Case Study Sutton Station – Breathing new life into an old station

Case Study Sutton Station – Breathing new life into an old station

Sutton station, owned and operated by Network Rail, needed refurbishment. The station was showing signs of its age, with the old timber work in need of replacing, the roof leaking and the glass roof sections in need of some TLC.

Due to their age, the glass roof sections had become fragile and had subsequently broken, Also because of the difficulty in safely cleaning them, they were proving more of a light blocker, than a source of natural light.

It was decided that the glass roof sections would need replacing, in order to do this, Twinfix were consulted by Network Rail and asked to offer a solution. Twinfix were mindful of the aesthetics of the station but were also very aware that they could offer something which would provide a long-term solution for the station.

Utilising their Multi-Link-Panel System, Twinfix put forward a solution which would do justice to the refurbishment work, the station was receiving whilst bringing the roof up to date and delivering an outcome which would last the test of time.

By replacing the old steel and glass sections with their sustainable aluminium and polycarbonate Multi-Link-Panel System, Twinfix’s proposed solution would maintain the look and feel of the old roof, but deliver something which is virtually unbreakable, doesn’t need repairing or regular replacement and would allow routine cleaning to be carried out, keeping the station flooded with light. By replacing the old glass with a slightly obscured 6mm polycarbonate, the light inside the station would be diffused rather than harsh, and significantly brighter than the current situation.

The new system would not only last the rigours of time, but is made of sustainable materials. Polycarbonate has minimal impact on the environment and is fully recyclable at the end of its long life. Polycarbonate panels, used in place of glass can be manufactured to give the same look as more traditional glass with features such as Georgian wired but with a significant weight saving.

This weight saving means that transportation, manual handling of lifting is easier and requires less energy, plus the structural elements can be reduced as the weight they are required to support is reduced.

The result is a total saving on energy and materials needed for installation. Once installed polycarbonate is considerably stronger than glass and is unlikely to break. Depending upon the requirements and location of the installation, Twinfix manufacture a ‘non-fragile’ version which, in testing could withstand far greater impact than an equivalent glass panel.

This is especially good for areas where people might accidentally step or fall onto the panels such as rail station roofs. This inherent toughness also reduces the need to replace the glazing panel as often as glass and with UV coatings the panel doesn’t yellow with age or become brittle.

Aluminium is known as the ‘Green metal’ due to its ability to be recycled again and again, without degradation of its inherent properties. Recycling aluminium also saves 95% of the energy required in the production of aluminium from raw materials. Compared to traditional steel, aluminium is approximately 2.5 times lighter, strength for strength, so again there is a weight saving comparable to that associated with polycarbonate over glass.

Unlike steel, aluminium will not rust, and the application of powder coating will prevent corrosion. Powder coating is a pigment encapsulated in a powdered resin and then cured in an oven to harden the paint surface.

Working with the roofing contractor, G.S. Moore, and as part of the larger station refurbishment, delivered by BAM Nuttall, Twinfix were able to replace the existing damaged glass roof in the entrance, the footbridge and the platform adding up to an area over 340 metres square, bathing the covered areas in natural light.

Vicky Evans, Director at Twinfix, said:
“It was a pleasure working with the team at Network Rail, G.S.Moore and BAM Nuttall. Sutton Station roof was in a dramatic need of replacement. We are proud of the finished product and that we were able to offer a long-term solution that delivers the aesthetic charm of the old roof, increases light levels for passengers, improves safety for all using the station and offers a sustainable, future proof outcome. We look forward to being part of delivering more excellent results for our clients in the future.”

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Twinfix

Twinfix is a family owned and managed business, established in 1990. Described by some as the ‘Pioneers of Polycarbonate’ we, in the main, offer polycarbonate glazing solutions.

From the early years of installing multiwall and solid...
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