colours set a confusing image for a business’s brand. Keep employees happy One of the misconceptions about colour is that it only affects mood; in fact, colours shape our physical, emotional and mental state. Typically, blue is known for its stillness and its ability to affect our frame of mind. However, different tones of blue have different meanings. For instance, a light blue will calm the mind and create the feeling of stillness, whereas a more saturated blue would stimulate the mind. If businesses want to utilise colours to increase employee wellbeing and productivity they need to: assess the tasks of the employees, how long they spend in the space and what they want to achieve in that space. Does the employee’s job require a calming environment or a stimulating one? If they are dealing with difficult phone calls all day perhaps a lighter, calming blue would suit the environment, but if they are focusing on mundane tasks for long periods a brighter blue might be preferable. For instance, an office space would be designed differently to a canteen if the required outcome was different. Happy employees say a lot about the business it is representing and having spaces that suit the requirements, whether within interiors or on exterior façades, makes a clear statement about a company’s relationship with its employees. Get support and invest time Selecting a provider who is an expert in colour technology is a crucial requirement. Injecting colour into a building which houses your business is a bold move. But, gaining the support of a provider who understands the technology and theory behind colour choice is a worthwhile investment. Take time to select the perfect colour. Businesses invest time and money developing and honing their strategies, and the same should apply when it comes to considering colour schemes. Follow the 60 – 30 – 10 rule This ratio is a well-known tool created by designers which businesses can choose to use or not. It just depends on whether some organisations require the added support. To ensure a colour scheme looks balanced and calculated, this 60 – 30 – 10 proportion is a useful device. It ensures that the colours are not out of place, nor are they random. Finding the right colours to complement a business’s identity can be a challenge. However, with the right amount of research, consideration and support, colour can be the defining aspect of a business. Whilst some might choose to go green to reinforce their focus on employee wellbeing, others might stay with more modest tones, such as whites and greys, and introduce a blue or yellow into the mix. Every business is different and that is why colour is a great option – it showcases individuality. Take time to find the right colours for your business and see what differences they make. Visit: https://baumit.co.uk
    Nov 21, 2018 180
  • 20 Nov 2018
    The devil is in the detail when it comes to roofing, it only takes a minor oversight to cause a major issue writes Ian Weston, General Manager at Aperture. A roof’s weathertight protection requires more than a membrane and insulation. A commercial project is likely to include a host of plant facilities such as solar panels, rooflights, air conditioning units and fire escapes. Such details can lead to damp and ingress penetration, and the waterproofing system’s failure, if not sealed correctly. Therefore, the need for a proven solution is essential in ensuring plant penetrations and the roof itself remains watertight.    Ideal solution As with most, if not all roofing projects, selecting the appropriate waterproofing system is crucial in applications involving a plethora of plant penetrations, PV panels, air conditioning units, rooflights which require regular maintenance. A single-ply solution where an array of plant materials is present is not advised. When exposed to foot traffic and equipment used during maintenance visits, single-ply membrane is susceptible to damage. This in-turn is likely to lead to leaks and costly, long-term performance issues. Evolution Construction sites are a combustive mix of toil, tools and trades; therefore it’s not unusual for elements of a project to be left to the last minute. However, when this comes to waterproofing details all sorts of problems can arise. This is where a company such as Aperture comes into its own. Originally set up to deal with penetrations in composite roof panels Aperture has evolved over its 17-year history in the industry to combat any type of roof detail and penetration. Aperture liquid coatings are compatible with a wide range of existing substrates including, but not limited to, bituminous systems, asphalt, single-ply, concrete, timber and metal-profiled sheets. The Aperture system has permanent elasticity with a durable finish. It is hand applied by directly employed operatives, with minimal disruption and once complete, it is maintenance-free. Approved by Kingspan for use with its systems, the Aperture solution is backed by its own BBA certificate. Awkward details Due to the compatibility with most substrates, the Aperture solution is ideal for solving the sorts of problems encountered on new-build projects. These can vary from interfaces between two non-compatible waterproofing systems, awkward access details and most commonly, service riser penetrations. The application is totally cold-applied. Based in Manchester, Aperture carries out several hundred projects across the UK each year. Its operatives are first-aid trained and qualified to a minimum SSSTS standard. This provides the client and employer with additional peace of mind whilst waterproof installation teams are on site. Originally formed in 2000, Aperture was headed by Mick Philbin who retired in April 2018. To ensure the company continued along its successful path, Mick worked closely with new General Manager, Ian Weston, for the first four months of 2018 to ensure a smooth transition. Speaking of his new position, Ian said Aperture’s success is based on its ability to react to any type of situation in a short period of time. He said: “I’m sure our customers see us as the ‘go-to’ people when a difficult waterproofing detail arises. It’s my intention to not only continue this service, but to build upon it and improve our customer base, whether it’s a multi-million pound new-build or refurbishment, or a small building conversion, Aperture has a huge range of solutions to deal with the seemingly minor details.” Visit: https://aperturesp.co.uk
    156 Posted by Talk. Build
  • The devil is in the detail when it comes to roofing, it only takes a minor oversight to cause a major issue writes Ian Weston, General Manager at Aperture. A roof’s weathertight protection requires more than a membrane and insulation. A commercial project is likely to include a host of plant facilities such as solar panels, rooflights, air conditioning units and fire escapes. Such details can lead to damp and ingress penetration, and the waterproofing system’s failure, if not sealed correctly. Therefore, the need for a proven solution is essential in ensuring plant penetrations and the roof itself remains watertight.    Ideal solution As with most, if not all roofing projects, selecting the appropriate waterproofing system is crucial in applications involving a plethora of plant penetrations, PV panels, air conditioning units, rooflights which require regular maintenance. A single-ply solution where an array of plant materials is present is not advised. When exposed to foot traffic and equipment used during maintenance visits, single-ply membrane is susceptible to damage. This in-turn is likely to lead to leaks and costly, long-term performance issues. Evolution Construction sites are a combustive mix of toil, tools and trades; therefore it’s not unusual for elements of a project to be left to the last minute. However, when this comes to waterproofing details all sorts of problems can arise. This is where a company such as Aperture comes into its own. Originally set up to deal with penetrations in composite roof panels Aperture has evolved over its 17-year history in the industry to combat any type of roof detail and penetration. Aperture liquid coatings are compatible with a wide range of existing substrates including, but not limited to, bituminous systems, asphalt, single-ply, concrete, timber and metal-profiled sheets. The Aperture system has permanent elasticity with a durable finish. It is hand applied by directly employed operatives, with minimal disruption and once complete, it is maintenance-free. Approved by Kingspan for use with its systems, the Aperture solution is backed by its own BBA certificate. Awkward details Due to the compatibility with most substrates, the Aperture solution is ideal for solving the sorts of problems encountered on new-build projects. These can vary from interfaces between two non-compatible waterproofing systems, awkward access details and most commonly, service riser penetrations. The application is totally cold-applied. Based in Manchester, Aperture carries out several hundred projects across the UK each year. Its operatives are first-aid trained and qualified to a minimum SSSTS standard. This provides the client and employer with additional peace of mind whilst waterproof installation teams are on site. Originally formed in 2000, Aperture was headed by Mick Philbin who retired in April 2018. To ensure the company continued along its successful path, Mick worked closely with new General Manager, Ian Weston, for the first four months of 2018 to ensure a smooth transition. Speaking of his new position, Ian said Aperture’s success is based on its ability to react to any type of situation in a short period of time. He said: “I’m sure our customers see us as the ‘go-to’ people when a difficult waterproofing detail arises. It’s my intention to not only continue this service, but to build upon it and improve our customer base, whether it’s a multi-million pound new-build or refurbishment, or a small building conversion, Aperture has a huge range of solutions to deal with the seemingly minor details.” Visit: https://aperturesp.co.uk
    Nov 20, 2018 156
  • 13 Nov 2018
