The Hadley Group worked in partnership with the Client and Architect to deliver a fully compliant design that delivers the performance (open spans of ~7.2m) with minimal site disruption, all thoughtfully integrated into the Worcestershire countryside.
The weight of traditional construction proved from the engineering calculations to be prohibitive due to the depth of foundation required to support the weight of traditional materials. Using a concrete, float finished floor slab in a raft construction containing rebar reinforcement both a timber and steel frame were both viable options. The Hadley Group engineering, design and detailing team using Hadley DesignSuite Pro™ software (free to download on their website) to calculate the engineering load data (wind load, snow load, etc.) and then Trimble’s Tekla design software populated with the full range of Hadley Group primary, secondary and tertiary products to create a full digital twin of the entire building to assess building performance and most importantly weight. The weight calculation allowed the foundation structure to be interrogated and strengthened to accommodate the loading, reducing to an absolute minimum foundation thickness to minimise disturbance of the site (when in more typical projects we see a ~30% saving in foundation costs).
Ground floor space is all dedicated to vehicles so the client was adamant no support columns / pillars would be acceptable in the internal space due to the risk of a vehicle potentially being damaged.
A timber frame could not achieve the ground floor spans required without support columns or a roof structure where the timber beams were so large that they forced a decision the client was uncomfortable with. This was either to apply for a Material Amendment to increase the height of the structure to allow for thicker wooden beams to take the building load, or to limit the use of the first floor space to being storage due to the head height available no longer being compliant with Building Regulations.
A steel portal frame with a secondary framing system could deliver the building performance and weight reduction necessary over traditional construction methods and achieve the approved building height without compromising first floor space and being full Building Regulation compliant as demonstrated from without our digital Building Information Model (BIM) allowing the Client and Architect the confidence in the Hadley Group UltraMezz™ flooring system to switch the originally intended traditional design to steel – a modern method of construction (MMC).
The timber frame may have been unable to deliver the spans required but timber cladding system was an essential aspect of the planning permission and required a building to look like a traditional timber construction. The design challenge was to seamlessly integrate the benefits of a portal steel frame with SFS infill with a natural kiln dried oak and traditional clay roofing tiles to match the 100+ year old farmhouse roof tiles. The results are a traditional looking building without the constraints of timber and traditional construction techniques.
Each segment of the building had to be delivered using a telehandler weighing 10.1 tonnes, limiting the lift capacity to 1.9 tonnes. This required Hadley Group to manufacture products in coordination with the onsite team and delivered on their custom vehicle fleet with all materials broken down and into packs below this weight limit and smaller where the maximum 7m reach was required to locate products into position using a site fix system (SFS). All products were pre-cut to length, eliminating cutting and reducing waste onsite and delivering a 7-week build programme with no delay, despite Storm Ciara, Storm Dennis and a month’s rain in a day all occurring within programme.
The client is thrilled with the results and the extensive list of pre-conditions of the build have been fully successfully discharged. Hadley Group learnt a huge amount throughout this rapid build in working collaboratively as a true construction partner to deliver the best solution for the client within the numerous site constraints and a project certainty that delivered the planned programme, costs and return.
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