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Balancing nature with wooden building at Center Parcs Elveden Forest

The construction of three new Waterside Lodges at Center Parcs Elveden Forest is an ambitious architectural and engineering project. The stunning new lodges have been designed to compliment the woodland landscape in which they sit, while connecting guests with the surrounding natural environment. Wood was a natural choice of building

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New training facility boosts BIM training opportunities for architects

Architects are set to benefit from a new ARCHICAD training facility following the relocation of Graphisoft UK’s training centre in Nottingham. The new facility based at Castlebridge Office Village in Nottingham offers a bright and spacious training space, ideally suited to the needs of delegates. The central location of the

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Latest Issue

BDC 318 : Jul 2024

architectural

Balancing nature with wooden building at Center Parcs Elveden Forest

The construction of three new Waterside Lodges at Center Parcs Elveden Forest is an ambitious architectural and engineering project. The stunning new lodges have been designed to compliment the woodland landscape in which they sit, while connecting guests with the surrounding natural environment. Wood was a natural choice of building material, which would blend in seamlessly with the natural forest setting. When designing the new accommodation, the choice of building materials was a key consideration for the architectural practice Jackson Design Associates (JDA). They were faced with the challenge of not only creating a design, which would blend in with the natural surroundings, but also be sufficiently lightweight to achieve the impressive arches, overhangs, and cantilever designs, without needing a considerable amount of foundation works. The only material that could meet all the requirements of the structure was Metsä Wood’s light, yet extremely strong Kerto® LVL (laminated veneer lumber). The use of Kerto LVL enabled an efficient and fast building time, which was a key factor as the project needed to be completed in time for the summer. Innovative design Architects JDA created an elegant shape, reminiscent of a boat turned upside-down. The lodges have two levels; the forest-facing side is situated higher, accessed through a wooden bridge on the first floor. The first floor contains three en-suite bedrooms, two of which open onto a deck and balcony facing the lake. The ground floor combines kitchen, living and dining areas opening out on to a terrace on the waters edge. Luke Hunter, Director at JDA said: “It was important to the Client to develop an exciting and interesting building form that made references to the boating activities of the watersports lake. This concept is continued inside the lodges where the ‘ribs’ of the boat hull are exposed to express the building’s structure and form.” Particularly unique to this project is a two storey ‘leaning’ arch overhanging the lake edge, which is also curved three times to suit the sectional profile of the main roof. While providing an impressive architectural feature, the arch also serves as a shelter to the cantilevered terrace and first floor balcony, which look out over the lake. The architects at JDA needed to find a solution that would make the structure easy to assemble and stay/remain stable from wind action or ground settlement. They choose to use lightweight and versatile Kerto LVL for the portal frames. Paul Kent, Development and Construction Director at Center Parcs said: “We have been delighted to work with Metsä Wood on the supply of Kerto LVL for our new Waterside Lodges at Elveden Forest. The versatility of their product has helped to create a unique design feature in this brand new style of accommodation, complementing the nautical theme and lakeside setting.” Fire safety Another important consideration was fire safety – an issue that often discourages architects from specifying wood. However, in the event of a fire, Kerto LVL performs predictably. As a result of burning, the surface of Kerto becomes charred, which protects the product, insulates it and slows down the burning process. Strong yet lightweight building material Kerto LVL was chosen as the construction material as its solid bonded structure offers incredible strength and dimensional stability, while its high strength to weight ratio allows for smaller spacing in mechanical connections. It is also a versatile and lightweight material, which is easy to work with. Luke Hunter, also said: “Kerto LVL was the perfect choice to help us achieve the leaning arch and thin roof / facia profile on the lake facing elevation. This flexible material helped to overcome the challenge of cutting the leaning, curved roof edge on an angle. A number of systems were investigated to achieve this, however, Kerto LVL was the only material that fully achieved the concept’s vision.“ One of the most complex elements of the structure was an exposed arch at the front, which leans towards the lake. This needed to withstand biaxial bending and compression, while supporting the roof structure with a large cantilever. Kerto LVL Q-panels were used to create the long span to the first floor deck, which was designed to bear the weight of the column horizontally with a spring support. Another factor was that the angled arch had to have a considerable bending moment connection at the top. This had to be manufactured in such a way that there was a perfect connection between the deck and arch, resulting in an irregular shape. Vertical columns were formed with two members spaced to support the first floor’s beams and curved roof beams. Kerto LVL was also used to create a recessed infill detail, closing the gap between the two vertical columns, a bespoke detail developed by JDA and Metsä Wood. Innovative bracing and connections The columns, floor beams and support ribs of the curved roof were created using Kerto LVL Q-panel structural members. This allowed for smaller spacing in the doweled circular bending moment connection and better moisture stability.   The bracing of the roof and floor was provided by Kerto LVL Q-panels, which were connected together with 3-dimentional screwing. In this way no steel bracing was required. Engineering firm, BSP Consulting, designed the foundations and the steel platform supporting the frames, which cantilevered over the lake. The Kerto LVL frames, consisting of the arch, two columns and the floor beam, are connected to the steel through metal shoes, which transfer shear and horizontal forces to the platform.  Working together to solve the structural engineering  Divisional Operations Manager at Cocksedge Building Contractors, Tom Courtney, said: “The project combined a unique architectural approach with challenging structural engineering to great effect. The success of the project demonstrates the technical know-how and expertise of everyone involved. “The use of engineered wood allowed us to overcome a number of challenges that simply wouldn’t have been solved using other materials, while at the same time maintaining a look and feel to match the surrounding natural environment.” “The use of such a versatile and lightweight material