    Insulation is a common element found in many buildings – whether they are residential or commercial. They are versatile in purpose – they can act as a sound barrier between spaces, a method of maintaining heat and cold temperatures, which in and of itself can benefit clients in terms of energy savings on their bills. When you combine with the functionality of an insulated access panel, they increase the functionality and make it a choice for contractors. Insulation 101 To better understand insulation – it is essential to know that there are two types to choose from. Open cell and closed cell. Open cell insulations typically come in spray foam; however, due to its application, it has a lower R-value in comparison to closed cell insulations. Closed cell insulations are great in preventing moisture built-up, which means avoiding any chances of moulds etc. With closed cell insulation, these have a higher R-value, and when it comes access panels installed on the exterior of a building, clients want to ensure contractors go with a quality closed cell insulation. While it will be slightly higher in costs, the benefits are well worth it. Insulated access panels can provide structural protection; however, pair that with insulation and coating, then one has maximized its ability to be thoroughly functional and versatile. Why insulation? When clients think of insulation, they do not associate it with access panels; however, they are a great addition to access panels. Typically, insulation is believed to be found only between walls, ceilings and roofs; yet, insulated access panels can be located in the exterior access panel, soundproof panels, as well as floor, hatches that people seek to have an airtight seal. Insulation provides this added support and seal. While insulation can come in a batting form or spray, the choice of application and the added layer will indeed depend on the type of access door selected. For example, if your contractor chooses a drywall access panel, the chances are they may ensure that there is batting in and around the area, as well as ensuring that the access panel is insulated once installed. This can mean applying spray insulation around the panel itself. This further enhances the access panels functionality but also improves it as well for the client. Picking the perfect pair of panel and insulation Deciding on an access panel can be hard – as you want to ensure your panel choice matches your needs and functionality. When you factor in insulation and the type of application, it is important to consider what is the best way to install insulation or if it is a combination of both spray and batting. A knowledgeable contractor who is seasoned with insulation will know what the best choice is as well as the client's needs for space. While some think insulation is just meant to keep homes warm, or insulated – the reality is that insulation is sometimes underrated in their purpose. With access panels, they offer a new range of versatility as insulation only increases the functionality of the panel. Imagine a security or floor panel, while access panels are made with everything from plastic to steel, these materials are not known to regulate or insulate. When you include or factor in insulation, now that steel access panel is insulated and is able to do more than just be a security panel, it is an insulated security access panel. Visit: www.accessdoorsandpanels.com
    215 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Insulation is a common element found in many buildings – whether they are residential or commercial. They are versatile in purpose – they can act as a sound barrier between spaces, a method of maintaining heat and cold temperatures, which in and of itself can benefit clients in terms of energy savings on their bills. When you combine with the functionality of an insulated access panel, they increase the functionality and make it a choice for contractors. Insulation 101 To better understand insulation – it is essential to know that there are two types to choose from. Open cell and closed cell. Open cell insulations typically come in spray foam; however, due to its application, it has a lower R-value in comparison to closed cell insulations. Closed cell insulations are great in preventing moisture built-up, which means avoiding any chances of moulds etc. With closed cell insulation, these have a higher R-value, and when it comes access panels installed on the exterior of a building, clients want to ensure contractors go with a quality closed cell insulation. While it will be slightly higher in costs, the benefits are well worth it. Insulated access panels can provide structural protection; however, pair that with insulation and coating, then one has maximized its ability to be thoroughly functional and versatile. Why insulation? When clients think of insulation, they do not associate it with access panels; however, they are a great addition to access panels. Typically, insulation is believed to be found only between walls, ceilings and roofs; yet, insulated access panels can be located in the exterior access panel, soundproof panels, as well as floor, hatches that people seek to have an airtight seal. Insulation provides this added support and seal. While insulation can come in a batting form or spray, the choice of application and the added layer will indeed depend on the type of access door selected. For example, if your contractor chooses a drywall access panel, the chances are they may ensure that there is batting in and around the area, as well as ensuring that the access panel is insulated once installed. This can mean applying spray insulation around the panel itself. This further enhances the access panels functionality but also improves it as well for the client. Picking the perfect pair of panel and insulation Deciding on an access panel can be hard – as you want to ensure your panel choice matches your needs and functionality. When you factor in insulation and the type of application, it is important to consider what is the best way to install insulation or if it is a combination of both spray and batting. A knowledgeable contractor who is seasoned with insulation will know what the best choice is as well as the client's needs for space. While some think insulation is just meant to keep homes warm, or insulated – the reality is that insulation is sometimes underrated in their purpose. With access panels, they offer a new range of versatility as insulation only increases the functionality of the panel. Imagine a security or floor panel, while access panels are made with everything from plastic to steel, these materials are not known to regulate or insulate. When you include or factor in insulation, now that steel access panel is insulated and is able to do more than just be a security panel, it is an insulated security access panel. Visit: www.accessdoorsandpanels.com
    Nov 13, 2018 215
  • 06 Nov 2018
    Noisy air conditioning systems in workplaces can help to contribute to excessive background noise and can have a profound, negative impact on employee productivity, increasing stress and anxiety levels. It is serious enough for the Department for Health to warn that elevated workplace or environmental noise “can cause hearing impairment, hypertension, ischemic heart disease, annoyance and sleep disturbance.” Companies across the world are now looking seriously at ways to minimise such noise says Denis Kerr Sales Director at Krantz Limited, who makes an informed case as to why we should choose sophisticated air-distribution systems which minimise or even remove noisy acoustics at work, looking at why the right products can significantly help to improve the office environment. In modern office spaces and further afield, exposed ceilings and soffits are a prominent design trend. Whether developers choose to reveal ceiling beams for aesthetic purposes or turn to design-savvy solutions to keep costs to a minimum, exposed ceilings are a thing of the future for modern commercial spaces.   As exposed soffits are now a common design feature in such environments, it is crucial to manage acoustic levels accurately. Without the correct products to minimise such noise there is the risk of creating a harsh atmosphere, with a cacophony of different sounds ricocheting around the environment. The challenges It is important to keep acoustic levels controlled within these spaces, especially in environments where people work. The combination of higher ceilings, exposed services, computer monitors and human voices create an impractical environment, increasing stress levels in the workplace. With exposed soffits, there isn’t a natural method for the architecture to control or reduce acoustic levels; essentially there isn’t any material for sound absorption. The ceiling is completely revealed to the human eye, with its services (the fans, ductwork and lighting) on view they can directly contribute to the background noise levels resulting in a poor acoustic performance of the space. What are the options? Many elements come into play when managing a space’s acoustics, including the way air-conditioning systems are designed. To create a peaceful, workable and visually-engaging environment, the right air-distribution system must be selected. Some environments often require tailor-made, bespoke solutions to minimise noisy acoustics; there are, for example, these kinds of air-distribution systems in acoustically-sensitive buildings such as the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Germany. A concert hall on this scale demanded acoustically-advanced solutions; bespoke sound control was completely necessary in this location as noise could interfere with the artist’s focus and the paying audience’s enjoyment. But in terms of air-distribution systems for commercial spaces, products such as the Krantz AVACs system (Air Ventilation And Cooling system) keep acoustic interference to a minimum and can actively improve the space. These systems are designed to great detail and sophistication; they do not contain any moving mechanical parts so the systems cannot generate any noise. Through convective radiant panels, AVACs heat and cool without the use of a fan, completely removing the presence of disruptive sounds. All of the acoustic absorption can be hidden within the panelling, and they are acoustically-designed to reduce noise and improve the reverberation time of the space. More importantly, by selecting a multifunctional system which heats, cools and controls acoustics, the occupants’ comfort is not compromised. These systems distribute fresh air around a space, ensuring thermal and acoustic comfort, which is of particular significance to employee wellbeing and happiness. According to the World Health Organisation, it is estimated that the annual cost to Europe from excessive noise levels is £30 billion. This extortionate sum accounts for lost working days, healthcare costs and reduced productivity. Acoustic control is a complete design necessity in commercial workspaces. Although exposed ceilings are perfect for new build and future retrofits and make maintenance easier, it is important to take all elements into consideration when planning an acoustically-sound space. In terms of air-distribution products, there are sophisticated, multifunctional solutions available on the market which, simultaneously, control acoustics and heat and cool spaces. As commercial office spaces tend to be acoustically-demanding areas, flexible, state-of-art air-distribution technologies should be a priority, particularly as they can assure thermal comfort without any unwanted background noise inconveniencing the occupants. Visit: http://www.krantzuk.com
