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W20 steel windows shine in Jewellery Quarter conservation contract

The retention of a four-storey façade has been one of the main technical challenges for the project team involved in the redevelopment of a former factory located in Birmingham’s famous Jewellery Quarter; with a member of the Steel Window Association (SWA), REA Metal Windows, having supplied and installed a package of custom-built W20 windows to replace the original frames.

Kettleworks on Pope Street is part of St George’s Urban Village – Birmingham’s largest residential development – and consists of 292 spacious homes across a 2.67 acre site, where Colmore Tang Construction is the main contractor, and Building Design Group (BDG) are the architects.

REA Metal Windows is the SWA member, which won the contract from Colmore Tang Construction under competitive tender, to produce a total of 88 horizontal pivot windows, exactly replicating the old medium universal section fenestration. Having carried out an accurate site survey of each opening over the four floors of the old brickwork elevation, REA began fabricating the W20 frames, ready to be glazed with 16 mm Krypton filled IG units as part of a tightly coordinated installation programme.

As the main contractor’s operatives removed the old corroded frames, REA’s experienced fitters followed closely behind ensuring the building was kept secure and weather-tight. All the windows, measuring some 3,500mm x 2,500mm, were hot dip galvanised and finished in a RAL 7016 Matt Grey, polyester powder coat. The 4-8-4 double glazing offers a centre pane U-value of 1.2 W/m2 K.

Oliver Cartwright, the project architect for BDG, commented: “The original hope was to refurbish the original windows within the façade, but closer inspection revealed that a lot of them were badly deteriorated and damaged, while some of the lintels above had settled, causing distortion of the frames. We, therefore, carried out a number of cost exercises looking at the possibilities of refurbishing what remained and installing secondary windows behind – or replacing like-for-like. In the end, that second option was deemed to be the best and, as the successful sub-contractor, REA Metal Windows completed an installation which looks superb. We are hopeful that the project will earn wider recognition.”

Members of the Steel Window Association offer a UK wide service for the repair and replacement of various types of old metal windows, doors and screens, as well as being able to manufacture new fenestration which fully meets the requirements of the Building Regulations. Choosing an SWA member to manufacture and install your steel windows and doors ensures that you are receiving the highest standard of fabrication, Installation and customer service.