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Now you can make landmarks, buildings, bridges shine with a simple swipe on your smartphone

New Scene management app from Philips Lighting allows lighting managers to control a building’s façade lighting from anywhere, at any time using a smartphone or tablet. Philips Lighting (Euronext: LIGHT), the world leader in lighting, announced today the launch of a new cloud-based Scene management app that enables businesses to quickly and effortlessly change a building’s architectural lighting using your smartphone or tablet. The app, specially designed for use on smart devices, further illustrates the company’s leadership in connected lighting and lighting for the Internet of Things. With a simple tap or swipe, the Interact Landmark Scene management app enables lighting managers to manage, control and change the lighting on bridges, buildings and monuments on the fly. Spectacular light shows can be remotely programmed to commemorate special events, holidays and important civic causes. For example, managers can now respond quickly to a request from the mayor’s office to paint a bridge in pink light to support World Breast Cancer Awareness or program. “Architectural lighting is increasingly being used by businesses and cities to create a unique identity and engaging experiences. The need to be ‘on call’ and responsive to last minute requests outside of the office is a pain point for lighting managers. The app now provides them with the flexibility to change lighting scenes at any moment and anytime.  It also illustrates the power of Interact Landmark to support lighting managers, simplify the management of architectural lighting and help make cities smarter and more livable,” said Jacques Letzelter, Global Business Leader Public Segment at Philips Lighting. Controlling the light, whenever & wherever  Site managers may personalize their user account settings and securely access their architectural lighting system while on the go. They can change colors, trigger light shows and view schedules. As the app works via the cloud, authorized users no longer need to first log in via a VPN connection. The app is part of Interact Landmark suite of capabilities and will be available in June 2018. Live demonstrations of the Scene Management app will be on display at the Philips Lighting booth #1402 at LIGHTFAIR International taking place in Chicago, May 8-10, 2018 at McCormick Place.  

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New training facility boosts BIM training opportunities for architects

Architects are set to benefit from a new ARCHICAD training facility following the relocation of Graphisoft UK’s training centre in Nottingham. The new facility based at Castlebridge Office Village in Nottingham offers a bright and spacious training space, ideally suited to the needs of delegates. The central location of the venue is also convenient with good transport links nearby. “It was great to start in our new premises. We’ve received some brilliant feedback from delegates who have already attended courses at our new facility,” said Gemma Sewell, support and training manager at Graphisoft UK. “We have a team of six highly-experienced support staff who provide our customers with personalised technical support. The additional space and open plan layout will allow us to work more closely together and will enable us to grow our team as necessary so that we can continue to provide a high level of service,” she added. According to Brendan Sexton, BIM manager at maber, an architectural practice headquartered in Nottingham, “It’s often best to take time out of the office to fully concentrate on learning new skills. Graphisoft’s new training facility is the ideal environment to do just that. As always, the standard of training by the Graphisoft team is exceptional, and with the new facility we expect to be frequent visitors over the coming months.” Training groups are kept to a maximum of six delegates to allow the courses and trainers to focus on individual requirements. Graphisoft offers several training courses tailored to suit the needs of architects with varying degrees of knowledge about ARCHICAD. All courses include a mixture of discussions, exercises and assessments to help trainees develop skills in ARCHICAD. The essentials course introduces delegates to the principles of Building Information Modelling (BIM) and demonstrates positive and productive ways to use the software. The advanced course goes beyond the essentials, showing delegates the most productive ways to use all ARCHICAD’s tools and covers workflows, templates and documentation. Bespoke training courses are also available, which allow courses to be tailored to the specific requirements of the customer. Find out more about training with Graphisoft at: http://www.graphisoft.com/training/training-courses/  

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