    176 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Noisy air conditioning systems in workplaces can help to contribute to excessive background noise and can have a profound, negative impact on employee productivity, increasing stress and anxiety levels. It is serious enough for the Department for Health to warn that elevated workplace or environmental noise “can cause hearing impairment, hypertension, ischemic heart disease, annoyance and sleep disturbance.” Companies across the world are now looking seriously at ways to minimise such noise says Denis Kerr Sales Director at Krantz Limited, who makes an informed case as to why we should choose sophisticated air-distribution systems which minimise or even remove noisy acoustics at work, looking at why the right products can significantly help to improve the office environment. In modern office spaces and further afield, exposed ceilings and soffits are a prominent design trend. Whether developers choose to reveal ceiling beams for aesthetic purposes or turn to design-savvy solutions to keep costs to a minimum, exposed ceilings are a thing of the future for modern commercial spaces.   As exposed soffits are now a common design feature in such environments, it is crucial to manage acoustic levels accurately. Without the correct products to minimise such noise there is the risk of creating a harsh atmosphere, with a cacophony of different sounds ricocheting around the environment. The challenges It is important to keep acoustic levels controlled within these spaces, especially in environments where people work. The combination of higher ceilings, exposed services, computer monitors and human voices create an impractical environment, increasing stress levels in the workplace. With exposed soffits, there isn’t a natural method for the architecture to control or reduce acoustic levels; essentially there isn’t any material for sound absorption. The ceiling is completely revealed to the human eye, with its services (the fans, ductwork and lighting) on view they can directly contribute to the background noise levels resulting in a poor acoustic performance of the space. What are the options? Many elements come into play when managing a space’s acoustics, including the way air-conditioning systems are designed. To create a peaceful, workable and visually-engaging environment, the right air-distribution system must be selected. Some environments often require tailor-made, bespoke solutions to minimise noisy acoustics; there are, for example, these kinds of air-distribution systems in acoustically-sensitive buildings such as the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Germany. A concert hall on this scale demanded acoustically-advanced solutions; bespoke sound control was completely necessary in this location as noise could interfere with the artist’s focus and the paying audience’s enjoyment. But in terms of air-distribution systems for commercial spaces, products such as the Krantz AVACs system (Air Ventilation And Cooling system) keep acoustic interference to a minimum and can actively improve the space. These systems are designed to great detail and sophistication; they do not contain any moving mechanical parts so the systems cannot generate any noise. Through convective radiant panels, AVACs heat and cool without the use of a fan, completely removing the presence of disruptive sounds. All of the acoustic absorption can be hidden within the panelling, and they are acoustically-designed to reduce noise and improve the reverberation time of the space. More importantly, by selecting a multifunctional system which heats, cools and controls acoustics, the occupants’ comfort is not compromised. These systems distribute fresh air around a space, ensuring thermal and acoustic comfort, which is of particular significance to employee wellbeing and happiness. According to the World Health Organisation, it is estimated that the annual cost to Europe from excessive noise levels is £30 billion. This extortionate sum accounts for lost working days, healthcare costs and reduced productivity. Acoustic control is a complete design necessity in commercial workspaces. Although exposed ceilings are perfect for new build and future retrofits and make maintenance easier, it is important to take all elements into consideration when planning an acoustically-sound space. In terms of air-distribution products, there are sophisticated, multifunctional solutions available on the market which, simultaneously, control acoustics and heat and cool spaces. As commercial office spaces tend to be acoustically-demanding areas, flexible, state-of-art air-distribution technologies should be a priority, particularly as they can assure thermal comfort without any unwanted background noise inconveniencing the occupants. Visit: http://www.krantzuk.com
    Nov 06, 2018 176
  • 01 Nov 2018
    Moving into a building should be a hitch-free experience but sadly not all building projects are handed over successfully writes Susan Lowrie. It’s often a case of simply a handover date rather than a process of transition where there is a transfer of knowledge from the project team to the building users. While most project teams want a smooth handover, buildings often don’t match the client’s intentions. How can we handover projects better and reduce the gap between designed and as-built performance? From the outset it is important to consider who is specifying the building and are they actually the people who are going to be using the building. Who is the client? Is it the person who might be saying we need a room here, a room there, or is it the person who is saying make it ten stories high? Or is the client the person who is going to have to maintain, use or access that building? One only has to look at a spectacular atrium built for an NHS hospital. A marvel to look at and filled with natural light, but had the designers thought how easy it was to simply change a lightbulb which didn’t involve scaffolding? Hospitals might also be designed for more patients but this at the expense of other spaces such as storage.  Managers don’t see the point of creating storage areas, while nurses do. It’s why a patient room ends up being used as an ad-hoc storage facility. Similarly, we might arrive at the point of handover, but the last step of securing an operator and maintenance manual doesn’t always happen. The handover could well be to the client team who were involved in the design but they are not the actual people who are using the building. So you might end up with a maintenance team who has never seen a fire alarm system working.No one has asked the question ‘are you happy with what is being handed over?’ It’s critical that we look at how we manage what we are left with as a building residual. Buildings that are handed-over may have an engineered design, but then down the line the people who are made aware of that engineered design no longer work there.  So what was an engineered design suddenly becomes a problem because the users want to change things as the building evolves. But the ability is not built-in to allow the building to evolve. A building will be designed to a specification but then you may well be speaking to the owner/manager of a building and not the user. There needs to a smooth transition from design to operation, along with the full support of designers and contractors, in order to fine-tune a building and ensure there is no gap between design intent and reality. The construction industry is after all a service industry delivering buildings to end users.  Visit: https://www.cbuilde.com  
    186 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Moving into a building should be a hitch-free experience but sadly not all building projects are handed over successfully writes Susan Lowrie. It’s often a case of simply a handover date rather than a process of transition where there is a transfer of knowledge from the project team to the building users. While most project teams want a smooth handover, buildings often don’t match the client’s intentions. How can we handover projects better and reduce the gap between designed and as-built performance? From the outset it is important to consider who is specifying the building and are they actually the people who are going to be using the building. Who is the client? Is it the person who might be saying we need a room here, a room there, or is it the person who is saying make it ten stories high? Or is the client the person who is going to have to maintain, use or access that building? One only has to look at a spectacular atrium built for an NHS hospital. A marvel to look at and filled with natural light, but had the designers thought how easy it was to simply change a lightbulb which didn’t involve scaffolding? Hospitals might also be designed for more patients but this at the expense of other spaces such as storage.  Managers don’t see the point of creating storage areas, while nurses do. It’s why a patient room ends up being used as an ad-hoc storage facility. Similarly, we might arrive at the point of handover, but the last step of securing an operator and maintenance manual doesn’t always happen. The handover could well be to the client team who were involved in the design but they are not the actual people who are using the building. So you might end up with a maintenance team who has never seen a fire alarm system working.No one has asked the question ‘are you happy with what is being handed over?’ It’s critical that we look at how we manage what we are left with as a building residual. Buildings that are handed-over may have an engineered design, but then down the line the people who are made aware of that engineered design no longer work there.  So what was an engineered design suddenly becomes a problem because the users want to change things as the building evolves. But the ability is not built-in to allow the building to evolve. A building will be designed to a specification but then you may well be speaking to the owner/manager of a building and not the user. There needs to a smooth transition from design to operation, along with the full support of designers and contractors, in order to fine-tune a building and ensure there is no gap between design intent and reality. The construction industry is after all a service industry delivering buildings to end users.  Visit: https://www.cbuilde.com  
    Nov 01, 2018 186
  • 31 Oct 2018
    As building owners become more environmentally aware, enquiries to convert existing flat roofsinto green roofs have never been higher. On face value this would seem an easy task but with modern building regulations demanding increased levels of insulation as well as practical challenges such as the heights of parapet walls and other upstand restrictions – the entire process can in reality be a lot more difficult writes Justin Pitman of Proteus Waterproofing. Many buildings, particularly those constructed in the 50s and 60s were never designed to take green roofs. Even assuming that the deck could handle the weight of an extensive sedum roof there are still several major obstacles to overcome, but none are insurmountable. In recent months Proteus has developed a new waterproofing system using its exclusive Cold Melt® membrane with an advanced hybrid insulation that enables a warm roof application to be easily installed on a refurbished deck. A green roof is laid over the top and a combination of the hybrid together with the added insulation properties of the additional soil and plantings, ensures that all current building regulations are met - and here comes the added bonus – the combined insulants are thinner than conventional boards which means that in most cases there is still at least 150 mm of upstand available to safely encapsulate the roof around the borders. Such green roofs are usually applied in urban or built up areas where there is a high risk of disruption or annoyance from odours when the membrane is installed. The advantage of Cold Melt® is that it is odour free and totally seamless making it ideal for a green roof. It is BBA accredited to last for the lifetime of the roof structureand best of all, the membrane itself incorporates recycled material making it one of the greenest on the market. What it does is to make available the opportunity for every building owner to actually consider a green roof application, particularly in the light of recent climate change warnings. Every green roof is of course different and will require its own calculations to ensure the right levels of insulation are used but the answer is no longer – NO – giving every building owner the chance to do their bit for the environment. Visit: www.proteuswaterproofing.co.uk See video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDvhkiczqYc 
    286 Posted by Talk. Build
