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Gebrik boosts Bucks UTC’s bold project

The new Buckinghamshire University Technical College was finished ahead of schedule – and the Gebrik cladding system played a large part

Posted by Dave Higgitt | June 30, 2014 | Bricks & mortar

The new Buckinghamshire University Technical College in Aylesbury features a stunning brick façade, created with an unusual blend of finishes from the Gebrik Insulating Brick Cladding System range.The project was built throughout the winter months and to extremely short timescales. Moreover, compounding the already tight schedule, contractor BAM Construction’s start date was delayed by six weeks due to planning issues.

However, through the use of Gebrik (supplied by Aquarian Cladding Systems), BAM was able to remove the external facade from the critical path, making the building weather-tight as soon as the steel framing and external sheathing were installed, and enabling internal trades to start work before Gebrik was installed.

Tight build programmes are common in education projects, and the entire façade was completed in two months by specialist installer LSC Facades. “We worked closely with Aquarian on the project to ensure that we met both the architect’s aesthetic requirements and BAM’s programme deadlines,” says LSC’s Operations Manager Mick Godwin. “Gebrik’s lightweight panels are easy to handle and quick to install – providing a much cleaner working environment than traditional methods. In our experience, the construction process benefits greatly from the predictability that Gebrik brings on site – particularly as it can be built in almost all weather conditions.”

By using Gebrik, BAM was able to incorporate many dry construction and off-site processes, providing greater predictability to the programme. Colin Williams, Construction Manager at BAM added: “Not only was Gebrik faster, it was also cleaner and easier to store and to move around site. Although demanding and challenging, the project was a positive experience and I have nothing but praise for the Gebrik system. Despite the planning delays, we finished four weeks ahead of schedule, with the use of Gebrik a major factor in recovering lost time – effectively enabling us to recover 10 weeks from the programme.”

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