Gateway Academy, Thurrock, Essex

Gateway Academy, Thurrock, Essex

Client: Gateway Academy
Type of works: over 15,000m2 of Rockfon ceiling tiles specified throughout the school.

Gateway Academy, in Thurrock, has now been completed with an impressive final construction value of £24 million. Over 15,000m2 of Rockfon ceiling tiles were specified for use throughout the entire school. The state of the art doughnut-shaped building has been developed for the forthcoming merger of two under-capacity secondary schools within the town, becoming host to 1,800 students.

Lianne Toothill, of Lyster, Grillet & Harding Architects, who have specified Rockfon in the past, comments on the project, “Rockfon were specified as they were the only ceiling tile on the market that had 100% humidity resistance. They were unmatched in terms of their fire resistance properties and after using them in the past we had no hesitation in using them again.”

Six Rockfon products were specified for this project: Koral, Sonar, Polar, Sonar Silence, Hygienic and Rocklink 24 Grid.  Adrian Warne, Partner at Lyster, Grillet & Harding, noted; “All areas within the school have different requirements, and many with gentle curves. The project has Rockfon suspended ceilings throughout as these fitted the bill perfectly with a range that fulfilled the various design parameters. The ability to have a one-stop shop was really beneficial and cost efficient.”

The Sonar tile is ideally suited for use in classrooms due to its compliance with the sound absorption requirement Approved Document E E3. It is available in various module sizes and edge details to suit differing design options and installation needs.

Polar tiles can make a dramatic difference to the impression of any room due to the variety of colours available.  For this specific project, Night Blue was chosen, as Lianne explains; “The Polar tile was chosen because of the colour range, as it was necessary to provide Drama rooms with the option of a blackout.”

Koral is a white, micro-textured tile that performs extremely well in a number of performance areas and ensures a high level of sound absorption. It was specified for this project due to its acoustic properties and in a tegular format for aesthetic reasons.

For enhanced room to room insulation, Sonar Silence, with its specially applied backing material, was installed, while its White painted and slightly textured surface helped to create a truly elegant ceiling expression.

With all schools, there are areas such as kitchens and food technology rooms that require a high level of cleanliness. The Hygienic tile was specified because it fully complies with the most stringent demands for hygiene and ease of cleaning. They are durable and covered in a white surface paint incorporating fungicide to enhance resistance to any micro-organisms that may develop in environments such as this.

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