  • As building owners become more environmentally aware, enquiries to convert existing flat roofsinto green roofs have never been higher. On face value this would seem an easy task but with modern building regulations demanding increased levels of insulation as well as practical challenges such as the heights of parapet walls and other upstand restrictions – the entire process can in reality be a lot more difficult writes Justin Pitman of Proteus Waterproofing. Many buildings, particularly those constructed in the 50s and 60s were never designed to take green roofs. Even assuming that the deck could handle the weight of an extensive sedum roof there are still several major obstacles to overcome, but none are insurmountable. In recent months Proteus has developed a new waterproofing system using its exclusive Cold Melt® membrane with an advanced hybrid insulation that enables a warm roof application to be easily installed on a refurbished deck. A green roof is laid over the top and a combination of the hybrid together with the added insulation properties of the additional soil and plantings, ensures that all current building regulations are met - and here comes the added bonus – the combined insulants are thinner than conventional boards which means that in most cases there is still at least 150 mm of upstand available to safely encapsulate the roof around the borders. Such green roofs are usually applied in urban or built up areas where there is a high risk of disruption or annoyance from odours when the membrane is installed. The advantage of Cold Melt® is that it is odour free and totally seamless making it ideal for a green roof. It is BBA accredited to last for the lifetime of the roof structureand best of all, the membrane itself incorporates recycled material making it one of the greenest on the market. What it does is to make available the opportunity for every building owner to actually consider a green roof application, particularly in the light of recent climate change warnings. Every green roof is of course different and will require its own calculations to ensure the right levels of insulation are used but the answer is no longer – NO – giving every building owner the chance to do their bit for the environment. Visit: www.proteuswaterproofing.co.uk See video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDvhkiczqYc 
    Oct 31, 2018 286
  • 29 Oct 2018
    The world of acoustics can be baffling to the untrained. How many of us know the difference between attenuation or frequency for example? And what exactly is the sound absorption coefficient? Such is the complexity, acoustics is a subject that has been frequently described as a ‘dark art’, particularly when it relates to the application within buildings.  In a bid to demystify the definitions and notations for the non-acousticians amongst us, Stuart Colam, Acoustics Advisor of SAS International delves into some of the more basic principles and common acoustic terminologies. Sound absorption is a measure of how much sound is absorbed by a surface or object. When sound comes into contact with a surface, such as a wall or ceiling that is not particularly sound absorbing, it will be reflected back into the space. This can result in a room becoming noisy or reverberant because the sound is ‘trapped’ and continues to ‘bounce around’.  Excessive reverberation results in poor clarity of speech which is problematic in schools and transport hubs, for example. As more sound absorption is introduced into a space, the noise level will reduce and the sound will decay more quickly. A material’s sound absorption properties are described by the sound absorption coefficient (αs), which is a value between 0 and 1.  A value of 0 means total reflection while 1 means all sound is absorbed by the surface and not returned to the room.  Sound absorption of a surface is not the same for all frequencies of sound. For example, a porous surface like carpet is more efficient at absorbing mid and high pitched sound than low pitched sound.  The sound absorptive properties of a material are defined in standard BS EN ISO 11654:1997. Sound insulation (sometimes referred to as sound attenuation) describes the extent to which sound is limited when passing through a building element or elements.  The associated term sound reductionis used to define the drop in sound level after passing through an element such as glazing, partitioning or ceiling. This ‘single pass’ descriptor is abbreviated as Rwwhere ‘R’ refers to reduction and the subscript ‘w’ refers to weighted (a type of average). In short, the Rw figure is a simplified indication of the difference in sound level from one side of a building element to the other. Sound insulation is also quantified in terms of the reduction in level due to a flanking or a double pass route.  The abbreviation Dnfw is used which means a sound level difference via a flanking route that is normalised and weighted. It basically defines how much sound is blocked by passing through the same element twice, such as ceilings, which span more than one room and have a common void. The fact that acoustic terminology can be confusing to the uninitiated has made it increasingly important for specifiers to ask the right questions to ensure they have been completely understood.  Acoustic comfort in the built environment has become a concern to society and a challenge to designers. The acoustic performance of a space within a building will ultimately have a dramatic effect on the performance of tasks taking place in those spaces. Visit: https://sasintgroup.com
    176 Posted by Talk. Build
  • The world of acoustics can be baffling to the untrained. How many of us know the difference between attenuation or frequency for example? And what exactly is the sound absorption coefficient? Such is the complexity, acoustics is a subject that has been frequently described as a ‘dark art’, particularly when it relates to the application within buildings.  In a bid to demystify the definitions and notations for the non-acousticians amongst us, Stuart Colam, Acoustics Advisor of SAS International delves into some of the more basic principles and common acoustic terminologies. Sound absorption is a measure of how much sound is absorbed by a surface or object. When sound comes into contact with a surface, such as a wall or ceiling that is not particularly sound absorbing, it will be reflected back into the space. This can result in a room becoming noisy or reverberant because the sound is ‘trapped’ and continues to ‘bounce around’.  Excessive reverberation results in poor clarity of speech which is problematic in schools and transport hubs, for example. As more sound absorption is introduced into a space, the noise level will reduce and the sound will decay more quickly. A material’s sound absorption properties are described by the sound absorption coefficient (αs), which is a value between 0 and 1.  A value of 0 means total reflection while 1 means all sound is absorbed by the surface and not returned to the room.  Sound absorption of a surface is not the same for all frequencies of sound. For example, a porous surface like carpet is more efficient at absorbing mid and high pitched sound than low pitched sound.  The sound absorptive properties of a material are defined in standard BS EN ISO 11654:1997. Sound insulation (sometimes referred to as sound attenuation) describes the extent to which sound is limited when passing through a building element or elements.  The associated term sound reductionis used to define the drop in sound level after passing through an element such as glazing, partitioning or ceiling. This ‘single pass’ descriptor is abbreviated as Rwwhere ‘R’ refers to reduction and the subscript ‘w’ refers to weighted (a type of average). In short, the Rw figure is a simplified indication of the difference in sound level from one side of a building element to the other. Sound insulation is also quantified in terms of the reduction in level due to a flanking or a double pass route.  The abbreviation Dnfw is used which means a sound level difference via a flanking route that is normalised and weighted. It basically defines how much sound is blocked by passing through the same element twice, such as ceilings, which span more than one room and have a common void. The fact that acoustic terminology can be confusing to the uninitiated has made it increasingly important for specifiers to ask the right questions to ensure they have been completely understood.  Acoustic comfort in the built environment has become a concern to society and a challenge to designers. The acoustic performance of a space within a building will ultimately have a dramatic effect on the performance of tasks taking place in those spaces. Visit: https://sasintgroup.com
    Oct 29, 2018 176
  • 26 Oct 2018
    One of the biggest problems facing contracting companies is the ability to keep in touch with the workforce, particularly when they are scattered over several sites writes John Ridgeway. It is particularly difficult to know when workers have turned up and what time they leave. In this “Big Brother” world no employer wants to be seen to be tagging staff but there is considerable anecdotal evidence of abuse by workers who clock in late and leave early. As well as losses for the company, employers have to prove a duty of care particularly with staff who might be working alone. Strict health and safety rules also mean that bosses should know where their workers are at all times – and of course what they are doing. Over the years employers have tried different tracking devices, mostly on vehicles but this does not give you any idea where individuals are located. To counter this some companies have looked at personal trackers most of which have failed to deliver – mainly for not being accurate or tough enough to face the challenging environments of building sites. But now it seems, there could be an answer with a new type of tracking product from www.trackmyworld.net which offers huge potential for the construction industry. It’s a tough and robust personal tracker, especially developed for people with equally tough and demanding jobs. Its waterproof built to cope with rough handling and will continue to deliver even under the most difficult conditions. The suppliers claim that it is rapidly becoming the personal tracker of choice for employers who need to keep in contact with key members of staff working in the most challenging and difficult environments. The tracker clips on to a belt or other item of clothing and in the event of an emergency there is an SOS button to instantly summon help. Tests show that it will tell you exactly when your team arrives on site and when they leave using advanced geo fence technology with the addition of real time pin point location to keep in touch and get alerts if speed limits are broken and much more. The device is controlled using an advanced App which will allow an administrator to monitor a limitless number of teams or individuals anywhere in the world from a mobile phone. The TMW GPS Tracker also offers a long battery life and can be easily recharged from the mains or via a cigar lighter in a vehicle. It’s the tough tracker for tough jobs say TMW – and when it’s vital to keep to keep in touch – it appears to have no equal. Visit: www.trackmyworld.net  
    254 Posted by Talk. Build
