Westfield Stratford City, London

Westfield Stratford City, London

Westfield London represents a £1.7 billion investment in the redevelopment of a 42 acre site in East London.

To maximise manufacturing efficiency, ACO designed the curved and straight systems with the same channel body – the only difference being that on the curved system the inlet is positioned to one side so it can fit flush againstthe planters and steps.

In total, 250 metres of curved and 250 metres of straight channel have been installed across the two terraces.

Following the grand opening in September 2011, the £1.75billion Westfield Stratford City is one part of the major redevelopment programme in and around East London and stands in close proximity to the prestigious new international sports stadium, the main venue for the major sporting occasions of 2012. With over 250 retailers and over 70 places to dine, covering 1.9 million square feet of retail and leisure, Westfield Stratford City is the largest urban shopping centre in Europe.

Uncompromising demands on high aesthetical appearance were placed by the architects on the Westfield project and the drainage specification brief supplied to ACO Technologies plc was for a discreet and unobtrusive system to provide exceptional functionality. This posed an immediate dilemma for ACO’s technical team, as maintaining the visual integrity required along the wider paved areas would result in insufficient surface drainage capacity to convey rainwater away, especially during heavy downpours.

ACO specialist experience in design innovation was called upon to overcome this challenge. The team devised a system in one specific area using two interconnected, parallel channels 100mm apart; one blind and one open.

The ACO team also carefully considered important installation factors and specified the use of bespoke MultiDrain V300S channels and MultiDrain M100DS 0100 shallow channels, both manufactured from polymer concrete with stainless steel edge rails and Heelsafe lockable gratings. This minimised the need for deep
excavation channelling during installation, saving valuable time and associated costs, especially when installing across structural floor elements around the retail basement area.

Other installation challenges that required careful planning included the impressive 17.5metre radius curved patio entrance area to the complex, a triangular stage feature for arts and crafts activities and free-flowing sloping gradient areas.

To maximise efficiency, ACO supplied the bespoke MultiDrain M100DS channels in 1metre and 0.5 metre straight sections for use with both straight 1 metre length and curved 0.5 metre length gratings, allowing contractors to install the channels quickly. The visible gratings were supplied from stock, saving time
on delivery and manufacturing with all precise detail work fabricated on site before finally being installed. In total approximately 2000 metres of channel were used on the project.

With a range of grating finishes and high performance options available from ACO, a black granite/gravel finish using Heelsafe lockable gratings, manufactured from 4mm thick Grade 304 stainless steel, was specified for this project to provide a safe, secure and discreet drainage solution but with optimum water flow capacity. The 123mm and 58mm width gratings are supported on bespoke grade 304 stainless steel support frame classified to Load Class C250.

Alan Kirby, Project Manager of management contractor ImtechMeica said, “The grand paved thoroughfare in Westfield Stratford City posed a real challenge for us and will be one of the first sights shoppers see as they approach the entrance, so we knew we had to get the finish right. The sweeping, curved feature, gradient falls and main triangular stage area all presented particular challenges when dealing with surface water drainage, requiring tight tolerances to be adhered to. Luckily, drainage specialists ACO Technologies plc provided us with a quality bespoke low profile surface drainage system that reduced preparatory work necessary to install, saving considerable time. The result has produced strong, precise, accentuated drainage lines that blend perfectly throughout. The whole project is one that we feel both proud and confident in.”

Along with the upgraded public transport facilities, shoppers will find the smart new environs of Westfield Stratford City easy to get to and an irresistible place to visit. The attention to detail from the drainage upwards and the sheer scale of redevelopment is raising the profile of this area of East London that is set to attract large numbers of visitors.

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