Steam Ship Great Britain, Bristol

Steam Ship Great Britain, Bristol

Client: Linden Homes
Type of works: supply of Deckline drainage system

The latest shallow invert surface water drainage system, developed and manufactured by ACO Building Drainage, the UK’s leading specialist in drainage systems and corrosion resistant building products, has been installed at the prestigious Steam Ship Great Britain housing development in Bristol. Called the Deckline, this versatile and innovative drainage system enabled the developers to create a highly effective 100% watertight solution that complements the sophisticated aesthetic qualities of the landmark development, while also being cost effective, quick and simple to install.

The development by Linden Homes, winners of the Best Large Housebuilders Award 2010, consists of 145 one and two bed luxury apartments in the heart of Bristol’s historic harbour and has been designed to capture the character of the original Victorian dockyard, providing a fitting and authentic backdrop to the SS Great Britain in the original dry dock.

Linden Homes selected the ACO Building Drainage Deckline galvanised steel system for this unique development, using it for drainage channels in the building’s external cantilevered walkways. The channel drainage system was chosen in order to avoid positioning a large number of unsightly downpipes at 6m interval, with obvious cosmetic benefits. In addition, the developers required a system that offered flexible yet watertight joints. This was essential as each separate cantilevered unit has to join to the one adjacent, yet allowing for the inevitable movement caused either by footfall or normal material expansion; ACO was able to supply Linden Homes with specially factored neoprene gaskets, to ensure a watertight joint between each of these units.

Aside from the challenge of providing watertight joints in a system of this kind, the developers required a channel that fitted within the low profile metal framework of each of the cantilevered units. The drainage channels needed to be fixed to the units’ metal foundations, over which a cementitious mix and subsequently flooring tiles had to be laid. Thanks to its shallow invert channel of 50mm, the Deckline system was ideal for this type of installation. Thus low profile, together with versatility of construction, as well as watertight joint and devices such as locking points and levelling feet made the Deckline the perfect choice for this complex application within the SSGB housing development.

Overall, the housing site presented a great number of technical challenges and Linden Homes had to work closely with the SS Great Britain Trust and all contractors and suppliers, in order to provide a regeneration solution fitting to the Great Western Dockyard. Alex Spinks, Senior

Technical Manager at Linden Homes explains, “Drainage was one of the many complex issues we had to contend with and ACO’s Deckline system provided the best solution that met all of our specific requirements.”

Tim Growdon Regional Manager from ACO Building Drainage explains, “This was a highly prestigious project, within a site of great historical interest. After all, we have to thank Isambard Kingdom Brunel for much of the essential infrastructure we are still using in Britain to this day. It was fitting therefore that only premium materials were used for this development and we are very proud that our drainage system was one of them.”

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