  • One of the biggest problems facing contracting companies is the ability to keep in touch with the workforce, particularly when they are scattered over several sites writes John Ridgeway. It is particularly difficult to know when workers have turned up and what time they leave. In this “Big Brother” world no employer wants to be seen to be tagging staff but there is considerable anecdotal evidence of abuse by workers who clock in late and leave early. As well as losses for the company, employers have to prove a duty of care particularly with staff who might be working alone. Strict health and safety rules also mean that bosses should know where their workers are at all times – and of course what they are doing. Over the years employers have tried different tracking devices, mostly on vehicles but this does not give you any idea where individuals are located. To counter this some companies have looked at personal trackers most of which have failed to deliver – mainly for not being accurate or tough enough to face the challenging environments of building sites. But now it seems, there could be an answer with a new type of tracking product from www.trackmyworld.net which offers huge potential for the construction industry. It’s a tough and robust personal tracker, especially developed for people with equally tough and demanding jobs. Its waterproof built to cope with rough handling and will continue to deliver even under the most difficult conditions. The suppliers claim that it is rapidly becoming the personal tracker of choice for employers who need to keep in contact with key members of staff working in the most challenging and difficult environments. The tracker clips on to a belt or other item of clothing and in the event of an emergency there is an SOS button to instantly summon help. Tests show that it will tell you exactly when your team arrives on site and when they leave using advanced geo fence technology with the addition of real time pin point location to keep in touch and get alerts if speed limits are broken and much more. The device is controlled using an advanced App which will allow an administrator to monitor a limitless number of teams or individuals anywhere in the world from a mobile phone. The TMW GPS Tracker also offers a long battery life and can be easily recharged from the mains or via a cigar lighter in a vehicle. It’s the tough tracker for tough jobs say TMW – and when it’s vital to keep to keep in touch – it appears to have no equal. Visit: www.trackmyworld.net  
    Oct 26, 2018 254
  • 25 Oct 2018
    Building quicker and with better quality is the much-needed panacea for the UK housing crisis.  For these two reasons alone, it’s why volumetric modular construction has attracted so much interest from policy makers to businesses as a way to modernise the industry and create great places where people choose to live. By no means a new concept, offsite construction offers architects more control over detailed design and an opportunity to reclaim build quality. Changing delivery and construction methods has sadly meant the decision-making process has been steered from architects towards contractors. Volumetric modular construction allows an architect to gain a stronger voice on construction projects as they are involved from design to completion. It tends to avoid the architect being pushed around by contractors looking to value-engineer and do things more cheaply.  The architect is not caught on the back foot, because the solution is already there, and if changes do have to be made, then at least the architect gets paid for them. This avoids the common scenario where developers chop and change architects, which in turn loses that thread of knowledge throughout the build process.    Offsite technology not only addresses quality issues in design and build contracts, it is an increasingly important way to meet tough performance targets and counter climate change.  The thermal and acoustic performance of a building can be improved as modules are assembled off-site, where they can be easily checked and tested in factory conditions.  Fast and efficient builds can be achieved as difficult coordination issues on-site including production substitution can be avoided.  Furthermore, there are fewer defects, the snagging process is minimised and the process helps overcome skills shortages. The HTA-designed Apex House in Wembley represents the benefits of modular construction.  The 29-storey student accommodation was built using 679 off-site fabricated modules and is the tallest modular building in Europe. Resembling shipping containers and complete with kitchen, bathroom, services and a bed base, 11 modules can be installed per day. This results in a 12-month construction programme and built in half the time it would take to construct a concrete or steel-framed equivalent.  From concept to completion in 30 months, the project is an exemplar of what modular construction can bring to UK construction.  The true potential of modular construction as a solution to the housing crisis will surely be the HTA-designed paired towers at 101 George Street in Croydon.  This 38 and 44-storey build-to-rent scheme is currently under construction, and when complete will offer 546 new homes in what will be the tallest modular building in the world.  It will be delivered in just 24 months from construction starting to residents moving in. The housebuilding industry has lacked innovation for some time, but volumetric modular construction has potential to revolutionise the way we build homes. We just need to be able to convince the sceptics amongst us.  Perhaps we should use the analogy of building a car.  What would the quality of a car be that is built on the side of a road in a field? I’m not convinced the build quality would be anywhere close to that of one built in factory-controlled conditions. Visit: https://www.cbuilde.com
    155 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Building quicker and with better quality is the much-needed panacea for the UK housing crisis.  For these two reasons alone, it’s why volumetric modular construction has attracted so much interest from policy makers to businesses as a way to modernise the industry and create great places where people choose to live. By no means a new concept, offsite construction offers architects more control over detailed design and an opportunity to reclaim build quality. Changing delivery and construction methods has sadly meant the decision-making process has been steered from architects towards contractors. Volumetric modular construction allows an architect to gain a stronger voice on construction projects as they are involved from design to completion. It tends to avoid the architect being pushed around by contractors looking to value-engineer and do things more cheaply.  The architect is not caught on the back foot, because the solution is already there, and if changes do have to be made, then at least the architect gets paid for them. This avoids the common scenario where developers chop and change architects, which in turn loses that thread of knowledge throughout the build process.    Offsite technology not only addresses quality issues in design and build contracts, it is an increasingly important way to meet tough performance targets and counter climate change.  The thermal and acoustic performance of a building can be improved as modules are assembled off-site, where they can be easily checked and tested in factory conditions.  Fast and efficient builds can be achieved as difficult coordination issues on-site including production substitution can be avoided.  Furthermore, there are fewer defects, the snagging process is minimised and the process helps overcome skills shortages. The HTA-designed Apex House in Wembley represents the benefits of modular construction.  The 29-storey student accommodation was built using 679 off-site fabricated modules and is the tallest modular building in Europe. Resembling shipping containers and complete with kitchen, bathroom, services and a bed base, 11 modules can be installed per day. This results in a 12-month construction programme and built in half the time it would take to construct a concrete or steel-framed equivalent.  From concept to completion in 30 months, the project is an exemplar of what modular construction can bring to UK construction.  The true potential of modular construction as a solution to the housing crisis will surely be the HTA-designed paired towers at 101 George Street in Croydon.  This 38 and 44-storey build-to-rent scheme is currently under construction, and when complete will offer 546 new homes in what will be the tallest modular building in the world.  It will be delivered in just 24 months from construction starting to residents moving in. The housebuilding industry has lacked innovation for some time, but volumetric modular construction has potential to revolutionise the way we build homes. We just need to be able to convince the sceptics amongst us.  Perhaps we should use the analogy of building a car.  What would the quality of a car be that is built on the side of a road in a field? I’m not convinced the build quality would be anywhere close to that of one built in factory-controlled conditions. Visit: https://www.cbuilde.com
    Oct 25, 2018 155
  • 19 Oct 2018
    As specialist contractors carry out the vast majority of construction work in the UK, isn’t it about time the construction industry acknowledged their role writes Gerald Kelly.  Specialist contractors and suppliers will together produce the bulk of the detailed design work and will manufacture, fabricate, supply, install, commission and maintain the components which make up the finished building or structure.  However, this is conveniently forgotten when Main Contractors deal with the Client. The Main Contract Agreement between the Client and Main Contractor is considered as the most significant contract, even though the expertise of specialist contractors is indispensable. Specialist contractors invariably end up having no direct contractual link to the client, operating as sub-contractors to the Main Contractor and having to deal with Main Contractors unloading risk down through the supply chain. So, why is there a reluctance to acknowledge the functions of specialist contractors and suppliers? Could it be that it is far easier to abuse contractual positions if specialist contractors are relegated to being functional accessories to the Main Contractor rather than being recognised for the crucial role that they perform. Of course, Main Contractors will argue that their supply chain is extremely important and are recognised and rewarded for the expertise they bring to construction projects. However, if this were the case, why do Main Contractors alter standard forms of subcontract, insist on onerous Terms and Conditions and participate in late payment practices. A quick look at data compiled by Build UK on their members’ payment performance, using data published under the Duty to Report on Payment Practices and Performance, highlights the appalling late payment practices of many Main Contractors. Company Name          % of invoices NOT paid within agreed terms   Average time taken to pay invoices (days) Clugston                                             13                                                 32 Willmott Dixon                                   8                                                   33 Canary Wharf Contractors                 8                                                   34 VolkerWessels                                  19                                                   35 Bouygues                                          31                                                   40 AECOM                                              52                                                   40 Skanska                                            11                                                   41 ISG                                                    48                                                  42 Multiplex                                           47                                                  43 Seddon                                               