Volkswagen, one of the world's leading car manufacturers, has recently built a brand new office complex in Milton Keynes, which uses Booth Muirie's specialist cladding systems to form the building's striking façade. The new building was designed by pHp Architects and the development has achieved Grade A 'BREEAM Excellent' status. The building design imitates the form of the famous 'VW' logo, using Booth Muirie's BML rainscreen cladding, manufactured from Alucobond aluminium composite material (ACM), to accentuate the design.

The £25m project was headed by UK & European Investments and introduces a new home to the company's financial services (VWFS), creating new office space and social areas over four floors, totalling over 100,000 square feet. The new headquarters brings together two existing sites keeping the financial services close to its sister company, The Volkswagen Group.

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Project details

As part of the development, Booth Muirie supplied 4000m² of bespoke-engineered rainscreen and spandrel panels manufactured from Alucobond® ACM. The choice of colours emphasized the contrast within the design; Natural 400 material was used to highlight the outline form of the building against the backdrop of Metallic Grey and Dark Zebrano spandrel panels. Installed as a Booth Muirie rainscreen system, the cladding provides a decorative yet weather resistant outer layer, fixed to an underlying structure to maintain a ventilated and drained cavity between the façade and the structure, preventing weather damage to the building.

The challenge this project posed was significant,  with spiral-shaped units requiring bespoke engineering and manufacturing to achieve the right finish. The cladding panels use the specialist Aluminium Composite Material (ACM) Alucobond® to offer a flawless, weatherproof finish to the building. The flexibility of the ACM panels allowed the material to be easily folded and bent to adapt to the sleek curves and contours of the building without any loss to the rigidity once installed. The lightweight qualities of the material make it particularly easy to transport and install, though its high strength and rigidity ensure the panels maintain their shape and flatness even when exposed to extreme weather conditions.

Constructed using two 0.5mm thick aluminium sheets either side of a mineral-filled core, the pre-fabricated Alucobond® panels are supplied to the site ready to install and this can be done using conventional tools to ease the application processes. This helps to keep the time and cost of the project to a minimum, which is an extremely important factor for the overall success of a project.

The Alucobond® panels also offer a protection from weathering, chemical and other harmful effects on a building which will ultimately provide long-term preservation of the building's structure and less need for maintenance. The material also reduces heat transmission which will reduce the costs for heating and air-conditional throughout the year.

Specifications

Location Milton Keynes
Architect pHp Architects
System Rainscreen
Material Alucobond®
Colours Metallic Grey, Dark Zebrano & Natural 400

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