Kier Construction - The Waterside Student Residences

Project Details

Project - The Waterside Student Residences
Sector - Residential
Company - Kier Construction
Technology - Steel
Contractor - Voestalpine Metsec plc

Project Overview

The Waterside scheme couples two distinct building types; a more traditional five storey cluster flat arrangement supplemented by four-storey townhouses, providing a street scene and a more sympathetic relationship with the adjacent residential streets and public domain. Furthermore, the cluster flat buildings were, in part, built on top of a podium level created at first floor to allow for open plan, ancillary spaces to be provided on the ground floor, further demonstrating the flexibility of the offsite constructed Metframe system. The differing building types allowed for a collaborative construction solution to be adopted, utilising two different Metframe contractors to install the differing building types. This further enhanced the benefits of the offsite construction method and incorporated a new, collaborative benefit to the construction methodology.

The University of Northampton residences scheme is the largest Metframe project on site in 2016/17, with an extremely aggressive site programme, utilising two installers and several installation gangs each to reduce the total site installation time. It is the first light steel frame structured BIM level 2 project and one of the first projects to be completed to this level.

Metframe is a pre-panelised system, used to provide the load bearing structure for low to medium rise structures. The system uses the studs in the same way as load bearing a steel frame solution, except they are bolted together off site to form panels. The incorporation of heavier gauge studs and the bespoke designs allow structures to be constructed up to 11 storeys in height. Metframe structures can incorporate steel joisted or concrete floors, depending on the client's requirements. Joisted floors offer a much lighter structure, but concrete floors generally provide a higher level of acoustic and fire protection. Pitched, dormer or flat roofs can be readily incorporated in Metframe structures as well as balconies, cantilevers, insets etc.