7                                                   44 Morgan Sindall                                 24                                                  44 Wates                                               62                                                  44 Mace                                                 43                                                  45 BAM Construct                                 49                                                  45 Keltbray                                           11                                                  47 Galliford Try                                    26                                                  47 Sir Robert McAlpine                        70                                                  49 Interserve                                       83                                                  50 William Hare                                   29                                                  51 Vinci                                                36                                                  52 John Sisk & Son                              64                                                  52 Kier                                                  48                                                  54 Balfour Beatty                                 54                                                  54 Engie                                                 1                                                   61 Murphy Group                                 66                                                   66 The Guidance to reporting on payment practices and performance specifies that the average time taken to pay should be measured from the date of receipt of invoice to the date the supplier receives payment. For construction contracts in scope of the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996, businesses must use the earliest point at which they have notice of an amount for payment, which would generally be the date they receive an application for payment. It truly is the time for the construction industry to move forward. A good start would be to recognise the worth of specialist contractors, issue fair contracts, pay on time and stop all detrimental payment practices. The construction industry has many problems; however, they can be solved if all work together and put aside the adversarial attitude that is prevalent within the industry. Gerald Kelly is General Manager of the Confederation of Construction Specialists, an organisation which fights for fair and ethical contracts within the construction industry.  Visit: www.constructionspecialists.org    
    306 Posted by Talk. Build
  • As specialist contractors carry out the vast majority of construction work in the UK, isn’t it about time the construction industry acknowledged their role writes Gerald Kelly.  Specialist contractors and suppliers will together produce the bulk of the detailed design work and will manufacture, fabricate, supply, install, commission and maintain the components which make up the finished building or structure.  However, this is conveniently forgotten when Main Contractors deal with the Client. The Main Contract Agreement between the Client and Main Contractor is considered as the most significant contract, even though the expertise of specialist contractors is indispensable. Specialist contractors invariably end up having no direct contractual link to the client, operating as sub-contractors to the Main Contractor and having to deal with Main Contractors unloading risk down through the supply chain. So, why is there a reluctance to acknowledge the functions of specialist contractors and suppliers? Could it be that it is far easier to abuse contractual positions if specialist contractors are relegated to being functional accessories to the Main Contractor rather than being recognised for the crucial role that they perform. Of course, Main Contractors will argue that their supply chain is extremely important and are recognised and rewarded for the expertise they bring to construction projects. However, if this were the case, why do Main Contractors alter standard forms of subcontract, insist on onerous Terms and Conditions and participate in late payment practices. A quick look at data compiled by Build UK on their members’ payment performance, using data published under the Duty to Report on Payment Practices and Performance, highlights the appalling late payment practices of many Main Contractors. Company Name          % of invoices NOT paid within agreed terms   Average time taken to pay invoices (days) Clugston                                             13                                                 32 Willmott Dixon                                   8                                                   33 Canary Wharf Contractors                 8                                                   34 VolkerWessels                                  19                                                   35 Bouygues                                          31                                                   40 AECOM                                              52                                                   40 Skanska                                            11                                                   41 ISG                                                    48                                                  42 Multiplex                                           47                                                  43 Seddon                                               7                                                   44 Morgan Sindall                                 24                                                  44 Wates                                               62                                                  44 Mace                                                 43                                                  45 BAM Construct                                 49                                                  45 Keltbray                                           11                                                  47 Galliford Try                                    26                                                  47 Sir Robert McAlpine                        70                                                  49 Interserve                                       83                                                  50 William Hare                                   29                                                  51 Vinci                                                36                                                  52 John Sisk & Son                              64                                                  52 Kier                                                  48                                                  54 Balfour Beatty                                 54                                                  54 Engie                                                 1                                                   61 Murphy Group                                 66                                                   66 The Guidance to reporting on payment practices and performance specifies that the average time taken to pay should be measured from the date of receipt of invoice to the date the supplier receives payment. For construction contracts in scope of the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996, businesses must use the earliest point at which they have notice of an amount for payment, which would generally be the date they receive an application for payment. It truly is the time for the construction industry to move forward. A good start would be to recognise the worth of specialist contractors, issue fair contracts, pay on time and stop all detrimental payment practices. The construction industry has many problems; however, they can be solved if all work together and put aside the adversarial attitude that is prevalent within the industry. Gerald Kelly is General Manager of the Confederation of Construction Specialists, an organisation which fights for fair and ethical contracts within the construction industry.  Visit: www.constructionspecialists.org    
    Oct 19, 2018 306
  • 17 Oct 2018
    Flooring in food and beverage environments must be slip-resistant, easy to clean, durable and hygienic. These factors pose significant challenges to flooring designs; not only do most floors have to be purpose-built, they must be functional, meeting the strict criteria stipulated above. So what kinds of design considerations need to be made to ensure floors meet hygiene standards at the point of specification? Keeping it clean Floor finish is a key design consideration which should fulfill a variety of standards in the European Food Safety Directive. In food preparation areas, flooring must be seamless and easy to clean to meet hygiene levels, particularly as the spread of bacteria must be prevented in food environments at all times. Flooring must also be rinsed thoroughly to remove wash-down residues and any viruses, bacteria or pests that might be present. The finish should also be compatible with certain solvents, including cleaning agents, for the quality of the finish to remain uncompromised. A finish needs to be impermeable and made to a high specification otherwise employee and consumer safety could be put at risk. An excellent finish,often best provided by dense resin-rich systems, will prevent flaking, cracking and discolouration, making sure a floor looks professional and performs to its best. Drainage must be placed in correct areas and never under processing equipment as it obstructs important cleaning procedures. With the assistance of gravity, gradients ranging between 1:100 and 1:80 can be useful for moving any liquids towards drains. Efficient drainage systems are fundamental design considerations as they guarantee cleanliness is maintained at an optimum standard in food environments. Slip-resistanc Floor finishes must also be slip-resistant. Slips and trips are the most common causes of injury at work, accounting for an average 33% of total work injuries. Injuries tend to occur most often in areas where meat, fruit, vegetable, fat and other residues are present. To counteract this, companies can choose flooring that has an optimum combination of grip and wash-ability to keep employees safe and the facility supremely clean. The most common method of providing grip to new flooring is to apply aggregate onto the top of the wet surface before it hardens. Aggregate varies in size and type and can create numerous profiles. The most common types are silica, quartz, flint, and aluminum oxide. Durable designs Flooring in food environments must be able to withstand high-impact shock and abrasions, whether from large mechanical shocks or a drop of a heavy knife. In the food sector, floors will be put under a significant amount of stress given the nature of the environment, therefore cleanliness, durability and safety are complete priorities. Flooring solutions must also be compatible with cleaning agents to ensure longevity. Floors with low chemical resistance not only wear down faster, they also create traps for bacteria and viruses can hide.Be mindful of the volume of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by various floor, wall, ceiling, and other finishes. Flooring products with low VOC emission means air is kept clean, resulting in safer food production and a healthier working environment for employees. Finding the right flooring system which fulfills a variety of challenging design aspects is difficult, especially in relation to the food industry. With countless years of experience, Sikafloor® systems are created and installed to meet all of these challenging requirements thanks to their flexible design possibilities. From floor finish to drainage system, to durability, Sikafloor® has companies covered.  Visit: www.sika.co.uk
