RPS provided architectural, landscape and fire engineering services under a design build appointment to cover the developed design through to and including construction (RIBA stages three to five inc) for Phase 2 of this mixed-use development project. The scheme at City Park West, Chelmsford, includes a mix of 426 rent and share ownership one and one bed apartments, 4 retail units, all with ground floor and basement parking spread over 9 linked blocks varying in height from 4 to 13 storeys, each having their own design characteristics within a common palette for the scheme.
Central Park, Phase 2
The challenge of any project is bringing client expectations of quality design and materials together with designing for best value and affordability. The project comprised multi storey apartments being constructed at a time of heightened sensitivity over fire protection on high rise blocks, when manufacturers of insulation and cladding materials were uncertain of legislative changes in standards, all whilst attempting to achieve target thermal standards for the buildings.
The complex building arrangement meant normal limitations for escape routes and smoke control were exceeded.
Through close collaboration between architectural and fire engineering disciplines, RPS were able to overcome means of escape and smoke control by using fire engineering solutions to maintain a design in line with client expectations whilst still satisfying requirements under building regulations.
Experience of high rise building design and legislative requirements for associated fire resistant construction allowed the redesign of client proposals to overcome the potential conflict between need for thermal insulation whilst maintaining fire resistance in compliance with legislation in an economically viable way.
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