SFS Supports Library Development

Whitley Bay Library during construction

Project: Whitley Bay Joint Services Centre
Category: Public buildings
Products: SFS lightweight steel framing
Scale: £5.9m project to provide multi-purpose joint services centre in the heart of Whitley Bay
Architect: Ryder Architecture
Contractor: Robertson Construction
Installer: Rowan Specialist Interiors

Metsec SFS lightweight steel framing system has been used to create a multi-million pound library and joint services centre in the heart of the north-eastern seaside town of Whitley Bay.

Designed by Ryder Architecture, with construction by Robertson, the new three-storey development will accommodate a library and a variety of other local community services under one roof, creating a vital and versatile resource at the heart of the community, and encouraging people into the town centre.

The new state-of-the-art library facilities will replace the town’s old library, which had become cramped and unserviceable over the years. It will occupy two floors of the new building and will provide printed, audio and visual media information services together with internet facilities for public use.

The centre’s versatility and value to the community will be demonstrated through the wide range of additional services that will be housed within it. These include contact points for adult social care, Age Concern, primary care, police, employment and council services as well as a café, community meeting rooms and event space.

The secondary structure for the £5.59m project is constructed using Metsec lightweight steel framing, with the external envelope featuring a combination of brickwork, fibre cement cladding and curtain walling. The result will be a light, airy and welcoming building which contrasts and empathises with its town centre surroundings.

Rowan Specialist Interiors of Gateshead carried out the installation of Metsec SFS as well as the cladding. Mervyn Hogg, general manager at the company, comments, “The scheme needed to deliver economy and speed of construction, and Metsec proved the ideal choice. Their SFS framing system is quick and easy to install, and its range of accessories enhanced versatility and speed of construction on site. In addition, Metsec’s were able to propose a number of solutions at the early design stages of the project which delivered cost economies and installation efficiencies.”

Due to open in Spring 2013, the Whitley Bay Joint Services Centre is expected to become a hub of the community which will reap benefits for the town’s people and businesses.