    183 Posted by Talk. Build
  • Flooring in food and beverage environments must be slip-resistant, easy to clean, durable and hygienic. These factors pose significant challenges to flooring designs; not only do most floors have to be purpose-built, they must be functional, meeting the strict criteria stipulated above. So what kinds of design considerations need to be made to ensure floors meet hygiene standards at the point of specification? Keeping it clean Floor finish is a key design consideration which should fulfill a variety of standards in the European Food Safety Directive. In food preparation areas, flooring must be seamless and easy to clean to meet hygiene levels, particularly as the spread of bacteria must be prevented in food environments at all times. Flooring must also be rinsed thoroughly to remove wash-down residues and any viruses, bacteria or pests that might be present. The finish should also be compatible with certain solvents, including cleaning agents, for the quality of the finish to remain uncompromised. A finish needs to be impermeable and made to a high specification otherwise employee and consumer safety could be put at risk. An excellent finish,often best provided by dense resin-rich systems, will prevent flaking, cracking and discolouration, making sure a floor looks professional and performs to its best. Drainage must be placed in correct areas and never under processing equipment as it obstructs important cleaning procedures. With the assistance of gravity, gradients ranging between 1:100 and 1:80 can be useful for moving any liquids towards drains. Efficient drainage systems are fundamental design considerations as they guarantee cleanliness is maintained at an optimum standard in food environments. Slip-resistanc Floor finishes must also be slip-resistant. Slips and trips are the most common causes of injury at work, accounting for an average 33% of total work injuries. Injuries tend to occur most often in areas where meat, fruit, vegetable, fat and other residues are present. To counteract this, companies can choose flooring that has an optimum combination of grip and wash-ability to keep employees safe and the facility supremely clean. The most common method of providing grip to new flooring is to apply aggregate onto the top of the wet surface before it hardens. Aggregate varies in size and type and can create numerous profiles. The most common types are silica, quartz, flint, and aluminum oxide. Durable designs Flooring in food environments must be able to withstand high-impact shock and abrasions, whether from large mechanical shocks or a drop of a heavy knife. In the food sector, floors will be put under a significant amount of stress given the nature of the environment, therefore cleanliness, durability and safety are complete priorities. Flooring solutions must also be compatible with cleaning agents to ensure longevity. Floors with low chemical resistance not only wear down faster, they also create traps for bacteria and viruses can hide.Be mindful of the volume of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by various floor, wall, ceiling, and other finishes. Flooring products with low VOC emission means air is kept clean, resulting in safer food production and a healthier working environment for employees. Finding the right flooring system which fulfills a variety of challenging design aspects is difficult, especially in relation to the food industry. With countless years of experience, Sikafloor® systems are created and installed to meet all of these challenging requirements thanks to their flexible design possibilities. From floor finish to drainage system, to durability, Sikafloor® has companies covered.  Visit: www.sika.co.uk
    Oct 17, 2018 183
  • 15 Oct 2018
    High-rise curtain wall buildings have become architectural statements across the globe, their façades projecting image and a creative intent which sets them apart from other buildings across city skylines. While curtain walls offer formability, durability and weather resistance, it’s vitally important that passive fire protection and compartmentation measures are installed to limit the spread of fire, saving lives and property. Chris Hall, Commercial Development Officer at SIDERISE, feels that passive fire protection solutions such as firestops are crucial to prevent the passage of flames and noxious gases travelling from one compartment floor or room to the next. Fires in high-rise buildings can generate large quantities of smoke that tend to spread vertically throughout the building, even if the fire is contained to one room. When the gap/cavity at the perimeter edge between the floor and curtain wall is not properly sealed, flames and smoke can spread vertically to higher floors, and horizontally from one room to the next. Addressing these gaps/cavities by properly installing firestops maintains the floors’ fire compartmentation of the building. This delays vertical smoke-spread and reduces the risk of smoke-related injury in the upper floors of the building, and adjacent rooms. Closing the gap The perimeter barrier firestops seal the gap between the edge of the compartmentfloor slab and external curtain wall. Due to project designs and site tolerances, this linear gap can be variable, so the firestop system used needs to have a degree of ‘dynamic’ movement capability – compression and recovery – in order to accommodate serviceability movement, and more significant movement under fire load. It’s critical the firestop system does this in combination with the primary functional requirement, which is to maintain continuity of fire resistance between the compartmentfloor and the external wall. The installed firestop system needs to match the same period of fire resistance as the compartment floor. All firestop systems need to be tested to two criteria – Integrity and Insulation (EI). Integrity (E) refers to the ability of the system to prevent the passage of flame, smoke and combustible gases either through, and around the material or through joints in an assembly; while Insulation (I) refers to a measure of the increase in conducted heat transferred from the exposed to unexposed surfaces of 180°C rises above ambient. These two criteria are critical in the development of curtain wall perimeter firestop products. The most effective products combine a number of material features – density, thickness, resin content, fibre structure and controlled compression – which together determine the resistance properties. When looking at the Integrity (E) criteria, the material chosen must be impervious to the transfer of flame and gases, easy to install with minimal site management and accommodate all real-world requirements at interfaces, joints and details. In order to meet the fire and smoke stop requirements in all external façade applications, Certifire Approved perimeter barrier and firestop systems offer an unrivalled combination of fully-qualified performance, practical installation and service benefits. The principal function of these systems is to maintain continuity of fire resistance by sealing the gap between the compartment floors or walls and external curtain walls horizontally and vertically. These systems can offer tested fire rating options ranging from 30 minutes to five hours and accommodate void widths up to 1200mm. In addition to providing an effective seal against the passage of smoke and fire, the products will also function as an effective acoustic barrier and plenum lining. Key design considerations The firestop should be installed under compression and must have test evidence to show that it is capable of accommodating movement of a façade. It is imperative that the installed seal is able to function effectively with due regard to all designed movement serviceability limits.  Curtain walling and cladding façade systems will deflect due to positive and negative windloads as well as occupational live loads.  These criteria are covered by EN 13116:2001.  Typically, a project may stipulate that the curtain walling system may have the following allowable deflection limits: Under the declared wind loads the maximum frontal deflection of the curtain walling’s framing members shall not exceed L/200 or 15mm, whichever is less, when measured between the points of support or anchorage to the building’s structure in compliance with EN 13116. (Extract from EN 138300) These factors may inevitably combine to preclude the suitability and therefore, use of certain systems e.g. high density material slab products. Perimeter barriers must be installed to provide horizontal compartmentation at every floor level.  Vertical cavity barriers should be provided as a minimum to fall in line with any compartment wall and more frequently if dictated by the fire strategy of the building. Products should be fitted tightly around all bracketry to restrict the passage of smoke.  Where there is potential for gaps, the product must be sealed with a sealant that carries the same fire insulation and integrity rating as the perimeter barrier. All installations should be in accordance with manufacturers’ instructions and where fixing brackets are required these should be fitted and spaced in accordance with a certified fire test report. Products used for fire safety installation should carry an independent third party certification in order to ensure that the product supplied is the same as that tested. The gap between the slab edge and the façade is often a weak point acoustically.  Any products used to improve the acoustic performance must not contribute to the fire load or inhibit the performance of the perimeter barrier. Seal the voids At the $135 million Al Fattan Crystal Towers in the Dubai Marina, UAE, fire safety was paramount in a development which houses hotel rooms, suites and residential apartments. With both vertical and horizontal fire compartmentation requirements, the specification of SIDERISE CW-FS 120 firestops provided the contractor Cladtech with a one-stop-shop solution that could maintain a fire and smoke seal in one product and could successfully fill lineargaps at the podium levels in excess of 300mm. For the two towers, Cladtech installed 12,000 LM of SIDERISE CW-FS 120 firestops including horizontal (floor slab) and vertical compartmentation. With the timeline on the project critical, the use of this dry fix system enabled the work to be completed quickly and efficiently, ready for handover to subcontractors.   Throughout the application, SIDERISE provided comprehensive support including drawing assistance, liaison with the authorities for approval, installation training and periodic site inspection and assistance. Whilst specifying the correct product is vital, the quality of installation is equally as important.  Contractors installing life saving measures such as perimeter barriers and firestops must have adequate training on the particular manufacturer’s products and be qualified to install it in the first place.  When it comes to saving lives and protecting businesses and property, a well designed and installed system can make the difference.  Visit: www.siderise.com
    195 Posted by Talk. Build
