Situated directly opposite the renowned, and sadly currently undergoing extensive refurbishment works due to fire damage, Rennie Mackintosh building is the new Reid Building designed by Steven Holl & JM Architects. The contemporary and futuristic appearance of the Reid provides a very pronounced contrast with not only the Rennie Mackintosh but also the abutting Assembly Building to the West elevation.
The predominant architectural feature of the Reid Building is the extensive covering of translucent laminated glass rainscreen which is broken up by a series of glazed curtain wall screens, terraces and notched rebates within the façade. The contrast between the opaque glazed screens and translucent glass cladding becomes especially vivid at night time once the building is internally lit.
Following submittal of our contractors proposals and detailed tender towards the end of 2011, Dane were appointed as the chosen Façade Contractor in early 2012. A lengthy design period followed during which the glass rainscreen underwent extensive weather and impact testing at the Vinci Technology Centre, Leighton Buzzard. The main concrete frame was completed in late 2012 and façade installation commenced immediately thereafter. Project completion was achieved in 2014 and the first students began attendance in the September of that year.
The Architectural requirement for slim profile sightlines having long unsupported spans was met by the selection of the Schuco Jansen VISS steel system. The south façade incorporates 12m long single span mullions which presented considerable logistical challenges during the installation work owing to their weight, fixing location and proximity of the mobile crane required to facilitate. The north elevation has a distinctive glass shelf, this was achieved with prefabricated mullions adapted by Dane with bespoke toggle plates to provide the required flush glazed finish specified by the Architect.
The maximum sized double glazed unit contained within the structurally glazed façade weighed 700kg. 20mm wide joints between the toggled units were pointed on site with a grey silicone seal.
A key feature of the building is the three large cylindrical “driven voids”, light shafts that run through the central core of the building. These structures were capped with rooflights including Schuco AWS 70 HI structurally glazed automated vents controlled by the building management system.
The glass rainscreen system was specially developed for this project and comprises two leaves of heat strengthened glass laminated with a special interlayer, the inner face of the outer leaf is screen printed to provide translucency. Embedded within the laminate on each panel are four stainless steel circular “ghost fixings” which fix back via stainless steel bracketry to both the steel mullions of the curtain walling as well as the main concrete walls of the building.
The rear (south elevation) of the building is clad with a stainless steel rainscreen above street level.