The Fitzrovia W1 - HybriDfMA Frame structurally complete

With The Fitzrovia W1’s structural construction completed, PCE’s HybriDfMA approach to frame design and build has yet again proved to be the blueprint for success.

Appointed by lead contractor, Kier, PCE Ltd were assigned design and build for The Fitzrovia W1, on Tottenham Court Road in central London. Using the company’s innovative HybriDfMA Frame system build solution, PCE achieved structural completion in 26 weeks from starting on site, with 25 operatives at its peak. The Fitzrovia is an 86,000 sq ft, 6-storey Grade A mixed-use building in the prominent city centre location on Tottenham Court Road for property developer M&G Real Estate, working with Co-RE. The Architect is PDP London, with consulting engineers AKT II. The hybrid framed structure will provide office space, mixed retail space, and eight premium residential units.


Why HybriDfMA Frame?

As with all of PCE’s HybriDfMA system build solutions, HybriDfMA Frame is founded upon predetermined, pre-engineered components that create standardised PCE components. Manufactured offsite, these components form a ‘Kit of Parts’, manufactured from suppliers across the UK and Europe. They are then assembled quickly on site through standardised methodologies and PCE’s established ‘smart connectivity’. HybriDfMA Frame sets the precedent for predictable, high quality structural frames that are assembled quickly and safely. Whilst working to predetermined components, the system remains configurable, able to easily incorporate existing designs and adapt to unique project requirements. This adaptability guarantees the maintenance of structural integrity, whilst enabling a variety of different materials to be interchanged and used as required, dependent on required aesthetics and sustainability targets. This enables truly hybrid structures delivered through Modern Methods of Construction.


Offsite Engineered

The Fitzrovia’s hybrid 'Kit of Parts' comprised various structural materials including reinforced precast concrete, insitu concrete, and composite steel beams. Over 2,100 units were manufactured and installed for The Fitzrovia W1 from 6 different offsite supply chain specialists across the UK and Europe. This included brick-faced sandwich panels, stairs, landings, upstands, twin and solid walls, and recycled steel for composite steel beams. Additionally, 5,000m2 of concrete in-situ flooring and over 1,000 hollowcore slabs helped reduce material usage, aiding in sustainable performance. Many components are exposed, giving a clean, finished look to concrete elements like soffits and columns. PCE’s offsite approach enabled consistent manufacturing of high quality, creating aesthetic components that do not rely on additional materials, such as plasterboard. This ensures the structure captures the architects desired impression whilst remaining structurally strong and sustainably driven.


Accelerated Assembly

Efficient performance is preceded by effective preparation. With components preassembled offsite with required safety mechanisms, such as temporary handrails, they arrive to site primed and ready for fast installation and safe access. Once a level is structurally complete, temporary works are stripped out. This allows safe and fast access for follow on trades and a faster fit out, enabling structures to become operational much sooner.


Sustainable Success

At 'The Fitzrovia W1,' PCE's expertise in materials helped cut carbon emissions. Using Ground Granulated Blast-Furnace Slag (GBBS) reduced-cement mix saved 25,000 kg of CO2. Basalt fibre reinforcement (BFR) instead of steel mesh saved over 30,000 kg of CO2. Prefabricated steel beams with 90% recycled steel saved 237,000 kg of CO2. PCE also uses electric-powered plant and equipment, reducing noise pollution and onsite disturbances. These sustainable practices supported the project’s sustainability focus, having already achieved BREEAM Outstanding Design and a 5-Star NABERS rating.


City Centre Constraints

PCE prioritises minimising disruption caused by construction in local communities. In central London, careful planning was crucial for success during installation. PCE's expertise in inner-city projects allowed for early assessment by its in-house design team, ensuring components fit within site constraints like space availability and delivery routes. The HybriDfMA offsite solutions, exemplified in The Fitzrovia W1 project, greatly reduce onsite construction, improving quality, control, and safety while reducing noise, dust, and disturbances. This approach can cut onsite work and waste by up to 80% and 90%, respectively. Standardisation enhances predictability and efficiency, making installations faster and less intrusive for nearby residents and workers. It also allows for construction near existing structures, like The Fitzrovia, assembled just 6 inches from existing buildings, demonstrating PCE's precision and skilled workforce.


Team Effort

The Fitzrovia W1 project is not the first time PCE and Kier have enjoyed success together. Having collaborated on many projects, including NHS Golden Jubilee, Capella, and more recently, HMP Millsike, The Fitzrovia W1 continues the positive portfolio shared between the two companies. PCE’s delivery team for the project have continued to demonstrate the value of PCE’s HybriDfMA system build approach. Achieving such standards in a short period of time is no mean feat, especially considering the project site is in one of the busiest London locations.


The project’s Senior Project Manager, Darren Waller, noted:

“Big thanks to the team for their constant hard work across the project. Someone once said, a successful construction project is a symphony of skilled workers, precise planning, and unyielding perseverance. Structural delivery of the Fitzrovia is a great example of how this mindset pays off!”


Congratulations to all on a job well done!

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