  • High-rise curtain wall buildings have become architectural statements across the globe, their façades projecting image and a creative intent which sets them apart from other buildings across city skylines. While curtain walls offer formability, durability and weather resistance, it’s vitally important that passive fire protection and compartmentation measures are installed to limit the spread of fire, saving lives and property. Chris Hall, Commercial Development Officer at SIDERISE, feels that passive fire protection solutions such as firestops are crucial to prevent the passage of flames and noxious gases travelling from one compartment floor or room to the next. Fires in high-rise buildings can generate large quantities of smoke that tend to spread vertically throughout the building, even if the fire is contained to one room. When the gap/cavity at the perimeter edge between the floor and curtain wall is not properly sealed, flames and smoke can spread vertically to higher floors, and horizontally from one room to the next. Addressing these gaps/cavities by properly installing firestops maintains the floors’ fire compartmentation of the building. This delays vertical smoke-spread and reduces the risk of smoke-related injury in the upper floors of the building, and adjacent rooms. Closing the gap The perimeter barrier firestops seal the gap between the edge of the compartmentfloor slab and external curtain wall. Due to project designs and site tolerances, this linear gap can be variable, so the firestop system used needs to have a degree of ‘dynamic’ movement capability – compression and recovery – in order to accommodate serviceability movement, and more significant movement under fire load. It’s critical the firestop system does this in combination with the primary functional requirement, which is to maintain continuity of fire resistance between the compartmentfloor and the external wall. The installed firestop system needs to match the same period of fire resistance as the compartment floor. All firestop systems need to be tested to two criteria – Integrity and Insulation (EI). Integrity (E) refers to the ability of the system to prevent the passage of flame, smoke and combustible gases either through, and around the material or through joints in an assembly; while Insulation (I) refers to a measure of the increase in conducted heat transferred from the exposed to unexposed surfaces of 180°C rises above ambient. These two criteria are critical in the development of curtain wall perimeter firestop products. The most effective products combine a number of material features – density, thickness, resin content, fibre structure and controlled compression – which together determine the resistance properties. When looking at the Integrity (E) criteria, the material chosen must be impervious to the transfer of flame and gases, easy to install with minimal site management and accommodate all real-world requirements at interfaces, joints and details. In order to meet the fire and smoke stop requirements in all external façade applications, Certifire Approved perimeter barrier and firestop systems offer an unrivalled combination of fully-qualified performance, practical installation and service benefits. The principal function of these systems is to maintain continuity of fire resistance by sealing the gap between the compartment floors or walls and external curtain walls horizontally and vertically. These systems can offer tested fire rating options ranging from 30 minutes to five hours and accommodate void widths up to 1200mm. In addition to providing an effective seal against the passage of smoke and fire, the products will also function as an effective acoustic barrier and plenum lining. Key design considerations The firestop should be installed under compression and must have test evidence to show that it is capable of accommodating movement of a façade. It is imperative that the installed seal is able to function effectively with due regard to all designed movement serviceability limits.  Curtain walling and cladding façade systems will deflect due to positive and negative windloads as well as occupational live loads.  These criteria are covered by EN 13116:2001.  Typically, a project may stipulate that the curtain walling system may have the following allowable deflection limits: Under the declared wind loads the maximum frontal deflection of the curtain walling’s framing members shall not exceed L/200 or 15mm, whichever is less, when measured between the points of support or anchorage to the building’s structure in compliance with EN 13116. (Extract from EN 138300) These factors may inevitably combine to preclude the suitability and therefore, use of certain systems e.g. high density material slab products. Perimeter barriers must be installed to provide horizontal compartmentation at every floor level.  Vertical cavity barriers should be provided as a minimum to fall in line with any compartment wall and more frequently if dictated by the fire strategy of the building. Products should be fitted tightly around all bracketry to restrict the passage of smoke.  Where there is potential for gaps, the product must be sealed with a sealant that carries the same fire insulation and integrity rating as the perimeter barrier. All installations should be in accordance with manufacturers’ instructions and where fixing brackets are required these should be fitted and spaced in accordance with a certified fire test report. Products used for fire safety installation should carry an independent third party certification in order to ensure that the product supplied is the same as that tested. The gap between the slab edge and the façade is often a weak point acoustically.  Any products used to improve the acoustic performance must not contribute to the fire load or inhibit the performance of the perimeter barrier. Seal the voids At the $135 million Al Fattan Crystal Towers in the Dubai Marina, UAE, fire safety was paramount in a development which houses hotel rooms, suites and residential apartments. With both vertical and horizontal fire compartmentation requirements, the specification of SIDERISE CW-FS 120 firestops provided the contractor Cladtech with a one-stop-shop solution that could maintain a fire and smoke seal in one product and could successfully fill lineargaps at the podium levels in excess of 300mm. For the two towers, Cladtech installed 12,000 LM of SIDERISE CW-FS 120 firestops including horizontal (floor slab) and vertical compartmentation. With the timeline on the project critical, the use of this dry fix system enabled the work to be completed quickly and efficiently, ready for handover to subcontractors.   Throughout the application, SIDERISE provided comprehensive support including drawing assistance, liaison with the authorities for approval, installation training and periodic site inspection and assistance. Whilst specifying the correct product is vital, the quality of installation is equally as important.  Contractors installing life saving measures such as perimeter barriers and firestops must have adequate training on the particular manufacturer’s products and be qualified to install it in the first place.  When it comes to saving lives and protecting businesses and property, a well designed and installed system can make the difference.  Visit: www.siderise.com
    Oct 15, 2018 195
  • 09 Oct 2018
    London Mayor Sadiq Khan has already gone on record to state that he wants to make the Capital a zero-carbon city by 2050 writes Kevin Knapp, CEO, Ecolution Renewables. It will be a major challenge and one that will only be achieved if Londoners are willing to embrace green technology. The Mayor has already put his considerable political weight behind a Solar Action Plan to persuade homeowners and businesses across the Capital to install photovoltaic panels to generate green electricity – and thousands are taking advantage of this initiative, benefitting from reduced installation costs and long term energy savings. It’s a welcome step forward but more could be done if householders and businesses would be willing to accept the Mayor’s challenge and even better – be prepared to go that extra mile, to help reduce air pollution across the Capital while significantly reducing reliance on fossil fuels. We call that extra mile #JointheEcolution which combines photovoltaic panels with advanced HyCube battery storage units further linked to electric charging points (EV) turning every household and business into its own virtual power station. With more electric cars on the road it means less pollution. Photovoltaics linked to storage units would also help to make buildings energy self-sufficient, with the ability to save and share that energy with others. It’s joined up green energy which could totally transform the way we power our homes and businesses in the future. The advantages are there for all to see. In the first month alone of 2018, London’s air pollution reached the legal limit for the entire year so anything that encourages the use of electric cars has to be welcome. Air toxicity has been at illegal levels in urban areas in the UK, including London, since 2010, resulting in around 40,000 early deaths a year. Add on our reliance on fossil fuels and nuclear and the word green seems a long way off. Now is the time to change all that and invest in renewables otherwise what will we leave for the next generation – London smog. As I recall - we have been there before and we did not like it. Visit: www.ecolutiongroup.com
    194 Posted by Talk. Build
  • London Mayor Sadiq Khan has already gone on record to state that he wants to make the Capital a zero-carbon city by 2050 writes Kevin Knapp, CEO, Ecolution Renewables. It will be a major challenge and one that will only be achieved if Londoners are willing to embrace green technology. The Mayor has already put his considerable political weight behind a Solar Action Plan to persuade homeowners and businesses across the Capital to install photovoltaic panels to generate green electricity – and thousands are taking advantage of this initiative, benefitting from reduced installation costs and long term energy savings. It’s a welcome step forward but more could be done if householders and businesses would be willing to accept the Mayor’s challenge and even better – be prepared to go that extra mile, to help reduce air pollution across the Capital while significantly reducing reliance on fossil fuels. We call that extra mile #JointheEcolution which combines photovoltaic panels with advanced HyCube battery storage units further linked to electric charging points (EV) turning every household and business into its own virtual power station. With more electric cars on the road it means less pollution. Photovoltaics linked to storage units would also help to make buildings energy self-sufficient, with the ability to save and share that energy with others. It’s joined up green energy which could totally transform the way we power our homes and businesses in the future. The advantages are there for all to see. In the first month alone of 2018, London’s air pollution reached the legal limit for the entire year so anything that encourages the use of electric cars has to be welcome. Air toxicity has been at illegal levels in urban areas in the UK, including London, since 2010, resulting in around 40,000 early deaths a year. Add on our reliance on fossil fuels and nuclear and the word green seems a long way off. Now is the time to change all that and invest in renewables otherwise what will we leave for the next generation – London smog. As I recall - we have been there before and we did not like it. Visit: www.ecolutiongroup.com
    Oct 09, 2018 194