Phoenix Heights, Canary Wharf, London

Phoenix Heights, Canary Wharf, London

Client: Phoenix Heights
Type of works: Supply of Natura fibre cement rainscreen cladding.

A mixed tenure housing project close to London’s Canary Wharf has been given an award-winning visual identity thanks in part to Natura from Marley Eternit.

Natura fibre cement rainscreen cladding offers a sustainable and low maintenance façade that combines excellent aesthetics with durability and impact resistance.

Topaz, Coral and Ivory coloured Natura was specified by the architects for Phoenix Heights at Mastmaker Road in East London as part of an ‘appealing, human scaled aesthetic’.

The challenge this posed for the architects was how to bridge the shift in scale between the low rise buildings in the west and the high rise glass fronted Millennium Quarter to the east.

The issue was addressed both by graduating the height of the 199 homes over three to seven storeys, and by the use of the Natura in three colours to visually reduce the scale of the building and make it appear less imposing.

Topaz coloured Natura was used for the high level sunshade canopies, whilst Coral was specified as infill panels and privacy screens on the roof terraces. Insulated render to the main body of the building was then matched with Ivory coloured Natura on the large high level balconies, which proved to be much lighter and easier to apply than render.

Project Architect for the development Andrew Carr said: “We specified Natura in collaboration with Ballymore, the developer, from a range of alternatives which fitted within their budget. Whilst meeting the necessary technical requirements Natura was primarily chosen on appearance and colour. We did consider some alternative cladding materials which did not have the appearance we were looking for or could not provide certification to satisfy UK building control.”

Natura was installed by MPG Facades as part of a rainscreen cladding insulation solution, with the walls achieving a U-value of 0.25 W/m2K. The development achieves an Eco Homes Very Good rating and secured The London Evening Standard’s award for The Best New Affordable Housing Development.

Natura is available in a wide choice of colours, textures and finishes and the practical qualities of the material include durability, strength and an installed life expectancy of at least 50 years. It has a tactile, smooth, semi-translucent surface, which allows the natural variegation of the fibre cement to show through, creating a practical as well as visually engaging building. It is also available with a ‘Pro’ coating which protects against staining and graffiti.

Marley Eternit fibre cement cladding panels can achieve an A+ rating as defined in the BRE Green Guide to Specification based on generic rating for autoclaved fibre cement single sheet - (Element Ref: 80623042, 806230422, 806230447, 806230450).

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