Detailed structural design is in progress for PCE's innovative DfMA hyTower® solution. Appointed as specialist design and build contractor for Regal London's Fulton & Fifth project in North London's burgeoning Wembley area, the project is the latest Regal and PCE collaboration. The development features a dynamic 3-storey podium structure with parking and commercial spaces, topped by five residential towers housing over 840 high-quality apartments, including two blocks dedicated to affordable housing solutions.
As with all of PCE’s HybriDfMA systems, hyTower® features an optimised ‘kit of parts’, which sees refined and repeatable components connected with precision through ‘smart connectivity’. Configurable to the unique requirements of each project, PCE’s philosophy ensures selection of optimum materials, based on structural integrity, embodied carbon, and desired aesthetics. This guarantees the highest quality components are selected and connected seamlessly and efficiently, bringing the architectural vision to life.
Considering high-quality, high-performance, safety, and compliance, the structure of the multi-storey frame is designed to relevant parts of BS EN 1992 - Eurocode 2 - Design of Concrete Structures, and other pertinent design codes and standards, as specified by Regal’s design engineer. This includes the design of over 13,000 individual offsite manufactured components, and their assembly on-site using in situ reinforced concrete, grouted reinforced and grouted bolted connections, to provide the necessary structural connectivity.
Within the podium structure, due to column spacings not aligning with the principal load paths from the multi-storey tower above, the precast concrete transfer beams at the top level of the podium are designed to be up to 1.6m in depth. Notably, in a specific location where the transfer load is exceedingly high, a 'hybrid concrete' solution has been adopted, resulting in a 2.0m wide by 2.2m deep transfer beam of 24m overall length. This intricate solution involves 3 offsite manufactured reinforced concrete 'U' sections, with wall and bottom thicknesses of 150mm. The remaining reinforcement and concrete are cast once the sections are positioned, resulting in a finished beam weighing in excess of 250 tonnes.
As well as the above beams, the podium structure includes precast concrete columns up to 9.5m tall and prestressed hollowcore flooring units ranging from 200mm to 400mm deep. Other precast concrete components will be incorporated, with over 1,200m3 of in situ reinforced concrete used to enable the finished structure to achieve robustness class of 2B.
The five towers above the podium are designed to meet the required 2-hour fire resistance necessary for such residential buildings. It is not just fire resistance that factors into PCE’s hyTower® solution. Rigorous design ensures the structure will benefit from robust thermal, acoustic, vibration, air, and water performance. This comprehensive approach means that PCE’s structural solution isn't just safe, but economically and socially beneficial, improving long-term cost efficiency and comfort for residence and occupants.
Each tower will be equipped with a stair and lift core. These cores are formed with 250mm thick precast concrete twin wall units, precast stairs and landing units, blade columns, composite reinforced structural steel beams, 200mm deep prestressed hollowcore concrete flooring units. Furthermore, the façade will be formed using load bearing precast concrete insulated sandwich panels, enhanced with brickwork and exposed architectural finishes.
The design for the towers intricately accounts for nearly 1,593 core, stair, and landing units, 243 columns, 519 composite beams, 7,074 hollowcore units, 1,473 sandwich panel units. There is also over 5,562m3 of in-situ reinforced concrete.
PCE’s rigorous design processes are underpinned by innovative and cutting-edge digital capabilities. This includes a detailed digital asset tracking system, capturing and communicating key project information in an accessible, real-time format. This comprehensive approach is supported by intelligent integration between PCE’s Building Information Modelling (BIM), asset tracking system, and its Common Data Environment (CDE). In line with Golden Thread requirements, the integration between these platforms ensures compliance with component referencing. With automated communication between systems, this referencing information provides accurate and assured insight relating to key information including QA data, engineering calculations, design information, dimensions, real-time tracking status and more.